Thursday, September 27, 2007

Aircraft Pilots Unite

No words can describe it. -MR

Wednesday, September 26, 2007

Back to the Basics

Here are two wave riders demonstrating what the seals and dolphins do best. -MR

Tuesday, September 25, 2007

One California Day

I've been waiting to see this film for a long time and it's finally coming to SF.

One California Day is a visual journey through six distinct coastal regions, capturing the California surfing experience through the surfers who live it. Shot in brilliant super 16mm color film, the movie examines the variety of subtle differences that make California so unique.
Opening Night October 4 @ 8pm
Oct. 5-7 @ 7pm & 9pm
Tickets $10

Taco Bell Rental

Awhile back I came across a free surfboard. Here's the story to it and the letter I sent to my fellow wave riders.

Hello All,

Last week at Linda Mar a gentleman was having a really frustrating surf session in the wind chopped waves. To add to his problems he somehow dinged his board on the soft sandy beach. After exiting the water he proceeded to jam his surfing board down the garbage can but because the lid was on only the nose made it in. So he karate kicks the lid off and drops it in, tail first. I say to him, "Excuse me sir, do you not want that board?" He replied, "Fuck no bro! This shit is water logged, surfs like hell and now it has this hella big ass rail ding." Then I responded with, "Sounds perfect, can I have it?" He says, "It's all yours bro!" As I'm taking the board to my car I watch him stumble around the parking lot like he's searching for his car. He comes back a few minutes later and I'm thinking, great he changed his mind, he wants the board back. But that wasn't it. He came back to give me the leash for the board. So I scored a new old short board and a new old leash. I knew exactly what to do with it. It was BM that gave me the idea. I fixed the ding with some bondo and painted it to hide it's identity.

I have the key for now but will hide it somewhere near the board today after work, if the board is still there. Once the key is hidden I let everyone know where it's at so you can all ride it.

The rules:
1. Do not let anyone see you uncover the key.
2. Sign your initials on the board and date it.
3. Do not pee on it.
4. Lock it back up and don't let anyone see you hide the key.


So the board sat there for almost two weeks chained to the world famous Taco Bell. I ended up hiding the key under a rock right next to the board. One day when I showed up the board was gone but the key and lock where still there. I have no idea what happened to it but I sure gave me a good laugh. -MR

Sunday, September 23, 2007

JR Countinued

JR in action. -MR

Friday, September 21, 2007

Surfing Influences Part One

Let me introduce to you my best buddy JR. He was born in the Philippines and moved to the great USofA during high school with his dad, mom and two older sisters. I met him my first year of high school when I joined the swim team. He was by far the fastest and most talented swimmer on the team. So naturally I wanted to be his friend not only because he was a great swimmer, funny guy or even an upper classmen, but because he was friends with all the hot girls. Throughout high school classmates always asked me to teach them how to surf but I was hesitant for the reason I never wanted the responsability of watching over someone in the water. With JR it was different because he was already a better swimmer than I. The first time I took him out was in the winter of ’97 which was a testing time to learn in these waters. We went out during the weekday after school and sometime during class, and always on the weekends. I gave him my beater board and a holy farmer John wetsuit to use. For anyone else it would have been hell but JR never complained. In fact, he enjoyed it and I’m sure it’s because he was hooked since that first wave. It wasn’t long after that he bought a wetsuit and used board for himself.

Over the next year he just progressed like no one I’ve seen before. Within a few months he was getting barreled. Not no half-ass semi cover up but full on shacked. Completely covered up and making it out clean as a whistle. It was like he’s been doing it for years. I still remember his first barrel vividly in my mind to this day. The best part about that tube ride was he never claimed it when he came out. He just finished surfing the wave and pulled out like it was no big deal. Most people including myself would have thrown my arms up in victory. What impressed me the most was his wave knowledge. JR was able to find these tubes at breaks where it normally didn’t throw over. Maybe it was both luck and skill playing a role but either way it sparked a competitive drive within me. Before he got his first barrel it was just fun and games. Now it brought out this hunger in us both to push each other to improve.

