Ultra Groveler?

Island Bay's picture
Island Bay started the topic in Tuesday, 14 Jun 2022 at 2:07pm

I love solid waves. And perfect waves. And perfect, solid, hollow waves. Like everybody else. But there's something very very satisfying about surfing soft, knee high waves, if you have the right board, so I'm keen to find the ultimate Ultra Groveler.

A board that'll let you take off on fat, shitty waves, and connect impossible sections, on days when you wouldn't normally surf.

Joistik Cab Sav. Fireturd Sweet Potato 2. That sort of thing.

Ideas?

Waves like this (and no, that's not me thank you)

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Island Bay Tuesday, 14 Jun 2022 at 2:08pm

Bump

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udo Tuesday, 14 Jun 2022 at 3:03pm
Island Bay's picture
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Island Bay Tuesday, 14 Jun 2022 at 3:15pm

That dude RIPS on the Vernor. Proper grovel waves, yet makes it look fun.

Would get one tomorrow, if I could.

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udo Tuesday, 14 Jun 2022 at 3:29pm

Buy yourself a Blank and play around...How much are Fish Blanks in NZ ?
$89 at South Coast Foam Burliegh .

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Island Bay Tuesday, 14 Jun 2022 at 3:31pm

Got a blank sitting in the garage. Nowhere to glass, but a local shaper might do it (his website says so).

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udo Tuesday, 14 Jun 2022 at 3:50pm

Why not Glass in the Garage...? 'The Vizzla'
Some inspiration - https://www.instagram.com/explore/tags/minisimmonssurfboard/
Those Mini Simmons are much Prettier with a nice [LSD Tex look ? ] Nose

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Island Bay Tuesday, 14 Jun 2022 at 3:58pm

Agree about the slightly pointy noses, Udo.

Garage is full is stuff after a recent move, so may have to find a mate who'll let me shape/glass. Or do the Greenough wet shaping trick in the garden :-)

mugofsunshine's picture
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mugofsunshine Tuesday, 14 Jun 2022 at 7:58pm

My two pence... I think it's easy to fall into the high volume trap ala Sweet Potato. I shaped my self (from a seconds long board blank) a 5'3 x 22 x 2 1/4. Thin tail, mild/almost S deck. I called a bar of soap. I sit pretty low in the water in between waves but the surface area is the key. It flies, but it also turns. The thinner rails and lack of thickness through the tail mean I can get it around pretty sharp. One of my favourite things to do on the Sunny Coast points is wait for a long boarder to pick up a wave further out then spin and take off behind them. Couple of pumps and I'm caught up and they think they've dropped in on someone by accident and kick off :)
Think Curren and skim boards.
I'll try and upload a photo if I can.

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mugofsunshine Tuesday, 14 Jun 2022 at 7:59pm

Oh, I'm 178cm and 78kg btw

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Island Bay Tuesday, 14 Jun 2022 at 8:08pm

Would love to see it, mug.

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poo-man Tuesday, 14 Jun 2022 at 8:49pm

I don't really like the sweet potato style of Firewires but just got the latest Machado one called the Mashup and it's super fun in 1 or 2 feet. Also if you're wanting someone to glass your own shape then get Dave Elley to do it in Raglan. He's good

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Island Bay Tuesday, 14 Jun 2022 at 8:56pm

Cheers, mate!

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82shoes Tuesday, 14 Jun 2022 at 9:00pm

Iv'e had this board by Chris Garrett for years now, probably surfed it more than all the boards in my quiver due to the way it surfs small gutless waves. Basically rides waves you would normally need a mal to pick up, yet is so much more manoeuvrable.
It's called a "nub"
Hull entry with small channels right at the back with twin keels right on the tail
Will attempt to post photos
Sadly need to move it on soon

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udo Tuesday, 14 Jun 2022 at 9:06pm
Rabbits68's picture
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Rabbits68 Tuesday, 14 Jun 2022 at 9:19pm

Get the dimensions right on one of these & you’ll have a serious addiction on your hands :-)

https://www.yahoosurfboards.com.au/boards/mark-ogram/kelvinator/

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markxxx Tuesday, 14 Jun 2022 at 9:50pm

Lost Couch Potato (I think they have a newer model called the Bean Bag but they’re super short in comparison). I have a 5’7 CP in eps and it flys in knee to thigh high waves. Short, wide but best of all pretty thin compared to other grovelers. Not just a little cruiser either, surprisingly hp contrary to its looks.

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82shoes Tuesday, 14 Jun 2022 at 9:52pm
udo wrote:

One of these ?
https://www.blinksurf.com/surfboards-and-equipment/chris-garrett-shapes-...

Yep that's basically it

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frog Wednesday, 15 Jun 2022 at 8:25am

Don't be afraid to go longer say around 6' and high volume ~ 38 to 40 litre to get easy paddling and "lazy" trim speed. I have seen a lot of footage of surfers pushing water and struggling to plane with speed on super short board for limited benefit. A lot of the promo vids (excepting some above) that I found show the boards in waist to shoulder high surf - not true grovel stuff.

