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tracks : surfboard design, 1972 

Tracks : Surfboard Design, 1972.
Tracks: Surfboard Design
Number 17 February 1972.

An edition rich in surfboard design it includes an extensive range of designs in an advertisement for Farrelly Surfboards and an article on rocker by Bob McTavish (R.McT).
Some of the images have been rotated.

Page 26
Farrelly Surfboards

Dimensions 6' x 19"
The Whiska is changed.
The fast lines and even volume are the same as before.
The out­line has been altered to give a tighter fitting tail design and the nose is sleeker for gentler entry as the waves of Autumn begin to hollow out.
The rails have been changed to a more positive shape being low and soft but now rising a little faster to the deck to give a slightly squared effect.
This change gives added thrust to the turn while the board is up on the rail.
The flatter deck is certainly more stable for toe and heel pressure and the overall impression the board now gives is that it still looks very easy to ride but it is a much faster piece of equipment.
We vary the thickness of the Whiska to suit the style of the indi­vidual surfer.
As before, a thinner board sits tight to the face of a good fast wave, while slower waves demand more buoyancy.
The nose is built thicker for positive entry and the tail is fine and sensitive for rapid direction changes.
The bottom of the board is basically flat throughout with a slight vee in the tail to keep the board laterally free tor the turn at higher speeds.
When any board moves fast over water traction increases with greater surface contact making it desirable that the tail should be able to break free tor  direction change.
The 1/4" of vee achieves just this.
All up weight of the board is around eight pounds.
The rugged glass job employs only the best volan and silene cloth.
The foam we make here at our factory, trade name Surf blanks.
Many smaller manu­facturers have taken to buying our blanks because ot their strength and resis­tance to delaminating.
These  smaller manufacturers are as concerned as we are that the surfer can trade his board back with out dropping all kinds of money just  because the deck has blown off in a blister.
Another  result of using this tougher foam is that the glasser doesn't have to load the tail up with cloth patches to protect the pres­sure points thereby unbalancing the board by making it tail heavy.
You can put one, two or three tins on the Whiska for different turn characteristics.
A single large fin for general purpose surfing, twins for pivot and drive up the face, and the tri set up for no-spin turns and added thrust out of the turn.
The use of the fin box, though slightly more expensive adds to the strength of the fin and tail and means that the board can be converted to ex­perience different fin set ups.

Dimensions: 6' x 19"
The roundtail is a balanced de­sign that can definitely be considered a general purpose surfboard.
If a wave had to be ridden at six feet in a variety of breaks any­where on our coastlines the roondtait could handle it.
The outline of the board is responsive to the kind of waves a surfer would expect to encounter year round.
The thickness is even throughout and the rocker flows in an even curve.
The balance of the board's weight is slightly forward to tip into speed at the slight­est opportunity.
The rounded tail is very smooth through the turn giving sus­tained drive at the be­ginning and end.
The deck is flatter for foot grip and the rail low and sensi­tive.
An average or better surfer can generate an even rhythm with this design keeping the pace up while moving into all known posi­tions.
Wave range for the roundfail is approximately two to eight feet.
The design will handle up to ten feet under perfect conditions.
A '69 or the 'low raifer' would have the advantage from eight feet because of their reduced tail area.

Dimensions  48" x 19'
This thin, high speed design was created for maxi­mum performance across any challenging wave.
This same design has been used in Hawaiian surf up to 15'.
There is no other design in Australia like it since nobody has explored the exact design potential.
Given a good wave with the slight V bottom and hard edges will out race high speed gun boards.
The nose is sensi­tive being thin and scooped.
A foot before the tail the deck is humped to carry the chest ol the surfer.
Full carving turns can be had by burying the squarish extremities of the tail.
With either a large single or two small twin fins the Belly Rider is very positive and free in handling.
N.B.This is a board designed specifically for surfers who don't get to their knees or feet.
It is strictly for the belly rider due to its finely balanced profitle and minimal flotation.
Lengths and widths can be varied on request.

Dimensions: 6' x 18-19"
The Hawaii '69' has been around for a long while now.
It was our speed shape last Summer.
The board was originally designed for use in the islands.
As Australian surfers began to demand more freedom and speed we found that the 69 found its way to wider acceptance, in any good wave the board performs as if it only makes contact with one point of the bottom to the water.
To say the least, it is very free at speeds.
It does have limitations like any design that specialises.
It doesn't like flat, slow   waves.
It is primarily designed to beat the lip.
The tail is small and sensitive for snappy turns.
The nose is kicked high and comes with either high or Iow rails.
The rails go low very quickly and harden up at the tail.
The fin is medium size and is swept back just a Iittle.
The board pictured can be stretched out to 6' 8" for maximum performance.
The extra length means more reach along the wave as well as better paddling.

