Channel Island Mongrel is it good buy or not?

IM looking to get a new small wave board. IM leaning a little more towards the mongrel though instead of the other CI models. I’ve been surfing for about over a year or so IM about 5’9 155-160. I was thinking 6’0 but the other dimensions I wasn’t sure about. I have no knowledge of the Mongrel itself if anyone has one or has ridden one. Please tell me your experience and what you thought of it. Thank you very much.

i dont know what the mongrel is like but i do know that all of the ci descriptions of their boards posted on their website are very accurate. i dont ride merrick boards but i have in the past and i can tell you that they are the top of the line as far as shapes go. they work particularly well. They are special boards. if the description describes what you are looking for then dont waste anymore time and order it.

Like anything else, it depends largely on the rider.

The Mongrel will probably work fine but beware its fat beefy rails. You might end up digging those rails a lot. A guy like you who is a medium-weight surfer might do better to get a Flyer or Sashimi.

I’m 5’10", 170lbs adn I have a 6’0", 19 1/4 wide sashimi and I swear by this model. It gets me through summer and rides well until the surf gets head high. It’s fast down the line, it turns well, and I feel that I’m not losing any performance.

Also check out the K small wave.

A CI flyer is one of the best small wave boards out there IMO.It has alot of fishy qualities and still performs like a shortboard.I live on the east coast and have been going through some boards that perform well to the conditions.By far the flyer is the best one I’ve ever ridden and I’ll probably always have one from here on out.

I also have an epoxy JC stingray I ride when the waves get gutless and mushy.It also performs well when it gets head high,which isn’t very often.

Definitely get a flyer over a mongrel

Thats the problem i’ve seen with these two models the flyer and mongrel. Some people say yes and no it’s funny almost. IM just trying to get a feel which one will suit me the best. Because of course everyone knows what board might work for me doesn’t for another. And, so goes on the quest for the perfect board to suit your style, talent, and need. What about the ksmall wave board by CI. What do you guys think about that for a almost intermediate type surfer. So the question is does anyone own a mongrel, Flyer, or Ksmall wave? Which would you choose and if im about 5’9 155-160 would it be good for me to get a 6,0?


I’ve never tried riding a ‘mongrel’ but have expreirenced an 80s shape.

I own a 80s Sam Egan Thruster (its also yellow).

This was my first ever board. Now i can surf quite well (a year or so expirence) (well i feel i can surf well) I can tell you the charecteristics of my 80s board.

  1. I love the way this board goes in 2-3ft Hollow, Dumping, Barreling Beach break waves! i don’t know why it goes so well it just does.

2.My dimensions on this board are 5ft10 x 19’ x 2 3/4

I am around 5ft4 (a grom)

3.these boards have heaps of flotation so they would probably really suit your level of surfing.

hope this helps.


u sound like a reasonable one to me…

it all depends on what YOU want to accomplish and how many boards are in your quiver. If u plan to have only one board then get one that is all around for the conditions in your area (slow weak mushy…fast peaky sectiony…whatever). If u can afford two boards then get one for good conditions and one for poor. CI does not make a bad board.

Im a shortB surfer and if I were buying a small wave CI I would get one with less rocker, a bit wider and a bit more floaty. I would avoid more rockered out boards.

You can always send them an email and tell them what u are trying to do and they will recommend something. The Mongrel and Flyer are both excellent boards and the website has enough information to for u to make a informed decision. IWS in Deerfield beach has several models for u to look at as well…take your time the ocean is totally flat…

good luck

PS - I got a masters degree from FAU

Get the Rusty Pirannah. If you buy the 6,4 or the 6,6 you are going to be in fake-fish heaven. I have a 6,10, (I’m 190 pounds) and as many of these guys hear at Swaylocks know (and are sick of hearing) I LOVE my Pirannah.

And I am not normally the kind of guy to buy shortboards off the rack. Longboards, yes, because half the reason I ride longboards is to look cool (hey, just being honest). With longboards, I really do like to kind of make a fashion statement, so I buy name brand occasionally (every other year).

But shortboards are more personal to me, so I always ordered custom. This Pirannah is the first off the rack shortboard I have had since 1984 (a Lightning Bolt tri fin shaped by Tom Eberly). I bought the Pirannah, took it out, and the first wave (a right at Windansea) told me I made the right decision.

Seriously, go check one out.

Although, many shapers think Rusty has a problem with the local shaper-type businessmen, wants to see them out of business. That’s an opinion, of course, based upon interviews and such. How he really feels at any given point in time is only known to him. But, from what I read, it seems as though he thinks Clark Foam shouldn’t be selling to the small time guys.

