SurfScience Custom Search by Google

We just got done installing a new search function on our site. The custom search engine by Google will make it easy to find what you’re looking for on SurfScience.  Located at the top right of every page, the search bar is the best way to find what you want faster than a speeding Mick Fanning.

surfscience google custom search

Basically it’s the same Google you know and love but… it only searches OUR website and blog. Pretty cool!

The results display on a new page of the site and make it easy for you to keep reading.  You don’t have to worry about jumping back and forth between different websites.  Its all done within our framework.

Our favorite part of this new tool is that it will keep track of all of the terms that our visitors search for. If we see a lot of people are looking for something that we don’t have much information about, guess what we’re going to do? Thats right, go learn more about it and write some great new articles.

So go test out the custom search feature yourself here. Some fun searches to start with if you can’t think of anything else: “thruster” “channel islands” “surfing tips”

Source: Surfscience

Sacred Craft Spring 2011

Sacred Craft is happening this weekend in Santa Cruz, CA.  If you haven’t heard of the expo yet, what are you doing?  Its basically the premium place to geek out on surfboards.  There is one more day left, Sunday the 20th, so if you’re anywhere near Nor-Cal, make the journey.  Below are some things I enjoyed seeing today.

More info here – Sacred Craft Expo Website

Here is the crowd at the show.  A lot of people showed up.  As you can see, the building is 50% surfers and 50% surfboards.

sacred craft expo crowd

This next board is my favorite one at the show.  It needs to win best in show this year.  (Scott Bass, if you’re reading this, please take note)  It is a collaboration between mad scientists/shapers Bufo Brauers & Carl Ekstrom. has done interviews with each of them (CarlBufo) and we’re stoked to see them working together.

The board is an asymmetrical EPS fish with adjustable flex pressure.  This is the future people!

ekstrom bufo collaborative surfboard

Some of the fins from Rainbow Fin Co.  Check out the cool colored glass ones.  The one on the left with a huge rake was made to surf in kelp.  Pretty good looking stuff.

rainbow fin company

Bulletfins were designed to split the water around the base of the fin.  Gene Cooper really enjoys it on some of his shapes.  Its an interesting idea, I’ll have to give it a try.


A wide offering of foam blanks from Marko Foam.  Notice the one with a ton of stringers.  Also, the one one with no stringers.

marko foam blanks

Some boards from Cooperfish.  The one he is showing off now is a stringerless high density PU pig shape with a glassed on fin.

cooperfish surfboards

Looks skatey.

surf skate

Here is a giant wooden SUP.  That thing looks beast to paddle and will set you back a coll $2,500.  You won’t have to worry about wind chop though.

wooden sup

Some shots from the shape off.

shape offshape off

I saw this board sitting off in a corner.  Shaped by none other than Dale Velzy.  A good looking board and piece of surfing history.

surfboards by dale velzy

Here are the team of surfboard appraisers going over the classic boards people brought in.  Sam George was hanging around for a good part of the day.

surfboard appraisal

If I had $10,000 sitting around, I would buy all 15 of these Rusty boards.

rusty surfboards

This is called the topless boardbag.  Its a neat idea.  It slips on easy and protects your board from UV damage and scratches.  Unlike a board bag it doesn’t get all wax covered in the inside.  A novel idea.

topless boardbag

topless boardbag

topless boardbag

A company called Incide was showing off their new blanks.  Each one has a 3D carbon fiber stringer in the inside like the one pictured here.  I will most likely be buying one to test out for my next surfboard project.

incide core

This is Santa Cruz style at its best.

santa cruz surfboards

FCS showing off some of their new SUP product.

fcs sup gear

Source: Surfscience

Q&A About “The Best Surfboards of 2011” Best Surfboards of 2011 just released our newest feature, “The Best Surfboards of 2011.”  This new section of our site pulls data from every surfboard model’s ratings to rank the top surfboards of each category.

This is the first time anyone has done a feature like this using 100% user ratings, so we’re stoked to be able to release it.  Of course, like everything new, there are a lot of questions from surfboard shapers, surfers and industry folk.

I’m going to take a minute here to answer some questions I’ve been emailed in the past week.

Q: How do you calculate the rankings?

A: In our top secret laboratory we have an army of one thousand monkeys with abacuses running complex calculations.  First they look at the performance rankings of each board, taking into account overall score as well as: paddling, maneuverability, stability and speed.  They then look at things like popularity; how often is the board viewed, ranked and commented on.  Finally, they look for consistency in rankings, if a board has a lot of really high rankings and a lot of low rankings, it shows us that there might be something fishy, where as if a board is consistently ranked a 7 or 8, we know that is accurate.

Its a fairly complex equation that results in a new number we call the “SurfScience Score” or “SS Score”  This new number will be appearing around the site more and will be a new way to compare surfboards.

Q: Who ranks the boards, is it SurfScience employees or a panel of experts?

