Yes, Yet Another Bing Bonzer

If you’re getting sick of me writing about Bing Bonzers…well, you might want to reconsider your Shred Sledz patronage. And trust me, this is not a blog that can afford to lose any more readers! But I digress — pictured here is a certifiably bitchin’ Bing Bonzer that’s currently for sale on Craigslist in Orange County, California. All pics in this post are via the Craigslist listing, which you can find here.

I don’t like to think of myself as a grouchy old guy grumbling about how they don’t make ’em like they used to…but it’s hard not to look at the fifty-year-old board pictured above and come to that exact conclusion. In particular, I can’t stop looking at the resin pinlines. They are so clean and subtle but also make the board pop. The color combo is incredible, too. Overall, the surfboard is striking without seeming at all excessive.

Bing Bonzer Tail and Fin.jpg
This is a beautiful surfboard. The End.

How sexy is that matching fin, too?! You can also see the signature deep double concave in the photo above, as well as the Bonzer branded side bites. I love the contrast between the sharp lines of the side bites and then the pronounced curves of the concave in the tail. I think the Bing Bonzer is one of the most beautiful shortboards that has ever been created.

Now, as for the price: the seller is asking $800. I have seen better deals on boards like this, but I have also seen much worse. And while it seems like Bing Bonzers aren’t ultra rare, they don’t often pop up for sale, and the condition can always be a crap shoot. This example has some noticeable heel dents on the deck, and some nicks scattered throughout, but the most important aspects of the board have been well preserved over the years. Of course, I haven’t seen the board in person myself, so standard caveats apply. Provided there aren’t any issues with the board that aren’t shown in the pictures, I think this is a pretty fair price for a genuine Bing Bonzer.

There’s no telling who shaped it — possibly Mike Eaton, I guess — nor are any dimensions listed. You can check out the Bing Bonzer on Craigslist here.

Price Checks: Vintage Bing Bonzer

Greetings, Shredderz! Today we are featuring a beautiful little vintage Bing Bonzer that sold on eBay for $800. You can find a link to eBay listing here; all photos in this post are via the listing.

My take is this is a good price for a very cool board. By contrast, I wrote up another Bing Bonzer, albeit one in much better condition, that sold on eBay for $1,100. The Bing Bonzer looks to be pretty good condition, especially considering its age.

When I first saw the vintage Bing Bonzer pictured below, it almost looked like a stubby-esque outline. However, I was surprised to see the dimensions: 8′ x 21 3/4″ x 2 1/4″.

Vintage Bing Bonzer Nose.jpgVintage Bing Bonzer Side.jpg

I really love the prominent beak in the nose. This board looks like it has tons of paddling power. The subtle pinlines on the deck and the cream and blue colorway are both beautiful touches, too.

I can’t help but compare this Bing Bonzer to other examples I have seen. The first thing that stands out to me is the Bonzer logo that appears on the side bites. See below for a close up from the board that just sold on eBay:

Vintage Bing Bonzer Fins.jpg

Now, see below for three other Bing Bonzers I have written up previously. You’ll notice the Bonzer logo is different on the three boards below. The text is in all caps and it’s not quite as “round” as the font on the white eBay vintage Bing Bonzer, for lack of a better word.

In addition, the entire tail end of the eBay Bing Bonzer looks different from other examples I have seen. The white eBay board has a much more mellow double concave in the tail compared to the extreme scooped-out design of the three Bing Bonzers above. In addition, the eBay board has a round tail. One other random note: I have seen a different version of the Bing logo that includes the word “Bonzer” in it, which is different from the standard Bing logo on the deck of the eBay board.

It seems clear to me that the eBay board is a different model than the trio of Bing Bonzers pictured above. However, I’m not sure which came earlier — the Bonzers with the super deep tail concaves and the all caps logo on the side bite fins, or the eBay board. It’s also possible they were produced at the same time, but I think that’s less likely. A knowledgeable friend thinks the eBay board might be a later version of the Bing Bonzer, but I can’t confirm any of this. According to the Campbell Brothers’ website, the Bing Bonzer was only produced between 1973 and 1975 at the latest.

If you have any clues about the dates different vintage Bing Bonzer boards were produced, please let me know! Finally, you can find a link to the board featured in this post here.

 

Concave for Days: Bonzer Tails

Greetings, Shredderz! If you’re a regular reader of the blog by now you know that I have a soft spot for the Bonzer. The Bonzer is a board I have written up numerous times, and I don’t expect that to stop any time soon! As the title suggests, this post will focus on the dramatic concave that you see in early versions of the Bonzer. A friend read some of my earlier posts on the Campbell Brothers‘ iconic design, and was kind enough to send some close up shots of a few of the Bonzers he owns. Give him a follow on Instagram when you get a chance. He has an insane collection with a lot of gems from Santa Barbara-area shapers.

