Another Mike Slingerland Aipa / SNI Sting

It’s been less than a week since I wrote up an Aipa / Surfing’s New Image sting, but when it rains, it pours. Pictured here is another Aipa / SNI sting shaped by Mike Slingerland. The board belongs to Steve Wray, who has been kind enough to share photos of many boards in his quiver, including a killer Eighties Wave Tools / Echo Beach twin fin, a pair of Bill Shrosbree-shaped Sunset single fins, and a Mike Eaton UEO model Bonzer. Well, Steve is back with even more heat, and personally, this might be my favorite board of Steve’s that he has been kind enough to share. Click the photos below to enlarge.

The Aipa / SNI sting above measures in at 7’4″. Steve found this board at a garage sale, where it had been stashed away in the rafters. Even though it’s more than four decades old, the board remains in remarkably good condition. The airbrush on the deck is insane!

Now, this wouldn’t be a Shred Sledz production without overthinking some of the small details on the board. I couldn’t help but notice that the Surfing’s New Image logo has a slightly different font than other boards I have seen. The first image below is the logo from Steve’s board. Compare this to the second image, which is taken from a different Aipa / SNI sting I wrote up earlier. I don’t know enough about typefaces to describe the differences, but hopefully it’s pretty clear from comparing the two laminates.

Mike Slingerland Surfing's New Image

Finally, Steve’s Aipa / SNI sting appears to be shaped by Mike Slingerland. This is denoted by the “S” that appears after the serial number along the stringer. See below for a close up.

I don’t know enough about Slingerland’s serial numbers to make any guesses as to when the board might have been shaped. The Aipa / SNI stings were produced in San Diego during the Seventies. I’ve read that the boards were shaped in the mid-Seventies, but I haven’t been able to verify that with anyone with first hand knowledge. For what it’s worth, the Aipa / SNI sting I wrote up last week has serial number 3828.

Mahalo Steve for sharing photos of this board, and I hope all of you got as much of a kick out of seeing this gem as I did!

Aipa / Surfing’s New Image Sting by Mike Slingerland

Greetings, Shredderz! Look, I’m practically contractually obligated to write a blog post any time I see a rad little Aipa / Surfing’s New Image sting that’s listed for sale. There just so happens to be one such example listed on Craigslist. I’ve reproduced some of the photos from the listing below.

First, you’ll probably notice the beautiful gradient airbrush that decorates so many of these Aipa / SNI boards. I’m not sure who worked in the SNI factory during this time, but I’ve noticed that these boards almost always have killer airbrushes on them (check out this beaut, for example).

According to the seller, the Aipa / SNI sting measures in at 6’6″. Apparently this was not one of the stock lengths that the brand offered when the boards were made, and this had to be custom shaped. The seller claims the board is in all original condition, and while it’s not museum quality or anything, it’s obviously still in great shape.

Shout out to the seller, by the way, for taking great pics of a beautiful board. I also really dig the foliage in the background. It sounds petty, but one of my Craigslist pet peeves are people who insist on taking photos of beautiful boards set against some hoarder-like backdrops. Anyway, I digress!

One final little tidbit about this stick: I believe that it was actually shaped by Mike Slingerland, as evidenced by the “S” that appears on the stringer after the serial number. The vast majority of the Aipa / Surfing’s New Image stings I have seen were shaped by Rick Hamon, who went on to become a longtime in-house shaper at Rusty Surfboards. You see less of the Slingerland boards, and then every once in a while you’ll stumble across the Donald Takayama-shaped stings. I have only ever seen pictures of a handful of the Aipa / SNI stings shaped by Takayama.

The seller hasn’t mentioned a price — looks like he’s fielding offers for this stick. The board is located in South Florida. Check out the listing here and if you end up snagging this thing, please do give me an update.

Wave Tools Jeff Parker Model & More: Weekend Grab Bag

Shredderz, I can’t lie: it has been some time since I last offered up an entry of our Weekend Grab Bag series. But better late than never, right? Today we’ve got an eclectic group of vintage surfboards. Per Grab Bag rules, all boards must be currently listed for sale as of the time the post is published. Keep scrolling for more, starting with a sweet Wave Tools Jeff Parker Model.

