Greetings, Shredderz! It’s another Thursday, which means another small but satisfying dose of surf culture from years past. Pictured above is a vintage Donald Takayama ad that originally appeared in Surfer Magazine in 1979. What’s interesting to me is the fact the ad is for board Takayama shaped under his own name, as opposed to his Hawaiian Pro Designs label. I’ve never been able to figure out when exactly HPD was founded — Stoked-n-Board claims 1965, but I’ve read late 1970s elsewhere — or how exactly HPD came to be. Larry Bertlemann was also involved in Hawaiian Pro Designs at some point.
The Takayama ad above features a young Joey Buran, who would famously go on to become the first Californian to win the prestigious Pipe Masters contest. Buran won the Pipe Masters in 1984, meaning this ad came out a full five years before his Hawaiian victory.
Standard Store, a rad Japanese surf shop, claims the above board is an example of a Donald Takayama Joey Buran model. I’m not so convinced, but I’m not ready to make a judgment either way. I have personally never heard of a Joey Buran signature model, and to me, the Takayama above looks like any number of twin fins that Takayama shaped during the late 1970s / early 1980s. In any case, the board above does not have any Hawaiian Pro Designs branding.
I haven’t been able to find any other pictures of Joey Buran surfing Takayama boards. If you know of any, or if you’re sitting on a secret stash of vintage surf pictures, then please do get in touch!
Otherwise, check in next Thursday for another installment of Sagas of Shred.
Greetings, Shredderz! Today we’ll be examining an awesome surfboard that crosses over a few different standouts from surf history: a Donald Takayama David Nuuhiwa Noserider shaped in the 1980s, under Takayama’s legendary Hawaiian Pro Designs label.
Nuuhiwa and Takayama’s relationship goes way back. Nuuhiwa has mentioned Takayama as one of his early influences. Later on the two men were stablemates on Bing’s legendary surf team in the 1960s, and both Takayama and Nuuhiwa had signature Bing boards to call their own. Bing’s David Nuuhiwa Noseriding Model was produced during this time, and it remains coveted among longboard collectors. Takayama played a critical role in developing both of Nuuhiwa’s Bing models, which were the aforementioned Noseriding Model and the subsequent Bing David Nuuhiwa Lightweight Model.
The board pictured above is a Hawaiian Pro Designs Donald Takayama David Nuuhiwa Noserider (now take a breath), and it is currently available on Craigslist in Norfolk, Virginia, of all places. Pics in the post are via the listing.
The David Nuuhiwa laminate is an unusual one, and I have only seen it on a handful of Takayama boards before. On the other hand, I have seen a ton of Hawaiian Pro Designs / Takayama boards with “Noserider” logos, one of which you can see below. You’ll notice there is no mention of Nuuhiwa’s name.
I’m not sure to what extent the Takayama David Nuuhiwa Noserider is a variant of the Bing David Nuuhiwa Noseriding Model or the Bing Nuuhiwa Lightweight Model. Given the two men’s history with the Bing brand, however, I would be surprised if the HPD board pictured here didn’t at least contain some of the DNA from Nuuhiwa’s earlier Bing models.
The board that is being listed for sale also has something of an interesting history, according to the seller. He claims he was given the board as a Christmas gift from his wife around 1985. The mid Eighties represented longboarding’s dark years, as the surf world’s attention had turned to high performance shortboard thrusters. In the Nineties, noseriding underwent a resurgence, thanks in no small part to the likes of Takayama and his star pupil Joel Tudor. To complete the cycle, Tudor’s surfboard brand has also produced a Nuuhiwa-esque noserider model. In any case, the board featured in this post pre-dates Takayama’s resurgence in popularity by about a decade or so, which is a cool little touch.
As you can see in the pictures, the Takayama David Nuuhiwa Noserider is in impeccable condition. It looks completely new, despite being over thirty years old at this point. The seller is asking $1,600, and while I wouldn’t say this is cheap, it’s not insane, either. If you’re interested in the board, check it out on Craigslist here.
