Social Media Roundup: Santa Barbara Edition

It’s the first Social Media Roundup of 2019, and today we’re focusing on some recent posts that delve into the rich history of Santa Barbara surfing. Alright, enough from me, and onto the pics…

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This is a photo of an early eighties shaping machine – Al Merrick. I wish I would have shot more of Al actually shaping. Using film back in the day to shoot in the shaping room, you really needed to spend time setting up lights to do well. It is a room design to absorb light not bounce it. Film and cameras just did not have the ability to capture motion in that type of lighting conditions without some form of strobe. Very much different than the cameras now. The full lighting setup took too much time and when shooting Al or any shaper in high demand, you were stopping production, literally. Shooting Al was usually a 30 minute disruption max with one hand held strobe. Al was always great about it, never pressured me to hurry. The rush was always self imposed. This shot is outside of the old factory. It’s an insurance shot in case the one strobe did not render anything desirable. • Shaper, board, and rider • @cisurfboards #almerrick @curfuffle #tomcurren #surfboards #surfboardshaper #surfboardshaping #surfphoto #surfphotos #surfphotographer #surflifestyle

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I’ve featured his work here a few times before, but I can’t help doing it again, because Jimmy Metyko is a must follow! His Instagram feed is a who’s who of the Santa Barbara surf scene back in the day, and he’s also a very talented photographer. You should check out a recent slideshow of his photos on Surfer Magazine’s website. This portrait of Al Merrick is simple and striking. I’m assuming it’s from the same shoot as the featured photo at the top of the page. Make sure you scroll through for the bonus shot of a young Tom Curren riding a Channel Islands shape.

The black & white Santa Barbara theme continues, but this time around we have a very clean Transition Era Yater hull / vee bottom board. Wish there were some dimensions listed on this bad boy. You don’t see these late Sixties Yaters everywhere, but I think they are among some of Renny’s coolest shapes.

Alan Casagrande is a talented artist who has a long history with Liddle Surfboards. I was blown away to discover that the board he’s holding in the picture is a Liddle. I can’t be sure but it almost looks like a sting! Either way the outline doesn’t have much in common with Greg Liddle’s famous displacement hulls.

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ABALONE SPOON YATER LOGO

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And what better way to introduce a little color to this entry than by way of a stunning abalone inlay on a Yater Spoon? Abalone was once plentiful up and down the California coast, and I love how Bob Haakenson, one of Santa Barbara’s finest glassers, still uses it for special occasions. This is a subtle but awesome touch to add to a custom Yater, if you ask me.

Photo at the top of the page by Jimmy Metyko; via Surfer Magazine.

Weekend Grab Bag: Yater Spoon & More

Greetings, Shredderz! I’d like to think the blog has been off to a nice start this year, with content like this absolute weapon of a Channel Islands single fin sporting an epic Jack Meyer airbrush, or scans of an old Eaton Surfboards brochure sent to me by a reader. Ultimately, though, that’s for all of you to decide. If you’re still reading this, first I would like to say thank you, and second, let’s get right to the next installment of the Weekend Grab Bag, where I highlight some of my favorite boards currently listed for sale on the internet. Scroll down for a selection of sick vintage sticks that are currently up for grabs.

9’10” Andreini Spoon (Craigslist Santa Cruz)

Marc Andreini is one of my all-time favorite shapers. The board above is a take on Renny Yater’s famous Spoon design, which, fifty plus years after its invention, remains one of the greatest noserider surfboards ever crafted. Andreini, who spent formative years shaping and surfing in Santa Barbara, considers Yater one of his chief influences. (Check out “The Gift” for more info on Andreini and California surfboard history.) The Andreini spoon pictured above isn’t quite vintage — the seller estimates it was shaped in 1996 or so — but it’s old enough to qualify as interesting (to me, anyway). As best I could tell, Andreini’s current noserider model does not have the step deck you see on both the Yater Spoon and the board above. No matter what, this Andreini spoon is a cool board from one of California’s great living shapers, and at $575, I think it’s more than reasonably priced. See below for a video of Joe Davies riding an Andreini Owl Noserider, which is via Andreini’s own website. (And if you’re into unique Andreini boards, here’s a Bonzer that’s currently for sale.)

