Social Media Roundup: March Madness

Aloha, Shredderz! This entry is being written from beautiful Hawaii. More on that later! In the meantime, enjoy a selection of some recent social media posts from the wonderful world of vintage surfboards.

I’ve posted many of Jimmy Metyko’s photos, and as long as he keeps publishing great ones, I don’t see any reason to stop! Metyko’s photographs documented the Santa Barbara surf scene during Tom Curren’s rise, and the results are amazing. Here’s a shot of Al Merrick posing alongside two of his creations. This must have been sometime during the early to mid Eighties, given the thruster and the twin fin, and I like how the photo gives a clear idea of the rocker on both shapes.

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The name Fletcher means “arrow maker.” As with everything in life, there are times when you’ll make a u-turn and be led into the wrong way. But I think, overall, I’ve been pointed towards the right direction ——————————————————————————— (📷: Flame) #astrodeck #theoriginator #since1976 #wavewarriors #adrenalinesurfseries #thethrillisback #sideslipboogie #surfhistory #surffilm #fletcherdna #genepoolofcool #herbiefletcher #dibifletcher #artist #inventor #performanceart #wrecktangles #wallofdisaster #archipelagos #bloodwaterseries #thebiglick #caseofarrows #rvca #rvcasurf #flame #tbt @dibifletcher @astrodeck @wavewarriors @fletcherdna @rvca @rvcasurf @surfer_magazine

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Here’s a great photo of Herbie Fletcher taken by the late, great Larry “Flame” Moore. I love that Fletcher is putting one of his surfboards on a rail. There’s also some great trivia, which I had never realized before: Fletcher means arrow maker, hence the arrow logo on Herbie’s shapes!

Here’s a killer shot of Carl Ekstrom taken by Jon Foster. I was actually shocked when I read the caption — I just assumed this photo was far more recent than forty three years ago! Ekstrom is widely credited with inventing the asymmetrical surfboard back in the Sixties. Most recently Ekstrom has been collaborating with Ryan Burch. I’d love to know the back story behind the board featured in Foster’s photo! The photo at the top of the page features Carl Ekstrom posing next to one of his asymmetrical designs in the Sixties, and was originally found on the San Diego Reader website.

Last but not least, here’s Skip Frye posing alongside one of his signature fishes. How about that killer airbrush!

Happy Birthday Herbie Fletcher: Social Media Roundup

Greetings, Shredderz! As 2018 comes to a close I figured I put together one last Social Media Roundup for the year. Even better, it was Herbie Fletcher’s birthday yesterday, which conveniently provides a theme for this post. Check out the photo above of Herbie launching a Jet Ski with an awesome Pottz airbrush design. (Eagle eyed readers may remember that Herbie featured prominently in the last Roundup, but there can’t be too much of a good thing, right?) For anyone who’s read this blog in 2018, I can’t thank you enough. I hope you enjoyed reading Shred Sledz, and more importantly, I hope 2019 has even better vintage surfboard goods for you to enjoy. Now onto the fun stuff…

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Happy 70th Birthday @herbiefletcher Pic bolster

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Joel Tudor posted this photo of Herbie, which was taken by famed photog Warren Bolster. If you do a bit of digging in the comments, it turns out that this photo was the basis for the Herbie Fletcher Surfboards logo. Dig a comparison shot below.

Herbie Fletcher Logo.jpeg
Close up of the Herbie Fletcher Surfboards logo. You can clearly see the design is based off the Warren Bolster photo featured in Joel Tudor’s Instagram post above.

