George Greenough talks mats

Saw this posted on the home of the 4th Gear Flyer @

It is a clip of George Greenough talking about mats - never before seen clip

Thanks for linking this. great clip!

Good post. The mat was my first vehicle way, way back.

And one of the coolest things I’ve ever seen in person was GG riding a mat in the cove at Rincon

one February evening in 82 or 83. Backlit little zippers, this prone figure just streaking along at seemingly

impossible speeds. I seem to remember that the mat appeared to be inflated to about 8000 psi, but I

could be wrong or perhaps GG was experimenting…


Mats do look hard inflated when someone is lying on them riding as body weight and wave forces push the air to the perimeter. Did you see him get out of the water and pick it up in his hand? That would really tell how much inflation

Yeah - Always underinflate them and don’t forget to modify those UDTs. :slight_smile:

Yeah, I waited around until he got out of the water and the thing looked so

hard a cat couldn’t scratch it. But I didn’t get very close and it’s been 25 years

so I’m sure it’s me that’s off, or George was doing a science experiment…


cool stuff…

does anyone know the wait time for dales mats at the moment?

hummmmm, Dales matts—i’d buy another in a minute, mine is so much fun—it goes everywhere with me—my backup board on two trips to centrAmerica…handles stuff i really don’t want to go on—major confidence builder…and OF Course, tune your UDEEt’s!!!

The delivery time for the 4th gear flyer, which is the mat GG is talking about, is 2 weeks

Just a note for the record. GG does love the 4thGF and also loves a number of Dale’s Neumatics (as well as various pool toys and rubber duckies etc). Dale does have a long wait time currently but his mats are custom for your size/weight which may be of some advantage plus he has several models for different conditions. Though one mat will ride all, some design tweaks will up the performance in specific conditions i.e. K-mat for tiny waves etc

I remember mats, a lot like those shown, from small kid time. Mostly because a day of mat riding gave my and my brothers a rash we shouldn’t forget.

But seriously folks, this is a surfboard building forum. Have any of these mat guys ever posted how to build one?

While these guys - possibly the top mat guys around - get going nicely on the waves shown, they just cruise in mostly straight lines. Tom Bloke could do as well, and tell us how fast he went, too.

Ho hum.

Sorry Charlie (hey isn’t that a line from an old canned tuna commercial?). Oughta try and ride one. Some (not me) ride mats in big, hollow, ledgy waves to very good effect… Very delicate craftmanship to build one. Complex internals etc and tiny variations make huge difference. Takes master craftsmen like Paul and Dale to design one that works. I know Dale has designed and built specialized equipment to make them with and he has been experimenting ongoing w/ design variations for what, 30 years?. George makes and modifies all his own stuff mostly but he buys mats from Dale and Paul. Maybe that’s a hint.

There’s a lot goes on here that isn’t specifically building. At least this is about wave riding craft and not just dissing someone else’s trip. So a quick “dis” on the PG promo and this is a design issue (though not a personal build one)–much is made of one size fits all in mats. I rather doubt it. Not true in surfboards, wetsuits or even boogies! I think the 4thGF’s are designed around GG’s smallish size. I’m sure they will work for a larger person but I sort of doubt they will give the optimum performance.

I had Dale make me one of his Neumatic mats for an Indo boat trip a couple of years ago. I rode it about to where you could just fold it in half. That was his recommendation. We had a nice long talk about all of this before he sent it out to me. He’s a wealth of mat knowlege. I rode it in some head igh Indo(Mentawai) surf. Those things are nutty fun. While catching the wave they seem to all of a sudden come alive. Crazy. I’ve since loaned it to out and it’s traveled with some great surfers to Nicaraugua, Dubai, Liberia, and…

Tim Stamps

the offical word was that there was one mat size … the unofficial word … now that is another story

Straight lines? Blisterin’ speed straight lines.

Hey the mats turn insane… just you have to develop technique. I recently lent a friend a backup intex mat ( the red/blue one - canvas) and he took a surf trip up the interior here with his babe, who also surf a bit – mostly boogies – so she takes the mat out at this point with 6-8ft faces, first time on mat, and she has the time of her life. My friend - who’s ever the pessimist with regards to the gear i ride ( mainly hulls or mats now ) – over a cold one when he gets back, looks at me sideways like and says ’ heeeey, those things carve!'.

BTW - his gal rigged up a leash through one of the grommets on the mat… opened it right up.

My Neumatic has been the best surf purchase ever… and hangs in my closet with my beloved aloha shirts

Leash ona Intex otay but…long leash, short life for mats I think

agreed - i never thought to tell them to avoid the temptation to use a leash, and these two were totally in the blue about mats. I assumed, and you know what they say, 'to assume, makes and ASS our out of U and ME.

Still - the intex cost only $5.68 at the time at