9’8″ Yater Spoon from 2000 (Craigslist San Diego)

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And now that we’ve seen a take on the Yater Spoon, how about one from the OG himself? I think the price might be a bit steep on the Yater Spoon pictured above. The seller is asking $1399. He claims the board has only been surfed once, and it certainly looks to be in extra clean condition. Even so, you can easily find a brand new Yater Spoon on Mollusk’s website listed at $1199 before tax. To each his own, but I think we can all agree that you simply can’t go wrong with a Yater Spoon.

9’6″ Greg Liddle L Spoon (Craigslist Ventura)

Greg Liddle’s L Spoon design is also influenced by Renny Yater. See the Liddle Surfboards website for more info. Honestly, I’m a little surprised this board is still listed for sale. It has been up for over two weeks, which is longer than most Greg Liddle hand shapes last on Craigslist. I’m wondering if the board hasn’t already been sold, and the seller never bothered to take down the listing. The Liddle L Spoon listed above is priced at $1500. No matter what, I’m a sucker for that old school Crash Test Dummies inspired Liddle Surfboards logo, too.

Weekend Grab Bag: Liddle Reef Smoothie and More

Greetings, Shredderz! Sorry for the relatively parse posting schedule last week. I don’t want to tip my hand, but I think we’ve got some gems coming up that should make up for it. In the meantime, here are some boards for sale that I think you might dig, including a Liddle Reef Smoothie. Keep scrolling for more:

Liddle Reef Smoothie Model (Craigslist Ventura)

Frankly, I’m surprised this Liddle Reef Smoothie model is still listed for sale. (See more about this model on the Liddle Surfboards site.) The seller is asking $1,200. As always, pricing surfboards is more art than science, but collectors have been welling to shell out top dollar for vintage Liddles as of late. For comparison, Kirk Putnam sold a Marty Peach Liddle for $1,200, which you can see on his Instagram here. This board has the classic Liddle crash test dummy logo, which is always a nice touch.

Hawaiian Island Creations Single Fin (Craigslist Santa Barbara)

This stick is pretty bitchin’. I really love these old school HIC boards, and while it’s a well known brand, it doesn’t have nearly the cachet of something like Town & Country. This one is super sick — I love the triple icon logo, the channel bottom, and as a nice bonus it comes with an original Rainbow fin. The seller is asking $450, which I think is right there in the ballpark.

Con Surfboards CC Rider (Craigslist SF Bay Area)

This bad boy is 10’2″ of classic longboard beauty. I love colors on this board, and in particular, the contrast between the yellow bottom and the blue high density foam stringer. Seller is asking $950. The fin is apparently a Greenough Stage III Wonderbolt fin — gotta love it any time someone puts a lot of detail into a Craigslist post. For more on the Con Surfboards CC Rider model, check out this Deep Dive I wrote a while back.

Bing Bonzer Redux (Craigslist Orange County)

Bing Bonzer Surfboard Tail

I actually wrote up this board a few months back, and it’s back on Craigslist at $400, or half the price at which it was offered before. This thing has a bunch of pressure dings on the deck, but I love the colors and the resin pinlines, and that fin is gorgeous, too.

Social Media Roundup: Autumnal Awesomeness

Greetings, Shredderz! By now you may know the drill: here’s a collection of some of my favorite vintage surfboard related social media posts from the past month or so. Keep scrolling for more.

I believe this photo was actually taken and published by Jeff Booth’s dad. True story: as a seventeen year old “grom” one my first surf experience was attending a Quiksilver surf camp in Montauk. Jeff Booth was the resident pro that day, and not only was he nice enough to push me into a wave, he politely declined to point out the fact that I was five to ten years older than all the other campers. Thanks Jeff — I owe you for that one! Anyway, peep that killer Eighties Stussy stick, complete with the NSSA lams. (The photo at the top of the page features Booth in a later ad for Stussy Surfboards.) I’m also trying to zoom in on the Stussy logo beneath the NSSA sticker, but can’t quite make out what it might be.

I love vintage Yater single fins. This one is classic: all clean lines and understated cool. This is a grown ass man’s surfboard.

Here’s a killer Town and Country twin fin. Make sure you scroll through all of the pics, including the beautiful glassed on fins with the T&C yin yang logo. Lots of people go nuts over the Eighties T&C boards with the crazy airbrushes — and I love them, too — but I think the slightly earlier T&C vintage boards are every bit as cool.