Vintage Campbell Brothers Bonzer TailVintage Campbell Brothers Bonzer Tail 1

As you can see, the photos really give you a great idea of just how extreme the double concave is in the tail. Pictured above is a vintage Campbell Brothers Bonzer, which I would guess was shaped sometime during the Seventies. I’m still tripping out on the curvature of the fin box, which looks like it was modified to fit the bottom contours of the board.

Vintage Bing Bonzer TailVintage Bing Bonzer Tail 1

The second board is a Bing Bonzer, which I think was also shaped during a similar time period. Check out those branded side bite fins! The tail of the board is practically scooped out, which would have helped create water flow out the back. I am far from an expert on fluid dynamics, though, so rather than butcher the science behind this influential design, I’ll instead refer you to Malcolm and Duncan Campbell’s helpful rundown on Bonzer mechanics.

Finally, you can see a comparison between the Bing Bonzer and the Campbell Brothers model at the very top of the page. As you can see, the two vintage Bonzers are extremely similar to one another, which shouldn’t come as a surprise, given that the Campbell Brothers actively worked on the Bing version alongside Bing Copeland and Mike Eaton.

Thanks to Jesse for supplying the pics for the post! And if you have any photos of any rad boards you’d like to see featured here, don’t hesitate to reach me by email, or DM me on Instagram.

Bing Bonzer Surfboard Price Check

Greetings, Shredderz! As you may know by now, I’m an unabashed admirer of the Bing Bonzer (and heck, bonzers in general). I’ve written up numerous Bing Bonzers before, and as long as cool examples keep popping up, that trend will continue. The Bing Bonzer surfboard featured in this post recently sold on eBay, which is a great opportunity to get some good info on what these boards command on the open market. Keep reading below for some more information on the board…

The Bing Bonzer surfboard featured here is in great condition. If you’re dead set on nitpicking, it looks like there might be a few tiny pressure dings on the bottom. Otherwise, it looks pretty pristine. The Bing Bonzer surfboard also has some beautiful colors. I love the combination of the deep cherry red pigmentation on the bottom and the subtle cobalt blue pin lines on the deck. I’m a sucker for the branded side bite fins, and on this board they are in great original condition. Finally, the Bing Bonzer surfboard comes complete with a Rainbow fin. The posting isn’t clear, but if I had to guess, I would say the board is entirely original. All in all, it’s a stunning board.

As you can see from the eBay listing, this Bing Bonzer surfboard sold for a cool $1,100. Even though the board is in great condition and has some wonderful touches, I was still a bit surprised by the high price. Moreover, the board was available only for local pickup in northern Florida.

Is the board worth the money? Well, that’s not really for me to say. Nonetheless, given the rarity of these boards, and the enduring appeal of the Campbell Brothers’ design, I wouldn’t be surprised if stellar examples of Bing Bonzers continue to climb in value over the years.

Vintage Bing Bonzer Duo

Greetings, Shredderz! Today’s post brings you a pair of vintage Bing Bonzer boards that are currently for sale on Craigslist. I wrote up another Bing Bonzer earlier this month — check out that post here. Without any further ado, here are the boards:

Vintage Bing Bonzer #1: 7’1″ with Diamond Tail (For Sale on Craigslist Ventura)

Pics above are via the Craigslist posting. The yellow vintage Bing Bonzer pictured above is in pretty good condition considering it’s 40+ years old. Still, you can see some obvious spots on the deck where repairs were made. The deck has some sun damage, but now we’re just nitpicking. The glass-on side bite fins are remarkably well preserved, and I just love the Bonzer logo! The last shot gives a great close-up of the concave in the tail. The seller is asking $800 for this board.

Vintage Bing Bonzer #2: Dimensions Unknown (For Sale on Craigslist Orange County)

Pics above via the Craigslist posting. Sadly, no dimensions are provided, but the board is very similar to the first vintage Bing Bonzer featured in this post. It’s nice to see a slightly different color combination, too: Board #2 has a green Bonzer logo on the side bite fins, and then a red Bing logo on the deck.

Vintage Bing Bonzer 4.jpg
Close-up shot of the tail. Pic via Craigslist.

One thing that stands out about Board #2 is the different fin. Board #1’s fin looks like it is plastic, whereas Board #2 could be fiberglass. It’s difficult for me to say without looking at each board in person. If anyone has info on the original fins that came with vintage Bing Bonzer surfboards, let me know! This board is listed at $500, which seems like a great price for a Bing Bonzer in great condition.

It’s unclear to me who shaped each of these boards. The vintage Bing Bonzer I wrote up earlier bore Mike Eaton signatures (which were not pictured in the post). Both of the Bonzers above do not have any markings that I could discern.