Dimensions 5' x 20"
Many surfers have begun to explore the possibility of using a board that performs more than one function.
It would seem that the ideal piece of surfing equipment could be ridden lying down, kneeling up, and possibly in the standing position.
Waves allowing this is just what the BK is designed to do.
The board is shorter than a conventional board to facilitate leverage from a very low centre of gravity.
It is also just barely long enough to be operated from the standing position.
Imagine the potential for this board in all kinds of Summer waves.
The bottom of the board features a slow curving line lengthways that guarantees lateral freedom at speed.
The rails are low and fairly soft.
The deck is scooped up to 1/4" to make a well and to put the surfer a little closer to the water without interfering with the rail thickness.
The BK makes use of one large fin or else two smaller ones, depending on the turning characteristics demanded by the rider.
There are two basic prices for the BK Rider $80 with­out a wood strip, and $85 with.

Dimensions: 4'10" x 20"
Rugged construction and functional lines are what makes the shell the ultimate eqipment tor the knee-rider surfer, and a hollow curl.
Fifteen layers of 8 oz keep this little machine together, through all the stressing turns it can be pushed through in better than average wave.
We pur­posely avoid making the tail too flexible as this cuts down the board's strength and performance in faster, heavier waves.
The standard fin for the shell is large and swept back.
Rotation is good with the foam section and the all glass centre is concave on the underside.
Longer high speed hells with lower rails can be built on request.

Knee Riders can have streched version of the Belly Rider to 51" at $73.00.

Dimensions: 6' x 17-18"
The ultimate in surfing equipment for any surfer of above average ability.
It's the only board that you would want to use it you found yourself confronted with your perfect wave.
The fact that all the rail is turned down and the board has a throughout rocker, means that no matter how difficult
  the wave is to make the board will stay free and keep slicing into th vertical water.
A good surfer knows instantly what this will mean to his surfing.

It means pushing the unmakeable situation instead of backing off from it.
It means getting high into the tip for a burst when all other boards are forced to the bottom and into the white-water.
Today when the wave places so many limita­tions on most surfers, it is the equipment that is breaking down the barriers, open­ing up possibilities and pushing the limit a little further ahead into the future.
The nose of the board is a little heavier than the tail and can be ridden easily once the board is planing  freely.
This forward trim is essential for thrust out of the turn.
No longer is the rider confined to the tail after the turn has been nego­tiated.
By making full use of the deck the surfer can achieve that flexibility that goes with  total perfor­mance, back under the lip, in the dark shadow of a really pumping wave.
This design performs best for

the average size surfer at 6'8"  to 7'.
It can also be stretched out to 8' if neces­sary like the hoard in the surfing shot, centre page.

farrelly 230 harbord rd., brookvale, n.s.w. 2100
ph. 939 1724






EXTRA FIN: @ S $7. ...M $7.50. ...L $8.


Page 27
design                                       JOHN BLANCH'S SHAPE


Bob has made three asymmetrical surfboards.
The boards give a different release from tide to tide, flat bottom with vee on right, hard rail and flat on left.
Widest point- right hand tide 4" in front of halfway; left hand tide 3" in front of halfway.
Thickness 3", nose 11". tail 10 1/2", fin 10". Length 7'1" Width 18", 1/2" curve throughout.
This board hat been ridden around the North Coast for the past three months.


Boards from Sol Surfboards, Ballina.

Board One.
Length 6'9", Width 19", 3'1 1/2" from the nose.
Hullshape: concave, Tail 12 1/2", nose 12 1/4", fin 8 1/2".
A fast hot dog type hoard for clean waves, soft rails in centre, harder at ends.
Board Two.
Length 6'11", Width 17 1/2", 2' 10" from the nose.
Hullshape: bowl to flat to vee, lift throughout.
Tail 10 3/4", nose 11 1/2" fin 8"
A summer speed board for Lennox and Broken Head when it's big.
Boards from San Juan, Byron Bay.

It is real free and surfs tight, gets back in the curl quickly,
draws long lines or short tight arcs.
Surfs lefts tight and well too. Board from Bare Nature, Byron Bay.