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Presents Expression Session 5: California Dreamin’

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Surfboards and Coffee held their latest event this month, and by all accounts, it was a doozy! They collected a bunch of boards with some amazing airbrushes. Shout out to all my Airbrush Aficionados out there!

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Flashing on empty secos with a stringerless….. early 1980s… i usually keep my trap shut but….I always hear guys talking about hulls these days talking about how they enjoyed them back in the day … when I’m thinking to myself wait a minute wernt you the kid on that stupid pointy down railed rocketship that just didn’t work in most surf or that ampy echo beach thingy… or whatever.. fact is for now at least my memory is pin perf…. I can spin about 20 names off like Greg, steve, mardy,Andy,bozo, wocheck,Tim kabota,ed Phillips, kp, McKnight , buck,wemple…dadams to name a few…. (sorry if I left u out, it’s early) i mean show me a shot of you riding one better yet how bout a shot of you just holding one?…. in the 70s…. naw… 80s nope…, 90s, maybe…. 2000s yeh probally… better late than never…. this post isn’t ment for you younger guys….. #hulls #liddlesurfboards #surfboards #glomontoanything 👣bongo archives photo: Kirk Putnam

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Now this is a vintage Liddle flex! Happy that Mr. Casagrande spares “younger guys” like me — I’m in my mid thirties, do I still count? — but regardless, respect to the hull trailblazers. And how dope is that board?

Last but not least we have a rare and beautiful Surfboards Haleiwa single fin shaped by none other than Mike Diffenderfer. I don’t know that I’ve ever seen a Diff board under the Surfboards Haleiwa label before, but this one is so cool. Love the resin pin lines, the bold red bird logo on the bottom, and the unmistakable outlines of a classic Seventies single fin.

Skip Frye K Model and More: Weekend Grab Bag

Greetings, Shredderz! As always, here’s a collection of vintage surfboards that have been listed for sale online recently, including a lovely Skip Frye K Model thruster. Usually I like to link directly to sale links, but in the case of this edition, not all of the boards are still for sale, and some just might be more fun as mysteries. Anyway, keep scrolling for some selections.

Skip Frye K Model Thruster 8’6″ (No Longer Listed)

This board was listed for sale on Craigslist in San Diego and the asking price was $2,850. Yes, you will have to pay an arm and a leg for one of Skip’s boards on the open market. The Skip Frye K Model was developed in the late Seventies. I have probably linked to The Surfer’s Journal feature on Skip’s boards more than any other article, but nonetheless, it’s worth checking out. According to TSJ, the K Model was created in conjunction with a local San Diego surfer named Timmy Kessler, although many incorrectly attribute the board to Barry Kanaiaupuni, who was in Frye’s graduating high school class! This board is just too pretty.

Canyon Seventies Single Fin

Canyon Rusty Priesendorfer Seventies Single Fin

Sorry, no hints yet as to whether this board has been listed, although all I will say is that it’s up somewhere on the internet. Like Skip Frye, Rusty Preisendorfer is another San Diego surfboard shaping luminary. Early in Rusty’s career he shaped for Canyon Surfboards, among some other labels. Sadly, the Canyon name is now being slapped on pop-outs, but that doesn’t diminish the coolness of the board above. I’m not 100% sure if it was shaped by Rusty himself. The board isn’t in perfect condition but I love the colors and that awesome gradient Canyon logo.

Greg Liddle Smoothie 7’11” (Craigslist LA)

Greg Liddle Smoothie .jpg

Here’s a neat Greg Liddle Smoothie, measuring in at 7’11”, with a 2+1 fin setup. The seller is asking $900. I can’t say this is a fantastic price, but it is a great opportunity to look at an earlier Liddle shaped by Greg himself. There’s a photo of the typically hyper detailed signature on the board (I don’t even understand half of the dimensions listed.)

Del Cannon V Bottom (Craigslist Orange County)

There is no question this board has seen some finer days, but I am a sucker for all things Transition Era, including the mighty v bottom design. If you can’t handle all the scratches and weird patches on the board above, then check out Gene Cooper’s Instagram, where he has been glassing some truly gorgeous modern v bottom boards lately.