Finally, you can see that both boards have standard Bing logos on the decks. At some point, however, Bing produced a combination Bing Bonzer logo. I have included one below. Stoked-n-Board offers up some clues for dating the boards above, via the logo designs. According to S-n-B’s excellent Bing entry, the non-Bonzer variant of the logo was produced starting in 1970. S-n-B claims the Bing Bonzer logo,  pictured directly below, was used beginning in 1972. By that math, both vintage Bing Bonzers above were likely produced between 1970 and 1972. This is by no means definitive, but that’s the best I could come up with.

Vintage Bing Bonzer Logo
Here is a version of the Bing Bonzer logo that was reportedly used starting in 1972. Note that both boards featured above have the standard Bing logo with no reference to the Bonzer.

Check out Board #1 here, and Board #2 can be found here.

Bing Bonzer by Mike Eaton

Pictured below is a Bing Bonzer shaped by Mike Eaton that is currently for sale on Craigslist in Orange County. You can find a link to the board here. The Bonzer was invented by the Campbell Brothers in the late 1960s / early 1970s in Ventura, California. Their website has an excellent overview of the history of the design. The design, which predated the thruster by almost a decade, endures today. The board above, however, harkens back to the original days of the Bonzer, when it was first released in collaboration with Bing Surfboards.

Mike Eaton was one of the head shapers at Bing during the early 1970s, and he continued to shape Bonzers even after leaving the label. The Bing Bonzer pictured above measures in at 6’9″, and it looks like it’s in great condition. Check out the last shot for the close up of the branded Bonzer side bites. I can’t decide if the 70s themed color scheme is ridiculous in a good way, or, as the New York Times put it, harkens to “the decade that taste seemed to forget.”

The real star of the show is the tail of the board. Check out the Bonzer branding on the side bite fins. It looks like the board has its original fin, which isn’t always a guarantee when dealing with boards from the 1970s. Note the bolt located behind the fin, which has a loop around it holding the string that is attached. This indicates that the board was likely shaped before the leash became popularized. Take a look at the two pictures above for a nice close-up of the dramatic double concave in the tail. Later on, when Eaton shaped Bonzers under his own name, he continued to produce boards with extremely deep concaves.

Eaton Bonzer Bottom The Board Source.jpg
Example of another Eaton Bonzer tail. Look at the scooped out double concaves. Pic via The Board Source
Mike Eaton Bonzer Explanation.JPG
Mike Eaton’s handwritten explanation on the hydrodynamics of the Bonzer design. All I know is if it’s good enough for Taylor Knox, it’s good enough for me! Pic via Eaton Surfboards

The seller is asking $700 for the board. You can find a link to the board here. I am a bit torn on the price. First, it’s not every day you find a genuine Bing Bonzer in good condition. That said, a first generation 6’10” Bing Bonzer failed to sell at the 2013 California Vintage Surf Auction. Estimates for that board ranged from $300 – $600, which seems low to me.

Sadly, as I mentioned in a previous post, it appears that Mike Eaton suffered a serious stroke in 2015. See this page for updates on his condition, but it has not been changed since December 2015. Mike, if you are reading this, thank you for your contributions to surfboard history, and we wish you nothing but the best!

Shred Sledz Presents: Mid-Week Grab Bag

Greetings, Shredderz! As always, here’s a little selection of some cool boards you can find for sale online.

Bing Bonzer on Craigslist (San Diego)

This thing is 8′4″ and it’s got all the cool branding you would expect from this unique Campbell Bros / Bing collaboration. However, there’s some discoloration going on. Check out the Bonzer-branded glass on fins, though!

Greg Noll Mini Gun on Craigslist (Sarasota, Florida)

This thing is pretty trashed, honestly. I don’t think it’s worth buying. Nonetheless, it includes a good close up picture of the Mini Gun logo. More than anything else this is a great opportunity to share some cool older surfboard logos. Click through only if you won’t be triggered by the sight of a collectible surfboard that has been abused throughout its lifetime.

Greg Noll 1950s Longboard on Craigslist (San Diego)

This board is no spring chicken either. Same deal with the other Greg Noll board listed above – just look at the cool logo. This is a rare variant that has Noll holding a camera while riding (you can see that it actually rads “Surf boards and film productions.”) One interesting tidbit is that Stoked-n-Board has the filming logo corresponding to the late 50s, but the actual green logo as being in the 1960s.

Daytona Formula V on Craigslist (West Palm Beach, Florida)

This is a really cool looking vee bottom board. I don’t think Daytona was a particularly notable Florida label, but I’ve never seen one of these before. It’s in decent condition, maybe a little pricey at $300, but I love these cool vee bottom transitional boards.

Skip Frye Gordon & Smith Longboard on Craigslist (San Diego)

If you’re wondering why the link is missing…this thing was taken down very quickly! Someone jumped on this bad boy. It was going for $500. I couldn’t get a good idea of the condition but I tend to think these boards are quite collectible.