a lot of it's marketing & wanting what the pros have, but i also think that some of it is repeatability. KNOWING that you can go into a shop & get THE SAME EXACT BOARD, no questions, not ifs, ands, or buts.
that said, i've had great boards from my local guys & i've had crap boards from my local guys. but i've also had great boards from CI & crap boards from CI. sometimes there's just no telling. price will definitely be cheaper from the local guy, but some folks don't care about that.
I've owned several of both CI and Rusty boards. I preferred the Rustys, but both brands are built very well and with computer aided consistency.
My last 2 boards, however, were a Quiet Flight and a unknown local brand. Both were only $499+ tax out the door.
The cool thing about Quiet Flight is they're actually shaped by Bruce Ragan (shapes CJ Hobgood's boards), not some ghost shaper like you'd get on a Rusty or CI. QF are handcrafted through every step so they don't have the absolutely perfect look of the big name computer aided brands, but they surf great.
The local brand is also 100% handcrafted and glassed, in house, by a guy who was born and lived all his life a few blocks from the spot I ride his board...the board has visual flaws, but rides my local conditions better than any other board I've owned.
Last edited by waterbaby; Oct 2, 2012 at 03:44 AM.
CI, Rusty and Lost are brands, started by very knowledgeable and talented shapers... some would argue among the best in the world. But the "craze" has little to do with that other than their talents have made them successful and their market is now global. The craze is over the brand... which I'm sure people know more about than the shapers themselves. Some may not even know their names, and most certainly won't know the names of the ghost shapers and groove smoothers that finish shape the machined blanks for glassing. And I'm also certain nobody knows the names of the glassers, not to mention the sanders!
People buy what they know. "Everybody's got one... they must be good." That's just the way it works... whether that is right or wrong is another discussion.
But there will always be a segment of the board-buying public that wants to seek out something else... that want to be part of the process, at least to some degree. They want to take ownership of some part of the board, even if it's just the conversation with the shaper, and they believe that going to a local shaper and ordering a custom board will give them the opportunity to have more fun in the water. Buying a board is exciting for most of us... and it's even better when you have an idea in your head of what you want, and you can go to somebody local who can give you a beautiful, functional board that's exactly what you envisioned. Maybe that vision in your head IS a Lost or CI or Rusty. And you can go to your local surf shop and get that perfect board for you. But that's just not the case for everybody.
channel islands boards have the best shapes and designs. I broke my Quiet Flight and got a CI and started surfing better that day. CI boards are glassed super thin though so don't expect them to last a long time. Ive made like four repairs on my board and only had it for a few months
my feelings are that CI's and the like are for pros and spoiled cali kids who are basically sponsored by their parents.
Take any CI board into someone like Tim Nolte and he can make you a "fryer" or a "dumpster driver" for $450 or so, if you know what I mean.
Take your intentions/ ideas to a guy like Jesse Fernandez or Tmoore (I have a thing for wrv) and they will always amaze you. That is basically what the pros get to do with Al Merick.
I think having a guy that surfs the same waves as you making your sticks is critical. Having the right equipment is what is important, not what the sticker says or what pro's are riding it, because guess what? Pros are better than you and that pro model board is only holding you back.
Last edited by leethestud; Oct 2, 2012 at 12:55 PM.
Its just like with anything else in life......call it marketing but I prefer imitation. People are like sheep, when one goes down the path, others will follow. Many want to belong to the collective and know nothing about individuallity. Young surfers see a pro on a certain board and they gotta have it thinking the board is the key. Rippers will rip on a piece of crap because they can. It's not the board so much as the talent. Most high end boards are lightly glassed and just arent going to hold up. Many boards the pros ride only last a couple sessions before they are discarded. In my years Ive only had one high end board I truly enjoyed riding. When I went custom I realized even that board did not compare to boards made just for me. Everyone should try a local custom at least once. I'll never buy another in store stick.
Matt Biolos is about my size, admits hes not a pro surfer and QA's his own shapes. I bought a motivator after a lot of demoing and research and this has been my magic board since the purchase(I probably caught 5x as many waves as my buddy the other day... best day of surf all summer). I also own a psycho ward i bought for a good deal on CL. CI has outsourced their shaping (from what I understand) and I don't think Al works much with anyone other than pros (Where Matt tests his shapes such as the plank and the motivator). To sum it all up, I think marketing plays a part in it, but also think that once youve found what youre looking for you stick with it. I respect the mom and pop local shapers but know the glassing is a bit heavier most of the time. That was a deal breaker for me (traded a chris burch in for the lost)...although I just bought a moonlight glassed Campbell Bros thruster on CL for 180....YEW!!!
channel islands boards have the best shapes and designs.
sorry, but that's all in your head. either that, or your quiet flight was a gigantic POS & being on a half-decent board made a big difference. "best" is a subjective judgement & will always be a matter of opinion. i think boards w/ single-double concave w/ vee out the back are the best boards. but others think that a straight single is the best. po-tay-to, po-tah-to.
Originally Posted by petesmith
CI boards are glassed super thin though so don't expect them to last a long time. Ive made like four repairs on my board and only had it for a few months
why is this acceptable? if you really like the board, wouldn't you want it to last a while? is it really so necessary for the average surfer to have a super light board? maybe it's just me b/c i'm hell on decks, & i can kill a 4x4 deck in 1-2 sessions, but it seems like, for an average surfer, a 6x4 deck is the way to go. protect that baby for a while...make her last. i really don't understand when the concept of the disposable surfboard became commonplace. working at a shop, i saw an old 80's board come in...an in the eye, i think. it had an "ultra light" glassing lam on it...6x4 deck, 6 bottom!