Social Media Roundup: September Sticks

Greetings, Shredderz! It’s time for some more vintage surfboard selections from the interwebs. Keep scrolling for more…

The Surfer’s Journal recently ran a great feature on Skip Frye’s boards. It’s among the best surfboard-related articles I’ve ever read. Photographer and TSJ Photo Editor Shawn Parkin will occasionally post nuggets from this incredible shoot. I still can’t get enough of that lineup of pristine Skip boards! Just gimme one of those, Skip, and I swear I’ll die I happy man…

Good luck finding a photo with more surfboard shaping firepower than the one featured above. Skip Frye and Donald Takayama is a combo that’s hard to beat!

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Good morning With @davidnuuhiwa

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Is David Nuuhiwa the most stylish surfer of all time? He’s gotta be in the conversation. I don’t have the stones to show up to a surf spot rocking a vest without a shirt underneath, but then again, I don’t surf nearly as well as Nuuhiwa does! I wish there were more photos of the boards in front of Nuuhiwa. If you look closely at the one on the far right, it looks like it has the red and white yin yang David Nuuhiwa logo, similar to an earlier Nuuhiwa single fin surfboard I wrote up.

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Nice Liddle 8'0" Find .

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This is an older post — it’s over two years old — but vintage Liddles are timeless. I’ve featured vintage Greg Liddle boards many times on the blog before. The vintage Liddle that Kirk Putnam posted above is one of the cleaner examples I have seen. I love the smaller logo, set perpendicular to the stringer. This is a somewhat unusual setup compared to Liddle’s later boards. The red coloring provides just the right amount of pop, too.

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It’s been a while since I posted a board. ~1976 Gordon & Smith, Steve Griffiths Bonzer 7’3, 20’1/2, 2’7/8 it is beat up, got fungus in the top 1/3 had the leash plug removed and repaired in a seriously dodgy way but wouldn’t change a thing. Speed more speed and a little more speed on top of that, wide point is pushed back for the period and is at 3’3 from the nose. The double concaves start in the nose and are quite prominent down the the entire length of the board narrowing and deepening between the bronzers. It is an awesome board for the era. It is now a favourite to take out Long Reef Bommie @gordonandsmithaustralia @houseofbonzer #bonzer #bonzersurfboards #bonzersurfboard #whatsinyourquiver #stevegriffiths #elouraboardriders #cronullasurfers #gands #longreef #longreefboardriders #longreefbeach #toomanysurfboards #myshaperisnotacomputer #handshaped

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Finally, I love these Aussie Gordon & Smith Bonza boards (AKA Bonzer for my fellow Seppos.) “Curvaceous” is the word that comes to mind whenever I look at those swooping bottom channels.

 

Greg Liddle Longboard

Greetings, Shredderz! Today we have a bit of an oddity from one of the blog’s favorite shapers. No, your eyes do not deceive you: that is indeed a Greg Liddle longboard you see.

The board pictured here was posted for sale on Craigslist in Santa Cruz for an unbelievable $180. I sent over perhaps the single most desperate email that has ever been sent in Craigslist history, and I’m still waiting to hear back. I don’t know who ended up with this thing, but even if they paid double the asking price I think that’s a nice score.

You can click the photos above to enlarge. Usually I like to crop the photos I get off Craigslist and try and make them a little more presentable, but I really dig the jungle-like background in these shots. If you’ve read this far in the post, trust me, you’re going to want to geek out on the details of this Greg Liddle longboard.

The seller thinks this thing was shaped in the late Sixties, but I don’t think that’s the case. The seller’s analysis is based off the fin box, but I can’t see it up close in the photos. Even if I could see the fin box I’m not sure I would be able to draw any conclusions about the board’s age. Either way, it just looks newer to me than something made in the late Sixties, but that’s a hunch more than anything else.

The vast majority of Liddle Surfboards I see are mid-length hulls. The Greg Liddle longboard in this post is obviously an exception. I have seen numerous Liddle L Spoon models, which I believe were based off Renny Yater’s famous Spoon design. I’m not quite sure if the board featured above qualifies as an L Spoon, however. Based on the Instagram photo below, it looks like Liddle also shaped some non L Spoon longboards, too.

