Bob Hurley for Windansea Surfboards

Greetings, Shredderz! There’s a Windansea Surfboards single fin currently listed for sale on Craigslist in the Inland Empire (of all places). You can find a link to the board here. It is a clean example of a classic Seventies single fin, but even better, the board was shaped by none other than Bob Hurley. The timing here is a bit ironic, given that Nike recently announced the sale of the Hurley brand to a decidedly non-core sounding company named Bluestar Alliance, representing the latest blow to the once-flush surfwear industry. And yeah, we’re getting a bit off topic now, but it’s worth remembering Bob Hurley’s remarkable career. By the late Nineties Hurley was already a surf industry fixture, having spent years running Billabong’s US business. But in the late Nineties Hurley stepped away from a comfortable perch at Billabong to strike out on his own, and later sold his eponymous brand to Nike for tons of cash. If nothing else, the man is an incredible entrepreneur, and one who took a huge risk when he had everything to lose.

Even better, before Hurley became a clothing magnate he was a well-regarded shaper in Orange County. Hurley shaped under a few labels, including his own Hurley Surfboards / International Pro Designs brand.

Hurley also shaped for a few other brands, including Lighting Bolt, and Hot Stuff Surfboards, where he shaped some of the Rabbit Bartholomew twin fin models in the US.

In the mid Seventies, Hurley also spent some time at Windansea Surfboards. I don’t know the exact years Hurley spent at the label, but we do know that in 1976 Hurley was churning out shapes for Windansea. I have a real soft spot for the rare and obscure brands where famous shapers got their starts, and the Hurley / Windansea combo definitely counts.

You don’t see a ton of Hurley’s Windansea Surfboards sticks floating around these days, much less ones in great condition. I’ve only seen a handful of Hurley Windansea boards, including one below, which was sold a little while back on eBay.

Of the Windansea Surfboards shaped by Bob Hurley that I have seen, all of them were signed on the deck in pen, like the board above. I don’t have a reliable way of identifying the boards otherwise, and I wouldn’t be surprised if there are some Hurley boards out there that he didn’t sign.

The board you see above is the Windansea Surfboards Bob Hurley single fin that’s currently for sale on Craigslist. As you can see, it’s in fantastic condition, especially considering its age. The board is listed for sale at $575. There are no dimensions listed on the ad, but according to an earlier listing, the board measures 6’11” x 20″ x 2.5″. Maybe I’m a bit salty because I missed out, but the Windansea stick you see here was actually listed on Craigslist over a week ago at a significantly cheaper price. That said, I can’t write about how much I admire Hurley for his business acumen and then get mad at some enterprising Craigslist sellers for leaping on a good opportunity.

Anyway, as you can see from the photos above, the Craigslist Windansea board is pretty stunning. I love the colors and by now you should know that I’m an absolute sucker for an original matching fin. I think the price is on the ambitious side, but on the other hand, at times I’m surprised there isn’t more of a market for Hurley’s shapes. As mentioned earlier, surf history will no doubt remember Hurley as one of the greatest businessmen the industry has ever seen. More importantly, Hurley had long since established himself as a respected shaper before he went on to helm not one but two all-time surf brands. I’m pretty neutral on the surf industry, but you have to respect the fact that all the big brands, whether it was Gordon Merchant at Billabong, Bob McKnight at Quiksilver, Richard Woolcott at Volcom, or Doug “Claw” Warbrick at Rip Curl, were all built by people who surfed, first and foremost. Bob Hurley is definitely in that category, and I can’t think of a better way to pay tribute to his career than by celebrating the handmade creations that started him off on his journey.

Social Media Roundup: Autumn Advancing

Greetings, Shredderz! By now you may know the drill: keep scrolling for some of my favorite surf and vintage surfboard-related Instagram posts in recent memory.

Can you believe the venerable Channel Islands brand has been around for fifty years?! It’s a bit hard to digest. Hint hint, there might be some cool Al Merrick boards coming up on the blog soon, so stay tuned for that.

How cool is David Nuuhiwa?! Definitely way cooler than me, and probably cooler than you, too (no offense). I’ve seen lots of pics of Nuuhiwa in some truly out there get ups, and I really dig this relatively conservative look in contrast. I wish I knew more about all of Nuuhiwa’s work with different surfboard labels, which the caption briefly covers.

Bob Hurley shaped for Lightning Bolt…who knew?! This thing is gorgeous, though. 1979 single fin with an incredible color combo and Bolt logo on the deck.

Donald Takayama was a member of the storied Jacobs Surfboards surf team before he made a name for himself as a shaper. I’m mostly used to seeing pictures of Takayama from when he was older, but it’s a blast to see some photos of him from his younger days.

Dave Rastovich with an Andreini edge board! Marc Andreini is one of my favorite shapers (in fact, I have a 9′ Serena sitting next to me as I type this entry), and Rasta likely needs no introduction. There’s a great Surfer’s Journal article on some George Greenough edge boards that Rastovich surfed at Cloudbreak. Stoked to see Andreini and Rastovich continuing to explore Greenough’s designs together.

Photo at the top of the page is David Nuuhiwa. Photographer unknown; source is David Nuuhiwa Surfboards page on Facebook.

Hurley: Before the Clothes

Did you know that Bob Hurley, founder of his eponymous surfwear label, is not just a surf mogul but a well-regarded surfboard shaper in his own right? I just came across this board – for sale in San Juan Capistrano / Costa Mesa, found on Craigslist – having been on the prowl for a Hurley-shaped board. (If you ever want to see a grown man cry, ask me about the vintage Hurley gem that popped up on Craigslist about a year ago that I still regret not buying…but I digress.) This one is fairly recent, but it’s still go the sweet International Pro Designs logo, which Bob shaped for back in the day. While Hurley has become something of the borg when it comes to SoCal surf culture, and all the negative things one associates with it, Bob Hurley is an absolute legend not just for his business exploits but his skill with a planer. Oh, and lest I forget, this thing is only $250! I don’t think he shapes a ton any more and I don’t know that he sells his boards in shops anywhere. If I’m wrong about that please let me know! Looks like there might be some pressure dings on the deck but otherwise in pretty good shape. According to the signature, Bob may have shaped this for his son Jeff. Anyway – a really cool little piece of modern SoCal surf culture for sale at a very reasonable price. Located on Craigslist here.