Joyce Hoffman Model for Hobie Surfboards

Greetings, Shredderz! Today’s post features the first-ever woman to have a signature surfboard in her name: Joyce Hoffman. As evidenced in the photo above, Hoffman rips! This shouldn’t come as a surprise, given that Hoffman is a part of the legendary Hoffman / Fletcher clan (daughter of Walter, niece of big-wave surfer Flippy, sister to Dibi, aunt to Christian and Nathan Fletcher…the list goes on). Joyce Hoffman was one of the few women who surfed Oahu’s fearsome Sunset Beach during the 1960s. In addition, Joyce Hoffman was one of the more accomplished competitive surfers of the decade, racking up a number of contest wins and even a famous Sports Illustrated writeup in 1965. Hobie Surfboard produced the Joyce Hoffman Model starting in the mid-1960s in order to capitalize on her growing status.

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Joyce Hoffman (left) and Margo Godfrey Oberg (right). Makaha, 1968. Photographer unknown; pic via Pleasure Photo

There is currently a Hobie Surfboards Joyce Hoffman model for sale on Craigslist, which is a great opportunity to shine a light on the board and its namesake. You can find a link to the board here.

Pics above are via the Craigslist posting. The Hobie Joyce Hoffman model measures in at 9’9″, and it features a step deck and a removable fin. Before we proceed, can we get a shout out to the poster for providing clear, detailed photos of the board in question? ShredSledz.net would have about three times the number of entries if more sellers posted great pics of their boards, but I digress…

The classic Hobie bolt-through fin clearly indicates the board was made in the 1960s. Check out the picture above on the right, which is a top down shot of the deck side of the tail.

The Hobie Joyce Hoffman Model pictured above is from Hobie’s initial run of boards. You can tell by the Joyce Hoffman signature and the diamond shape. Hobie Surfboards has an excellent blog post detailing the history of the board, including the fun fact that Joyce’s “signature” was in fact drawn by her mother! According to Dick Metz for the Surfing Heritage and Cultural Center, the initial Joyce Hoffman model was introduced in 1967. Check out the SHACC’s link here, which has some great pictures, as well as a cool explanation of the board.

Pictured above is the SHCC’s Hobie Joyce Hoffman model. The fins on the SHACC and Craigslist boards look quite similar to one another. There’s a separate post on Hobie’s website dating the SHACC board to 1968.

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Close-up of the signature on the SHCC’s Hobie Joyce Hoffman Model. You can see it was also signed by Terry Martin, the longtime Hobie shaper. Pic via SHACC

The Hobie Joyce Hoffman Model belonging to the SHACC also has a signature from Terry Martin. I think it’s possible Martin could have shaped the board being sold on Craigslist, but given there are no signatures anywhere, it is difficult to say.

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Close-up of a fin signed by Joyce Hoffman and Terry Martin. The yellow fin was an extra fin that goes along with the SHACC board. Pic via SHACC

The SHACC board also came with an extra fin, which you can see above. Note the construction: you can clearly see the screw, which was used to bolt Hobie fins through the decks of the boards. Swaylocks also has a thread with pictures of another first generation Hobie Joyce Hoffman Model; you can find the link here.

Finally, at some point the Hobie Joyce Hoffman Model was redesigned with a floral logo. I believe this happened sometime around 1968. As detailed in the SHACC post, Dick Metz believes that less than 400 of the first generation Joyce Hoffman Models were produced.

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Close-up shot of the logo from a second generation Hobie Joyce Hoffman Model surfboard. As you can see, Joyce’s first name was removed from the board. Tsk, tsk, Hobie! Pic via Swaylocks

The removal of Joyce’s first name from the logo is suspicious, to say the least. One has to believe Joyce’s name was eliminated in order to make the board more appealing to male consumers. Curiously, the Joyce Hoffman Model was still referred to as such in Hobie advertisements.

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Hobie ad from 1968. The board in the center is the second generation Joyce Hoffman Model. Note that the second row of photos shows the corresponding tails and fins for each board in the ad. Fitting in with the times, the second generation Joyce Hoffman Model had some vee added to its bottom. Pic via the incomparable DIS•PLACE•MEN•TIA

On the bright side, no amount of cynical rebranding efforts can dim Joyce Hoffman’s radness. The board’s seller is asking $600, and you can find a link to the board here.

