glen car­keek | pri­mal

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What made you want to be­come a surf­board shaper? It was pretty ac­ci­den­tal, I al­ways was the kid try­ing to make things in the shed and saw some sec­ond blanks for sale one win­ter week­end. I got hold of a cou­ple of them and just kept go­ing.

Best thing about be­ing a shaper? It would have to be job sat­is­fac­tion. The process of think­ing through de­sign and trans­form­ing it into a func­tion­ing shape is very re­ward­ing. The ab­so­lute best part is the gen­eral stoke it cre­ates. For most surfers a surf­board is up there as their most prized pos­ses­sion, from or­der­ing the board to surf­ing it for the first time and best case it be­ing a magic there is an aura of stoke the whole way. To ex­pe­ri­ence it week to week is a priv­i­lege.

What are you fo­cus­ing on this year as a shaper? Our key fo­cus this year is to get the Fu­ture­lite tech­nol­ogy to a big­ger mar­ket, both lo­cally and in­ter­na­tion­ally. Have the tech­nol­ogy avail­able through many shapers al­lows for surfers to get their favourite shaper to de­sign. In­ter­na­tion­ally we have had Billy through Hughes shapes tak­ing on the world’s best, win­ning in Eng­land on a Fu­ture­lite this month. Now Paige has just picked up a Steve Mor­ris Fu­ture­lite to test drive. The plan is to take it to the in­ter­na­tional mar­ket, watch this space. Surf­board com­pa­nies are start­ing to in­clude board vol­ume on their di­men­sions, do you think it’s a good mea­sure­ment to base your board choice on and how do you de­cide what vol­ume board fits you? Vol­ume has al­ways been a key com­po­nent in your board choice. With CNC ma­chines we have that mea­sure­ment at our fin­ger­tips. It is an in­di­vid­ual thing de­pen­dant on abil­ity, style of board and just out­right per­sonal

pref­er­ence. To know your op­ti­mal vol­ume is just an­other tool in un­der­stand­ing your equip­ment, some­thing ev­ery surfer should try and get a grasp of. It will al­ways re­sult in choos­ing the right board.

What are the key things a surfer should look at when look­ing for a new board? Al­ways be ob­jec­tive in what you re­ally need. Con­sider abil­ity, con­di­tions you surf the most, but most of all buy Kiwi. With pretty much ev­ery shaper us­ing a com­puter to shape their boards do you

think shapers will ever be­come ir­rel­e­vant in the fu­ture? The big mis­con­cep­tion on shap­ing ma­chines is just that. The ma­chine only cuts what the shaper de­signs, it takes thou­sands of boards to get an un­der­stand­ing of what makes a board ride the way it does. There are so many dif­fer­ent lev­els of abil­ity. Styles of surf­ing and surf craft. As a shaper we have to re­late to all of th­ese needs and de­sign the right board for ev­ery need. Shapers are prob­a­bly bet­ter de­scribed as surf­board de­sign­ers now. It is a more pre­cise and ac­cu­rate process than it ever was, shapers are even more rel­e­vant than they ever were. Who’s the fu­ture of NZ surf­ing? Grom­mets, we need more of them in the wa­ter.

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