Tuesday, April 21, 2009


20 year old, RYAN BURCH, on Sauritch thruster shortboard above, is one of the most surf stoked, open-minded, design inquisitive, d.i.y.'ers that I've come across. Among other things, he makes his own Alaias on a shoestring budget with relatively inexpensive Douglas Fir wood he glues up himself into shape-able planks.

Last March, a few days before Ryan left for his month in the Southern Hemisphere, I met with him in the Encinitas area for a surf. Here's some shots, by Matt Shuster, of Ryan riding two boards I brought down for him to check out, and his self-shaped "Wrongald" finless, along with a few quotes taken from the impressions he shared about each board after riding...

I. NINE LIGHTS, 5' 6", Solid Foam Core/Balsa Wood Skin, Open Face Composite Sandwich Construction:

"I've never really ridden a twinny like this that has a little trailer... It was so fast and loose... It's so light, It's right there with, like, when I hold a shortboard under my arm, it's got that same good weight to it... you could really feel it... projecting. This is something like I've always wanted to make. I admire the craftsmanship, for sure. It's like the ultimate board for fun everyday California surf."

II. THE WHITE PONY (#2), 4'11", Simmons-Fish Planing Hull, Hydrodynamica Project Board:

"It's insane how a board with this much volume, I mean there's no chippy part about this thing, but it rides insane, it's really sensitive... you can crank turns on this thing and keep it on a rail. You'd think that something this wide and bulky would always want to lay over, or bog out, or bob outa the water, just not do what you want it to do, but it was so responsive and so fast. It just jams everywhere... blown away.

III. WRONGALD, 5'7", Finless, Foam, Shaped and glassed by Ryan with Ronald fabric:

"One of my personal favorites. I think I'm just really proud of it 'cause I made it myself. It's Mr. McDonald, the Happy Meal... whatever you feel like callin' it. It has a step tail in it. I was originally making it as a board I could ride with fins... I was like, 'It'll work finless.' The first day it worked... 'cause I had ridden Alaias a lot... now it's just kind of the board you take out when it's small and butter around, slide everywhere, it's real fun! People can't take you too seriously when you've got Ronald on it. I was like, 'it's such a goofy board as it is ya might as well throw Ronald on there.' "





Danimal said...


Anonymous said...

awesome research!! thanks RT.

And I agree, your best is always the one you make!


R.T. said...

my pleasure, Push!

yep, regardless of their imperfections, there's something special about riding self-shaped boards that completes the circle of the experience.

Dr. Robert said...

great review..great surfing!

Mr. Lentini said...