Greetings, Shredderz! As some of you have no doubt noticed by now, the late, great Donald Takayama is a favorite around these parts. Vintage Takayama boards exchange hands pretty frequently on the secondary market, especially in the San Diego area. Donald Takayama Surfboards continues to sell templates of DT’s designs today, a few years after his untimely passing, but as always, my interest lies in vintage Takayama boards. Here are a few interesting examples, curated from my exhaustive Craigslist trawling.
Here is one of the cooler vintage Takayama boards I have spotted recently, which I believe dates to the 1980s. First, I’ll start by saying I have no clue why some Takayama boards were produced under the Hawaiian Pro Designs labels, and others only have Takayama laminates. Either way, the board pictured above and below looks like it pre-dates a lot of the vintage Takayama boards from the 1990s and 2000s that are fairly commonplace on Craigslist in San Diego. The seller also thinks the board was likely shaped during the 1980s.
The font used on the Hawaiian Pro Designs laminates is different from what you see on later vintage Takayama boards, which you can see below. There are two other nice, smaller touches about the board: one is the wooden tail block. Second, you can just make out the old-school yellow Clark Foam laminate, which is always a welcome sight:
The seller is asking $750 for the board. I could go either way on the price — I certainly don’t think this is crazy. On the other hand, the board isn’t in great condition, and I think if you’re patient, you can find newer boards in better condition at similar prices. Then again, this noserider has a couple of unique touches that would make it a nice addition for a big Takayama fan. One quick caveat, however: the Craigslist post does not have pictures of a Takayama signature, and I would look for this before making any purchase.
Example #2: 1990s Donald Takayama Hawaiian Pro Designs Competition Model
This bad boy was snapped up shortly after the ad went live. It was actually listed with the 1980s noserider above. It appears that Noah Shimabukuro, a Takayama team rider, got this 2+1 Competition model for himself!
Shimabukuro has his own signature model, which is called the Noah Ka Oi. According to the Takayama Surfboards website, this translates to “Noah is the best”, which is a fantastic name for a signature board.
I don’t know that I have seen a Takayama Competition model before. I am pretty sure the Competition model was shaped in the 1990s. You’ll notice that the Hawaiian Pro Designs font has been updated, and it has a streaky script look, as opposed to the rounded letters from the font on the 1980s noserider at the top of the page. In addition, the Takayama Competition model has a clear example of an authentic Donald signature, which I have included below.
Once again I am taking some guesses at the dates, but the thruster setup indicates the board pictured was shaped sometime after 1981. The removable center fin paired with glassed-on side fins is a setup that seems to have fallen out of fashion. As someone who obsesses over shaper signatures, I was interested to see this is the rare example of a Takayama board signed with initials, as opposed to his full name. There are tons of vintage Takayama boards out there without signatures — and the newer ones have dark laminates that say “designed by Donald Takayama” — but Takayama seems to have signed a large number of his creations. Despite the unusual use of the initials, the handwriting looks similar to the Competition Model above. Here’s another example of a Takayama signature from a board. The seller of the thruster is asking $285. I think this is a little on the expensive side, given the condition, but these older Takayamas don’t appear every day.
Pictured above is a somewhat cleaner example of a Takayama board from a similar era. It’s interesting to note that the thruster with the initials on the stringer has a Hawaiian Pro Designs laminate above the Surf Boards by Donald Takayama logo, whereas the twin fin above does not.
Donald Takayama is a surfer and a shaper whose illustrious career practically demands a longer and more in-depth post. In the meantime, I hope this post was a helpful overview of some of the options for vintage Takayama boards that one can find for sale online. Until next time, Shredderz!
Fresh off last week’s post about Mike Purpus, today we have another collaboration between the Hermosa Beach pro and a well-known shaper. The board pictured above and below is the Jacobs Mike Purpus V, a Transition Era vee bottom board that was created in the late 1960s. The board can currently be found for sale on Craigslist, and you can find a link to the listing here. Keep reading below for some more pictures of the Jacobs Mike Purpus V for sale, and some background on the collaboration between Jacobs Surfboards and Purpus.
