Clipz: Random Selections

Greetings, Shredderz! Here’s a rundown of some of my favorite surf and surfboard-related videos in recent memory.

There’s a good chance that some of you will see a Firewire Surfboards video and want to throw up in your mouths a little bit. Sorry but I’m not sorry. It’s particularly hard to feel any remorse when Rob Machado has made such a graceful transition to middle age, partially due to his embrace of alternative designs. I love watching him surf this mid-length fish. I continue to be fascinated by Machado’s insistence on dropping edits with below average waves when every other surfer in the world has to go halfway around the world to find something worthy of an Instagram post. Anyway, Machado’s Seaside and Beyond model looks super fun. I love the relaxed takeoffs, coupled with the ability to fly past flat sections, and finally a shocking amount of maneuverability in the turns. Here’s a different clip of Machado explaining the genesis of the new Seaside and Beyond model.

For more talented San Diego surfer / shapers, here’s Ryan Burch weighing in on a couple of different topics. I can’t believe Slater asked Burch to make him a longboard! I don’t think I’ve ever seen footage of Slater surfing anything other than super high performance equipment, so I hope Burch reconsiders his stance of declining to shape the stick.

If you’d rather watch Ryan Burch surf than talk, then hopefully the above clip scratches that itch for you. Personally I’m a fan of both!

The power balance in the surf media seems to be shifting away from the legacy outlets, which mostly have their roots in print, towards YouTube series from individual surfers. There’s a lot of good stuff out there, but even in this crowded field Mason Ho stands out. Like the other surfers mentioned above, Ho is pretty open-minded when it comes to his equipment. In this day and age when Pipe step up boards are barely over six feet, Mason seems to relish going longer than a lot of his contemporaries. Here he surfs a 6’9″ Matt Biolos board whose length and rocker seem like they’d be a better fit in an early Taylor Steele flick. Also, Mason appears to have more fun than anyone when it comes to actually surfing, and that always makes him a pleasure to watch.

Clipz: January 2019

Greetings, Shredderz! It’s a rainy day here in Northern California, so I figured what better way to spend some time than with some quality surfboard related videos. See below for a selection.

I’ve said it before but it’s worth repeating: Bird’s Surf Shed is the Mecca! If you ever find yourself in San Diego, make sure you pay a visit to witness one of the most epic stashes of vintage surfboards you will ever see in your life. In this latest installment of Surfer’s excellent Shed Sessions series, Bird pulls down some real gems off the shelves, including a rad little Steve Lis twin fin fish. I actually snapped a pic of the same Lis fish when I visited the shed; you can see the pic (alongside a Skip Frye fish) at the top of the page.

Newport Beach’s Daydream Surf Shop has begun to produce a video series and podcast entitled “Case Study”, and their very first episode features none other than the esteemed Marc Andreini. Check out the video above and you can find the podcast here.

I recently wrote a Sagas of Shred post featuring an old Mike Eaton Surfboards brochure featuring his various models. See above for the first part of three of a series of interviews done with Eaton.

Not vintage, just fun: witness Mason Ho putting a series of impossibly small Matt Biolos / …Lost Surfboards Round Nose Fish models through their paces in pumping Hawaiian surf. For all my love of awesome airbrushes and cool laminates, at the end of the day, surfboards are all about function, and this video is a great reminder of that fact.

…Lost Presents: “Fish”

Greetings, Shredderz! As a vintage surfboard blog, we tend not to focus too much on the modern high performance shortboard. This is not a criticism by any means. Truth be told, if I were a better surfer this blog might be more focused on the finely tuned Ferraris you see all the pros riding!

Matt Biolos, the shaper behind …Lost Surfboards, one of the largest producers of said high performance thrusters, is one of the most fascinating (and influential) figures in modern surfing. He is a must follow on Instagram, where Biolos alternates behind tireless stumping for …Lost team riders and up-and-coming San Clemente rippers, and then the minutiae of surfboard design. Biolos has a clear sense of history, as seen by his collaborations with people like Mark Richards, for example. Simultaneously, …Lost Surfboards is unafraid to experiment with new materials and technologies, such as its work with Lib Tech, which is better known for creating innovative snowboards.

Early …Lost designs aren’t considered vintage quite yet, but personally, I think it’s only a matter of time before Biolos’ early shapes are coveted by collectors. I wonder if he is taken for granted to some extent, thanks to …Lost’s ubiquity, not to mention Biolos’ unpretentious approach. It’s amazing now to think that the fish revival, led by the landmark …Lost movie 5’5″ x 19 1/4″, is now twenty plus years old!

Today …Lost Surfboards debuted a cool little short film, “Fish”, which you can see online. I have linked to it below. The movie has some awesome historical footage, ranging from David Nuuhiwa in the Seventies to the infamous …Lost mid-Nineties highlights featuring  Cory Lopez and Chris Ward going berserk on what were then regarded as novelty boards. As a bonus, fhe film is narrated by none other than Dogtown legend and artist CR Stecyk. Finally, “Fish” brings things full circle by having current pros like Luke Davis and Josh Kerr lay down some amazing lines on these timeless designs.

Check out “Fish” below!

Vintage Surfboard Trivia with Mayhem and Kolohe Andino

Attention vintage surfboard trivia buffs: Matt “Mayhem” Biolos and …Lost Surfboards team rider Kolohe Andino are giving away a free surfboard to the person who can name all of the surfers who inspired the various paint jobs in the Instagram post above. Edit: Kolohe also included close ups of all the boards on his Instagram account, which I have included below:

View this post on Instagram

nostalgia is scary. since, the last two weeks of (barely get to your feet) flatness around town. i have dipped back into some surf movies i frothed on when growing up and tried to widen my range with some "history of surfing" type shiz. every single person who used one of these (dirty garage non artist replica) designs absolutely captivated me when there story/ part turned on. mostly because the style of surfing they were doing at the time of the flick was much beyonds its years. so, i challenge all surf nerds/ historians/ parking lot carps/ the 80's were better dudes to name every single design of these boards. first person to do it will win one of my boards. oh, and two things, sorry OCCY all your boards were white, and i couldn't find the Michael Ho broken arm deisgn at pipe. #europequiver

A post shared by Kolohe Andino (@koloheandino22) on

Some hints are rapidly filling up in the comments. Even with the added help, I’m only certain of three of them, and I have an educated guess for another.