 

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Here’s a Greg Liddle inspired 7’10 x 21 x 3.25 displacement hull type surfboard that I hand-shaped  last week designed for North Shore surf. 5 years before I left California for Hawaii, I consistently surfed Malibu in the late Spring, Summer, and early Fall months as my favorite surf spot in California. One of my very favorite surfer’s to watch and surf with there at that time, was Greg Liddle, who was also a board builder and absolutely ripped first and second point on his Displacement Hull creations at Malibu along with his sander, Steve Crieski. When I see the “stubs” that are currently popular, and that many surfers are riding now, I can only think back 50 years ago to Greg and his long lasting influence on my surfing and shaping journey.  For those interested in Hull Displacement ideas, Greg can be reached at his website: gregliddledesigns.com

A post shared by Pat Rawson (@rawsonsurfboard) on

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Here’s two different singlefin flex keels from the 1973 era, that I still have from my South Bay influences from Jeff Ho @therealjeffho These fins were so dynamic, they made the boards we were riding and testing much faster and looser. They were thin and made from solid weave fiberglass. They also had curved bandsaw cuts in them to extenuate flex, and sometimes you could turn them so hard, that pieces would break off the fin during the turn!! Heres @therealjeffho and I together at Bob Milner’s (Robert’s Surfboards) memorial back in February 24,2018. In my opinion: in 1971-74, Jeff was way ahead of the curve over everyone else in advancing board design in our California South Bay area. What I remembered most then was Jeff innovating swallow tails, with flat decks and tucked edge rails, along with progressive flex keel fins.

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Pat Rawson continues to be one of my favorite follows on Instagram. For the longest time I associated Pat with high performance boards made to tackle serious Hawaiian surf, like the sled that enabled Tom Carroll’s infamous under the lip snap at Pipeline. I was pleasantly surprised to read that Rawson spent time surfing Malibu and overlapped with Greg Liddle, during which time Rawson developed an affinity for Greg’s famous displacement hulls. But that’s not all — Rawson’s time in Los Angeles also overlapped with Jeff Ho, the mind behind Zephyr Surfboards.

This is a stunning Morey Pope / Bob McTavish tracker. I love the groovy rainbow slip check on the deck. Transition Era designs don’t get much more classic than this one.

Last but not least Bird’s Surf Shed has a beautiful Natural Progression twin fin with a Bertlemann-esque airbrush on the deck. Love the double logo on this thing.

 

Photo at the top of the page by Denjiro Sato, and originally found via Zak Noyle.

Social Media Roundup: Herbie Fletcher’s Hawaiian Boards and More

Greetings, Shredderz! As always, here’s a smattering of social media posts from the past month or so, that I think you might enjoy. Keep scrolling for more…

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In 1969, I was having the time of my life living on the North Shore with Dibi, and surfing some of the biggest waves that ever hit the Hawaiian Islands. I hand shaped this 7’4” diamond tail board, and the nose on this board had plenty of concave; it was perfect for riding fast in the tube — and that’s just what I did! ——————————————————————————— (📷: @artbrewer) #astrodeck #theoriginator #since1976 #tractionpad #45degreetovert #wavewarriors #adrenalinesurfseries #thethrillisback #sideslipboogie #surfhistory #surffilm #fletcherdna #genepoolofcool #herbiefletcher #dibifletcher #artist #style #love #fun #performanceart #wrecktangles #wallofdisaster #archipelagos #bloodwaterseries #caseofarrows #hawaii #northshore #1969 #60s #fbf @dibifletcher @astrodeck @wavewarriors @fletcherdna @rvca @rvcasurf

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Pictured above we have two Herbie Fletcher boards shaped for Hawaii, happening at opposite ends of his career to date. The board in the top photo is a square nose longboard Herbie made recently and the lower photo features a 7’4″ diamond tail shaped in 1969.

This month Taylor Knox comes with not one but two separate entries. The first shot shows Ben Aipa making it look easy in some serious Hawaiian juice; the second is Taylor Knox putting a Mark Richards twinny through its paces.

And here’s one more that really ties the room together: MR, Owl Chapman, and Ben Aipa, sometime during the Seventies.

I wrote up this awesome Stussy twin fin recently. Here’s a shot of former Stussy team rider John Gothard brandishing another S double stick with some interesting looking fins.

