Wednesday, November 21, 2012


While I was walking around the booths in Del Mar at last months board show, I thought I'd come across an old member of the family. After closer examination, while it was very close, it was not my old board. My wife bought the one in the first photo at yard sale in Rio Grande, NJ in 1987 for $5.00. We held onto it for almost 20 years and numerous moves around the country, courtesy of the USCG, before we finally let it go. I took it up to George Gerlach (Surfer's Supplies, OCNJ) at some point in the early 1990s to get his take on it. George said it was most likely from around 1965 and that he sold a bunch of them out of the shop during that time period. It was 9'6", had a slight twist up toward the nose and a cool blue fiberglass "chopstick" fin. The red "Greg Noll" in the lam had faded away and for several years, I had no idea who made it. Just a little guy with the word "surfboards" on the deck. There wasn't much about longboarding history at my fingertips back in the late 80s and it wasn't until one day that the sun shone on the board at the right angle that I saw the faded name on each side of the the little "fat man" on the lam. Rode it quite a few times but never really fell in love with it as a rider. While stationed in Chattanooga, TN I kept it behind the garage where the tug I was on moored up. During the summer months I'd paddle up river during my lunch break in a weak effort to stay in some type of surf shape. After many years of it gathering dust, I put it up for sale and off it went to a new home somewhere in Northern California. Hindsight being 20/20, it's one I'd like to have back. Not so much for the performance aspect, but more for the nostalgia.

Summer 1988

Fat man lam

Vintage Noll at the International Surfboard Show in Del Mar, CA October 2012

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