Social Media Roundup: October 2019

Greetings, Shredderz! Regular readers know the rules: keep scrolling for some of my favorite vintage surfboard-related social media posts from the past month or so.

For all my ignorance of Australian surf culture and history, I remain a huge, unabashed fan. And as an American, I’m particularly interested in how Australian and American surfers often exchanged ideas in Hawaii, the birthplace of the sport that is conveniently located between the two continents. When Mark Richards wasn’t riding his own designs to world titles — still an incredible, and perhaps underrated, feat — he was a devotee of Ben Aipa’s iconic sting. There’s a Dick Brewer shape tucked away in that group, and the Al Dove airbrushes are classic, too. I’ve been meaning to do a longer post on MR’s love affair with the sting, so hopefully I get around to it sooner than later.

Luis Real is a fixture in the Social Media Roundup, and that’s because he keeps buying rad boards and posting about them. I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again: I think I prefer the Seventies T&C single fins to their more famous (and colorful) Eighties thruster counterparts. This one was shaped by Dennis Pang and it has a very similar color scheme to a Glenn Minami-shaped T&C Dane Kealoha model I wrote up a little while back.

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#inspiration #rickrasmussen ✊️

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The Rick Rasmussen picture above is in honor of the absolutely epic run of swell that New York has seen this past October. RIP to the original Slick Rick the Ruler.

Skip Frye ordered a board from Marc Andreini?! How awesome is that! I don’t know Mr Frye, but everything I’ve heard about him echoes my experiences with Andreini, who has been gracious, patient, and unfailingly generous with his time and knowledge in our limited interactions. Oh, and yeah, they both shape awesome boards, of course.

Is there anything more classic than a pristine Gerry Lopez single fin? I can’t stop staring at the outline on this thing. Give Liquid Salt / Glenn a follow; he posts beautiful pictures with consistently informative captions.

Another Mike Slingerland Aipa / SNI Sting

It’s been less than a week since I wrote up an Aipa / Surfing’s New Image sting, but when it rains, it pours. Pictured here is another Aipa / SNI sting shaped by Mike Slingerland. The board belongs to Steve Wray, who has been kind enough to share photos of many boards in his quiver, including a killer Eighties Wave Tools / Echo Beach twin fin, a pair of Bill Shrosbree-shaped Sunset single fins, and a Mike Eaton UEO model Bonzer. Well, Steve is back with even more heat, and personally, this might be my favorite board of Steve’s that he has been kind enough to share. Click the photos below to enlarge.

The Aipa / SNI sting above measures in at 7’4″. Steve found this board at a garage sale, where it had been stashed away in the rafters. Even though it’s more than four decades old, the board remains in remarkably good condition. The airbrush on the deck is insane!

Now, this wouldn’t be a Shred Sledz production without overthinking some of the small details on the board. I couldn’t help but notice that the Surfing’s New Image logo has a slightly different font than other boards I have seen. The first image below is the logo from Steve’s board. Compare this to the second image, which is taken from a different Aipa / SNI sting I wrote up earlier. I don’t know enough about typefaces to describe the differences, but hopefully it’s pretty clear from comparing the two laminates.

Mike Slingerland Surfing's New Image

Finally, Steve’s Aipa / SNI sting appears to be shaped by Mike Slingerland. This is denoted by the “S” that appears after the serial number along the stringer. See below for a close up.

I don’t know enough about Slingerland’s serial numbers to make any guesses as to when the board might have been shaped. The Aipa / SNI stings were produced in San Diego during the Seventies. I’ve read that the boards were shaped in the mid-Seventies, but I haven’t been able to verify that with anyone with first hand knowledge. For what it’s worth, the Aipa / SNI sting I wrote up last week has serial number 3828.

Mahalo Steve for sharing photos of this board, and I hope all of you got as much of a kick out of seeing this gem as I did!

Wave Tools Jeff Parker Model & More: Weekend Grab Bag

Shredderz, I can’t lie: it has been some time since I last offered up an entry of our Weekend Grab Bag series. But better late than never, right? Today we’ve got an eclectic group of vintage surfboards. Per Grab Bag rules, all boards must be currently listed for sale as of the time the post is published. Keep scrolling for more, starting with a sweet Wave Tools Jeff Parker Model.