A: Neither.  Our rankings are 100% user generated.  Over 5,000 user ratings and comments went into the equation for this years rankings.  We’re stoked to be able to do this because it removes bias or influence from financial gains.

Q: Where are the majority of SurfScience’s users from?

A: Anywhere there is surfing, there is SurfScience.  Our content is read in over 175 countries.  The top countries include: USA, Australia, UK, France, Spain, Canada, New Zealand, Portugal, Ireland & Brazil.

That means our rankings take into account users from just about every type of climate, wave and surf culture there is.

Q: Why is it the best surfboards of 2011, when the year just started?

A: We believe a surfboard should be graded on how well it performs, not its hype, marketing or newness.  Because of that, an older board that works better shouldn’t be hindered just because it wasn’t released this year.  The boards ranked on SurfScience are not separated by the year the model was invented.  We didn’t want to do a list of the best new boards in 2010, we wanted to do a list of the best boards you could buy right now, in 2011.

Q: Was there any money involved or are any surfboard companies sponsoring this?

A: No.  We have not taken any money from any surfboard manufacturer.  We intent to keep it this way to make sure that stays a neutral source.

Q: Why does Channel Islands have so many boards listed?

A: Channel Islands makes 27 of the 169 boards on our 2011 list.  That is by far the most from one company.  The reason is that one factor of our rankings is popularity.  We feel that a board that 10 people  rate a 9 is a stronger score than one that 1 person rates a 10.  Because of this, popular models will have an advantage.  If you think about it, this just means that they are tried and true.  Channel Islands is one of the biggest surfboard companies, and so it has a lot of very popular shapes.

Q: Why aren’t any of _______’s surfboards on the list?

A: Our board directory has about 1,500 surfboards in it.  That is a lot.  Of course, there are a ton more.  We did our best to reach out to shapers and have them send us info on their board models, the ones that emailed us back first have been listed and we’re working on the rest.  Every month we add more models, and we hope to one day have a complete list.  If there is a shaper you feel should be listed, feel free to leave a comment, email us or email them and tell them to make sure their boards are listed on

We are very proud of the fact that over 40 shapers are represented on the list.  If you think about most awards, usually a few contestants go home with all of the prizes.  How many movies win Oscars for; Best Picture, Best Screenplay, Best Director, Best Actor & Best supporting Actress?  We’re thrilled with the fact that a lot of

Q: What do the shapers get as part of their award?

A: Every shaper that receives an award will receive bragging rights and $1,000,000 in Monopoly money.  They also get to display the Best Surfbaords of 2011 seal on their website.  Along with that, we will display the seal on their board’s listing in our surfboard directory, letting interested customers know that the board has received an award.

There are a few different variations of the seal.  Everyone that appears on the list will get to display the standard seal pictured above.  Those shapers who’s board was in the top 10 or 5 (depending on the category) of its board type will also receive a special seal.

Shapers with the award may use the seal on any marketing material, advertisements or company literature of their choice.  So its a pretty big deal!

Q: What if I have other questions?

A: Leave a comment below and we’ll do our best to answer them.  Also, you can always email us at  Thanks for reading and go check out the award winner already, here is the link…

Source: Surfscience

Surf Forecasting with Solspot

solspotAs a surfer, knowing when waves are going to hit is important.  Really important.

I remember when I first started surfing, I would just go to the beach whenever I could get a ride.  Sometimes there would be waves, other times there weren’t.  Eventually I figured out to check the surf forecast first, which greatly reduced the number of days I got skunked.

Now, some 15 years later, I’m much busier and have to make the most of small windows of free time.  I can usually only free an hour or two to surf a day so it better count.  After making sure there are going to be waves, I’ve got to check things like: swell direction to pick a break, tide to pick a time, wind conditions to see if its even going to work.  (Let alone what the sandbars have been doing this season.)  Then there are crowds, traffic, parking and all sorts of other things to take into account.

Basically, I’ve become more concerned with knowing more about the surf.  The way it stands today, I would much rather go surf a perfect uncrowded 3-4 foot day than waste a day on the promise of 6ft surf that ends up being blown out and dragging down the coast.

This is where Solspot comes in.  I’ve been stoked on their site lately.

I like knowing a lot about the surf, but I’m by no means an expert, yet.  The “Forecasting Ninja” at Solspot on the other hand, is.  Adam Wright has credentials to boot, having worked for companies like Transworld SURF, Surfline, Wavewatch, and FuelTV.

My favorite part about the site is the unique personal approach to forecasting.  He takes screen shots, draws on them and explains what to look for.  He’s like the Madden of surf forecasting. 

I’m sure that after a while, I’ll be able to spot things on my own, which will be a great tool to have for doing my own surf forecasts in the future, whether its for a surf trip in a remote location or just to see if I can pick up anything else that the other forecasts didn’t mention.So, Solspot, thanks for doing what you’re doing.  Keep up the good work.

Everyone else, check it out, its pretty cool and a fun way to learn a bit more about forecasting.

Source: Surfscience