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Malibu style surfboard made by Norman Casey

Date: late 1950s
Overall: 220 x 3150 x 590 mm, 17.3 kg
Display Dimensions: 610 x 220 x 3160 mm
Medium: Wood, plywood
Credit Line: ANMM Collection Gift from Maroubra Surf Lifesaving Club
Object Name: Surfboard
Object No: 00001230

User Terms

    Made by Norman Casey, this hollow pine and harwood Malibu style board has a single timber fin, with solid wood rails, inset pine along the bottom edges and a plywood deck. The board has a varnish finish, and there is a hung hole drain fitted at the top front end. The board bears a season surfing permit, "Randwick MC no 245", used by Randwick council 1960-1961 on the nose. During this time surfing was licenced, partly to raise revenue, but also because the sport was seen as a hazard to swimmers.
    SignificanceUsed by members of the Maroubra Surf Life Saving Club, this rare hollow board exemplifies the stylistic and technological developments in surfboard designs of the 1950s.
    HistoryThough Australia was first introduced to surfing in the late 19th century by traders and travellers who had passed through Hawaii, the surfing demonstration of Hawaiian Duke Kahanamoku at Freshwater Beach in 1914 was a significant moment in Australia's surfing history. Solid hardwood planks were common on Australian beaches between World War I and World War II, and pre-dated the Australian surfing boom of the late 1950s and early 1960s. Designs were often similar to the Duke's 1914 board, which was shaped from sugar pine purchased from Hudson's Timber Mill in Sydney, and incorporated many of the standard Hawaiian design characteristics.

    The end of World War II opened up new possibilities in surfboard design. Many new materials had become available through advances in technology during the war. As a result, fiberglass coated Malibu’s were developed in the late 1950s. These allowed surfers a greater range of maneuvers than early wooden boards. The 1950s also saw experimentation in surfboard design, with additions such as a fin aiding maneuverability and stability. The Malibu shape was introduced to Australia in 1956 when a group of Californian lifeguards brought with them new Malibu boards made by Joe Quigg and the Velzy-Jacobs duo.

    Local Australian builders such as Norman Casey were slow to use balsa, probably due to the lack of a local supply, and adapted hardwood and hollow board technologies to make the Malibu’s. The shape was similar to the balsa Malibu’s of America, though the use of the fin was an early Australian adaptation. Eventually Australians began experimenting with balsa, foam and fiberglass designs, and the Malibu went into mass-production.
    Additional Titles

    Web title: Malibu style surfboard made by Norman Casey


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