From comments I have read on this type of board, many swear that their super shorty flies but for the heavier, less nimble surfers if you watch closely it often does not look like it.

A 6 foot board can fit in the curves of a small wave well enough.

If the tail is right you trim forward then step back and surprise yourself with the looseness even with boards that have thicker forward rails.

On mine (42 litre 6' 2") I can get long board trim speed without pumping at all by trimming forward. On fast waves often I feel up on the water surface with lots of air going under the bottom - frictionless flying. But on a wave with a pocket I can also step back and pump with loose speed like a higher performance board. You can feel the concaves squirting from back there. From a middle to forward trim you can't sink a rail - too corky. However, if you step back to the thinner tail it becomes very loose.

Foot placement and moving forward and back is needed to really get the most out of it. I often watch people get locked into the forward trim seemingly totally ignorant that they could step back and do some great turns.

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morg Wednesday, 15 Jun 2022 at 10:45pm

Try a 5’6” or 5’8” Annersley Bullshark. It’s a real surprise in sh#t waves.

https://www.annesleysurfboards.com/bullshark/

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Island Bay Thursday, 16 Jun 2022 at 6:36am

Bullshark looks interesting, but that video with the 100kg dude (Beau something?) is awful. Pumping like a loon to make a tiny, underpowered board make sections is not my idea of good surfing. Reminds my of Noel Salad board review vids; always on too small a board.

Contrast that with the lanky Seppo riding the Vernor at Hatteras.

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udo Tuesday, 28 Jun 2022 at 8:58am
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joesydney Tuesday, 28 Jun 2022 at 10:10am
Island Bay wrote:

Bullshark looks interesting, but that video with the 100kg dude (Beau something?) is awful. Pumping like a loon to make a tiny, underpowered board make sections is not my idea of good surfing. Reminds my of Noel Salad board review vids; always on too small a board.

Contrast that with the lanky Seppo riding the Vernor at Hatteras.

Funny you say that - because when that vid was posted I’m thinking “it’s bad enough I have to watch that guy when I’m in the surf now someone has posted a vid to watch it all over again…..”

(I should add my surfing is nothing to watch)

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Pops Tuesday, 28 Jun 2022 at 10:31am

I've got a 5'2 bullshark, very fun board in garbage surf (tends to get a lot of usage in Sydney spring). Does what you'd expect with that big flat planing surface.
Can be a bit weird and slidy with "normal" quads (which can be good fun to be honest), but the FCS split keels have tightened her up nicely.

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udo Wednesday, 29 Jun 2022 at 10:11pm
lostdoggy's picture
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lostdoggy Wednesday, 29 Jun 2022 at 10:18pm

There was a guy out here the other day on a lsd chubby cheddar ripping the bag out of 1ft waves.
I think the user was more responsible than the board though.

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groundswell Wednesday, 29 Jun 2022 at 11:53pm

Ive got to say a Mark Pridmore fat bat is an excellent groveller, goes well backhand, forehand, picks up speed as soon as you find/turn into a pocket..races around long closeout sections with ease and slight knee/body pumps around the section(so you dont bog).
but is not the full on groveller, many people take them to indo as a small good wave board.
They work all over the maldives and indo but for indo small waves i prefer my jim banks mk2 (5'10") which is the same height as me.
When i started on fish, i started too big as i was used to old school single fins that had too much volume and got a demo banksy fish to suit(6'0") but found it unresponsive unless i did whatever it was i did that just made it excell. sometimes it would go fast, float and cutback, sometimes i would bog...dont know what was going on but as soon as i got a fish a few inches narrower and thinner as Jim suggested
the board went unreal in 2-4 foot surf.

Once id gotten the board pretty wired i could surf 8 foot south sumatran points on it and 6 foot speedies barrels was its max i had the balls to ride it in. it may have handled bigger but i didnt tempt fate.It handled 8 foot walls at ujung bocur and loved 4ft mid to low krui left (which is getting too shallow most think)
however also liked 1foot walls just needed room and a pocket to gain speed out of.
One limit was chop, cant handle any (side)wind chop!

One other problem i had on the 5'10 mk2 was taking off under the lip straight into the tube on four foot plus waves at speedies or supersuck. The board would make the under the lip drop(or no drop) but try to aim for the crashing lip on the other side of the barrel as the board wanted to go straight after takeoff.
One of the best waves i ever caught at speedies it did this and i ended up banging into the lip then banging the tops of my feet on the sharp reef at speedies and the bones hurt for about two weeks. i had booties on too.

A better groveller ive heard are mini simmons but ive never ridden one.

udo's picture
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udo Saturday, 2 Jul 2022 at 12:36pm

lostdoggy's picture
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lostdoggy Thursday, 7 Jul 2022 at 11:19am

Maybe pick this up while you’re close by I.B.

https://www.facebook.com/marketplace/item/745789643216621/

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lostdoggy Thursday, 7 Jul 2022 at 11:22am

Pretty cheap for a Muz pipedream

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udo Thursday, 7 Jul 2022 at 11:31am

Jeezus what a Steal...Better hurry up thats gonna go in next hour..

