The Shaping Room, OG FLYER
Watch as Britt Merrick breaks down our all-time most popular design, The OG FLYER.
“It’s the original design with the single to double to vee bottom, and the original rocker, high bump squash and beak,” says Britt. “The difference is the stock dimensions have been changed to allow surfers to ride it a couple inches shorter than in 1999.”
“By the late ‘90s we had taken low volume and extreme rocker to the limit,” says Al Merrick. “Some of the team asked for a board specifically designed for poor conditions, so I went the other way. I took the M-BB3 design, cut it down to drop the rocker, and combined it with some of my tail templates from Tom [Curren].”
“In 1998, we were already shaping alternative short and wide boards in the Sashimi and MTF,” continues Britt Merrick, Al’s son and heir to the Channel Islands legacy. “But the team was asking my dad for that flow and glide in a more conventional package.”
“I first rode a Flyer about 12 years ago at a contest in Oceanside, and I absolutely loved it, which is why I’m so for it being re-introduced,” says CI teamrider Alex Gray. “The big difference I noticed in the design is how the speed and flow are carried from start to finish. The Flyer accelerates where most boards bog. It feels like you’re constantly on the gas pedal, being able to push the board as hard as you like. I find the Flyer makes less-than-average surf conditions extremely fun and motivating.”
“I remember Bobby [Martinez], Taylor [Knox], Timmy [Reyes] and Rob [Machado] all getting on that design quickly,” adds Al.
“It was one of the first Channel Island designs I ever surfed, and I instantly fell in love with the speed in California waves,” concurs Pat Gudauskas. “The thing was a bullet. It was so easy to surf and I had more speed than I ever had, especially in smaller waves. All I wanted to do was big airs on it. It became the backbone of my surfing stoke as a grom.”
“It made me have fun, ‘cause it was totally different than what I was used to riding,” Bobby Martinez said. “It felt more like a skateboard and it felt faster overall on any type of wave. And the bigger the wave, the more skatey it felt. So it was a good mix up for me — and nowadays, that’s kinda all I ride. A Flyer or stuff similar.”
Interview courtesy of SURFLINE