Thursday, August 14, 2008

Ballad of the Thin Man

TommyT stopped by last month to check out his board before it headed up to the Fattyshack.
“Too thick” he said, turning it over on the racks.
I thought for a moment. “I wouldn’t go any thinner,” I said. TommyT’s about one-night-of-drinking shy of 200Lbs.
“Too chunky,” he replied, sighting the board down from the nose. “Chunky monkey.”
“It’s pretty well blended…”
“Chunky funky.”
“The foil’s spot-on—“
“Chunkin’ donuts,” he said, moving toward the tail. “Chunk in the trunk. Reverse slam chunk. You chunk my battleship…” and so on, seemingly oblivious of my presence.
I told TommyT I’d be happy to thin it out a bit.
“Thin it out by half,” he said, sighting a rail.
That would have netted TommyT a ¾ ” thick board, but TommyT’s not a numbers guy, so I said OK and handed over a mask so he could watch.

“Thinner,” he said occasionally. “Like a coffee table. Like twenty pages stapled together. Maybe fifteen.”
I asked him if he’d ever surfed a board like this in the adult stages of his life.
“Nope.”
“It’s going to be under water when you paddle.”
“So?”
This was a good point. TommyT’s 6’4” with arms like telephone poles. He could probably paddle a car door into overhead beachbreak and never feel a thing.
I got to work, and a half-hour later offered the newly-reduced item for his inspection.
“Tail’s too thick,” he said. “Thick as a brick.”
I paused.
“Thick Cheney. Thick Van Dyke.”
I took a deep breath.
“Thickie Don’t Lose That Number.”
“Any thinner and you’re going to have problems getting into waves,” I said.
“So?”
Another good point—his board, not mine.

Twenty minutes later and it was done. The tail was thinner than a CD and the rails sported a dime-size radius, but TommyT was stoked. He pulled a beer out of his back pocket and cracked it, grinning.
“Think I’ll be able to get up on it?”
“No.”
“Imagine what it would be like if I could!” He said. “I’d friggin rip!”

TommyT’s 6’1” hi-pro quad fish, fresh resinwork from the Fattyshack, ready for ripping.

Feels good to be back on the West Coast!

7 comments:

pushingtide said...

Great shape. Love that thin line on the bottom.

HeadHighGlassy said...

Thanks, Push. The line is a product of a polishing accident at the 24th hour. Sssshhhhhhh!

reverb said...

...good outline

a fish should be less than 6
preferable in the 5 2 - 5 7 range
if a guy is big can handle very good a 5 10 x 22
a fish float lots more than a shortboard so more than 5 11 is a cork and lose that fishness thang
if a guy is big but will superb skills can handle a 5 6 very well

-yes, the tail and 12" up should be ultra thin for a modern fish

HeadHighGlassy said...

Thanks, Reverb!
TommyT is far from a superb surfer, but he does measure in at 8'1", so this board hits him about mid-clavicle (he also has a very small head). His new fish is actually shorter than his skateboard!

Anonymous said...

Nice board!
I once saw a whale shark. It was about 30 feet long. The longest catfish ever caught was somewhere in the 9ft range. Not to get too technical, but both those fish are longer than 6ft.
Just saying.

Anonymous said...

whatever...it's not a fish anyway...it's a quad with a fish tail. so what's you point, reverb? Note pulled in nose and lack of blobby outline.

good lookin QUAD

Anonymous said...

id be interested in meeting this tommy t...