Speedneedle Sets the Record Straight

"There has been considerable comment lately about the evolving epoxy market. Some of the discussions have centered around the state of surfboard technology, where the market is going and from time to time, fairly specific commentary about Firewire surfboards. In some cases these comments have come from people associated with our Brand. "

Gentlemen, I announce that I have resigned from Firewire surfboards…

With Swaylockers such a source of support to me over the years, I wanted to thank you all and tell you that I have taken a new direction in my career.

Having shaped, glassed, sprayed, sanded for more than twenty years and spent the last 2 on vacuum bagged epoxy composite boards, I am well placed to make some really special boards. Time to step up.

I made all of Taj Burrows personal boards right up to his recent winning at my home beach, Bells, and I now have a comprehensive understanding of composite surfboard construction technology. I’d had a hand in the construction of boards, poly and composite, for top 16 pros before, but to have Taj win on one I made was pretty special:-No more bridesmaid for Composite construction.

The winning Bells and Airshow boards, and Taj’s Tahiti guns, are the last Firewires to pass through my hands. Who now builds them? Who knows.

The journey began here at Swaylocks with Bert Burger and I hitting it off from day one, but also in particular I thank Silly, DanB, Pinhead and Chipfish for inspiration…

The boards in the attached pics are my personal quiver:-they are the prototypes for many of aspects of Firewires construction tech, but you won’t see these in their model range!

I look forward to getting my designs out there.

Now, what was that grassroots operation, begins with “S”, that started it all???


Looking forward to seeing & hearing more about your boards. Best of luck.

Thanks Deanbo, yes, now the real work starts…


Good on you Speedy,

And all the best of luck in your next step up…

Some people got burned along the way with FW, but that’s a true learning experience, makes you stronger to accomplish what you want in your future…

A bit more info on the pinkish board in the quiver please, the deck looks different to the others…

Yeah Hicksy…

Thanks heaps man. Add you to that list of Sways legends!

The pinkish/orange board has a double concave deck, like a big raised archbar. Two other boards in the shot have it too, but the matt finish and spray obscure it. The double concave deck is something I’ve worked on for a while. Its got a couple of functions. Feels good under the feet, locked in with the archs. Also an extension of Berts’ concave decks. Here the aim is have the bottom contour go DOUBLE concave as the board flexs. Its very interesting.

Dimensions on that one are 6’7 x 19 1/4 x 2 1/2. Weight 2.3 kg. It’s my first machine shape. More pix show how thin the tail tapers, with the back plug visible both sides. That tail twangs in your fingertips.


stoked , you wanna come over and work on Taj’s new Sunova’s ??

yes , i would say , your creative side is about to explode out the gate …




Its very interesting.


i nominate that sentence as the understatement of the month.

Try Supercharging one…it will answer All you questions and create some new ones.

Good on you for looking forward in the advancements in surfboard tech.Herb

Very cool Josh

look forward to seeing your new stuff and hearing more from you on the forum.

Congrats on the competitive success of your creations.

Will you have an “S” on your new boards?

Good Luck


Hi Josh, I just checked out your website- www.speedneedle.com.au.

Great shapes and unbelievable art works! I’d almost be reluctant to use the boards considering the originality of the artwork. For some reason I really like the weather map one, with the cyclonic depression and the front moving in. Abstract in a way that maybe only surfers can appreciate. Kudos. And best of luck with your endeavours. I’m sure you’ll shine.

Hey Wells,

How’s the coffin going?

I like to keep some of my stuff a little secret:- The double concave deck might get out there now.

The pics are detail shots. The twinfin is wild! Mellowed out the arch for the pink board.


Love your artwork Speedy, keep up the good work…

Way to go Josh!

'Can’t wait to see your own line of compsands!


Thanks again Hicksy,

There is some sick board art in the Pipeline!!!

Is that you with the tatt?


Yep, that’s me…

I saw one of your boards in a magazine, something about the top 20 shapers etc…

Loved that image…


That photo is right after the deed was done hey? It still has those welts. Hmm, I’ve got a Tatt/Surf story. You know the tattooist will say no salt water for a week. Well, 4 days into a new tatt with a big swell up, I just had to go out! My cred was suffering as I watched “Shitattacks” breaking from the carpark, so I had to go out, tatt bandage on. Big and lonely and Victorian.


Hey Speedy, I great to hear from you! I was wondering how the firewire life was treating you, and now I know. The firm has certainly been living up to my low expectations. Its amazing to see all that you’ve learned in the past couple years - your boards look amazing! I can’t wait to see what you come up with in the future.

Thanks heaps Dan, as I suggested in the original post, I’ve noted your work in composite surfboards also.

I have new riceys, have to go to work for a bit…



How's the coffin going?

great, thanks for asking! unfortunately right as I pimped out my kit completely, I got a bunch of work, and have had no time at all…I did manage to “squeeze” out a board a couple weeks ago, however, and finished and rode it monday for the first time…Pretty psyched, I’ll post it up as soon as I get the time (dont know when that’ll be).

I also have a big’ol box of balsa and several assorted cans of sticky goo, and some free time coming up, so I’ll let you know. let’s just say it’s already starting to smell like the undead around here…

wow, look at the sharp peaks of the deck contour on that fish…wouldn’t that concentrate maximum load along a pretty narrow strip of deck as the board flexed? they look almost like upside down rail channels…


nice work, speedy! I’m sorry to say, but my backroom is going to shamelessly copy and exploit all of your innovative new directions! ;~)) thanks for expanding the conceivable!


Hi there Josh,

This is great to hear… I’ve always loved your artwork and felt that we wern’t seeing nearly enough of it while you were at Firewire.

Hopefully this also means that you will make your full-time comback to Sways in the same way Bert has come back… it was a poorer place without you.

Are you planning to remain inthe Goldy, or return to Vic?

Best of luck with your new lease on life… time to soar!