Brief History of the Jacobs Mike Purpus V
Purpus became a Jacobs team rider when he was 14 years old. The first Jacobs Mike Purpus signature model was created under an unusual set of circumstances, befitting Purpus’ colorful personality. In 1967, Purpus had successfully made the finals of the AAA Oceanside Invitational (competing against a murderer’s row of Donald Takayama, David Nuuhiwa, Skip Frye, Corky Carroll and Mark Martinson!). When pressed by the announcer, Hap Jacobs declared that if Purpus were to win the contest, he could get his own signature model. A few waves later, Purpus sealed the victory, and the rest was history.
The initial Jacobs Mike Purpus model was a standard noserider that was similar to the Bing Noserider Model of the 1960s. Jacobs Surfboards continues to produce the original Mike Purpus model today, but I believe Matt Calvani is now the head shaper.
Just as we saw with Rick Surfboards and the Barry Kanaiaupuni model, which began as a noserider and then morphed into a mini-gun design in the blink of an eye, the Jacobs / Purpus collaboration underwent dramatic changes in a very short period of time.
By 1968, around a year after the Jacobs Mike Purpus model was introduced, the Transition Era was underway. Surfers now sought out turns and maneuvers in favor of extended rides on the nose, and as a result, shapers began to make smaller, more nimble boards. The Jacobs Mike Purpus V employs many of the design elements that emerged during the Transition Era. As the name suggests, the Jacobs Mike Purpus V has a pronounced vee bottom in the tail. The board also has a dramatic scoop deck, which you can see below.
The Jacobs Mike Purpus V is a fairly rare surfboard. To date I have only seen three others online. The Surfboard Project has a Jacobs Mike Purpus V, but I believe the board has been restored. The Museum of Surf has a bitchin’ Jacobs Mike Purpus V with a similarly colorful spray job. Finally, a plain white Jacobs Mike Purpus V was sold on eBay a little over a year ago. I have included pictures of the board below:
Even though Purpus’ career extended well into the 1970s, his vee bottom board was produced closer to the end of Hap Jacobs’ career as a surfboard builder. In 1971 Jacobs sold his business to focus on commercial fishing, and didn’t return to shaping for another twenty years. Even so, Jacobs remains a revered figure in surfing circles.
Australian Influences of the Jacobs Purpus V
The other interesting aspect about the Jacobs Mike Purpus V is that it is referred to as an Australian board in multiple places. Stoked-n-Board calls it “the first shortboard from Australia”, which is both a very strong statement as well as maddeningly vague. The Surfboard Project refers to its example as an Aussie vee bottom, but there’s no other context given.
Luckily, I found an amazing article that Purpus wrote for the Easy Reader News in which he tells some fantastic stories about the history of his collaborations with Hap Jacobs. In 1967, Purpus, alongside Skip Frye, Steve Bigler and Margo Godfrey, headed to Australia to film “The Fantastic Plastic Machine”. During this trip, Purpus encountered the vee bottom boards that had begun to usher in the shortboard revolution down under. (I’m still unclear as to whether or not Plastic Fantastic Surfboards got their name from the movie or vice versa).
Purpus’ article in the Easy Reader News sheds light on the Aussie influences on what would later become the Jacobs Mike Purpus V. The outline for Purpus’ 1968 signature model came from Aussie surf pioneers Midget Farrelly and Bob McTavish. Farrelly and McTavish disagree on who invented the vee bottom. Purpus sidestepped the controversy by modeling his new board after both Australian shapers. He says the nose of the Jacobs Mike Purpus V was taken from Farrelly’s design, and the tail from McTavish. When Purpus returned stateside, he worked with Hap Jacobs shapers Ricky James and Robert August to tweak the design.
The way Purpus tells it, Jacobs was initially resistant, and was convinced Purpus’ new board would be a dud. As a result, Jacobs promised Purpus that any vee bottom produced under the Jacobs label would bear Purpus’ personal decal. There was another boldfaced name working with Jacobs who was openly skeptical about the Purpus V: none other than Donald Takayama! Takayama apparently favored the mini-gun, which was popular in Hawaii, and saw it as a superior option to the vee bottom.
