Tag Archives: surfing

For Sale: Ectic Concepts Chubster Mini Simmons

Unfortunately living where I do means I’m not getting in the sea too much these days and having a quiver which includes 2 x mini simmons (this one and one I made myself) doesn’t make a lot of sense. So rather than sell something I made with my very own hands I’m selling my beloved Ectic Concepts Chubster, even though of the two boards it’s actually the one I prefer! But I can’t sell a board I’ve made myself now can I?

Here are the dims; 5’2 x 23 x 3. The short length might put some people off but if you’re a reasonable surfer (I’m not even that) you really will have no trouble surfing this thing. It’s light, has tonnes of volume for it’s length but has nice 50/50 rails which mean it’s still pretty responsive. In this way it’s not a full on conventional simmons with rails that are up in the front and down in the tail but I’ve found this does make it a really versatile board and you can have some real fun on it in thigh-high right up to head high. Board comes with the wooden style FCS Keel fins with 3 tabs that are actually over £80’s worth on their own! I’m looking for £190 for it. Here’s some piccies spanning my ownership of it and I’ll add some more over the weekend when I’ve had a chance to clean the wax off it.

Vito Van at Sandymere

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If you’re interested give me a shout in the comments below. Cheers.

The Return of South Coast Frustration

“Clean waist-high waves- get in there!” was the call on twitter from a couple of surf shops and a local surfer or two on a sunny weekend last month. Normally I do take twitter surf reports with a pinch of salt as one man’s “Flat” is another man’s “Fun log sesh” however waist high meant that surely there was something rideable. Clean’ish surf? In June, on the channel coast of the UK!? This is rare indeed. I hurriedly packed up the car, managing to dig out my summer suit which hadn’t seen any use since last October and headed for the most local spot to me, just inside the Dorset border with Hampshire. Once I arrived I remembered why I used to get so frustrated when trying to surf as much as possible round here. This was the scene;

The local. Waist high? Not really. Only one peak working too and predictably, it was mobbed.
The local. Waist high? Not really. Only one peak working too and predictably, it was mobbed.

This spot is pretty exposed so it was making the best of what little swell that was plodding in. It’s a pretty fickle place too, so despite a mile or so of sand there was only one peak working and it was like gold to the wave starved crew. There were about seven people out there vying for this little A frame roller, all on SUPs or beastly logs. There were also two Dutch guys getting suited up outside their camper van which was parked just along from my motor. You’ve come all the way from Holland to surf here?!

I stood and watched for a while, is it worth getting in? With that sand-bar already struggling to serve the guys that were out there I was thinking these Dutch boys will surely push it to breaking point… I’m already contemplating getting back in the car and heading home. Maybe I should go out on the bike or something? But wait, this one looks like it could be good?! Ah… it’s fattened up… it’s tiny actually. Hold up. Is that another peak down there? Oh no, that’s closing out. I scan around back to a groyne that produces a nice right every now and then, it’s probably the best peak on this beach on the average type of day, when the tide’s not too full. Alas, it’s not breaking. Even though there’s one guy out there willing it to.

Even this guy's super enthusiastic approach can't change the fact that this wave is not breaking.
Even this guy’s super enthusiastic approach can’t change the fact that this wave is not breaking.

I decide I can’t be bothered to battle it out on the crowded little A Frame, I’m maybe undergunned for it with just a 7’6 mini mal anyway. The SUPers will trample all over me. It’s not worth the parking fee for maybe a few party waves that last all of four seconds is it? Dejected I fire up the car and leave the sea behind.. that’s an hour wasted. Is all of this worth it? Should I just save surfing for the guaranteed nailed on days or trips to more wave rich coasts even? Am I just a grumpy bastard and should I have just got involved in the melle of 9 surfers to a wave?

These are the questions that haunt a south coast surfer.

Warm Water, Glassy Waves…. Enjoyed

My favourite, clean glassy peelers.
My favourite, clean glassy peelers.