That’s why it was very hard for me to buy from him.

Regardless, he is one of the best shapers in the world, and I doubt many would discredit that statement. World titles have been won on his boards (just like Merrick’s). CJ Hobgood and Mark Offthelippo won world titles on his boards.

Of course, Merrick makes the winningest boards on the world tour, so he knows a bit about shaping as well, eh?

I have no idea how the CIs ride, but I trust they are cutting edge. I only know that this 35 year old, who was THIS close to quitting shortboarding forever, came back to life because of a magical 6,10. I’ll never get rid of it, and I’ll buy another the very day it breaks, without hesitation. I may buy other shortboards to see if I can get better, but will keep that Pirannah as a base by which to expand. Now that I have found a design that fits my surfing style (down the line, out of the pocket, large roundhouse cutbacks) I am in heaven. Of course, if you plan to surf in the pocket more, I have no idea what works best. Some guys are tight in the pocket, off the lips, tubes, super tight bottom turns. That’s not me (although I sometimes wish it were). I can only get barreled well if I’m moving quickly down the line and the lip starts to throw down the line and I can race to get into that barrel and come out with speed. The only place I have ever successfully stayed right there in the thick of things is Lower Trestles.

That’s my take on the whole thing.

You’ll be stoked either way. The only advice I can give, which I truly believe, is that it’s better to have a board that is too big than a board that’s too little.


IM looking to get a new small wave board. IM leaning a little more towards the mongrel though instead of the other CI models. I’ve been surfing for about over a year or so IM about 5’9 155-160. ---------------------------------------------------------------------- Well no one has covered this angle yet… Most certainly a Very expensive board from Channel Islands was not in your interest in your first year of surfing. But now as you are starting your second year, I’m not so sure that finding and buying the best board available is such a good idea either. If money is available to buy two or more of these boards in a year, then go for it. If not , I’d go with a more sedate $$ type of board and go for the Channel Islands Big Bucks Board in another 12-18 months. Your first year of surfing is some of the toughest on a board, that may extend into the second year for some people. As to surfing exp. it may be wise to hold off till the second year mark to get that whizbang board, and instead get boards that are more limited so that you can learn to exceed its limits. This method will make you a better surfer. IN the 70’s and even 80’s many 1st year surfers made the mistake of going from a standard single fin to a Nitro Fueled Twin Fin within their first 1-2 years of surfing and their abilities and skillset never developed fully because they had their hands full trying to rein in the wildness, instability and speed of a twin. If it were me, i’d get a board like it…on the cheap side, and go for the $$ Beauty in another year or so when your surfing goals will be even different and you’ll be handling tube riding and bigger sized waves.

If you’re set on getting a CI board ,from the three boards,I would say the mongrel would be the most user friendly.They’re beefier and wider than the average short board so I would think it would work well in small waves.It has a pronounced vee going down the tail which I hear can make you lose your drive down the wave.Might have to work the board to keep your momentum.Maybe a 6’ or 6’1’ for your size.My best advise to you is buy a used one.It took me years to figure out what board suits me and the conditions of the waves I’ve been riding.

I didn’t realize you have only been surfing a year or so. I guess I should have read that a little better.

Given that circumstance, you might want to invest in a (lean closer so nobody hears) a body board. Okay, I said it. Yes, a bodyboard. Get the fins as well, of course, and go learn how a wave works, especially a hollow one.

I love to tease bodyboarders, er, spongers, but the truth is that a bodyboard teaches you how to ride the barrel, how to get into waves early, and how to ride hollow, powerful surf. Plus, it’s fun. And if you are really into the spirit of it, wear a pair of Speedos while you do it.

Back to stand up surfing: You should ride a bigger board if you are beginning. I can imagine how frustrating it would be to ride a six foot board if you are not a good surfer. If you are capable enough to catch head high waves, maybe a little bigger, angle, and do a simple cutback, then you are not a beginner anymore, maybe a low intermediate (if you can do it consistently in most conditions). I think an eight foot board would be better, one with a wide longboard-type nose and a wide tail as well, and the flatter the rocker the better, gives more stability. Worry about bottom turning later (which, by the way, is the single most important turn in surfing).

A six foot board needs a surfer who knows how to generate speed. I don’t mean simple rollercoasters on an easy wave like Cardiff Reef. I’m talking about actually being able to generate speed. Can you do that? If not, then a six foot board is too small for you. If you are simply standing up and going along for the ride, then the board is, again, too small. For riding a wave, use a big board. For SURFING a wave (only way I Know how to put it), you can use a shorter board.