When the Jacobs Mike Purpus V began selling out, the Jacobs team riders that were surfing Takayama’s boards began to ask Donald for their own vee bottom shapes. Donald acquiesced, but as soon as Purpus caught wind of this, he reminded Jacobs of their initial agreement:
Donald could see the David Nuuiwhia Noserider ordeal starting all over when his top riders Bobby Warchola, Jim Lester, Tommy Padaca and Pee Wee Crawford, wanted V-bottoms. Donald made them V-bottoms with his decal on them. I went crying straight to Hap, who told Donald that a deal was a deal. If he wanted to make a V-bottom he would have to use my decal. Donald was furious at me and left Jacobs to open his own shop down the road by the Baskin Robins 31 Flavors in Redondo Beach. Hap remained best friends with Donald, but as far as I was concerned the divorce was final. As I look back, I should’ve asked Donald to work together on shortboard designs, using both our names but I was way too immature and wouldn’t reach puberty for several more years.
Again, the entire article is well worth a read. Purpus’ account also makes me wonder if any of Donald’s short run of Jacobs vee-bottoms have survived! I have personally never seen or even heard of one existing, but needless to say, a Jacobs Takayama vee bottom would make an incredibly rare and special board.
Here is a link to the Jacobs Mike Purpus V that is currently being offered for sale on Craigslist. The seller is asking $1700. One other little tidbit that I was unable to confirm: apparently, at some point the board belonged to Gene Cooper! Whoever previously owned the board, the Jacobs Mike Purpus V is a very cool piece of California and Australian surf history.
Greetings, Shredderz! Welcome to another installment of the Shred Sledz Grab Bag, where we’ll be taking a look at some boards that have recently been listed or sold around in the internet. And if you’re catching up, I’d like to recommend checking out the earlier post on Rick Surfboards. Without any further ado, here are some selections:
There are two Stussy surfboards for sale on Craigslist, both of which are located in New Jersey. It looks like they are being offered by separate sellers. Both of these boards are cheaper than what you might expect for Stussy boards. In the case of the board pictured above, this probably has a lot to do with the condition of the board. The board is signed by Stussy (click through to the listing for more pics), but there are numerous visible repairs and pressure dings. Check out the funny Waterman’s Guild dolphin logo! As for the second board, which also boasts a Rasta logo, it’s hard to draw any conclusions on the condition from the pictures. I emailed the seller, who claims there are no dents and dings. The board above is listed at $525, and the second board (not pictured) is offered at $500. Neither board has the over the top 80s spray jobs, but the second one seems like a pretty good deal at $500.
This board has come and gone, so if you have an itchy trigger finger and an affinity for neon, I’m sorry to disappoint you! I thought this board was an interesting litmus test for prices around pre-Echo Beach boards. The Schroff twin fin above ended up selling for $388, which was a bit below what I had expected. This board looks like it’s barely a pre-Echo Beach shape. On one hand, with the bright colors and the multiple logos, you can see the beginnings of what would become Schroff’s signature style. On the other, the board is missing the signature Schroff black and white checkered logo, and between the beaked nose and the old-school lams, it has more of a late 70s / early 80s vibe. Personally, I love this twin fin, and I thought $388 was a steal, even considering the board had a bunch of dings. Then again, it’s clear that the market favors a certain era of Schroff boards, and this one does not fit into that description. The seller just posted another Schroff board, this time with all the 80s bells and whistles, and it’ll be interesting to note where the price ends up. For another example of a pre-Echo Beach shape, check out the earlier post on a Wave Tools single fin, which is still available for $250! Check out Board Collector for some more great shots of Schroff boards if you’re interested.
Let’s switch gears to a classic 1960s noserider as a little palate cleanser to the go go Day Glo 80s boards featured above. This here is a Hansen “The Hustler” model noserider, clocking in at a serious 9’10”. The poster claims the board was shaped in 1967. This is somewhat supported by the old Newport Beach surfboard permit sticker that dates to 1969. You can also see the board has the old Hansen bolt through fin, which you’ll find on many Hansen boards from this era. Stop me if you’ve heard this one before, but info about Hansen Hustler models is scarce online. There’s another Hansen “The Hustler” noserider on sale on eBay, which is partially restored and is listed for $3,500. The board above looks all original and it is being offered at $1700. I don’t know enough about these boards to weigh in on the price, sadly. If you have more context, please drop me a line — I would love to hear from anyone with some info on this board!