The board at the top left is modeled after a board Kelly Slater surfed at Trestles in “Kelly Slater in Black & White.” I only know this from the comments, but I was able to find a YouTube video with the incriminating evidence.

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Kelly Slater on a Channel Islands / Al Merrick potato chip at Trestles, 1990. Frame grab from Kelly Slater in Black & White via YouTube.

The red / blue board on the top row, second from right, is clearly Tom Carroll’s board from his famous under the lip snap at macking Pipeline. I’m not sure who the shaper might be, though.

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Tom Carroll, committed at Pipeline. Photographer unknown.

On the bottom row, the board second from right is clearly Martin Potter’s “The Saint” board, which is one of the most recognizable airbrushes ever.

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Martin “Pottz” Potter sporting one of his signature T&C Glenn Pang boards. Note that there were actually many of these boards produced, which is the subject for an upcoming post. Photographer unknown, pic via Rorden Surfboards

I believe the board that is second from left on the top row is a Mark Richards Lightning Bolt, but I’m not 100% sure.

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MR AKA “The Wounded Gull” going off the lip in Hawaii. Photo by Steve Wilkings

I suspect many of the boards aren’t what some would consider vintage. For example, there are a lot of guesses in the comments that suggest the top left board was one ridden by Kelly Slater in one of his earlier videos.

I’ll be running an updated post once all the answers are in, as I’m dying to know myself. In the meantime, check out the post here.

Progressive Pilgrim: …Lost x Pilgrim Surf + Supply

Head on over to Pilgrim Surf + Supply for a look at their latest project, a collaboration with famed …Lost Surfboards founder and shaper, Matt “Mayhem” Biolos.

It’s a great marriage between the gentler aesthetics of Brooklyn-based Pilgrim (I’m just trying to avoid using the word hipster, but alas, there’s no way around it) and the irreverent Orange County punk stylings of …Lost. …Lost has established itself as a fixture of the Southern California high performance shortboard scene, but it hasn’t lost any of its rebellious nature. It’s a tough act. Look no further than Volcom, whose rallying cry of “Youth Against Establishment” in the late 90s and early 2000s segued into an IPO and then an assimilation into a faceless luxury conglomerate shortly afterwards. …Lost has the luxury of having Biolos at his helm, and as long as he is making boards for the world’s best surfers, the brand is likely to stay true to its roots.

There are some really cool boards there that might seem a little out of place here at Shred Sledz HQ, where things tend to skew a little more vintage. But Biolos is a shaper who knows his shit cold, and you can see the great care and thought that went into every aspect of these boards. In particular I love the clean Pilgrim / Lost logo on each board, which is a refreshing departure from …Lost’s usual cartoonish vibe. Check out the listings on Pilgrim for detailed notes from Biolos about the design of each board and the carefully considered design decisions that were made.

Finally, you can see a video interview between Pilgrim co-founder Chris Gentile and Biolos here.

Vintage Mayhem

Here at Shred Sledz HQ we try our best to be open-minded. Sometimes that means going left even though I am a regularfoot and frontside just feels so much better. Other times it can mean going ahead and pulling the trigger on some guacamole at Chipotle – you know, really just keeping my mind attuned to the endless possibilities this world has to offer.

Despite this deep-seated commitment to intellectual curiosity, I have to confess that I am still a man, and a man whose preferences can sometimes veer into outright intransigence. I’ll just go out and say it: I love vintage surfboards and all sorts of weird and cool shapes, but the modern high performance thruster just doesn’t excite me all that much.

With that said, you can’t talk about surfboards without acknowledging the influence of shapers who craft specialized shapes for the world’s best surfers. Whether you’re talking about Al Merrick, who supplied boards to generations of the best American surfers, or someone like Hayden Cox of Haydenshapes, whose Hypto Krypto model is currently flying off shelves, these guys deserve a ton of credit for what they have done for the sport.

Personally, I have always been fascinated by San Clemente shaper Matt “Mayhem” Biolos. Biolos has always come across as a guy who knows his stuff down cold, but remains refreshingly unpretentious about it. It’s hard not to like the irreverent tone of his Lost Surfboards brand, which constantly reminds us not to take surfing too seriously. That, and when the World Tour descends upon San Clemente for the Lowers Pro, every pro scrambles to get a Mayhem shape for the contest, given his talent and his insider knowledge of his local spot.

What we have here, via Craigslist in San Diego, is what looks to be a rare pre-Lost Surfboards Mayhem shape. The measurements are 6′2″ x 19.75″ x 2.5″, which seems like a bit more volume than you might expect. There’s no sign of Lost Surfboards branding anywhere, which I have never seen on a Mayhem shape. The only branding on this board is a “San Clemente Surf Company” logo, and then “Wise Surfboards” on the signature, which I couldn’t quite place (maybe for famous San Francisco shop Wise Surfboards?)

Best of all? This bad boy is only $75! Sure, it’s got a little discoloration, but provided the board is watertight, that seems like a deal. This is a great opportunity to own a board by someone who will no doubt be considered one of the greatest California shapers ever – yeah, that’s right – and one that might be a rare and/or collectible item someday.

Check it out here.