Wave Tools Jeff Parker Model (eBay)

You want logos? We’ve got you covered. Pictured above is an Echo Beach era Wave Tools thruster. To exactly no one’s surprise, the board is practically drowning in awesome, oversized laminates — how sick are the ones on the rails? — and a loud herringbone pattern paint job. Parker’s Jack of Spades personal logo is all time. I’m also intrigued by the outline. The pronounced wings make it look like a more aggressive predecessor to the bump squash tail thrusters that were popular in the Eighties. If I’m not mistaken, the board is only 5’2″, but that hasn’t put a damper on the bidding. As of the time the post was written, the board was already at $640, despite needing a decent amount of work. The photo at the top of the page features Parker on a different but similarly colorful Lance Collins design; photo is by Mike Moir.

Surfing’s New Image Aipa Sting by Rick Hamon (eBay)

I’ve long had a fascination with the stings Rick Hamon shaped under the SNI / Aipa label. The one you see above is a nice and clean example. I think the price is quite high, but hey, it’s a lovely board and the seller provided some great pics, too. The seller dates the board to 1974 and the board is 7’4″. Love the airbrush colors and the pin line.

Gordon & Smith Midget Farrelly Stringerless Model (eBay)

Last but not least we have a very cool G&S Midget Farrelly Stringerless Model in mostly original condition. Like the SNI / Aipa sting above, I think the price is on the high side, but it’s a very cool older board. I hesitate to even link to this older post I wrote, but it contains some decent info on the Farrelly’s various collaborations with Gordon & Smith. The board is 9’10”, and according to the seller it was likely shaped in either 1966 or 1967. I am guessing the G&S Midget Farrelly Stringerless Model was shaped right before the Transition Era took off. The seller believes it was likely shaped by either Mike Eaton or Skip Frye. Those are interesting theories for sure, but I don’t know enough about G&S history to weigh in one way or another.

Aipa Wave Crest Hawaii Sting

Greetings, Shredderz! Today we’ll be featuring a board that is equal parts unusual and cool. Pictured here is an Aipa Wave Crest Hawaii sting with some positively supersized dimensions. The board clocks in at a whopping 9’4″, which is a good two plus feet longer than what you might expect from a classic Aipa sting. You can find a link to the eBay listing for the sting gun here.

Aipa Wave Crest Hawaii Sting Gun.jpg

Every time I look at this board I find myself doing another double take at its outline. Look at how high up those wings are from the tail! If the board is 9’4″, per the listing, you have to figure the wings are good four feet, minimum, from the back of the board. I’ve never seen another sting with dimensions close to this one. Maybe I need to get out more, but all the other examples I have seen are in the six foot plus range, to maybe hovering just under eight foot.

I can only imagine that this Aipa Wave Crest Hawaii sting must have been designed for some serious Hawaiian surf. Sadly, I’m much better at writing about surfboards than I am at riding them, so I’ll defer to someone else on how the stretched out dimensions of this outline might have affected the performance of the board.

The sting also has beveled rails on the bottom. The red board pictured above on the left is the same board featured in this post; the yellow board to its right is a different Aipa Wave Crest Hawaii sting that I own. Apparently the beveled rails, often paired with a step bottom, were a fairly common feature for later editions of the famous Aipa sting.

I think there is a good chance the red Aipa Wave Crest Hawaii sting was not shaped by Ben Aipa himself. (I’ve also written up the Aipa Surfing’s New Image boards, apparently none of which were shaped by Aipa.) Randy Rarick told me over email that Ben Aipa consistently signed his name and a number on the decks of his boards. In addition, Aipa also used some ghost shapers to produce some boards under his namesake label. The Aipa Wave Crest Hawaii sting doesn’t appear to have an Aipa signature or a number anywhere on its deck. That said, it is still an absolutely awesome surfboard.

The sting in question has seen better days, and shout out to the seller for carefully documenting the board’s condition throughout all of the photos. If you click through to the eBay link you’ll see, for example, that there’s a wide open spot on the tail that would require a decent amount of work.

That said, this Aipa Wave Crest Hawaii sting’s fixer upper status doesn’t seem to have hurt the price. There’s already a bid on the board for $650, which doesn’t even include the cost of any repairs or shipping. I think that speaks to the collectibility of any sting bearing Aipa’s name, regardless of whether or not Ben shaped it himself. And for good reason, too — Aipa’s sting is one of coolest designs ever, if you ask me, and there aren’t a whole lot of them floating around.

Check the board out here on eBay if you’d like to see more.

 

Vintage Infinity Surfboards Single Fin

Greetings, Shredderz! Today’s post is short and sweet: I just want to notify you all of the super clean and interesting vintage Infinity Surfboards single fin that’s currently for sale on Craigslist. You can find the board in question here. All of the photos in this post are via the Craigslist link.