Wave Tools Jeff Parker Model (eBay)

You want logos? We’ve got you covered. Pictured above is an Echo Beach era Wave Tools thruster. To exactly no one’s surprise, the board is practically drowning in awesome, oversized laminates — how sick are the ones on the rails? — and a loud herringbone pattern paint job. Parker’s Jack of Spades personal logo is all time. I’m also intrigued by the outline. The pronounced wings make it look like a more aggressive predecessor to the bump squash tail thrusters that were popular in the Eighties. If I’m not mistaken, the board is only 5’2″, but that hasn’t put a damper on the bidding. As of the time the post was written, the board was already at $640, despite needing a decent amount of work. The photo at the top of the page features Parker on a different but similarly colorful Lance Collins design; photo is by Mike Moir.

Surfing’s New Image Aipa Sting by Rick Hamon (eBay)

I’ve long had a fascination with the stings Rick Hamon shaped under the SNI / Aipa label. The one you see above is a nice and clean example. I think the price is quite high, but hey, it’s a lovely board and the seller provided some great pics, too. The seller dates the board to 1974 and the board is 7’4″. Love the airbrush colors and the pin line.

Gordon & Smith Midget Farrelly Stringerless Model (eBay)

Last but not least we have a very cool G&S Midget Farrelly Stringerless Model in mostly original condition. Like the SNI / Aipa sting above, I think the price is on the high side, but it’s a very cool older board. I hesitate to even link to this older post I wrote, but it contains some decent info on the Farrelly’s various collaborations with Gordon & Smith. The board is 9’10”, and according to the seller it was likely shaped in either 1966 or 1967. I am guessing the G&S Midget Farrelly Stringerless Model was shaped right before the Transition Era took off. The seller believes it was likely shaped by either Mike Eaton or Skip Frye. Those are interesting theories for sure, but I don’t know enough about G&S history to weigh in one way or another.

Aipa Wave Crest Hawaii Sting

Greetings, Shredderz! Today we’ll be featuring a board that is equal parts unusual and cool. Pictured here is an Aipa Wave Crest Hawaii sting with some positively supersized dimensions. The board clocks in at a whopping 9’4″, which is a good two plus feet longer than what you might expect from a classic Aipa sting. You can find a link to the eBay listing for the sting gun here.

Aipa Wave Crest Hawaii Sting Gun.jpg

Every time I look at this board I find myself doing another double take at its outline. Look at how high up those wings are from the tail! If the board is 9’4″, per the listing, you have to figure the wings are good four feet, minimum, from the back of the board. I’ve never seen another sting with dimensions close to this one. Maybe I need to get out more, but all the other examples I have seen are in the six foot plus range, to maybe hovering just under eight foot.

I can only imagine that this Aipa Wave Crest Hawaii sting must have been designed for some serious Hawaiian surf. Sadly, I’m much better at writing about surfboards than I am at riding them, so I’ll defer to someone else on how the stretched out dimensions of this outline might have affected the performance of the board.

The sting also has beveled rails on the bottom. The red board pictured above on the left is the same board featured in this post; the yellow board to its right is a different Aipa Wave Crest Hawaii sting that I own. Apparently the beveled rails, often paired with a step bottom, were a fairly common feature for later editions of the famous Aipa sting.

I think there is a good chance the red Aipa Wave Crest Hawaii sting was not shaped by Ben Aipa himself. (I’ve also written up the Aipa Surfing’s New Image boards, apparently none of which were shaped by Aipa.) Randy Rarick told me over email that Ben Aipa consistently signed his name and a number on the decks of his boards. In addition, Aipa also used some ghost shapers to produce some boards under his namesake label. The Aipa Wave Crest Hawaii sting doesn’t appear to have an Aipa signature or a number anywhere on its deck. That said, it is still an absolutely awesome surfboard.

The sting in question has seen better days, and shout out to the seller for carefully documenting the board’s condition throughout all of the photos. If you click through to the eBay link you’ll see, for example, that there’s a wide open spot on the tail that would require a decent amount of work.

That said, this Aipa Wave Crest Hawaii sting’s fixer upper status doesn’t seem to have hurt the price. There’s already a bid on the board for $650, which doesn’t even include the cost of any repairs or shipping. I think that speaks to the collectibility of any sting bearing Aipa’s name, regardless of whether or not Ben shaped it himself. And for good reason, too — Aipa’s sting is one of coolest designs ever, if you ask me, and there aren’t a whole lot of them floating around.