Astrodeck: A Fletcher Family Production

Surfing is a sport with more than its fair share of characters. And even by this standard, the combined Hoffman / Fletcher clan stands out for its per capita density of colorful personalities.

As a quick aside, while previous posts have covered various members of the extended Fletcher family, none have made mention of Dibi Fletcher (nee Hoffman). Dibi is Herbie‘s wife, and in addition to being the mother of Christian and Nathan Fletcher, both of whom are renowned pro surfers, Dibi plays a large role in running the day-to-day business of Astrodeck. Like Herbie, Dibi is descended from veritable surf royalty: her father, Walter Hoffman, was an early big wave surfer and surfwear industry pioneer, and sister Joyce was an early female pro, as well. See below for an incredible old ad Joyce Hoffman did for Triumph, of all brands.

RVCA, which has a history of collaborating with the Fletcher family, trained the latest episode of its “Inspired by…” video series on Herbie and the story behind the famed Astrodeck brand. The video coincides with the release of a new RVCA x Astrodeck collaboration. You can find more detail on the collaboration here.

And while the new RVCA project is focused on Astrodeck, the surfboard traction company that Herbie and family built into one of the original surf accessories brands, given that this is a vintage surfboard blog, we can’t let this entry go without highlighting some of Herbie’s shapes!

There’s currently a Herbie Fletcher-shaped single fin for sale on Craigslist in New Jersey, and you can find pictures of it below. Link to the Craigslist post for the board can be found here.

There are some open dings on the board that will need a bit of work to get it water tight. Click through to the listing for more details. Even though the board needs work the spray job has been beautifully preserved. I’m intrigued by the combination of a single wing pintail along with the twin fin setup, which feels unusual to me. There’s no signature on the board anywhere that I can see, but I don’t know that Herbie ever signed most of his boards.

According to Stoked-n-Board, some of Fletcher’s boards were subcontracted out to other shapes. Unfortunately, I have no way of knowing whether this one was shaped by Herbie himself.

There’s an Instagram user who found an old Herbie board in Baja at a surf shop near K38. He has some clear pictures of the board, and even some footage of him surfing it! It looks like a rad 70s single fin.

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You would think that there would be more information available online about Herbie’s boards, but sadly, it takes a bit of digging. If any of you eagle-eyed readers have more examples of Fletcher’s handshapes, I would love to see them!

Finally, if you want to check out the board featured above, the seller is asking $525, and you can check out the board on Craigslist here.

Hobie Phil Edwards Model (Part 1): A Shred Sledz Deep Dive

Today, little children, we are going to do a quick little lesson on one of the most famous boards of all time. This is the first post in a new Shred Sledz series that hopes to shed light on the creations of the one and only Phil Edwards. Today we will be starting with the famous Hobie Phil Edwards model, one of the most collectible boards ever made.

For a certain generation of surfers, Phil Edwards is and will always be a legend. For starters, he was one of the first people to ever ride Pipeline, which is about as awesome as it gets. The picture at the top of this post – taken by the legendary Leroy Grannis, and courtesy of the Encyclopedia of Surfing – depicts Edwards surfing the fearsome Banzai Pipeline. Edwards is one of the rare humans who shaped as well as he surfed, and his name remains associated with some of the most sought-after boards in the world today.

Given Edwards’ resume, you would think there would be tons of information floating around online. Sadly, this isn’t the case. I had always assumed Edwards had passed away, given how little is said of his current whereabouts. But apparently he is alive and well, and he visited the Hobie factory about four years ago for an event. You can find a recent photo on Hobie’s website, which I’ve included below.

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Phil Edwards at a recent Hobie Surfboards event. Photo via Hobie Surfboards

Phil Edwards his best known for two surfboards: the Phil Edwards “Honolulu” model, known as such for the “Honolulu” branding written on the board; and then the Hobie Phil Edwards signature model, which was produced over a few different time periods. This post will deal exclusively with the original run of Hobie Phil Edwards models. I will be devoting separate posts to Hobie Phil Edwards model re-issues (post 1960s); the Phil Edwards Honolulu models; and finally, a grab bag of some random boards that don’t fit into any other buckets.