Vintage Infinity Surfboards Single Fin

First, I am a little puzzled as to how to describe the outline. The first thing that comes to mind is the classic Aipa sting, due to the prominent wings in the tail. The wings on the vintage Infinity Surfboards single fin are more severe than what you would expect to see on a wing tail single fin, for example. But there are a number of reasons why I would stop short of describing the vintage Infinity Surfboards single fin as a straight up sting. First, with regard to the wing placement, I think the wings are pushed just slightly further towards the tail than you would expect from a standard sting outline. Then again, it’s hard to tell without being able to see the board in person. The other odd element is the pronounced diamond tail, which you don’t really see in many Seventies stings. The vast majority of stings I have seen are swallowtail designs, with a few round pins here and there.

It’s worth noting that shaper Terry Senate is a link between Ben Aipa and Infinity Surfboards. (Check out this sweet Aipa twin fin shaped by Senate I wrote up a little while ago.) Senate shaped for both Aipa and Infinity, so there are least some definitive links between Infinity and the inventor of the sting.

The other thing that really has me scratching my head is the board appears to be stringerless. Again, it’s difficult to say — this might just be a result of the glassing job. But if you look at the close up of the tail and then the photos on the Craigslist post, I can’t see any evidence of a stringer lurking beneath the glass.

And with Stoked-n-Board still out of commission from SHACC’s website, I don’t have any clear ideas on who might have shaped the board. If you click on the close up of the tail above and to the right, you’ll see “DC2” (or is it “RC2”) inscribed on the board. I don’t know who this is.

The board isn’t in perfect condition, but dang, it is beautiful. The colors really pop, and I think the vintage Infinity Surfboards single fin is all original. Truth be told, I prefer the vintage look to fully restored boards, which can sometimes take on an artificial brightness. As a sucker for careful resin work, I really love the pale blue pinline around the rails. And when it comes to the all-important topic of logo placement, I can’t get enough of the twin Infinity logos positioned right near the wings on the tail.

The seller seems firm on his price of $300. Yes, there are some dings and imperfections, but I think this is a more than reasonable stance given everything else that’s going on with the board. Check it out here and if you end up snapping up this vintage Infinity Surfboards single fin, definitely give me a shout!

The Surfboard Shaping Company by Harold “Iggy” Ige

Greetings, Shredderz! Today we’re featuring two quick surfboards shaped by Hawaiian legend Harold “Iggy” Ige. Ige was born in Hawaii in 1941, and spent time in both California and his native Hawaii shaping for some of the best known names in the business. Ige worked for both Greg Noll and Dewey Weber when both brands were headquartered in the South Bay area of Los Angeles. Dewey Weber produced an Iggy signature model, which you can still find now and then. Ige returned to Hawaii in the Seventies, where he began shaping boards under The Surfboard Shaping Company label.

Today I wanted to feature two The Surfboard Shaping Company boards that were sold recently. The first one, featured at the top of the post and below, was sold on Craigslist in Honolulu.

Harold Iggy Ige The Surfboard Shaping Company 1

It’s a beautiful Seventies single fin with some really gorgeous touches. I love the warm colors, right down to the fin. The logo placement on the bottom of the board, right above the fin, is also neat and unexpected. I’m not quite sure what’s going on with the deck — I can’t tell if the orange patch is simply just an opaque resin tint. The second leash plug up by the nose is unusual, too. This board was listed at $520.

Another Harold “Iggy” Ige The Surfboard Shaping Company board was recently sold on eBay…and, well, this somehow managed to slip past a lot of folks. You can find a link to the listing here, although the sale ended over two months ago. The board is a beautiful Seventies sting, and somehow it sold for a mere $250.

The Surfboard Shaping Company sting isn’t in perfect condition — not pictured are some open dings on the swallowtail, for example — but it’s well worth $250 when considering Ige’s place in surf history, not to mention that super sweet fin! You’ll also notice the sting has a slightly different logo. If I had to guess, I would say the sting was probably shaped a little later on in the Seventies than the yellow The Surfboard Shaping Company single fin above, but I’m not certain.

Ige is most certainly deserving of a longer post (sadly, he passed away six years ago), but for the time being, I hoped you enjoyed this quick overview of some of the boards he made shortly after his return to Hawaii.

Precision Surfboards: Vintage Robert August Sting

Greetings, Shredderz! Today we have an example from a well-known surf brand that has never before been featured on the blog: Robert August. August is probably most familiar to folks as one of the co-stars of “The Endless Summer” along with Mike Hynson. August, like Hynson, later founded his own surfboard label. Robert August Surfboards is still in business today, although it’s unclear to me whether or not the brand’s namesake continues to shape boards. At the end of the day, though, Shred Sledz is a blog about vintage surfboards, and today’s post features a neat little Robert August sting that was listed for sale a few weeks ago. Read more below…

Robert August Sting.jpg

As you can see in the photo above, the Robert August single fin has a classic sting outline. You’ll notice the wings that are about 1/3rd of the way up the board, paired with a swallowtail. While the terms “sting” and “stinger” are often used interchangeably, Ben Aipa, who created the design, is clear that the correct term is “sting.”