Check the board out here on eBay if you’d like to see more.

 

Aipa Twin Fin by Terry Senate

Greetings, Shredderz! Recycling is great for the environment, which is one of the many reasons I decided to take a closer look at a board I posted about on Instagram a few days ago. The Ben Aipa twin fin you see pictured here is no longer up on Craigslist, and last I heard, the bidding was around $950. It’s quite an increase considering the original asking price was a cool $200, but after what I’m guessing was a parade of very interested buyers, the seller put two and two together.

I can’t say I’m totally shocked, given the awesome colors and laminates on the board. There are a few dings here and there, but otherwise it’s in great condition. It looks like these are Star System fins but I’m not 100% certain. If I had to guess I would say the Aipa twin fin was shaped during either the late 1970s or early 1980s.

What did throw me for a bit of a loop was the fact the Aipa twin fin was shaped by Terry Senate and not Ben Aipa. I have never seen a Senate-shaped board with Aipa logos, but after doing a little digging online, I was able to find this one on The Surfboard Project.

Aipa Twin Fin by Terry Senate 5
Close up of the signature on the Aipa twin fin. As you can see, it is clearly signed by Terry Senate.

Terry Senate is a San Clemente-based shaper who makes boards under his own label. Previously, Senate also did a ton of work for Infinity Surfboards. Anecdotally, it seems like a decent number of these Infinity / Senate boards pop up here and there on Craigslist in Southern California. I also absolutely love this Infinity / Senate 80s thruster, which I posted about on Instagram a few weeks back.

The San Clemente Times ran a brief profile on Senate that mentions how he studied under both Steve Boehne (who ran Infinity) and Ben Aipa. The article suggests that Boehne and Aipa tutored Senate simultaneously. Given Boehne’s Infinity Surf Shop was based out of Huntington Beach, this leads me to believe Aipa must have been shaping out of Orange County for some period of time. I suppose it’s possible that Senate could have shaped some boards during some trips to Hawaii, but I’m not certain.

Either way, the Aipa twin fin featured here is an awesome board (and the script Aipa laminates on the rails are an awesome and underutilized touch!) The ~$950 price tag, if reports are accurate, speaks to the collectibility of Aipa boards, even in cases when the boards were quite clearly shaped by other shapers.

Vintage Ben Aipa Ad: Sagas of Shred

Greetings, Shredderz! Today’s Sagas of Shred entry is short but a worthy (I hope) follow on to most recent post, which featured an Aipa-branded but Rick Hamon-shaped sting. This ad comes from a 1981 issue of Surfer Magazine, after the 70s heyday of the Sting. Based on the copy I’m guessing it’s an ad for Aipa’s twin fin designs. The timing lines up, as the ad above ran at a time shortly before Simon Anderson’s thruster reached critical mass. The other interesting thing about the ad above is there is no mention whatsoever of Surfing’s New Image, which had licensed Aipa’s name for a run of California-made stings. Instead, the California distributor for Aipa’s shapes appears to be Infinity Surfboards.

I wish the photography in the ad were a little bit clearer, but oh well. It’s still pretty rad to me.

Thanks for reading and check in next week for more Sagas of Shred.

Shred Sledz Presents: 4/17 Weekend Grab Bag (Aipa, Hansen, Morey Pope, Hansen)

Back to our regularly scheduled weekend grab bags. Here’s a selection of some cool boards that have caught my eye recently.

Aipa / Surfing’s New Image Sting (Craigslist – Santa Barbara)

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Sadly, there are no bargains to be had here. Seller is asking $2250 out the gate for this Aipa / Surfing’s New Image sting. Shout out to the seller for being clear about the fact this board was shaped by Rick Hamon, and not Ben Aipa himself (see here for an earlier Shred Sledz screed on the topic.) I have never seen that stringer setup before, and the airbrush on the bottom speaks for itself! Deck isn’t perfect but that’s like pointing out a small dent on a gullwing Mercedes. Check out the board here.

Hit the jump below for some more boards, including another Aipa, and some transitional goodness..

