I have a pretty big birthday coming up in February, and to mark the occasion, I was gifted a custom made surfboard by Locus Surfboards. I have know about Locus Surfboards for about a year now, and what I was drawn to was that the shaper, Tyler Hopkins, is local to Santa Cruz, hand crafts the boards himself, and uses all eco materials. Since this is my first custom board, I didn’t know what to expect, and I didn’t know the process. All I really knew is that I wanted a high performance longboard. So after talking to the shaper, I was invited to the shop to start designing my birthday board.
Being in a board shaper’s shop was a dream come true. To see all the boards in progress, the colors, and the fins, I was in heaven. We talked about my board for about two hours. I decided on a 9’1″ high performance longboard with a 2 +1 fin set up. I added some specialities to this board as well. I have a custom wood stringer, two contours, and glass in fins. That’s right, glassed-in fins. I never thought I would try glassed in fins, but they are made from old paint brushes and are iridescent, so I felt it would make a birthday board look special. The board is also extremely light weight, which is nice to walk around beach with.
After patiently waiting for about ten weeks, my board was done and ready to pick up. Of course, when I picked it up, I was also sick with a cold so my maiden voyage had to wait a week. It was a long week of waiting.
My first surf session with the board happened on a pretty good wave day for a new board. The average height was 3-4 feet, so I decided to go to a local sandbar since I didn’t want to take a chance with a new board and rocky reef.
The first paddle on a new board is always memorable. Once I was on the board, the aerodynamic shape paddled beautifully through the ocean. I only had to wait for about 3 minutes before an amazing 4 foot wave came my way. Here was my chance, the first wave caught by the new board. I went for it, and I instantly felt the contours of the board and the fins glide perfectly through the water. I caught the wave with ease, popped up instantly, and was riding my first wave on my amazing custom board.
I caught every wave that day, and I never experienced a glide like I do on my custom board. The glassed-in fins definitely make a difference in my opinion, and I’m absolutely in love. Oh, and my board has golden flecks, which is super fun.
Scrappy Surfing Yogi