What’s really interesting about the Greg Liddle longboard in this ad is its appearance. Liddle’s boards tend to be pretty simple and straightforward. However, the one featured here has a ton going on, whether it’s the unusual logo placement, what I believe is a grey resin tint throughout, and then the navy blue patch on the deck, too.

Greg Liddle Longboard.jpg

Finally, this board has a rare “GL” logo that I have never seen on another Liddle before. This logo is part of the reason why I think the board was made well after the late Sixties — it looks vaguely Eighties to me — but it’s super unusual.

If you own this Greg Liddle longboard or you have more scuttlebutt about its origins, I’d love to know!

Vintage Liddle Surfboard

Greg Liddle is a California shaper who has built a rabid following on his famous hull designs. Liddle is compadres with the likes of Kirk Putnam and Marc Andreini, and you can find Liddle’s boards in fine surf shops like Mollusk. Even Hollywood luminaries love Liddle’s surfboards. I understand that Liddle is no longer hand shaping boards himself, and that boards produced under the Liddle Designs label are based off his old templates. That said, given that Shred Sledz is a blog focusing primarily on vintage surfboards, it’s only natural that there is a special soft spot for vintage Liddle surfboards.

Pictured above is one such vintage Greg Liddle design. The board was featured for sale on Craigslist in Orange County recently, although the listing is no longer available. The board is not mine and pics are via the old Craigslist post.

I would say the board above is not a hull shape, but without seeing the board in person, it’s hard for me to make any definitive judgments. Either way, you’ll note that the vintage Liddle surfboard pictured above has some marked differences from classic Liddle boards.

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A trio of modern Liddle hulls. Pic via Greg Liddle Designs

The photo above was taken from Liddle’s website, and you can clearly see the classic hull designs in the shapes above: relatively low nose rocker, rounded noses, and the famed “belly” up front.

Vintage Liddle Gun 6

The vintage Liddle board also has a very different fin that is a departure from the Greenough-inspired flex fins that you’ll see on hulls. In the picture above you can see the red fin has a much wider base when compared to the modern hulls. The vintage Liddle measures in at 7’3″, and given the size of the board, I would hazard a guess that this is more of a gun shape than anything else. As always, though, I am open to suggestions, and I’d like to repeat that my interest in surfboards often outpaces my knowledge. I’d also estimate the vintage Liddle was shaped sometime in the 1970s, but I can’t be certain.

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Close up shot of the signature on the vintage Liddle

Another thing I dig about Liddle’s boards are his often elaborate signatures. I’ve seen some examples that come with tons of different measurements — usually bracketed by dots, like in the example above — but the vintage Liddle featured here keeps it pretty simple. I can only assume the 7’3″ on the bottom refers to the board’s length, but I have no clue what the “X-142” might refer to.

The vintage Liddle pictured above was listed at $600. I don’t think this is an insane price, but it’s not exactly cheap, either. I think that it’s likely the price would have been much higher had the board been more of a traditional hull design. Examples of vintage Liddle hulls tend to command higher prices than his other shapes, from what I have seen on Craigslist and eBay. Liddle seemed to experiment a bit more on his earlier boards, as I have seen some examples of fish and even pretty standard looking thrusters pop up here and there.

Thanks for reading, and if you have any rad vintage Liddle hulls that are just begging to be shared with a larger audience, you know where to find me!

 

John Milius with a Greg Liddle Hull: Sagas of Shred

Greetings, Shredderz! Today’s entry in the venerable Sagas of Shred series comes one day later than its usual Thursday time slot. Hopefully the content is good enough for you to look past that. Pictured above is John Milius, the Hollywood director and screenwriter behind movies like “Big Wednesday” and “Apocalypse Now.” The photo was taken by Patrick James, and it originally appeared in an issue of Surfer Magazine from the 1980s. The pairing of a rocket launcher with a Liddle hull is a curious one for sure. I’m not qualified to speak about the weaponry in the picture, but Milius does have great taste in surfboards.

Shred Sledz Social Media Roundup (May 29)

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.

 

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The Donald Takayama Model @bingcopeland

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Here is an old Bing Surfboards ad for the Bing Donald Takayama Model. Wish this showed the entire ad, but it’s awesome nonetheless. Note that David Nuuhiwa is pictured in the ad as well.

 

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.