Robert August Sting 1.jpg

There’s a lot to dig about this board, although it has clearly taken some bumps and bruises during its time. I would guess it was shaped sometime during the Seventies, which was when the sting was at its most popular. Regular readers probably know that I love to geek out on surfboard logos, and this board doesn’t disappoint: I love the “Precision Surfboards” laminate you see at the top of the page, and then the simple mirrored “RA” that appears along the stringer on the bottom of the board.

Robert August Sting Step Tail.jpg

The other neat feature about this board is the step bottom. You can kind of make this out in the picture above. The black pinline towards the right side of the photo starts where the wings appear on the rails. Right beneath the pinline you can see the edge where the step tail appears, creating an effect where the back half of the board is a lower surface than the rest. I wish I could tell you more about the hydrodynamics of this particular design, but it’s fairly common to see in stings shaped during the Seventies.

The Craigslist post originally appeared in San Diego but it has since been taken down. The seller was asking $325 for the board. My two cents is the price was a shade high, although it seems like the board is no longer for sale. I would base this strictly on the condition — as you can see in the photos, there are a bunch of cracks and open dings on the board, and repairing it would take some work. Still, though, the vintage Robert August sting pictured here is a really cool board from a well-known California surf culture fixture, and I hope whoever ended up with it is restoring the board to its former glory.

Neon Appreciation Society: The Eighties at The 2018 Boardroom Show Auction

Greetings, Shredderz! As I’m sure many of you already know, next weekend sees this year’s version of The Boardroom Show, hosted at the Del Mar Fairgrounds. 2018’s Icons of Foam Honoree is none other than Marc Andreini, an all-around classy dude and tremendous shaper. The Boardroom Show is also home to the California Gold Surf Auction, which, in my mind, is the premier vintage surfboard auction. As always, the CA Gold auction has a curated selection of some the usual suspects — names like Dora, Noll, Brewer, et cetera. However, I was pleasantly surprised to see a significant number of boards from the late 1970s and 1980s. This is nothing new, of course — 80s Town & Country boards command pretty ridiculous prices any time they pop up on eBay — but I wonder if it isn’t a sign of a larger shift in tastes as older collectors age out. And as an incorrigible fluoro enthusiast, I thought I would take the time to highlight some of my favorite boards from the auction. Keep reading for some selections…

Stussy Thruster for Michael Tomson of Gotcha (Link)

Oh man, this board is killer. Michael Tomson, cousin of Shaun, founded Gotcha clothing. Stussy even designed an early Gotcha typeface that was used prominently during the 80s. This thruster has all the little touches I love about Stussy’s boards, including some nifty hand-drawn graphics. I love the little planer design, and the Gotcha shark logo on the deck is an awesome throwback to the brand’s heyday. Make sure you hit the link above for a shot of the sick Stussy Team logos on the fins. I also wrote up this board when it popped up at the Vintage Surfboard Collectors Club swap meet a few months back.

Wave Tools Lance Collins Twin Fin (Link)

Wave Tools Lance Collins Twin Fin California Gold Surf Auction 2

I can’t think of a better representation of Echo Beach than this incredible board. The board was shaped in 1980, and the auction estimate is between $2,500 and $3,000. There are so many details to love about this board, whether it’s the branded glass-on fins, the huge Lance Collins laminates, or, of course, the inimitable airbrush. The board has been restored, which I find slightly odd given the visible ding on the bottom right above the fins, but I’m not going to quibble. This Wave Tools twinny is ridiculous in all the right ways.

T&C Glenn Minami Channel Bottom Single Fin (Link)

Town & Country Glenn Minami Channel Bottom Single Fin California Gold Surf Auction 2

My initial guess was that this stunner was shaped in the 1980s, but it turns out it’s from 1978. Then again, it feels a little silly to focus so much on dates given the timeless — and bitchin’ — checkerboard graphic on the deck. This T&C single fin has also been restored. And while I prefer my boards all-original, this is a stunning example of a classic Hawaiian single fin.

T&C Glenn Minami Sting (Link)

Alright, this technically isn’t an 80s board, either, but given how sweet the board is, I am willing to make an exception. Like the other Glenn Minami example above, the board has been restored, hence its impeccable condition. I can’t get enough of the color scheme, and I really dig the old school Town & Country logos on both boards. I think it’s interesting how Glenn Minami’s name appears in a sans serif font on the sting, and then in a script font on the checkerboard single fin above. The sting is also dated to 1978.

