In these days of computer aided technology quite a few modern “shapers” design their boards solely on the computer, test the prototypes then hit the computer again making necessary adjustments before testing again and so on. While a perfectly valid means of surfboard creation at Water Pistols we tend to work at it from a different direction fusing old school methods with new school computer wizardry. I guess the first step is recognizing the need for a new model or a gap in your board range. There may be a design feature that is proving popular but sticking with our company creed it must be something hydrodynamicaly sound before we’ll even look at creating our own version or even blending it into one of our existing designs. Once our design brief is settled upon I will handshape one in a suitable size for my son Ryan as his versatility and all round skills make him the ideal test pilot. Now the fun part, we surf the shit out of the prototype and push it right to its limits. Once passing the test phase the board is scanned and programmed into the computer and a file created. This master file of our original shape becomes our base which goes on to more testing in a variety of sizes under a variety of riders varying in size and ability. These guys give priceless feedback towards either further modification or validation of the design as it is. All our designs never remain static but are always open to further adjustments as visions and inspiration occur. These small tweaks are always quantifiable because we make one change at a time and our base design remains unchanged. Quite simply if the modification improves the boards performance or any other aspect it stays, if not it’s out the door. If the new designs pass their stringent testing procedures they are given a name, I draw a suitable logo and a new model enters our range, that’s one of the beauties of the modern shaping machine is that it reproduces your designs exactly every time which allows for a more scientific incremental approach to board design and the more accurate sizing of each board to perfectly suit the customer. Take care and happy surfing……


July 18, 2019 — Stuart Campbell