The best surf trips I ever went on were with JR and we always had a great time even if the surf was flat. I went on my first surf trip with JR when I was 16. We took my ’81 VW, diesel pickup down south for a weekend trip. That was a great truck some memories. It was slow and unreliable but it gave us 45 mpg. Since we were always broke it worked out just fine. I told my mom we were just heading to Pismo Beach for a couple days, which was the initial plan. Somewhere on the drive down there I found out that JR has never been to LA so we took a little detour. A few hours later were cruising through Hollywood in my little truck with the boards hanging out the back. We did all the touristy stuff like take photos of the Hollywood sign, see the walk of fame and check out the hookers on Santa Monica Blvd. Finally we made our way to First Point, Malibu where we surfed that evening in some really fun waist high waves. I don’t remember where we slept that night but most of the time on our trips we found refuge in the back bed on my truck parked in some quiet neighborhood or industrial park. My mom at first wasn’t too happy when she found out but she got over it. Maybe she realized I’m too much like her, going off and doing think spear the moment. Many more trips followed that one and each one had its own lesson learned, hair raising adventure or never do that again experience. Like the time we almost were car jacked in Salinas or when the tread flew off the tire and had to drive on the spare at 40 mph from Santa Maria to Santa Cruz because we had no money to fix it. Also the good times like finding new spots along the California coast and the trip we took to the Philippines and found some excellent untouched surf.
After high school we gradually drifted apart, mostly do to school and work but we always kept in contact. It’s kind of like the movie Big Wednesday how the characters grow a part but they still share that common bond of surfing that brings them together in the end. Well, that’s how we are. We still find sometime to get out and share some waves. JR is still riding the green Bob Miller board he’s had forever and that is thrashed. The whole deck is one big delam and it’s covered in dings but he’s still out there surfing as good as ever. Thanks JR for all of the great memories with many more to come. -MR
photo by: MR
photo by: Skip Hoard

Thursday, September 20, 2007

The Jena Six

It’s sad to see that this crap still goes on today. It really needs to stop now. -MR

Wednesday, September 19, 2007

Surf Exploration by Sea

How great would it be to explore the Pacific coastline in one of these.

Tuesday, September 18, 2007

Glide House

One thing I love as much as surfing is architecture. Every now and then I'll post something about architects, designers and architecture. What better way to start it off than with the Glide House designed by Michelle Kaufmann. Michelle is a great Bay Area architect doing the right thing.

Sunday, September 16, 2007


Aircraft Acrobatics

All hail the mat riders.


Make your own surf wax. Here's what you'll need:

1 hot plate.

1 old crusty pot that you'll never ever want to use again.

1 cup cake pan with baking paper baking cups.

1 block of pure bee's wax.

1 sticky handful of tree sap from your neighbors yard.

1 can of coconut oil.
Extras include color crayons for color or vanilla extract, jasmine oil, etc. for sent.

For cold water wax the proportions are:
50% bee's wax

40% coconut oil

10% tree sap

For warmer water wax add more bee's wax and less coconu
t oil.

Melt the bee's wax in the pot over the hot plate. Add in the tree sap, coconut oil and optional extras and mix it all up real good. Pour the concoction into the baking cups to form the individual bars. Let it sit for a hour to cool and you're set. -MR

Friday, September 14, 2007

Little Jumbo Dumbo

The story goes something like this. BM is down in Malibu hanging out with friend DP. DP has this old 5’-0” something kneeboard which he asks BM to paint some crap on it. So BM takes the board with those intentions but never gave it back. Sometime goes by and BM along with JL need to show some junk at an art showing put on by OP in SF. This board was sitting around so they used it in the show. It has the words GO HOME written on the deck in blood-dripping red spray paint. About a year after the show BM is cleaning out his studio and this board made its way into the garbage mound. So JL rescues it and asks me to glass some fins onto it since the previous one was broken off. I forget from who or where the whole idea came about but we decided on some ridiculously over sized keel fins. More of a joke then anything. The best part was walking it down the beach to the water and having all of these hardcore surfers staring at you with a WTF expression on there faces. So I finished glassing on the fins and sent out the photos to a few friends. One of my friends, CR, who I sent the photos to was in Australia at the time visiting TW learning the process of making wooden surfboards. It turns out that DP is also living in Australia and is also friends with TW. That night after dinner CR shows TW and DP the photos I e-mailed him. DP is blown away! First he couldn’t believe that someone would do something so stupid like that but gets a laugh out of it anyway. Then he realizes that, that board is his and he’s not laughing so hard now. DP makes the connection about the circle of friends and how the board moved around over all these years. To top it all off, he wants his board back but he hasn’t got it back and he probably will never get it back. I’m sure the first thing he does if he gets it back is hack of the fins and of course shake a strong fist at us. The board surfs like shit which everyone expected but we all gave it a go anyway. It’s like riding a raging bull down a muddy road. The last I heard of it was when AK took it out to only be defeated by the beast. -MR