Miscellaneous Boards

If you haven’t already, make sure you check out the website for more boards that are being listed for auction at this year’s Boardroom Show. I’d also encourage you to attend, if possible! (Sadly, I won’t be there, due to existing commitments). If classic boards are more your thing, there is an embarrassment of Renny Yater riches up for auction this year, including a mini-gun with stunning abalone inlays, and a 1963 Pat Curren model elephant gun. There’s also a Phil Edwards Honolulu Model, an unrestored Gordon & Smith Skip Frye v bottom, a Bing David Nuuhiwa Lightweight with a tiger stripe paint job, and finally, an incredible Rainbow Surfboards example with a next level airbrush. Make sure you check out the site and support the fine folks who make this celebration of vintage sticks possible.

Aipa Surfing’s New Image Sting by Rick Hamon

Greetings, Shredderz! By now regular readers might know that I have a real affection for the sting, a surfboard outline created by Ben Aipa in the 1970s, and ridden to acclaim by Hawaiian surfers like Buttons Kaluhiokalani and Larry Bertlemann (and Mark Richards, too!) The board is frequently referred to as the stinger, but Aipa insists the proper name is the sting, and I am in no position whatsoever to argue with that! I wrote a previous post about how to identify genuine Ben Aipa shaped stings, given that many “Aipa” boards were produced by California-based Surfing’s New Image during the 1970s and 1980s. SNI boards are nothing to sneeze at though, as some of them were shaped by Donald Takayama. Rick Hamon, who would later become one of the top shapers at Rusty Surfboards, also churned out a number of Aipa / Surfing’s New Image stings.

Pictured above is a pretty flawless example of a Rick Hamon-shaped Aipa / SNI sting. These aren’t quite as collectible as real deal Aipas, but they are still amazing boards. The board pictured above happens to be listed for sale on Craigslist in San Diego, and you can find the listing here.

As you can see from the pictures, this thing is in extremely clean condition. The seller claims the board was shaped for him around 1975, which would put it around the height of the sting’s popularity. It has a beautiful rainbow airbrush on the deck, which you can clearly see in the pictures. The board measures in at 7’4″.

The seller is asking $600 for the board. While Aipa / SNI stings shaped by Hamon don’t command as high prices as Ben Aipa hand shapes, there seem to be a number of sting lovers. And even if the board isn’t shaped by Aipa, it still has his logo on it, which makes a difference. My two cents is this is a great price for the board considering the condition. Of course, standard caveats apply, as I haven’t seen the board in person for myself, but from what I can tell from the listing, this is a nice little pickup.

You can check out the Aipa Surfing’s New Image listing here.

Unity Surfboards Ad: Sagas of Shred

Greetings, Shredderz! Today’s Sagas of Shred post focuses on a South Bay brand of yesteryear: Unity Surfboards. There isn’t much info to be found on Unity, other than the requisite Stoked-n-Board entry. Unity Surfboards was the brainchild of Pat Reardon, who later shaped under his own name. According to Easy Reader News, as of March of this year, Reardon continues to shape boards for South Bay surfers.

The Unity Surfboards ad pictured above apparently ran in 1977. This makes sense, given the ad features a distinctive Sting shape. Here at Shred Sledz HQ, there are few boards more beloved than the Sting design. And while Aipa’s Stings will forever be held in high regard, I get a big kick out of seeing Sting interpretations from other shapers, whether that’s Con Surfboards or even Al Merrick and Channel Islands.

Unity Surfboards dubbed their design the “Sting-It.” You’ll also notice in the ad that Unity refers to the Sting-It as a stinger. The debate over Sting or stinger rages on; I have heard that it’s the former, and until someone can prove otherwise, I’ll continue to refer to them as Stings.

There also happen to be two separate Unity Sting-Its that are listed for sale. The first board is can be found on Craigslist in San Pedro, not far from Unity’s Hermosa Beach stomping grounds. You can find that Sting-It here. It’s listed at 6’8″, and it’s not in perfect condition, though it certainly looks rideable. (There’s also another Unity Surfboards single fin on Craigslist in Orange County, which you can find here.)

The board pictured above is currently listed on eBay. There’s no mention of Unity on the eBay listing, but it’s quite clear from the pictures. Pics via the eBay listing, which you can find here. The asking price for the eBay Sting-It is $600, which seems a bit steep. Nonetheless, it’s a great example of a classic 1970s design (even though a part of me cringes at the black leash plug that seems to have been added after the fact).