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zenagain Thursday, 7 Jul 2022 at 11:36am

Maybe It's hot?

udo's picture
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udo Thursday, 7 Jul 2022 at 11:42am

Goldy is full of Bargain buys like that..

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Baldhead Friday, 8 Jul 2022 at 3:15pm

Twin fin fish 5’10” 21 + wide, fat beak nose 40 litres is perfect for me. About 6 liters above my short board.
I’ve seen a few guys ripping on The Yahoo Kelvinator in small surf. Mini Simmons inspired. Getting so much speed.

https://www.yahoosurfboards.com.au/boards/mark-ogram/kelvinator/

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samerubi Friday, 8 Jul 2022 at 5:53pm

ultra grovellers are a science unto themselves...
i have tried a number over the years but the two that stand out are my current joistik cab sav and rex marechans blood diamond.
both work well as twin plus trailers. this means they are good for both fore and back hand surfing.
i have tried ultra grovellers as quads but if i am surfing backhand they always feel weird. Quads do have some benefits forehand though.
the rms blood diamond is still my favourite in small grovelly conditions.
i aim for 3-5 litres more than my regular shortboard.
i also only go for pu.
eps feels crap in small bumpy conditions. pu just has that momentum and settled feeling required for forward progress and linking of turns. Weight of pu has never been an issue - but i am not trying to get air. i am only trying to have smooth surfing fun.
i think though that the ultra groveller is just as important in the quiver as a big wave board. Possibly more so for those of us who live on Australia's east coast.
it is a board that we all should have waiting for that next "flat" spell.

udo's picture
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udo Sunday, 7 Aug 2022 at 4:02pm

“There is something incomprehensible, something a little mystical about this surfboard, something that makes it paradoxically easy to ride, but difficult to master. How did it appear? Let’s ask Reynolds, the shaper.”

“Thomas (Campbell) was doing a book and wanted to take pictures of me shaping a board that I would bring and ride in Morocco ’cause he thought that was a cool thread for the book. He did the same with Alex (Knost), too. I ended up hurting my knee and didn’t go to Morocco, but anyways, I had shaped three boards free-form and thought I was the free-form guru. My point being this: look at the thing you stand on the board with, your foot. It’s such a bizarre shape and there’s no way you apply pressure to the heelside rail the same as you do the toeside rail, so what’s the point of symmetry?”

Listen, closer, readers, as Reynolds continues with the theorem. “So we just fucked around in the shaping room all afternoon. Thomas was more interested in taking weird photos, cutting up blanks to look like Christmas trees and shit. But the Sperm Whale basically came from that. Just hacking away until it was too thin and we had to stop and glass it. He was telling me what to do, kept telling me it needed more vee, more vee, more vee. ’til it was crazy thin and the whole board had vee. I didn’t know he hadn’t even shaped a board before. He was telling me what to do like he was Skip Frye or something. But the end result was a misshapen Sperm Whale looking thing, hence the name, and somehow it actually worked. Well, I thought it worked. Thomas wasn’t convinced. He didn’t like the way I surfed on it. I brought it to Chile and he kept telling me to get off of it. But it was pretty fun anyway. For me.”

CI’s Trav Lee says: “Dane had a knee injury at the time so he shelved it for a bit, but as he was recovering he pulled it out and rode it a bunch and was surprised how incredibly fast and fun it was. Sometimes boards, no matter what they look like, have a magic element and work incredibly well. When scanning and reproducing this board for the model we really wanted to maintain the integrity of his original shape.”

Says Reynolds: “Travis said he kept getting orders for a Sperm Whale and so they scanned it and I’m surprised at how many people I see riding ‘em and saying they love it. The scanned version, where they took out all the major mess-ups, goes pretty insane. It’s less of a curve ball. The basic fundamentals aren’t that weird, just flat with a ton of planing surface and that eggy wide-point back thing with the big hip to pivot off of.”

“This board has a big cult following and sells extremely well in Australia and Japan,” says Trav.

Adds Reynolds. “I think I see way more homemade Sperm Whale incarnations in the lineup than real ones, which is pretty cool.

Dimensions: 5’5″ x 21¼” x 2 1/8″ and 28.1L volume. Interesting side note: “It’s crazy how close to Dane’s normal volume he got on this board when shaping this from a raw and using no measuring tools,” says Channel Islands’ Travis Lee.

Best at 1:5 playback speed

udo's picture
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udo Sunday, 7 Aug 2022 at 4:15pm

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halleys-comet Sunday, 7 Aug 2022 at 7:25pm

IB, I had a similar dilemma when heading back to NZ after years in WA, the search for a versatile groveller, I liked the Firwire Chumlee under chest height, but if a decent 3ft set came through, the tail was too wide, overpowered and uncontrollable. Ended up happy with a Pyzel Astropop, as a quad, though not cheap when imported from Oz and choosing the epoxy option...ps enjoy Ragtown, my old haunt

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udo Sunday, 7 Aug 2022 at 8:17pm

Matt Bennett on the 5'2" C.I. Fish at Raglan last year was sick..

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udo Sunday, 7 Aug 2022 at 8:33pm