I finally had another go out on the pig this past week.
2' to 4' south swell at C Street, fairly clean and lined up. I rode it with the fin pictured.
Unfortunately, I didn't get too many waves as I had to contend with a bunch of overzealous longboarders in their twenties, but I managed to snag a few.
On my best wave, a nice 4 footer, the board was just flying. The weight of the board combined with the low rocker makes it really go. It felt a little stiff, but overall not too bad. It definitely wants to go with that fin. I will fatten it up, as you suggested. I'm sure that's all it needs.
I also still need to adjust my stance to stand further back as I'm used to riding further forward. I will keep you posted.
One morning in 1974, I was shooting pictures from the water at what's now known as the "Super Bank" in Coolangatta...
I had just run out of film, and was jonesing to get back to my flat across the street and swap my water housing for my stubby. As I was swimming towards shore, some guy on a well overhead wave dropped out of the sky on a wide, beat-up, stringerless hull of some kind. He hit the flat water at the base of the wave, and, with just the balls of his feet, threw the board over on it's side. The entire rail, nose to tail, was buried, and he accelerated off the bottom and went rocketing past me.
It looked like he was riding a first-gen V-Bottom. WTF??? This was a full 5 years after the last Deep V was seen in the water anywhere in the civilized world. And back then, 5 years was like 50 years. There was NO nostalgia happening in 1974, as far as I could tell.
A local guy I knew paddled past me, and I blurted out, "Who the hell was that???!!!"
"Neil Purchase, mate!"
I made it home, grabbed my hull, and ran back to the top of the point. I was as anxious to talk to this Neil guy as I was getting any waves. Long story short, he was gone by the time I got out in the water, and I never saw him again.
Fast forward 41 years...
I was going through the Neil Purchase Junior web page, here, and found some info on the first board Neil Senior shaped...a classic Deep V with a few cool tweaks. (Like a stepped deck and a scooped out area on the tail.) It sure looked like the board I saw him ride back in '74! Could it be?
From that web page...
"Neal Purchase senior's first board "the Virgin", 8'4 , shaped at Keyo's in '66 whilst he was still the fin maker and shit kicker. See above for Neal senior riding it. Ted Spencer and Kevin Platt also rode it, came back raving, and he was immediately promoted to the shapers job with Bob Mctavish."
Image of Ted Spencer riding that board, with a comment by David Bell, on Pinterest...
"Ted Spencer on NP Senior's 8'4 x 24 x 3 1/4 Virgin with asymmetric vee and concave deck in the tail, the first board he shaped at Keyo's factory in '67.....a part of the short board revolution, and a major improvement on his surfing, NP Senior will not ride a log to this day..."
A full ten years before the thruster emerged, McTavish broke hull tradition with a narrow-nosed Morey Pope model called the "Big Mac."
(Yes, this is a real print ad for the Big Mac that ran in Surfer Magazine. Bob assumed the role of Captain McTavish for the photo shoot.)
"Big Mac," obviously, was derived from Bob's last name juxtaposed with the newly-minted McDonalds hamburger. And to drive the point home, there was a big image of a hamburger laminated on the decks of this Morey-Pope model. It wasn't a big seller!
Ben Lexan designed a no-nose hull for Shane Horan in the 80's. While not a true hull -- it was only rolled a bit under the nose -- the concept was similar.
So what happened to these seemingly futuristic, "best of both worlds" hulls?
The key word is "redundancy." Belly under the nose allows a full outline to lay into the face of a wave without sticking. A pulled-in nose does essentially the same thing. But together, it was overkill. There was nothing for the rider to drive off of...whether it be a parallel outline/full nose, or some edge on the front of a narrow-nose board. In the end, there was no benefit to applying both design concepts to one board.
I drew up a cut file for a 9'7'' Pig shape for Florian Morlat, based on the classic 50's era Velzy shape. Spencer Kellogg shaped it. Here's Florian's initial go-out report...
I picked up my board today. It came out insane! Board definitely has some weight, but I think that's a good thing.
Tried to surf Mandos, but got totally skunked. South wind, and the beach is completely gone. Even at medium to low tide, the water goes all the way to the rocks. I have never seen it like that. I decided not to try and climb, with my new board, the 30' of wet and slippery seawall down and ding it up completely. So I headed up north. Time was running out. I had to be back in LA by a certain time, so out of pure desperation I went out in 2' south wind Rincon.
I rode it with a 9" Wilderness fin about 6" up. The board paddles like a rocket, fastest board I ever paddled. The board felt pretty good with that fin. Then I stuck a big D fin all the way back and rode a couple of waves. Like you predicted, the board went really fast, but when I tried to cut back (standing a little too far forward) the board just kept going straight, me doing a face plant...that's how stiff and tracky the D fin was.
More experimentation in better waves required! I'm looking for a small, stocky fin. That might be just the ticket.
Stoked, and thanks so much for making this happen!