Continue reading “Shred Sledz Presents: 4/17 Weekend Grab Bag (Aipa, Hansen, Morey Pope, Hansen)”

Shred Sledz Social Media Roundup (3/30)

Greetings, Shredderz! As always, see below for my hand picked selections of some high quality social media.

I’ve been writing about Morey Pope a bit lately, and here’s an incredible find from Buggs, who has one of the dopest surfboard collections known to mankind, and runs SurfboardLine in his free time. This is a balsa Morey Pope board from what looks to be 1966 — see the comments for some more knowledgeable people chiming in with info on this beaut.

View this post on Instagram

My hero renny

A post shared by Joel_tudor (@joeljitsu) on

Joel Tudor has been posting a lot of quality vintage content on his Instagram lately. This is a picture of Renny Yater. I’d guess late 1950s or early 1960s, but don’t quote me on that. Either way, it is one classic picture of one classic dude (and posted by another!)

Continue reading “Shred Sledz Social Media Roundup (3/30)”

Con Surfboards Sting: Mint Con-dition 1970s Single Fin

I’ve written before about my love for Con Surfboards. I’ve had some time to think about it…and I stand by everything I’ve said. I don’t know what it is but I just can’t get enough of vintage Con boards. That logo is just so killer! There’s something about the simplicity of the design that encapsulates everything I associate with the early days of California surf culture.

Photo via Ron Regalado

Enough with the pretentious prose, though: let’s get to the good stuff! In the pictures above you can see a groovy Con Surfboards sting single fin that’s currently listed for sale on eBay. The board appears to be a variant on a traditional sting design.

There are a lot of interesting things about this board, but man, check out that insane arc tail! (Honestly, I didn’t even know what to call it, until I found this helpful breakdown of different surfboard tail designs by Rusty Preisendorfer.)

The wings on the Con board are not very pronounced, and they look to be pushed quite far back compared to other sting silhouettes. For example, take a look at this Aipa sting (Aipa, of course, invented the sting). The wings on the Aipa below are wider and located further up, closer to the wide point of the board:

Photo via Surfboardline.com

The Con board also sports a step bottom, which you can find on a decent number of stings. Here’s an example of a G&S sting (although I believe this is a board made in Australia, and not G&S’ native California), via the Cronulla Surf Museum, that features a clearly visible step bottom:

Picture via Cronulla Surf Museum

With that said, I can’t find any evidence of Con ever having made a sting. I’m not sure whether this was a specific model of board, or, more likely, a one-off. As for the date, Stoked-n-Board has a great entry on Con Surfboards, which has some good clues for when the board might have been made.

First, the board featured in the post has a clearly identifiable logo. It is the combination of Con’s script logo from the 70s, along with its classic red circle design. According to Stoked-n-Board, this logo was only produced between 1969 and 1974.

Those dates line up well with the other details for the board. First, you have a gorgeous rainbow fin in a fin box (not sure what kind of fin system), which points towards very late 60s and the 70s. Second, the sting was a design that came to prominence in the 70s, mostly thanks to Ben Aipa and the top Hawaiian pros of the time. According to the Encyclopedia of Surfing, the sting was invented in 1974. (See here for an earlier post on Aipa stings).

More than anything, I’m stunned that the board appears to be in such great condition. It’s almost to the point where I began to wonder if it was a retro board shaped more recently. However, I have my doubts that a retro board would have a rainbow fin, not to mention the funky details (the step bottom and the wings). My guess? The board at the top of the page is just in fantastic condition.

The board is going for $750. As far as I know, there’s no special historical significance to this thing. $750 is never cheap, but if I’m correct in saying the board is all original and in such fantastic condition, I’d argue that’s actually a reasonable price.

You can check out the board here.

Ben Aipa for Kimo’s Surf Hut

File this guy under things I have never seen before…

This is a 9′ Ben Aipa-shaped longboard with a logo from Kimo’s Surf Hut. The Aipa signature is definitely consistent with other signatures I have seen from genuine Aipa boards. I have never heard of Kimo’s Surf Hut before, but it looks like it’s a surf shop located on the eastern side of Oahu.

The board measures 9′ and it’s $550, available on Craigslist near Los Angeles. I think the asking price of $500 might be steep – especially since it looks like there could be some pretty bad damage on the nose – but it’s a cool example of a board from a well-known shaper with a very uncommon logo.

Craigslist listing here.