Try this. Get a skateboard, and learn how to generate speed on a flat surface without lifting the nose of the skateboard. Start by giving your self a little push or two with your feet, and then see if you can keep your momentum going on a flat surface indefinitely, while keeping both feet planted on the board, and all four wheels firmly on the ground (and sometimes lifting the nose of the surfboard). Be careful, because it’s easy to slide out. But if you can do this on a skateboard, you can probably do it on a surfboard. That initial push will come, of course, from catching the wave. The wave will provide that first thrust, but then you need to know how to channel the potential energy that’s in your body, into the board.

One of the other guys up there makes a good point. You don’t really need a CI at this point. You might want to visit a professional shaper and be very honest about your abilities. He’s going to want to know where you surf, how big of waves you ride, what you can do, etc. And don’t be surprised if he has something in mind that’s different from what you have in mind. This is perfectly understandable for many reasons. One, he doesn’t want to see you disappointed in HIS board (even though your poor choice wouldn’t be his fault, it’s still a failure to blend the right board to the surfer—it could be your fault, but you might not see it that way, and the result could be a loss of reputation for the shaper if you complain about his “crappy” board). Two, the shaper’s almost always right. Everytime I argued with a shaper and insisted he do it my way, I got exactly what I wanted but, unfortunately, what I wanted usually wasn’t what I needed. Does that make sense?

But, no matter what you do, the journey is a blast, isn’t it? God, I love surfboards. I love shapers too. Most of them seem a little grumpy, but that’s because of guys like you and me who think we know more than they do because we have our heads in the clouds and they see reality.

Hey, if you are serious about the CI, talk to the guys at Channel Islands Surfboards. Get more than one opinion.

And be honest about your abilities.

Good luck.


Pretty good advice from above. I would not get a boogie board over a surfboard. There nice to have laying around if you feel like it and your favorite spot gets shut down by the life guards during peal tourist season, etc. I don’t know where you live,but, I tell beginners here to invest in a very good wetsuit and a crappy board(yes, one that will float and paddle easily) if money is the issue. If your freezin your tail off you won’t ride any of your boards. Mike

IM leaning towards intermediate my backside and frontside still need work. But, IM not horrible catching waves get 3 out of 5 pumping the wave and generating speed. I still need a lot of improvement of course. My balance great from other things snowboarding 7 years, wrestling 9, and some skateboarding. IM nothing special but IM nothing horrible either. IM not someone you see out there and go damn that guys sick. But, IM not someone you say this guy belongs back on shore. So whatever dude I own a rusty piranha a 6’2 IM going to give it to my little bro. So he can use it that’s why IM looking for a new small wave board. IM not paying for it either graduation present for college. So that’s why I said forget it IM getting a CI. Now back to my main question who knows about the CI small wave boards. IM looking at the Mongrel, the Flyers, and the KSmall wave. Out of these models which do you think would suit maybe someone as me. Knee high slop to over head surf Florida yes IM learning but IM not a dumb ass. My first board was a used I rode the crap out it. I only stopped riding it so I could keep it before it buckled. So if anyone might own any of these models or know anything about them. Please share thank you very much and the bodyboard idea was cute dude.

I guess I insulted you with my advice.

You insulted the English language.

My god! The period is the most basic of all the punctuation marks. It comes at the end of each independent clause (unless, of course, you follow the independent clause with a semicolon and add another independent clause, or follow it with a comma, a conjunction, and a dependent clause).

All this was probably taught to you in school. But I guess the teacher’s advice is crappier than mine.

Enjoy your CI.

I know it’s a bit arrogant to correct someone’s grammar and punctuation on a bulletin board, but I can’t resist, just this once. Consider it another of your “college” graduation presents. Here it goes:

I’m leaning toward intermediate; my backside and frontside still need work. But, I’m not horrible at catching waves and get three out of five for pumping the wave and generating speed. I still need a lot of improvement, of course. My balance is great from other things: snowboarding, seven years; wrestling, nine and some skateboarding. I’m nothing special, but I’m nothing horrible either. I’m not someone you see out there and go, “Damn, that guy’s sick.” But, I’m not someone you would say belongs back on shore.

So, whatever, dude. I own a Rusty Piranha, a 6’,2". I’m going to give it to my little bro, so he can use it. That’s why I’m looking for a new small wave board. I’m not paying for it either (graduation present for college). So that’s why I said “forget it.” I’m getting a CI.

