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>Surfin stuff<

Thursday, April 18, 2002
Picked up my new board (7'6") later than I wanted to on a Friday night last week and was lucky to find swell in the Western Port area just like I did when I got my last new board. I surfed the Reef till just about dark and got a couple of right handers but didn't get much of a feel for the board coz the waves were a bit gutless and I was conscious of running the thing on to rocks as it was dead low tide (and the board was brand new) Got enough to convince me the board worked though.

Next day had one of those outrageously good surfs you get (rarely) that bring you back smiling. Walked around to a right hand point with my brother and surfed it about 3-4' and pure glass by ourselves for an hour and a half, just sharing waves. The board feel real loose and got into waves as early as his 8' mini-mal I reckon. A classic morning.

Thursday, April 11, 2002
Had a couple of days down at Wilsons Promontory again; two good fun surfs at Squeaky Beach, so named coz of its sand so clean and fine it squeaks. Rode the longboard (9') but a little frustrated at what I can do on it. It was about 3' and I coulda surfed something shorter and done more maybe.

Saturday, April 06, 2002
Back on the mini-mal last night to finish the week with a surf. Surfing by myself, which I don't usually mind at all, but it was later afternoon, a grey sky and a light onshore with lots of lulls on the 3' left-hander. There were a few people on the beach including an older guy (yes, older than me) who'd lit a fire on the beach (Gidget kook shack style) and was hacking away the pine tree car park boundary things to add more fuel to his fire! It was kinda nice to be sitting out the back and seeing the light blue smoke wisping away over the pine trees in the distance, but it felt a bit sharkey after a while too, and I started thinking about Seal Rocks across there in the distance and what would be attracted to seals? There were dark shadowy clouds across the grey water at times, and big clumps of seaweed that were drifting in with the onshore. I got a couple more and came in a little earlier than I'd planned.

The Nobbies / Seal Rocks

Wednesday, April 03, 2002
This is the posting I put through to the hoax coast today after trying out the 'stubby' in the first good surf I've had all Easter.

The 7'6" Stubby Vs 7' 6" Mini-Mal (Road Test)

Had the chance today to have a go on the new STUBBY (aka blaster, cheat-stick, nugget) which Triggers are shaping at the moment. In fact, if you go into the shop at Point Leo, practically the whole bunch of boards on the left hand side are these things. They describe it as as below but how does it stack up against a 7' 6" mini-mal? Read on...

Warrick's Road Test

Flickability: The nugget is definitely looser in the flick em around like CLuey department, and is quite twitchy feeling. It can go up and down quite vertically (Phil Trigger told me so) and it's more short board feel than mal in the dropping and climbing stakes.
Stubby - 7
Mini-mal - 5

Paddling: As expected the lack of foam at the front makes a difference and it doesn't paddle quite as smoothy as the mini-mal; you don't get that flow from paddle to paddle, but it floats well and you can duck-dive it easier because of the reduced foam in the front. This is the mal's big ace up its sleeve!
Stubby - 6
Mini-Mal - 8

Aesthetics: A personal decision surely, there are some who see longboards as intrinsically ugly, and others who see them as beautiful and retro as a 1971 Mustang. Some people even like those old S series Valiants! You can't account for different tastes. That said, the stubby looks more like the surfboards that we've been riding, even though the huge amount of foam in the tail has a kind of surreal look to it.
Stubby 7
Mini-Mal 6

Getting into waves: This was the real surprise, and Phil T. commented on it too. It gets into waves early and seems to get a lot of push out of that surreal foam I just mentioned. I thought I'd need an extra paddle or two (maybe you would if you were coming of an 8' mal) but it got into the waves easily.
Stubby - 8
Mini-Mal - 8

Street-cred: Like the aesthetics arguement, this is a matter of tase; most people judge this by imagining an angry young Harry looking over your board...what would he say? Chances are he wouldn't be overly-impressed with either board. He'd say the mal was a hoax and the tail of the stubby was 'shaped like an idiot' (might shape it) Truth is you wont win any street cred unless you get yourself a 6'2" Al Merrick potato peeler and it wont float you and you wont catch any waves with it!
Stubby - 6
Mini-Mal 5

Re-sale value: Who can say if anyone will want to buy one of these things in 2 years time when the next big thing comes round? There'll always be a market for mini-mals you'd reckon.
Stubby - 5
Mini-Mal 6

Overall: The board for the forty something who still wants to go whoop-bang on occasions and isn't ready yet to learn drop-knee turns and walking the board. It will require more fitness than the mal, but will probably deliver more fun too.

Stubby - 39 / 50
Mini-Mal - 38 / 50

That's it! I'm getting one!