Donald Takayama Hawaiian Pro Designs “In the Pink” Model
Pictured above is a Donald Takayama “In the Pink” 9’0″ noserider that was sold on Craigslist in San Diego a few weeks ago. The listing has since been removed. It’s an interesting board for a few reasons. First, look at the clear DT hand signature in the second to last pic, and compare the serial number with the one on the order form in the last photo. It’s a very cool look at a Takayama order form. I’m not sure when the board was made, but judging from the side bite fin boxes, it’s modern, likely made a few years before Takayama’s untimely passing in 2012.
Greetings, Shredderz! Sorry for all the radio silence here at Shred Sledz HQ, but I’m afraid our editorial staff was waylaid by a particularly nasty bug. But I digress. Today’s update features a rare board from a classic combination: a Donald Takayama Joel Tudor Pintail Pig currently up for sale on eBay. You can find a link to the board here. Pics via the eBay listing.
Tudor, of course, remains the world’s most famous longboarder a good two decades plus after he burst onto the scene as a wunderkind. Before his passing in 2012, Takayama had cemented his legacy as one of the finest shapers in the world. Takayama briefly disappeared from surfing during the 1980s to do time in federal prison as the result of a cocaine trafficking bust. In the nineties, Takayama revived his career and struck up a partnership with a young Joel Tudor. Their collaboration ended in 1998 — when Tudor was only 22 — as Tudor set up his own surfboard brand, working with shapers like Bill Shrosbree and Stu Kenson.
The board above is interesting for many reasons. First, Donald Takayama Joel Tudor models are generally difficult to find. I see a lot of older Takayama boards for sale on Craigslist, particularly around San Diego, where Takayama was based for much of his career (despite having been born in Hawaii), but it is more difficult to find ones with Tudor’s logo. In addition, the board above has two more interesting characteristics. First is the unusual “60’s Longboard Classic’s” (sic) laminate, which is hard to find. The other is the fact this is a “Pintail Pig”, a variant I have personally never seen before.
Here’s an example of a different board boasting the “60’s Longboard Classic’s” lam, but you’ll notice two differences: one, it doesn’t have Tudor’s name on it; two, the logo only reads “Pig.” The second aspect is a little strange, given that it sure looks like a pintail to me. The board is currently for sale on TheBoardSource.com. Pics taken via The Board Source listing (link here).
The Board Source has pictures of another Donald Takayama Joel Tudor board with the “60’s Longboard Classic’s” logo. This one, however, is not a pig design. Note that the wide point is much further up when compared with the Pig board above, and the tail is a squashtail. Note that the board is no longer for sale. You can find the original link to the board here.
Back to the board at the top of the page: it’s for sale on eBay, it’s currently listed at $800, and from what I can tell, it’s a pretty rare example of a Donald Takayama Joel Tudor collaboration. What’s the catch? Well, the board is located in France, so unless you’re a Hossegor local with an eye for collectible boards, you’re going to have to add a couple of hundred bucks to the final cost. That said, it is a cool example of one of surfing’s most classic partnerships, and that’s always worth noting. Check out the board here.
Konichiwa, Shredderz! This post is being written from lovely Japan, where I am enjoying an extended trip with Ms. Sledz. Hope all of my American friends are enjoying Memorial Day weekend. Enough about me, though, and onto the goods…
This is a KILLER shot of a lineup of some Zephyr Surfboards, posted by Instagram user @jjrober22. A couple of these boards boast what look like CR Stecyk spray jobs. I’m surprised by the length of some of these shapes, as I didn’t realize Jeff Ho shaped longer boards. I’m not sure if all of these are recent — at least a couple of the boards seem to have modern-looking fin boxes — but nonetheless it’s a colorful look at one of Los Angeles’ most revered surf brands.