Gerry Lopez Astrodeck: Sagas of Shred

Greetings, Shredderz! Today’s entry in Sagas of Shred — the series in which we feature a different vintage surf advertisement every Thursday night, California time — is an unexpected pairing in the form of a Gerry Lopez Astrodeck ad. Even though Astrodeck inventor Herbie Fletcher originally hails from California, he has a long relationship with Hawaii, including some amazing Jet Ski adventures in pumping surf. I’m not surprised that Lopez and Fletcher crossed paths on the North Shore during the Seventies and Eighties. (In fact, I even wrote up another Eighties Astrodeck ad where Gerry can be seen lurking in the background.) That said, Gerry Lopez and Herbie Fletcher strike me as an unusual pairing. Fletcher has always possessed a brash presence and the savvy of a sharp eyed businessman. Lopez, on the other hand, is known for being calm and low key, and by all accounts he has avoided the spotlight in recent years to dedicate more time to snowboarding.

This Gerry Lopez Astrodeck ad ran in the September 1982 issue of Surfer Magazine (Vol 23, No 9). I’m not sure when Fletcher invented Astrodeck, though I believe it was sometime during the late Seventies. There are a few clues that tell me the Gerry Lopez Astrodeck ad featured above happened earlier on in the company’s history. First, the logo is an earlier design (see here for the current version, which I believe has been around since sometime in the Eighties.) Second, if you look at the traction itself, it’s clearly an earlier design that predates the iconic traction pad we all know and love. By contrast, here’s another Eighties Astrodeck ad I wrote up before, and you can see the updated logo as well as the transition to tail pads.

I love this Gerry Lopez Astrodeck ad, if for no other reason there aren’t too many examples of Lopez doing ads for non-Lightning Bolt surf brands! The same issue of Surfer Magazine also has a feature on Lopez’s experience on the set of “Conan the Barbarian”. Between this Astrodeck ad and a brief Hollywood phase, I’m guessing Lopez reached his fill of the limelight.

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

Herbie Fletcher Double Dip

Greetings, Shredderz! Today’s post is just a quick hit from the archives featuring two unusual Herbie Fletcher surfboards. The photos of both boards were sent to me by a pair of generous Shredderz. Shout out to Russell and JD for passing these along — and I’d like to also issue a friendly reminder that my Instagram DMs are always open for some vintage surfboard heat! Anyway, let’s get to the good stuff:

First we have a classic Herbie Fletcher longboard, which Russell was kind enough to send along. Check out Russell on Instagram here. Apparently this board is mega thick — Russell tells me it’s close to 3″. I’m guessing it’s likely a noseriding machine, but I have yet to see this thing in person.

As you can see, the board is in pretty phenomenal condition. I can’t see any pressure dings on the surface anywhere, and it has been polished to a nice sheen. The Herbie Fletcher longboard has all the details you would want out of an older surfboard. I dig the slight bit of gradient in the tail of the Herbie Fletcher arrow logo, and the Clark Foam laminate is always a welcome sight. I’m not sure when this thing might have been shaped. If you held a gun to my head I would say the Seventies or Eighties, but that’s a wide range.

The second board is a unique Herbie Fletcher sting, which was likely shaped sometime in the Seventies. Gracias JD for sending over these pics! You can check him out on Instagram here. I mainly wanted to share this one because it’s so unusual. I have seen a good number of Herbie Fletcher single fins, but none with a sting outline, in an obvious nod to Ben Aipa’s groundbreaking design. I love the colors on this board too — there’s just something very mellow about the yellow logo and the sea green. Unfortunately some repairs were made on the bottom, as you can clearly see in the white areas, but the rest of the board looks remarkably well preserved.

Finally, if you’re in the market for a Herbie Fletcher single fin to call your own, the board featured above is still up for grabs on eBay. You can find a link to the orange Herbie board here. The price has dropped from $1100 to $850, although I’ll be curious to see if that does the trick.

Thanks again Russell and JD for the photos of these beautiful Herbie Fletcher shapes!

