Dead Kooks Surfboards by Eden Saul
Posted on 04 December 2015
Recently Eden Saul of Dead Kooks Surfboards stopped by and dropped off some of his new handcrafted gems. If you're not familiar with Dead Kooks Surfboards and who Eden Saul is here's a brief description of what this magical scene is all about.
Dead Kooks Surfboards are shaped by Eden on the Gold Coast of Australia. The surfboards are beautifully crafted surf machines, completely hand shaped by Mr. Saul and glassed locally [when in the states] at Moonlight Glassing Co. The shapes are retro inspired but with a good modern twist making them super functional and rideable in an array of conditions. And you can't forget the iconic acid resin swirls and color combinations that Dead Kooks is known for. Kooks Not Nukes!
Here are some pics of Eden doin' his thang in the shaping bay and surfing along with those beauts he just dropped off that are now available for you:
Here's Eden in his shaping bay mowing foam, creating yet another amazing board-
Close up foam mow-
Style for miles-
Van drop off-
The 4 New Gems-
If you missed the link above here's a direct link that'll take you to the page where you can grab any one of these amazing creations that were handcrafted by Eden- Dead Kooks
Along with capturing the pics above we were able to sit down with Eden for a few and pick his brain a tad, asking him everything from when he first started shaping to the music he digs. Here's what we got:
1.)When did you first start shaping?
I started shaping when i was about 17 just mucking around and making myself some boards, slowly figured out what i was doing, worked in a few shops cleaning up mess and making some of my own and thats where i really started to get a good grasp of the trade. Been tapping away at it ever since, still enjoying showing up at work everyday and having fun refining the boards i’m making.
2.) Who inspired you to start building surfboards, and name 2 of your favorite shapers of all time and why?
I guess i was inspired most by my mates and the people around me. Growing up in Lennox i had Dan Tomo making me boards when he was just starting out in his dad’s shed and i was still in school. I was getting a bunch of fish and random shapes from Dick Van Straalen also and he really opened my mind up, but there was a lot of guys really who i think got my psyched on it. For the most part i was just interested in the process and keen to experiment and see what i could make for myself, what worked and didnt.
Two favourite shapers of all time.. Bob Mctavish, he’s the real deal been around for ever, can shape anything, one hands a planer like a master and is still at it with the biggest grin on his face and a crazy amount of enthusiasm and excitement. Second, i dunno, maybe Eric Arakawa or something which is kind of left field, but if you want proper boards for Hawaii he’s the guy. He's been at it a long time, look at the guys he has made boards for over the years and its crazy. Very humble and just goes about his work, but he has those curves so dialled and makes some really beautiful refined blades for serious waves.
3.) If there’s a particular type of board you like to shape, more than any other, what type of board is it and why?
That seems to change week to week almost.. Ive been making a lot of very particular style of longboard for a while, drawing heavy influence from 67-68 Australian mals, lately though I've been really into refined fish stuff, blending some more modern foils and rails with old templates and seeing where that goes. For the most part it just depends what the waves are doing, what i’m surfing and whats got me excited.
4.) What are your thoughts on pop outs, soft tops, etc types of boards that are sold at cheaper prices compared to boards that are completely hand shaped by a craftsmen like yourself?
It is what it is. I surfed El Porto the other day and this couple were on the beach warming up with their Wavestorms and the pair of them had the fins all in backwards, it was great. The people buying those boards aren’t up for spending well over $1000 on a boards so its kind of irrelevant. That said those people seem to clog the line up and get in the way all too often, then again its allowing people to get into surfing and creating a wider customer base so maybe there is so positive side to it, i’m trying to see some good in a pretty ugly side to the mass marketed scene.
5.) A lot of people think boards are expensive. We understand that profit margins for hand shapers is super slim. Are you able to make a decent living off of building surfboards? Do you think there will ever be a time when profit margins will increase for the hand shapers of the world like yourself?
I dont think boards are all that expensive, relative to the time and work that goes into it, the skill and years of experience from the guy shaping it, the laminator, the sander, etc. Its messy, hot, dusty work, its not all that glamorous. There’s not a whole lot of guys building boards making big bucks, they are doing it cause they love doing it. I make a living from it but over the last 5 years if i looked at the hours i’ve put in and what i’ve made i could off taken a shitty job somewhere and probably made way better cash but I’m happy with what I'm doing and its not all about the bank balance. A lot of people get hung up on the purity of handshapes but i’m sure if you offer them a profiled cut for a few hundred less than a handshape it’d interesting to see just who many want to part with the extra cash. I take my hat off guys like Tyler Hatzikian who are taking the craftsman thing to another level and charging accordingly.
6.) Where’s your favorite spot to surf when you’re not building boards?
Lennox point, i grew up surfing there its just down the road from home and on its day is up there with about as good as any other righthand point i’ve found.
7.) Name 3 of your favorite bands that you dig listening to.
Beastie boys, Nick Cave, Brian Jonestown Massacre.
8.) Name 3 of your favorite surfers of all time and why.
Shuan Thompson, I remember wanting old VHS with my dad and was always blown away by his whole approach, his style, he just draws such clean lines and made it work. Joel Tudor for pretty much the same reasons, such a clean and classic style and approach, everyone knows he rules on a log but he gets it done at pipe and some heavier stuff to so credit where its due. Lastly Curren, well he’s number one actually, i don’t think that even needs an explanation.
9.) What would you consider your biggest triumph to date is?
The life i’ve created for myself probably. I work a job that i etched out for myself and love doing, I get to make boards for my mates and some of the most talented people going and travel around doing that. I’m pretty happy with how things are.
10.) If you could give one piece of advice to anybody who’s thinking about building a surfboard what would it be?
Give it a crack, it’s crazy how your first board always seem to go kinda good even though it probably sucks, but you put so much time and love into it that somehow it just works.
KOOKS NOT NUKES!