My initial reaction was to apologize for posting not one but two flamboyant 80s boards in a row. Then I thought to myself, wait a second: what is Shred Sledz if not a safe space to celebrate the loud colors of 80s surf culture?! The Schroff board posted above is pretty subdued by Echo Beach standards. This thing is so cool — I love the teal paint job and the diagonal lines on the deck, especially when paired with the Rainbow Fin! Make sure you click through for all the pics, as the post is an Instagram slideshow.
Greg Liddle is probably the most famous shaper of hulls, and Kirk Putnam‘s enthusiasm for Liddle’s shapes has been well-documented. This post comes courtesy of Displacementia, a great blog specializing in hulls. For all the excitement around Liddle, it’s hard to find good pictures of his earlier boards. I’ve only seen the BMW-style logo on a few of his boards, making this post a cool peek at some vintage Liddle Surfboards.
It’s a scientifically proven fact that you can’t go wrong posting pictures of vintage Lightning Bolt boards. And sure, the thing has a bit of water damage, but I much prefer old boards with some character than a lot of the full-blown restoration jobs that prioritize aesthetics over preservation. But I digress. No matter where your preferences might lie, Gerry Lopez was and will always be the man.
Another proven fact: there is no such thing as too much neon. This here is a selection of some primo Echo Beach vehicles, courtesy Lance Collins of Wave Tools, and Peter Schroff of Schroff Surfboards. Love the Team lams on the Wave Tools boards to the right.
Click “Continue Reading” below for some more selections…
Donald Takayama is a Shred Sledz favorite. Before his passing in 2012, Takayama struck up a memorable partnership with Joel Tudor. Takayama’s brand, Hawaiian Pro Designs, continues to produce boards from Takayama’s pioneering designs, but there’s no replacement for a board shaped by the man himself. Pictured below is a vintage Donald Takayama single fin.
The board is currently for sale Craigslist in San Diego. You can find a link to the board’s listing here. The seller is asking $499 for the board, and while that sounds steep, I think it might actually be justified.
The board pictured above has actually been written up before. Check out the Takayama post on The Surfboard Project (link here) that has some pictures of the same exact board from the last time it was sold. Even better, The Surfboard Project was able to get Tudor to chime in with some great context.
According to Tudor, the Donald Takayama single fin pictured above was shaped in either 1969 or 1970. During 1968 Takayama was still shaping boards under the Surfboards Hawaii label. You’ll note the board above doesn’t have any logos for Hawaiian Pro Designs, which was Takayama’s second brand. Tudor goes on to give some great back story about how Takayama’s first label went out of business after being blackballed from receiving blanks from Clark Foam! Anyway, I urge you to check out the link on The Surfboard Project.
The board above doesn’t seem to have a signature or any serial numbers written on the stringer, both of which are very common on later-era Takayama boards. It’s begging to be fixed up a bit and restored to some of its former glory. Maybe I’m crazy, but $500 doesn’t sound that nuts for such a unique board.
You can check out the Craigslist posting for the board here.
I’ve written about Christian Fletcher before, and I will never, ever get sick of his old logo, which manages to be both an act of visual rebellion as well as a time capsule for the day glo SoCal surf scene of the 1980s and 1990s. This is an interesting example of a Fletcher board, as apparently it was shaped by pioneering Aussie shaper Nev Hyman, who founded what would later become Firewire Surfboards. The other Fletcher boards I’ve seen have been signed by California shapers like Randy Sleigh and Chris McElroy. This board was posted to the excellent Vintage Surfboard Collectors group on Facebook; click through the link for the rest.
Finally, here’s a bonus shot of Fletcher — pre-tattoos! — and a McElroy shape.
Ryan Lovelace is a talented shaper based in Santa Barbara. He posted this picture below recently, which shows an early George Greenough sailboard with an edge board design. Edge boards have come into vogue lately, thanks to shapers like Marc Andreini (Andreini), Manny Caro (Mandala), and Scott Anderson (Anderson).
Speaking of neon boards from the 80s and 90s, I’ll never, ever get sick of old Channel Islands boards. This guy on Instagram posts a bunch of sweet boards, and he has a collection of vintage Merricks that makes me sick with envy. Check out his feed for more.