Grab Bag: Seventies Single Fin Selections

Greetings, Shredderz! Welcome to another installment of the Grab Bag, where I’ll happily point you in the direction of some really rad boards that are currently on sale. There are currently some great Seventies single fin surfboards floating around various corners of the internet, and here at Shred Sledz we see it as our duty to keep all you fine folks informed. Keep reading below for more…

Seventies Herbie Fletcher Single Fin (eBay)

Herbie Fletcher Dana Point Logo .jpg

I actually featured this board on my Instagram a few days back. First of all, I dig the swallow tail single fin combo. Actually, let me rewind: first of all, Herbie Fletcher is a legend, and for whatever reason, he doesn’t seem to shape boards that often these days. This Seventies Herbie shape looks to be in pretty good condition. It’s listed at $1,100, which I think is a bit on the steep side, but that’s not for me to decide.

Seventies Nectar Single Fin (Craigslist — Malibu)

Click the photos to enlarge. This Nectar Surfboards single fin looks like it could have been leaning against the wall of a house from “Boogie Nights.” The Seventies aesthetic is an easy punching bag for design snobs, but who cares?!. The painstaking spray job is truly a sight to behold, and there’s a bonus in the form of a lovely original Rainbow fin, too. The seller has listed this at $900. (I also happened to feature another Nectar board on Instagram today, too.)

Bing Seventies Single Fin (Craigslist — Santa Cruz)

Here’s a rad Bing surfboard with a very cool matching fin as well. This board is only $200, which I think is a great deal when you consider the fin is included. The Bing Seventies single fin has seen better days, for sure, but I think this is a great pickup.

Infinity Seventies Single Fin (Craigslist — North Carolina)

Infinity Seventies Single Fin.jpg

I wrote up a different Infinity surfboard last week, and it looks like that one is still for sale. Anyway, the one above is yet another swallow tail single fin, and it’s got an awesome spray job. Original fin is included, too. No price is listed on the ad but it’s definitely a lovely example of a vintage Infinity Surfboards stick.

Price Checks: Herbie Fletcher Egg

Greetings, Shredderz! By now some of you know that Herbie Fletcher is something of a Shred Sledz legend. Of course, Herbie is a legend, period, but more to the point, I have written about his boards many times before, and I don’t see that stopping any time soon. I’m also interested in surfboard prices, and a recent Herbie Fletcher egg popped up that gave a bit of insight into how much his boards sell for.

The board posted above is currently listed for sale on Craigslist, and you can find the listing here. All pics are via the listing.

The Herbie Fletcher egg is being listed at $600, and the price has been reduced a few times in the past few weeks. Initial asking price was $1,200. The same board was actually listed on Craigslist in November 2017 for $700, and it looks like it has changed hands since then. I would guess the board was shaped during the 80s and maybe the early 90s. The Herbie Fletcher thruster measures in at a solid 6’9″.

In my opinion $600 is pretty good for a Herbie Fletcher board, especially one in good condition, like the example shown here. And you know I’m a sucker for fins with logos on them!

Herbie Fletcher Egg 1

What I have seen, though, is that Herbie’s boards can command a wide variety of prices. A Herbie Fletcher single fin recently sold on eBay for $100, but the board wasn’t in great condition, and it was also shaped by Dee Miller. On the flip side, there was a Herbie Fletcher double winged single fin that sold on eBay for $259, despite being in pretty bad condition, including a missing fin box. I’m honestly shocked the double winged single fin sold for as much as it did, given the amount of repairs required to get it water tight again, much less looking good. But I take the $259 price as an indication that there’s a healthy market for some of Herbie’s boards. On the opposite end of the spectrum, there are two other Herbie Fletcher 70s single fins for sale on eBay. However, I think both are priced way too high: one is being listed for $3,200, and the other for $2,450.

One other thing that stands out is the fact that I don’t know who shaped the board. We know that Herbie employed some other shapers under his label, both from the Dee Miller board mentioned earlier here, as well as this previous post. But I can’t say either way with the egg thruster featured in this post.

So, how come the Herbie Fletcher egg above hasn’t sold yet? I honestly don’t know. If I had to guess, I would say that Herbie’s longboards and 70s single fins are his most collectible models. It appears the board is still for sale, so if you’re keen on snagging it, check out the Craigslist post here.

