Surfing is about enjoying what the ocean has to offer, about being part of that beauty and natural environment, yet mainstream boards are largely not eco-friendly. As an avid surfer and woodworker, I became interested in creating a surfboard using materials that are more environmentally friendly, while maintaining (or out-doing) performance aspects, and reducing the health threats to those that build them.
A keen surfer for 35years, I have always been interested in the “what’s next” in surfboard design. I have surfed many different styles of boards from 90’s wafer thin, huge rocker “pro-style” boards, through to mals, mini-mals, fish, retro, alternate, mini-simmons and the modern day short boards. The one thing these boards have in common is that many are built using toxic laden, carcinogenic, non-environmentally friendly petro chemicals that can be detrimental to the health of shapers and fibreglassers in addition to negatively impacting the environment as a whole.
Initially I started my eco surfboard experimentation by building hollow wooden surfboards. However, while I found them to be great when driving big open carves down the line on a long point break they could be a real pig to ride in heaving beach and reef breaks. Some of the problems I encountered were a lack of flex and a heaviness to them in the water that is restrictive to those surfing with a more aggressive style. I feel the hollow wooden surfboard is a great green option however a balance needs to be found to cater to all styles of surfing in addition to the environmental concerns. So began my search for better materials to create better boards.
In my experience, an etc surfboard will outlast any mainstream PU construction surfboard by years. Their performance will rival other surfboards and the boards will continue to look great for many years to come. Each etc surfboard is designed using CAD software, hand-cut from a solid block of foam, hand shaped, glassed and sanded by myself. Each board is individual and artwork created as a one off. I hope you can enjoy the experience riding an etc surfboard as much as I have enjoyed making it. In addition, you can sleep easier in the knowledge you are making a difference by purchasing a more eco-sensitive, environmentally friendly surfboard.