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A Year to Remember

Aloha 2020, Happy New Year 2021

by Donn Ito

A tempestuous year ends as we begin a new one. It is easy to forget events of the past, as they are archived to history. History can be forgotten and repetitive mistakes occur. How many more Black Lives must we lose? How many more lives will be threatened by mask-less faces lurking in our shadows? How many more surfer deaths and injuries before we truly understand old surfboard design?

History links our past to the present. It helps us recognize events which advanced our lives, civilization and technology. Hokulea's voyages generated the rebirth of lost Polynesian navigation techniques. Surfing has deep roots in Hawaiian culture. In exploring this past, we can find ways to advance valuable lost techniques and designs.


The great Duke Kahanamoku, Ambassador of Aloha, used and made long surfboards, some of which had a round or deep Vee hulls. These hulls served a purpose which can be very relevant today. Old concepts may make a big difference in modern surfboard performance.

Round or Vee bows part water and push it out of the path of a speeding surfboard. Eddie Aikau demonstrates how a round bow works in sequences from our past.

A round or Vee bow can push through a shallow pearl . Terry Fitzgerald, carves on an old Veed Nose.

At high speed, a modern flat bottom surfboard may stop when it impacts water, due to hydrodynamic resistance. The forces that provide planning lift, can also produce resistance on a high bent up nose. A flat underside of the nose rocker bend or bow, may cause a surfboard to abruptly stick and pitch the rider. The flat surface resists water penetration and generates lift, which pushes a surfboard back. While the round bottom pushes water aside and the board keeps moving. Mark Foo gave it all, surfing may progress from his loss. Photo Bob Babour

A replica of an old Round Nose Gun, underside. Below.

Modified old designs may improve modern surfing.

Happy New Year and Safe Surfing

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