Had an amazingly fun session the other day at the local. The water’s still nice and warm and there wasn’t a breath of wind which meant the chest high swell was super glassy. It was hitting the banks at Sandymere just right too as some of the better ones peeled for 50 yards or so. I got one absolute stormer of a right on the Cre8tion Hot Pepperjelly. I did nothing special on the wave (I’m not special), just raced the sections, rising and falling in tune with the shape of the wall. It felt amazing. The sort of connection with the wave that keeps you turning up at the beach, waiting for the next ride.


Summer with the Otta

Been having some real fun on the Otta the last week or so, a session on the above day in particular sticks in the mind. It doesn’t look much in the photo but then you don’t need much to have a blast on these types of boards. It was a warm day and the swell was producing some real ramp shaped waves almost custom made for the Otta’s smooth belly into single concave.

Summer fun at Westward Ho!
Summer fun at Westward Ho!

The bellied nose and S-Deck feel like they really help get you into waves with not much effort needed before you can feel the board racing down the face. It’s really responsive too, lean back and twitch your heel and you can get it on a rail quickly, lean forward and your accelerating again….! It’s great fun and I’m so glad I stumbled down the Simmonsy route a while back because it’s made surfing days like this one something to remember rather than a frustration from not having a board with foam in all the right places. The great irony is that I’ve discovered a board ideal for my old local, Bournemouth Pier, seems it took me moving to Devon to discover it.

Crooky on the Hot Pepperjelly

Summer in Bude

The waves have returned this week after a flat spell which drenched us in sunshine for most of the month. It’s done wonders for the water temp, I surfed this wedgey little swell in my 3/2 and it’s probably the warmest I’ve felt out in the water in the UK.

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Had some short but sweet rides on my 5’7 in Bude’s semi-closeout ramps, it’s good to have a dip to wash the cobwebs off! Going to take the Otta for a run out tomorrow I think.

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You Need a Longboard Mate…

WP_20130604There’s been some great logging sessions to be had in the sunshine these past few days, the weather has been largely cloudless and hot which is very welcome indeed. In previous years I may have bemoaned the fact the waves were tiny and not worth a dip but I’ve recently discovered why every guy with a big mini-mal or longboard in their quiver says “You need a longboard mate…” or equivalent….
I used to think that longboards were probably just their thing and I wasn’t interested in surfing something that looked so difficult to manoeuvre, maybe I also was caught up in the longboards are for old men bollocks. Anyway, all I know is having a big board on days when it’s knee-high and sunny is a blast! To be honest the waves on Sunday were weak but they were glassy and if you found a good bank there were some real fun ones to be had. I like big boards. There, I said it.

Saunton Session on the Doofer

Surfer assessing the line up at Saunton
Surfer assessing the line up at Saunton

Saunton this morning, it was a case of looking better from the beach than it was out there to be honest. A pretty weak and wobbly swell that wasn’t the best testing ground for my new 6’2 Fourth Doofer but I’d not got it wet despite having had it for a month so enough was enough. It paddles really well for a shortboard shape, definitely paddles better than my 5’10 Speed Dialer and I was glad of that in the close period stuff out there today, there was a fair bit of paddling and ducking to be done at times. Feels responsive when up and riding too if not quite as quick as I was hoping but I’ve been on a 5’2 Simmons type board for a while and I think its warped my sense of speed a little. Need a nice shaped wave to put it through its paces really but showing promise.


And the sea is still bloody cold for nearly June, I went with no gloves/no hood and my hands were ok after the initial 10 minutes of pain adjusting to the nippiness but the head was very ice creamy after a few successive duck-dives, hopefully it will continue to warm up…..!

Hot PepperJelly

Fun wedges at the local.
Fun wedges at the local.

Had a few fun ones yesterday in lazy 2ft surf at the good old Ho! I’ve been hoping to get my new Doofer from Fourth wet but the conditions called for something with a bit more foam (the Doofer’s intended for good waves) to maximise the fun so out came the 5’7 Pepperjelly from Cre8tion – I swear you can catch a ripple on this thing. The sun came out for a while too which made the hoodless duck-dives just about bearable although ice cream headaches are still in full force! Here’s to some more fun summer stuff.