Now, back to my main question: Who knows about the CI small wave boards? I’m looking at the Mongrel, the Flyers, and the KSmall wave. Out of these models which do you think would suit me in knee high slop to overhead surf in Florida. Yes, I’m learning, but I’m not a dumb ass [Are you sure about that???]. My first board was used; I rode the crap out it. I only stopped riding it so I could keep it before it buckled. So if anyone might own any of these models or know anything about them, please share. Thank you very much and the bodyboard idea was cute, dude.

FAIRMONT: I hope that helped. Now everyone should be able to read what you wrote. Oh, and about the bodyboard idea: Yes, you should disregard the idea for sure. I didn’t realize you lived in Florida. You might be more successful finding a job writing for a newspaper than finding hollow surf.

One of the pitfalls of giving advice to the youngins

is that amongst the 3 or 4 or more good nuggets of

advice that you give all in the name of helping others.

Invariably the immature will glom onto that 1 piece

that doesnt quite apply to them and act unruly about

it as if you were out to insult them…

The ‘being helpful and giving free advice’ biz is not

all its cracked up to be!

And Fairmont? you did give some good advice in your numerous 4-5 posts!!

Although the boogie boarding stuff(rafts,bodysurfing,etc) is what all of us go

through first on our way to hardboard surfing, it may have

sounded odd to him, but wasnt anything to have an allergic

reaction to.

As to anyone with one years experience getting the latest

and greatest board, I think it applies that its not really the

best of all ideas especially if your from Florida where

1 year exp. means much less than even here in California.

Your avg. Californian has 1-3 years of surfcraft exp. before

learning standup surfing in conditions that have consistent, sizeable and powerful surf year round.

Moreover, each one of us has already been your route

and unless you got Kelly Slater DNA (sic!) , its not a great

idea for bringing out the best of your surfing talents!

Good Luck and be nicer to those who offer free advice.


Now back to my main question who knows about the CI small wave boards. IM looking at the Mongrel, the Flyers, and the KSmall wave. Out of these models which do you think would suit maybe someone as me.

Alright, Fausurf, I have some info for you. I have ridden CIs for over 10 years, and I have had both the Mongrel and the Flyer in my quiver. I have not yet had a Sashimi, but friends of mine swear by them. The Mongrel I ordered turned out to be a total dog, but I did ask for a round pin rather than a squash (which is the recommended tail design). It was hard to turn, slow down the line, and “teetered” from rail to rail and nose to tail. I don’t think this is a bad design, as many pros love it, but for me, it sucked. It also has a retro aspect which you may or may not want in a board – that is up to you. I have had a 6’0" flyer and I loved it, especially in small, weak waves. I would go with a Flyer 6’0" x 19 1/4" x 2 3/8" , squash tail. I have no experience with the K Board, but the Flyer would suit your purposes more, I am sure. Good luck, Kit

My grammer does suck lol if it was up to me. I wouldn’t put any punctuation at all im a Microbiology major. Try to stay away from anything having to do with papers. I leave that up to my g/f shes the writing bad ass. W/e I guess I was alittle ungreatfull for your advice. But, I talked to someone at IWS and they helped me alot. He said to go with the flyer a 5’10. I asked him a bunch of times are you sure are you sure. I told him the truth about my experience he said the 6’0 or 5’10. But, just to go with the 5’10 and just get a feel for it. He was the general manager as well. So i guess and I hope he knew what he was saying. Oh Fairmount feel free to proof read it and correct it if you’d like. No hard feelings nothing I never didn’t know

I have a flyer and have had a mongrel in my quiver (sold it after a month). The flyer with the staighter hips ,wide bump wing squash and a lot of rocker made a good combination for a board that was loose with good drive in small to med hawaiian waves. The mongrel on the other hand was erratic and not to responsive. It did have some drive due to the flat rocker but the heavy v in the tail counter acted it and slowed you down. If the mongrel had a little less v and a little more tail rocker i think it would be a better board. I would go suggest a 6"0 flyer. Aloha

Hello, i’m a big guy, think about 6’ and near 200 lbs… I have a good quiver, and only one trifin shortboard on my quiver: a Mongrel.

OK, i’m not the standard shortboarder, i use to ride longer boards (6’-9’8’'), and i like the feeling of a single fin, but the Mongrel is a good board, believe me.

The Mongrel paddles easy, catch waves earlier, it’s fast, and have a lot of acceleration, and this board really turns well.

For me it has a nice combination: low rockered, fuller rails, a lot of area in the tail, and a nice V that helps you on the rail to rail transition.

The Flyer it’s a good board too, but i really prefer the “carving abilities” of the Mongrel. The Mongrel it’s like a refinement of an 80’s shape.

It depends on what you are looking for…

Good waves!