According to the Encyclopedia of Surfing, Hobie’s Phil Edwards model was produced first in 1963. Today these boards are incredible collectors’ items. This post will examine three different Hobie Phil Edwards boards that were recently up for sale. The hope is to give some kind of context on this wonderful board, as well as what kind of prices it commands on the open market.

Hobie Phil Edwards Model Serial Number #999

The first board featured here was sold at the recent Surfing Heritage Vintage Surf Auction. The picture below depicts a Hobie Phil Edwards model with serial number #999. The estimated closing price was between $2,000 and $5,000; I was unable to find info on the final price for the board, however. You can see the beautiful glassed-on D Fin in the pictures, the triple stringer design (with a wider center stringer), and then the silver foil label.

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Photo courtesy Surfing Heritage Vintage Surf Auction

 

Hobie Phil Edwards Serial Number #865

The second board is a Hobie Phil Edwards from the 1960s, also in excellent condition. It is a 10′ board that is currently for sale on Surf Garage, and the listing claims it’s all original and dates to 1968. Here you can clearly see an example of the “foil” label that can be found on the earlier runs of the Phil Edwards models. Later on, especially with reproductions, these labels were replaced by silver, non-foil laminates beneath the glassing. This board is being listed for sale at $4,000, which is steep, but if this indeed all-original, that is in the ballpark of similar boards. You’ll also notice this board has the same features as the one sold at the California Gold auction: same triple stringer setup, same D fin, and then the foil label. It is serial number #865, as clearly shown in the picture. My last note is that this board seems to be in suspiciously impeccable condition. I am wondering if it was restored, but I have no further info.

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Close up of the famous Hobie Phil Edwards foil logo. Photo via Surf Garage

 

Hobie Phil Edwards Model Serial Number #103

The third Hobie Phil Edwards model was also sold at an auction, but this time it was at the US Vintage Surf Auction. This board has the same hallmarks of a Hobie Phil Edwards model, as explained above: you can see the triple stringer design, a glassed-on D fin, and, of course, the distinctive silver label with a clear serial number (#103). The auction claims that this is the lowest numbered Hobie Phil Edwards they have found in existence; I have no way to verify if this is indeed the case. It’s also curious to contrast this silver label with the one on Serial Number #865. #103 is way more faded, and the deep blue of #865 looks more like a green. There are likely differences in photo editing, etc., that explain the discrepancy, but I found it interesting nonetheless. This board was estimated by the USVSA to go for somewhere between $5,000 and $6,000, but again, there’s no info on what the final price ended up being.

Photo via USVSA

Photo via USVSA

 

What’s interesting about these original boards is I can’t find an example of a Phil Edwards signature on any of them. I tend to believe that none of the original run of Hobie Phil Edwards boards bore his signature, but I would love to know if there are any examples I might be missing. Edwards signed the re-issued version of the Hobie boards, which will be the subject for a future post.

Hobie Phil Edwards Model from John Mazza Collection at Pepperdine University Serial Number #479

Finally, I’d like to include a shot from a board that Pepperdine University has as a part of their John Mazza Surfboard collection. It’s a 10′ Hobie Phil Edwards model from 1963, and they’ve got some great pictures up on the site. In this shot you can see the fin. I’ve heard conflicting reports, as some sources indicate the fins are made of ash wood, and I’ve also heard they are made from balsa. I can’t say for sure. But I do know they’re pretty awesome to look at.

Closeup of a Hobie Phil Edwards fin from John Mazza’s collection at Pepperdine University. I’ve read that the fins on these boards were made of ash, and I have also read that they were made out of balsa. Photo via Pepperdine University.

And as a bonus, I came across this old Hobie ad on Swaylocks. From left to right are the following surfers: Joey Hamasaki, Joyce Hoffman, Mickey Munoz, Phil Edwards, and Bill Hamilton! Note how each name has an Encyclopedia of Surfing account linked to it. That’s a murderer’s row of surf legends right there. In the middle of an ad is an example of a classic Phil Edwards model. You can see the triple stringer and the silver foil logo.

I hope you found this post useful, and stay tuned for parts two, three, and four on Phil Edwards and his boards!

Old Hobie Surfboards ad. Photo via Swaylocks