El Rancho

Has there ever been that one surf spot you've dreamed of surfing? Ever time I come across some photos of this classic place, it intrigues me even more. Last winter I had some photos were sent to me by AK which I wish I could post but they're considered TOP SECRET. It's a shame because the photos display the waves at their best. So I'll leave you with these teasers. -MR
surfer: Skip Frye / photo by: Ron Stoner
photo by: unknown
surfer: Danny Hazard / photo by: unknown
photos: unknown

Thursday, September 13, 2007

Foiled Fin for 9'-6"

I finished foiling and glassing that fin for the 9'-6" mentioned below. I came up with the template by messing around with some french curves and other fins. It's made of 1/2", finland birch marine ply that I picked up from WoodCraft--> A 1/2"x12"x30" sheet cost about $15 and I can get about four fins from it depending on their size. Foiling a fin takes about 15 minutes and glassing it takes about 30 minutes. After it's foiled I then wrap two layers of 4oz. cloth on each side of the fin. It's fun, easy and cheap. This one cost about $9 in materials and surfing something you made is priceless. One of these days I'll get around to posting the step by step process. -MR

Wednesday, September 12, 2007

Trim Speed

The surf is chest to head high clean hollowing rights at my favorite spot down in Capitola. A nice one is coming in so I swing my board around and paddle for it. Dropped in at an angle with a low neutral stance Derek Hynd style. I fly down the face in a high trim line with the spray coming off my bow and into my eyes. I get sucked back into the pocket and can feel the lip covering my back and hitting the outside rail. It’s a steep face and I know it’s about to section in the same spot as the last waves I slid down earlier. It doesn’t matter, I still grab the rail tight and tuck down waiting for it to happen. Sure enough, just like the last waves before I didn’t make the section. Only if I was going a little bit faster. I know it’s possible to pass the section because I’ve been lucky enough to have done it in the past. If you ever succeed making the section you’re granted another 25 yards to run through an even hollower face on the inside. I like to think my board is the reason why I’m not going as fast as I should. You see, I’m riding my pig shape here and it wasn’t designed to surf that well in these type of waves. I pulled the widest part of the board back giving it hips so it can turn easier in the beach break waves that I normally ride. In these fast, hollow waves the hips do two things that don’t work in my favor. One; they create more drag and two; they get wobbly and want to slide-ass. So I came up with a solution and it’s something that I’ve been thinking about for awhile now. I’ve decided to have Bob Miller ( craft me this new surfboard, a 9’-6” pin tail with loads of trim speed. I did a little sketch and gave it to BM. The blank was ordered and he should start shaping it anytime now. Just in time for Fall. BM is a true craftsmen and his shapes fit my surfing style perfectly. I was inspired by the old Pipeline guns of the 60’s and the green gun that Tom Wegener surfed in the film Siestas y Olas. I hope I’m on the right track. I’m making the fin for it now and I’ll post pictures of that soon.

Dream a Little Dream

I had a great dream last night which consisted of images like these. -MR

photo by BM

photo by JH

Tuesday, September 11, 2007

The Other Women

To start off I'll show you one my creations. I made this longboard some time ago and it has treated me very well. I would even say it is the best board I have ever surfed. My wife calls it the other women, so now I do too. This was the third surfboard that I shaped and the second that I fiberglassed. It's a little beat up now and I'm thinking of re-making it before it dies. The finished dimensions are 9'-3" length, 16" nose, 22.5" wide pulled back 12", 16.5" tail, 3.125" thick and a 4.5" square tail block. The rails are 50/50 and pinched and the bottom is rolled like a hull. The custom color job is spray paint and some people have said that it looks like a giant wiener. I made the board for my local beach break waves in mind but it does well at the points and reefs as well. I made the fin out of 1/2" thick marine ply which is my favorite material for making fins. The fin is 12" at the base and 10" in height with a traditional foil. I refer to the fin template as the Happy D. Most people are surprised that it's not as stiff as one might think.

Hello All

Well, I thought I should hop on the bandwagon and start a little blog-a-roo. I'll try to update it as often as possible but I can't promise much. Mostly it will be a collection and archive of my "findings", "doings" and "wish I was doing". If that makes sense and if it doesn't, just stay tuned. I hope you enjoy it.