As a surfer I’ve always been fascinated by board builders. I’ve interviewed shapers and stared in wonder like many young groms at the masters at work. They take a piece of foam and turn it into something that can bring another person so much pleasure. When I finally started thinking about making my own board I googled surfboard kits thinking it would be expensive and a task that I might not want to tackle due to the financial and emotional investment. To my surprise I could buy a kit for under $200. I’ve spent $200 on a lot less meaningful things in my life so why the heck shouldn’t I take a stab at shaping?
The one real lesson I had to overcome before I started sawing and planning away was am I going to butcher this thing and be out a couple hundred. It was a pretty good question. When beginners ask me if surfing is difficult I tell them, you should probably take a lesson. It helps to cut out some of the BS and get firsthand knowledge on skills that might take much longer to learn on your own. So I figured I’d take my own advice and interview one of the preeminent surfboard suppliers in southern California. Foam EZ. I had the privilege of speaking with Brad Nadell, the owner and founder of the rapidly evolving business to get his take on board building for the amateur surfer.
This podcast isn’t the most exciting or amazing, but if will bring you a basis for understanding that maybe without too much effort you can shape your own board. Surfers spend so much time with a product that only requires one thing: the surfboard. Why not have an idea for how its built and the trials and tribulations shapers go through to make the thing that brings us so much joy? Long story short, I hope you enjoy this episode. Maybe after this I’ll finally dust off that brewing kit I got a couple years ago for a birthday gift and finally make that IPA I love. Anyway, enjoy.