Board One
Length 6'4" Width 20", 32" from the nose.
Hullshape: soft rails, rocker gunned out from tail right thru.
Good for all round North Coast surf, no stringer.
Length 6', Width 18 1/2", 30" from the nose.
Soft rails, designed for fast surf.

Page 29

Since the late fifties the basic associations of bottom curves to wave speed have been that curves go slow and straights go fast.
Like Pat Current Waimea guns had six feet of dead straight plane in the back half, and the regular old long hot-dog boards had a kicked up tail and straight nose so they went slow on the tail and faster up front.

So when boards got shorter end shorter, tails went straighter and straighter, in the mainstream of design anyway.
Mini-guns indeed.

At the low end of the scale, two years ago when the average Aussie board was down to less than six feef, they had to have straight tails to make maximum use of their minimal square inches.
Now, as boards tend longer and faster, rocker's reappearing.

But what of the old tenet of rocker causing drag and straight gives speed?
Well for the first time surfing has reached the point where it can utilise throughout curve even in speed situations.

It starts with the surfer wanting to surf deeper, and have more comfort in there, naturally.

So he's turning deeper where the curves are steeper, and he's pressing harder because he's challenging more powerful waves.
Straight tails with down rails don't want you to press and wrap them, they resist.
The tail curve lets you.
And the result is a harder banked slicing turn, pulled off in the deepest area.
It's an attractive turn, low and forward, banked hard, yet throwing less rooster-tail.
Just layin' low and slicing.

But to be able to make use of this banking ability, the rest of the board must be in harmony with the bottom curve.
You have to be able to ride around on your rail so the plan shape must let you settle over on your edge without hobby-horsing or pulling you around too tight.
The more pronounced the hip, the more hobby-horsey, the more pronounced the shoulders, the more it'll pull you around.
You may have to ride a narrower tail than you're used to, but you'll soon learn to "spread yourself along the board" to compensate.
Or you may have to use rail tins to hold the tail in.

But does the tail rocker cause drag racing down the wall?
Not it it's the right curve.
It does lose that feeling of being "pushed" that the straight tails had, but you gain by having a "trimmable" curve, one that you can settle on the face and gain water line length, a characteristic that has been missing from main-stream boards for a couple of years.
There have been notable exceptions, like Mike Hynson's designs.

To use this trimming ability once again the surfer may have to adjust his style.
Once more the "spreading down the stringer" style helps greatly in transferring weight from front foot to back, trim point to tail, while maintaining a low centre of gravity, and low wind resistance on faster surfs.
Rotation by leading your turns with your left hand and following with your right like you see the Hawaiians doing in "Sea Dreams", is a natural way to transfer effort during the turn, (for a natural, reverse for goofy.)
A throughout rocker could be an interesting thing to get into, but remember when buying a board, a few extra inches in length won't feef so big with the curve to soften it.
   R. McT 

John Lewis makes "'Falcon" surfboards for himself and his friends.
John's boards:— Single fin 6'9" x 18" x 3 1/4".
The nose is 10 1/2" wide 12" from the front, the tail 11" wide 12" from the back going to a 4" rounded square tail.
The thickness is in the front half of the board, low hard rails all the way with release edges in the centre 1/3 of board.
Slight curve all through the tail, V tail and flex fin.
Ridden in ail manner of surf from 2'-8' goes best at 6-8'.
Pulls very fast arcs, with instant acceleration out of a turn.   

Mick's board, shaped by McTavish and
finished by John.
7' x 18"
super flat bottom with slight V in tail,
Continual rocker with a fair bit of tail lift,
flex fin.
All round hot dog-speed board and goes like a rocket.

Tri fin shaped by McTavish and finished
by John, built for surf over 8'.
7'2" x 17 1/2"
low hard rails with release edge in centre 1/3,
lots of tail lift, round square tail and
flat bottom throughout.
Outrider fins set in line and parallel to centre fin.

Ian's board, tri fin hot dog board, similar shape
to John's single fin.
6'10" x 18 1/2" with a 5" back.
Thickness in front half of board,
rails are hard-soft-hard with release edge in centre 1/3,
breakaway V in tail.
Excels in 4'-8' surf.

Page 22                                                                                                                                                                                                                           Page X

San Juan Surfboards

Shane Surfboards

Number 17 February 1972.


Geoff Cater (2018) : Tracks : Surfboard Design, 1972.