In Search of JoJo Perrin

Hey 'lockers --

Long time reader and beneficiary, first time poster.  I acquired a board shaped by JoJo Perrin and can't find much online about him.  Can anyone out there fill in some holes like:

-Is he still alive and shaping?

-If yes, where (found a JoJo Perrin in the construction business in Truckee, CA [N. Lake Tahoe] but not sure if it's the same one)?

-Did he shape a lot of boards (a PC way of asking if there's any value in what I have)?

The board has been badly neglected but is totally restorable, which I intend to do.  I'll post some pictures in a bit.

Thanks in advance!

Jo Jo was a local shaper in the Malibu area in the early 70’s.  He disapeared around the time I showed up.  He was heavily into the psychedelic resin tints,and airbrush.  I heard he was in Hawaii, but that was just a rumor.

Can’t imagine it having any great historic value.

Jamie Budge’s film "the Californians’ (which is pretty easy to find in DVD) has some great early-70’s footage of Jo Jo, if you’re interested.

Fantastic surfer sixties to early seventies and then dropped off the map.  Not widely known as a shaper.  If he isn't living in obscrurity in the Hawaiian Islands;  He's probably the contractor in Truckee.  Call him and find out.

I went to the same highschool (Samohi) as he did (a couple years ahead of him). He grew up around the Latigo Beach area in Malibu and was an MSA member with guys like George Szighetti, Bob Marble, Gary and Roy Seaman, John Gale, Eric Thornburgh, Jamie Budge, Phil Heath and Butch Linden back during the early-mid 60s.  He was a phenomenal surfer when quite young and was already riding for the Weber Competition team by the time he was 13.

Last year, while surfing down in Malibu, I asked a local lifeguard if he knew whether any of the hotshots from “back in the day” were still around.   Jo-Jo Perrin’s name came up and this guy seemed to think he was still living in the area.


JoJo on the nose: 1964 Mailibu Club Invitationals.  He came in 3rd, ahead of Mike Doyle, Rusty Miller and Mickey Munoz.

Dewey and Jojo (second from right) in mid-60s, Lunada Bay wetsuit ad

JoJo circa 1968

JoJo circa 1972

I thought he was a former Weber team member. PPK (Pete Kahapea) lives on Kauai and was on the Weber team, too. He might know where Perrin is. Pete knows everybody.


JoJo K-39 (Baja) 1964





Schilling the “competition stripe” look for Laguna clothing, 1964.  JoJo is in blue at top of boarding ramp.  In red, directly below him, is fellow MSA member Eric Thornburgh.  Fifth down (in yellow) is Malibu nose-riding master Lance Carson. On the tarmack: surf band “The Challengers”.





The guys second and third from the back are Gary and Roy Seaman, who may have taught JoJo something about shaping.  They also lived at Latigo, made some boards there and worked for Con Surfboards for awhile.  The other guys in the photo (front-to-back) are Jim Joto, Tak Kawahara, Ernie Tanaka, Bill Cleary (editor of the short-lived magazine “Surf Guide”) and Corny Cole (brother of Northshore pioneer Peter Cole).



JoJo at The 'Bu



JoJo at Haleiwa, winter '64/'65

i remember a shot of him at Trancas I think it was in the '72 surfer photo annual, I wonder where my copy is?

Thanks so much everyone and sorry for the delay in responding.  Special thanks goes to you Dropknee -- the photos and captions are outstanding.  You went to Samohi and I went to Pepperdine so this was especially gratifying.  It's nice to learn about a famous Malibu surfer not named Dora, Fain, Carson, Tracy, et al.

As promised, here are some pictures of the board.  I purchased it off of craigslist for $30 from a guy storing it in a storage locker near the San Jose, CA airport.  It was advertised as a beginner board or a unique table top (no joke).  The "leash" is a vinyl rope knotted through a hole in the skeg with a sailor's knot for an ankle strap.  The owner didn't remember anything about the board as it belonged to his brother or his brother's friend a long, long time ago.  It's 7'8" x 19" x ?  It's thick.  I liked the shape, artwork, and stringer -- the only wedge stringer I've ever seen.  It says "Tube Sled" at the bottom of the art work with "Perrin" written further down the stringer (on the deck).

Thanks again everyone and catch some waves for me this week.

