Greetings, Shredderz! I’m stoked to be coming at you today with a board that I shockingly have not written up before (or, more likely, I wrote it up years ago and just can’t find the original post): the Donald Takayama Joel Tudor Model. Takayama helped guide Joel Tudor during the early parts of his career, and the two collaborated on a number of boards that I’ve featured here on the blog. There is the Joel Tudor Flow Model; a line called “60’s Longboard Classic’s” (sic), which encompasses a few different templates; and here, what I’m simply referring to as the Donald Takayama Joel Tudor Model. I don’t have exact details on how these different models compare to one another, but it’s pretty easy to spot some immediate differences. Keep reading for a detailed breakdown.
First things first: I was able to get a little more info on this board, as Joel Tudor chimed in on Instagram with some background info. This board was shaped sometime around 1993. Tudor — who I believe has been vocal about being anti 2+1 fin setups — rode 2+1 himself between 1993 and 1998. After winning his first world title in 98, Tudor switched to single fins for his longboards and hasn’t changed since. The other important aspect to note is the cutaway fin, which is similar to what Tudor was riding during this period in the 90s. It seems like the cutaway fin template has also fallen out of favor with Tudor, but I can’t say for sure.
Many of these Takayama models were re-named over the years. The Joel Tudor Flow Model was apparently re-named to the “Double Ender”, and the Joel Tudor Model featured here was re-named the DT-3. The proof can be found on the Surfboards by Donald Takayama website’s entry for the DT-3 Model, which features a video of Max Weston riding a Joel Tudor Model with the exact same laminates as the one in this post.
The DT-3 is also described as a “diamond tail 2+1 longboard”, which perfectly describes the vintage board you see here. I believe these models were renamed after Joel Tudor left Takayama’s stable of team riders, which makes sense. You can also clearly see the differences between the Donald Takayama Joel Tudor Model and say, the Flow Model (which has a pintail), and the various 60’s Longboard Classics shapes.
It’s unclear to me if the Donald Takayama Joel Tudor Model was hand shaped. It doesn’t have a signature, but I wouldn’t read too much into it. I know I’ve geeked out before over boards that bear Donald’s pencil signature, but I’ve also heard that some of these signatures were done by production shapers. Who knows for sure. I still dig the boards with hand written pencil signatures on them, and I like that they were produced when Donald was still alive, but I also think that’s probably a pretty superficial distinction.
The Joel Tudor Model was posted on Craigslist, but unfortunately for the rest of us, the board has already been sold. Maybe it’ll pop up again but if nothing else I’m stoked the seller took such care to take great photos of a collaboration between two legendary figures in surf history. Last but not least, here’s another rad example of a Donald Takayama Joel Tudor Model, which I believe was one of Joel’s personal boards: