Opening Pandora's box....................

…Yup,that’s me! …How anyone could get that I was attacking them from the comment I made on Harbour’s site about CnC’D boards…I don’t know. …The fact is if you surf and have surfed for awhile,and have no interest in learning about the craft of building a board on your own,at least ONE,then you’ll never be a “true surfer”. …This is not my criteria,but a set standard past on to me by others in the past and present.I could name names and some might step-up to the plate and agree, others would ignore or deny it.I’m not saying it’s bad or wrong to ride something other than your own(whatever than might be, handshaped craft,cnc,popout),people need to decide that for themselves.You ride what’s right/correct for you,BUT if you never learn what it take to build a stick,“HANDS ON” don’t tell me how you are the better surfer for it. …On promoting:What I did was; pass on “a stoke of information”,if someone wants to think that it was promoting,OKAY FINE,SO WHAT? I have given everyone boosts that was deserving of it,including…ah.Harbour. …Now that the box is open,there is nothing I can do but say my peace.I’m not going to stop building,as long as I am able minded in spirit,body,blood, sweat and tears…and anyone deserving of a boost…you got it man!Herb

What’s with the heavy drama?

Right on, Herb!! Your comments are always welcome here.

Hey Swaylockians, If you want to know what happened go to the Harbour Surfboard Discussion Forum. Here are some general observations and some of my own views. Some bashing was going on over on Harbour’s site. Views are exchanged and some heat is generated. I’m not familiar with the guys that went at each other but some comments were pretty non-constructive A few by someone who obviously hasn’t taped into the vast resource that Swaylocks is. I have to agree with Slingblade’s & Razorfish’s comments on the thread. Anyway some opinionated things were said in pretty smug tone. Not good! Herb was pretty cool about what he said in defense of this site and then tried to bow out gracefully. What else can a guy do? Sometimes you have to consider the source. Rich let it go and said basically that he was going to keep his commentary on his site that’s all, which makes sense to me. With regard to those posting on the Harbour forum, from my standpoint it doesn’t make sense to go on someone site and discuss who the best fish shaper is anyway. It doesn’t seem to be an appropriate topic of discussion. It’s Rich’s show so naturally he has his own interests at heart and he will say what he thinks is in the best interests of his business. Why else would he have a forum? There are all kinds of things that come up when you open yourself to the public so you have to be careful what you say when you’re the man. Business strategy is important if you want to survive. I mean the guy quite Surftech. I think the decision was as much about image as it was about scruples but who can know how the balance bar tilted except the man calling the shots. Rich may have deal going with DHP. If I had something like that going down I’d quit Surftech too. If building surfboards is in your heart then that’s what you want to do. Hell the guy makes a great product and lots of people swear by his boards You and I and everyone else are entitled to run his business the way he sees fit as long as you do things equitably and perform a service that you stand behind and pay your taxes what’s the big deal? If Rich wants to defend the California Tax system on his forum it’s up to him. Personally, I struggle with many of their policies. Take a look at the state of our primary and secondary public school systems. Rich makes comment about underground surfboard construction. That’s the real Pandora’s box IMHO, defining the term will close it. Paul Jensen make some extremely valuable observations. Anybody that thinks their going to get ahead by building 20 surfboards or even 100 surfboards a year with no reputation to start with is nuts. We live in a world of do it yourselfers. Why hide from it? American enterprise happens in big factories and in the backyard and everywhere in between. So that brings us around to Swaylocks. It is a place where innovators have an opportunity to swap ideas. Something like this only exists because of cyberspace. If you’re a free enough thinker to come aboard great; if not stay in the box! I commend people like Bruce Jones, Natural Curves, Dewey Weber, Evolution, Eaton, Gordon Smith, Harbour (oops, how did that name get in here?), Stewart, &Wilderness Surfboards just to name a few who are willing to have their names in the Swaylocks shaper resources file. I think they really have the true aloha spirit at heart. I’m sure they’re all paying Mike big bucks for the exposure too. I hope Rich reads this because I think his website is arguably the most complete Surfboard manufacturers website on the net and I don’t even surf his boards nor do I care to. I prefer a Chevy to a Ford so hate me. Everyone is entitled to his or her views about the Swaylocks site or any other and should feel free to express them. The Harbour forum isn’t the place to do it IMHO. I don’t see how it is useful. Personally I feel very fortunate the S.C.Gary mentioned it to me one day over at the Freeline factory. There is much to learn here for those willing to share. Mahalo, Rich Sanders, (Halcyon Custom Fins) p.s. Come on in the water’s fine! P.

herb, ive shaped a fair few of my own boards and tend to shape my own when i want a new one, other than longboards. however my girlfriend has been surfing for about 8 years has no interest in shaping her own boards. to say people like her will never be true surfers is a bit much.

[Q]The fact is if you surf and have surfed for awhile,and have no interest in learning about the craft of building a board on your own,at least ONE,then you’ll never be a “true surfer”[/Q] That’s the biggest bunch of crap I’ve ever read. And I’ll put up my “true surfer” credentials against yours anytime, Herb. I’ve spent 42 years surfing, and never had the desire to build my own board. I can get a better result working with a professional, and spending my time earning the money to pay them. I do what I do best, they do what they do best. To those that can take the time to do it themselves, more power to them, but don’t toss out any elitist b*llshit. I understand the nuances of design as well as you do or better, by talking to and working with pro shapers that mow a lot more foam than you do. Get over yourself…you’ve turned into some high school drama queen.

What is going on guys?? I click onto Swaylocks in my lunch break, to chill my brain out (I’m having an awful day) and it’s just as stressed out in here!! I checked Rich Harbour’s comments on his site yesterday, and was really surprised to see his comments. I’ve looked in on his site for a few years, and he normally seems pretty chilled. Maybe he was having a bad one and spouted off, I don’t know. What I do know, is that his boards are beautifully crafted, and ride real well. I shipped one over the Atlantic to Old Blighty, and nearly had a heart attack when I got the duty tax bill!! So, I did find it a little strange that Rich (being a true craftsman, and starting off in his shaping career from a garage) was more than a little uptight about backyard shapers. As they say from Acorns grow Oaktrees? and as in anything we do in life, If we are good at it, isn’t there a natural progression to want to better yourself? Or, in the case of building surfboards, If you’re good and people want you to shape them one then why not? You gotta start somewhere. Herb, I here what you’re saying about the building surfboard thing. I’m fascinated by it all, and straight away wanted to build and experiment with boards. I love it. But I know guys who can surf way better than me, who know what they want but cannot for the life of them build it, or want to build it. I guess that we see it as a real shame from our view point, because it is very satisfying to ride your own work and see if your ideas worked. Herb, both yourself (and Rich Harbour once) have spent time and discussed ideas with me, and although I’ve never met either of you, I’ve always apreciated the help that you’ve given me (and who would of thought I’d be buying dipers and grinding the inners to get a fin box set in. Oh, and try asking around for an M16 machine gun grip in London, and you could get arrested)! so a big thanks you really do make a difference - even on the otherside of the pond! Anyhow, I hope there has not been too much falling out with friends, life is way too short. I hope it all sorts it self out. Good luck Peaman By the way, third time lucky, my resin pinlines came out a treat!!! Yeee Hahhh!!

If you have no interest in learning anything about the craft of building surfboards, what are you doing here on swaylocks? I don’t care much for what qualifies as a ‘real’ or ‘true’ surfer. I know however that I don’t have alot of respect for those surfers that have no clue why they ride whatever they ride. A little knowledge of what design elements in your equipment actually does (beyond for the logos and stickers and the adds in surfermag) surely don’t make you less of a surfer. Even if you don’t carve it out yourself you may be able to make a qualified judgement of what you want/need the next time you get a new board. regards, Håvard

[Q]If you have no interest in learning anything about the craft of building surfboards, what are you doing here on swaylocks?[Q/] Picking up on other peoples thoughts on design…which is different than building a board. Herb stated you couldn’t be a true surfer without wanting to build at least one board, and that’s just crap. For example, last year I wanted a new epoxy longboard. I spent several hours with Greg Loehr designing exactly what I wanted, and ended up with a board crafted to a degree I would never be able to achieve on my own. And the time I spent not screwing around learning about epoxy, made me enough money to buy 5 boards. I’ve got a career, a family, and a life. If I choose to not spend my free time glassing a board, it doesn’t have anything to do with any quality of being a surfer. Sorry for the vitriolic response, but I’ve got no use for scumbag elitist attitudes.

