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Australian hollow surfboard

Date: 1946
Overall: 4350 mm, 22.4 kg
Medium: Queensland maple, silky oak, marine ply
Credit Line: ANMM Collection Purchased with USA Bicentennial Gift funds
Object Name: Surfboard
Object No: 00015850
Place Manufactured:Australia

User Terms

    Made in 1946 by John K McLennan, this Australian 14 foot hollow surfboard features a combination of Queensland maple, silky oak and marine ply. Aged 17, McLennan purchased the plans for the boat from a shop in George Street, Sydney. The plywood came from Meadow Bank, and the two pieces of Queensland maple, matched by weight, were purchased from Victoria Road, Parramatta. The board was made over a six week period after McLennan came home from work each day.
    SignificanceAlso known as needles, toothpicks and longboards, hollow surfboards such as this were popular in Australia until the early 1950s. John McLennan surfed with this board until 1957, when he was 28 years old, frequenting the big swells of Freshwater, Avoca, Terrigal, McMaster's Beach, Fraser Park and Katherine Hill Bay.
    HistoryPlywood had been used as a lightweight and cheap building material since the 1800s and was the material used by Californian surfer Tom Blake, who in 1931 patented a design for a hollow timber surfboard. In 1934 one of the first hollow surf skis in Australia was made by Dr 'Saxon' Crackenthorp of Manly, New South Wales. Also built from plywood, the board was around four meters long.
    Additional Titles


    Web title: Australian hollow surfboard

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