Astrodeck Ad: Sagas of Shred

Greetings, Shredderz! As promised, we have another episode of Sagas of Shred, which features various bits of surf history from over the years. We have written about old Astrodeck ads before, but hey, you gotta keep drawing from the well until it’s dry! Today’s installment is an Astrodeck ad from the 1980s that features another murderer’s row of surfers. Pictured left to right: Willy Morris, Rabbit Bartholomew, Larry Bertlemann, Wes Laine, Gary Elkerton, and Chappy Jennings. The second picture has Hawaiian fixtures Buttons Kaluhiokalani and Rory Russell…because the All Star team assembled in the first one simply wasn’t enough! A lot has changed in surfing over the years, but Herbie Fletcher’s unparalleled ability to gather big name pros has not. Hope you enjoyed this post and tune in next Thursday for more Sagas of Shred!

The Infamous Square Nose Herbie Fletcher Surfboard!

Greetings, Shredderz! First, let’s ignore the fact that I spend my Friday nights combing through Craigslist in search of great vintage surfboards. Instead, I’d like to focus on the positives. Tonight’s silver lining is nothing other than a great example of a vintage square nose Herbie Fletcher surfboard that is currently being listed for sale.

Pictured above is a square nose Herbie Fletcher surfboard, which you can see on the left. This board is currently listed for sale on Craigslist in Orange County. You can find a link to the listing here. The square nose Herbie Fletcher surfboard measures in at 8’6″ and it is being offered for $1,000. I don’t have any historical prices on Fletcher boards. With that said, it’s difficult to find Herbie’s shapes for sale online. I was able to find two other Herbie Fletcher surfboards that are currently for sale. First is what looks like an old 1970s single fin for sale on eBay, which is listed at $2,450. Second is another 1970s single fin, this one with a winged swallow tail setup, which is listed on Craigslist for $3,200. I don’t view any of these prices as definitive, but I figured it’s helpful to have comparisons. I’d also like to point out that both of the single fins for sale have been up for grabs for a while now, which indicates that these prices are probably on the higher side.

Square Nose Herbie Fletcher Surfboard Noserider.jpg
The original Wave Warrior himself holding a Herbie Fletcher square nose design. Note this board has a swallow tail, whereas the Craigslist board above has a squash tail. Pic via SIMA

I’m not sure when the yellow Craigslist square nose Herbie Fletcher board was made. In the Art Brewer image at the top of the post, which Herbie also shared to his Instagram, Herbie describes the board as a 7’11” shape that was made in 1976. Unfortunately, that doesn’t give much insight as to when the yellow board was shaped.

As you can see, I embedded a few posts from both Herbie and Dibi Fletcher’s Instagram accounts. I highly recommend giving both a follow. Herbie was also recently honored by the Surf Industry Manufacturer’s Association, and I recommend reading his wife Dibi’s tribute to him here.

Finally, here’s the link to the Herbie Fletcher surfboard for sale on Craigslist, which you can find here.

1980s Astrodeck Ad: Sagas of Shred

Greetings, Shredderz! Welcome to the latest installment of Sagas of Shred, where I’ll be sharing bits and pieces of surf culture from years past. Pictured above is an Astrodeck ad that appeared in the August 1985 issue of Surfer Magazine (Volume 26, No. 8). The ad features none other than the following surfers: Rabbit Bartholomew, Larry Bertlemann, Greg Day, Gary Elkerton, Herbie Fletcher, Marvin Foster, Hans Hedemann, Michael Ho, Marty Hoffman, Jim Hogan, Vince Klyn, Buzzy Kerbox, Wes Laine, Buddy Lomas, Gerry Lopez, Barton Lynch, Tony Moniz, Willy Morris, Paul Peterson, Martin Potter, Joe Roper, and Rory Russell (whew!). That kind of list is only fitting for a product considered to be the “ultimate in competitive traction.” Bonus points if you can match the names to all the faces!