How can big brands produce so many surfboards that are all the same? The answer is simple.
Behind the glamour of the brand there is a figure called a back shaper or ghost shaper, who is in charge of the mass production of surfboards aided by the CNC cutting machine faithfully producing the same models over and over again.
These days there are creators with great marketing who have decided to build their own brands, but who don’t have the same resources and surfboard production knowledge and this is where the workshops, who specialise in that type of work, help give life to these brands. In these workshops are the shapers, glassers, sanders, decorators etc.
Apart from my work with Selsurfboards, a modest company, I also work in one of these workshops. This has allowed me to gain a lot of shaping experience by working daily on many types of boards – performance, twins, retrofish, longboards, shortboards, guns, singles, Malibus, bonzers etc. I am a strong advocate of hand shaping but, what happens if my orders exceed what I can hand make? The answer is simple, there is always a good back shaper ready to work.