Bing + Bonzer

Greetings, Shredderz! As I am sometimes wont to do, I thought I’d point you all in the direction of a couple of sweet sleds that are currently listed for sale. Bonzer aficionado Tim Orr is selling an original 1977 Campbell Brothers Bonzer and a 1968 Bing Surfboards Minigun model. Both boards are located on the Big Island, Hawaii. You can find a link to the listing here. Tim was also gracious enough to give me permission to use the excellent photos he took.

One condition of using Tim’s photos was that I credit all the relevant folks, which I’m happy to say is part of the Shred Sledz program. The Campbell Brothers Bonzer was shaped by Malcolm, and the measurements are 6’4″ x 20″ x 2 5/8″. Over the years Tim has not only collected more than his fair share of Bonzers, he has also built surfboards and done ding repair.

The yellow board is a 1968 Bing Surfboards Minigun measuring in at 7’1/2″ x 21 1/4″ x 2 3/4″. It’s unclear who shaped the Bing. The yellow W.A.V.E. Set fin on the Bing is not the original one that came with the board, but it’s definitely era correct.

These boards aren’t all that similar, per se, but the pairing immediately brings to mind the many connections between Bing Surfboards and the Campbells. The Campbell Brothers first partnered with Bing to distribute their Bonzer design to a wider audience. Bing head shaper Mike Eaton continued to produce Bonzers under the Bing label, and then under the Eaton Surfboards brand until his passing.

Last but not least, I loved this shot of both boards. I love the contrast between the Brutalist rails and pintail on the Bing, and then the many, dramatic curves found on the Bonzer, whether it’s the pronounced channels, or the exaggerated concave combined with the swallow tail.

If you’re interested in purchasing both boards, check out the listing here.

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  1. Tim Orr says:

    Aloha Henry,
    Mahalo for reaching out to me, the write up & kind words you said regarding my boards! I’m about 99.9% sure that the yellow Bing Minigun was shaped by Mike Eaton, but no signature. When he visited my workshop, many years ago, prior to his passing, he & I got the opportunity to go through all of the boards he had shaped in my quiver. He said that he “most likely” shaped it, as well as a Bing ‘Vincent’ model I had & a G&S singlefin ‘Fish’ shape I have as well. Most of the others all have his ‘EATON’ signature. (R.I.P. Mike Eaton🌅🌊🕊️) Much love & respect.
    Big Mahalo to Malcolm & Duncan Campbell for their Bonzer Surfboard design & invention, and for sharing it so freely with the world. A special thank you to Bing Copeland & Mike Eaton for all the great boards over the years & for recognizing & bringing the Bonzer Surfboard design to the forefront in 1973, giving credit where credit’s due to the Campbell Brothers for their innovative design and mindful surfing. They all sure have brought much Stoke to surfing & surfers from “days of future passed” to present day Soulsurfers & those seeking something other than the mass produced computer generated cookie cutter shapes found in most surfshops these days.
    I am a ‘Bonzer Believer.’ All glory to God.🌅
    Mahalo nui loa & have a Bonzer day!
    Tim Orr