I’ve got no use for scumbag elitist attitudes. this is almost as funny as the surftech thread.

Riding something you’ve built yourself is a truly unique experience, and thanks to swalocks you wouldn’t need all that long to actually do it. Even a screw up like me can pull it off. But then again, maybe I just got lucky… For whatever reason, we’re all here to learn something. Let’s just bury the battle axes for now. I’m going surfing. regards, Håvard

It’s curious how Harbour made a hard and fast rule that posters on his web forum are restricted to discussions about his company and his boards, no other companies, no other boards. Yet Harbour uses his forum to criticize other board makers and their materials. Does Harbour have a right to break his own rules? Of course. Is he right? Of course not. I’ve seen this union mentality too many times. Try and teach other people how to use your wholesale services, and entrenched jerks try to blacklist you. If your product is so solid, then why should you be jealous of competition? Harbour is the pro acting unprofessional here. If, as Harbour said, pros are supposed to shut up, then Harbour should shut up and stop trying to exert influence he doesn’t have. As for Swaylocks Design Forum, all publicity is good publicity. Thanks Rich!

…Did I break your concentration…elitest-scumbag?

quote: elitest-scumbag For god’s sake, if you can’t spell at least learn how to cut and paste.

…Naw,I like yanking your chain.Funny how you noticed the incorrect spelling ,but missed the meaning of my original message.Herb

If you have no intrest in Harbour surfboards…then why go there? Herb, I think you are a great guy…but you need to chill! I bet I know 20 surfers that can surf way better than you ever have, and have no intrest in building a board. Why would they? Al Merrick, Rusty, Surf Rx and Herb Spitzer can already do it…and much better than they will ever be able to. These guys are in the water, or at the gym, or taking a yoga class while you are mowing foam. They spend more time in the water than you spend in the shaping room. These guys live for surfing, wont get a “real job” because a real job would take away from their water time. They save their pennies and go to places like Tahiti, Hawaii, Costa Rica ect…for the waves. To say these people are not “real surfers” or to say they are any less of a surfer because they would rather have you shape their board is insane. They know what the design aspect of the board makes it work for them. What kind of rails they like on what style of board, ect. What else do they need to know? Relax Herb.

quote: The fact is if you surf and have surfed for awhile,and have no interest in learning about the craft of building a board on your own,at least ONE,then you’ll never be a “true surfer” endquote I didn’t miss the meaning of anything. You’re quote doesn’t leave a lot of wiggle room, Herb. I stand by my original post that it’s a ridiculous statement. You know, I feel stupid even continuing this post, but I found your quote highly insulting. If you place that much value on building a board, it’s you you don’t know what it means to be a true surfer. Boards are a tool, a means to an end. Going out on a hand made board, or a cooperfish, or a $10.00 piece of foam achieves the same ultimate goal, which doesn’t have anything to do with equipment.

…I think you were the one that couldnot express his message without using inappropriate vocabulary.Insulting? …and yes,you did mis the message. It wasn’t about building boards,surfing or being a “true surfer”… …It was about the spirit of learning.Herb

every six months or so you go through some kind of drama , seemingly to get some slack or sympathy over your personal situation , or lack there of. Your contributions here are well taken and very valuable. The high drama over other peoples business practices are not too worthy here.

"…A lot of the boards and design talk that goes onto Swaylocks, is for the most part, un-impressive…Redundant…Lacking originality…Paint by numbers… Sorry…A lot of you guys can do better…So much talk about the cosmetics…That’s fine, if that’s what you’re interested in, but is that what a DESIGN forum is about…???.. …I know it all takes time, to learn the basics, to become proficient, to go beyond the looks…I was there too…For a long time…But, it seems to me that some of the more experienced guys here, who have the fundamentals honed, are just going through the motions…The techniques are solid, but where is the DESIGN advancements…???..Fractions of inches…Please…Glaciers move faster than surfboard designs… …Push some boundaries…Explore some “outside the industry” materials…Take some chances…Risk a failure, or two…Advance the state of the art…PLEASE… …I don’t know, maybe we’ve reached “as good as it gets”…???.. " Thank you for your attention gentlemen.