“It’s nice to learn about a famous Malibu surfer not named Dora, Fain, Carson, Tracy, et al.”

There was a bunch of good surfers in the MSA at that time who were less “household names” than those you mention.  George Szighetti was about JoJo’s age (if memory serves) and he was quite good.  He did a stint on Weber’s Team as well.  Butch Linden, a goofy-foot from Colony, was another, but he was a bit older than Szighetti and Perrin. Alot of those MSA guys rode for either Dave Sweet or Con, whose shops were both in Santa Monica.

I think Dora had become pretty disenchanted with Malibu off by the time I was surfing there regularly ('63-'65).  He’d show up, but only sporatically, and was often off looking for less-crowded venues by then.  But it seemed like Fain and Jackie Baxter were ALWAYS there. IMO, Fain was often the best guy in the line-up once Dora bailed: he really had the place wired.

My guess is 1967-68 with a later-vintage replacement fin on your board. Kinda been rode hard and put up wet, as you said. The artwork appears to have been chemically-inspired, but that’s pure speculation on my part.  There certainly was no shortage of that sort of thing goin’ on in those days.

Here are a couple more JoJo PICs I dug up:

JoJo at Point Zero

JoJo in Spring 1965 Skateboard Quarterly

That board could have been from as late as the very early 70's - certainly the "replacement" fin and that half-assed leash scream that era, although the shape does look older.

Perrin had a recovered balsa board from Santa Monica entered in the first Malibu Arts Festival back in the late 70's. Beautiful thing, with shells inlaid in termite or dry rot areas, plus other stuff, glassed over. I would love to see a photo of that board, if anybody is holding one. Story was it was found in a vacant lot or yard.


Notice in the ad above it says “stoker” from the infinitive “to stoke”.  Stay stoked, and in the new economy, stay stocked, also.

“Story was it was found in a vacant lot or yard”

There was tons of old (well, back then it wasn’t quite so old) stuff laying around when I started surfing in the early 60s.  I remember borrowing an old balsa board from a woman down the street til I could save up enough for a (very) used Dave Sweet foam board. Balsa boards fell by the wayside pretty quick once foam construction was (relatively) perfected.  So there were balsa boards languishes in a lot of garage rafters.

It was years before sponge boards were invented, so many lifeguards back then still used 12-14 foot-long, Blake-style hollow, wooden paddleboards: marine ply fastened together with brass screws and painted.  Those things were everywhere. The lifeguard at one of the beaches I hung at used to paddle his a couple miles every morning to start his day.  Needless to say, that guy was pretty “buffed out”.

Another JoJo board

JoJo balsa

JoJo balsa (detail)

JoJo @ the 'Bu, 1968

Andy Lyon riding vintage JoJo shape

JoJo airbrush

Thanks Guys, appreciate it very much.  Addt'l question: what does a fin from this period look like and is there a place in particular I can look for one?  I'd love to be able to do a proper restorartion.  Thanks again.

I think the polycarbonate fins discussed in a recent thread here would be as close as you’ll get:


My first short board, a well-used, 7’10" “Soul” I bought in Huntington Beach in about 1969,  was shaped very similar to that board and it had a non-adjustable, Lexan fin which looked very much like the ones in the link above.  It was similar to a Waveset  but instead of having a hex-drive bolt on each end, the fin had a notch on one end that engaged a fixed rod in the box and a hex-drive bolt on the other.  Also, the ends of the fin and box were rounded instead of square. 

Unfortunately, the Joemotion fins cost twice what you paid for the board!

Here’s a PIC of a '67 Rick BK model for historical reference:


The fin system you describe would be first generation Fins Unlimited. Box is round at both ends, lateral pin in front that fits a notch in the fin and a single machine screw in the back.

The fins looked like this (image is from 1968):

Thanks, SammyA!  Always wondered who made that one.  I don’t remember seeing all that many of them, but then I was kinda out of the loop for a couple years during the late 60s.


The one in my Soul was a “Phase 2”


They quickly changed to an adjustable fin box. Squared ends with a plate front and rear.


BTW Are all the mag scans you post from your own collection? Many images are familiar to me, as I have most of those mags. No Quarterly Skateboarders, though. Lost those when I was in the service of Uncle Sam and my brother’s pals helped themselves to my mags and record collection.


This is the second generation FU system. Called “Variset”