Nov 19, 2021
Nov 17, 2021
Nov 16, 2021
Nov 5, 2021
We're back building mats, and right now our turn around time is 3-4 days.
Our new home page (surfmats.com) is still under construction, but you can order a mat by emailing us at fourthgearflyer at yahoo dot com. We'll send you an invoice that can be paid with a credit of debit card. Email us with your model choice, or we can discuss it.
Unfortunately, we're not accepting orders outside the US due to shipping problems with our postal system. We'll let you know via Surfmatters when that issue clears up.
Another thing we should note is that we're not building Trackers or Vespas anymore. It's a tooling issue.
Our model lineup for 2021 and beyond -- in increments of mat size, smallest to largest -- consists of the Kid's Mat, the Lotus, the Standard, the Omni, the Fatty, the XL and the UDT. If you're not already familiar with these models, the details will be in our new home page. Or you can write for info.
George was born on November 6, 1941. Skip Frye and Greg Liddle hail from the same general time period as well. It's interesting how three of the world's most influential hull builders are the same age...and still actively surfing and designing. What a poignant boiling pot they grew up in! With one foot in the WWII era and the other in the cultural revolution of the 60's, they intuitively found a way to see the value in both. Surfers who are either younger or older don't have the silk touch that these three demonstrate, in and out of the water.
With that thought in mind, I looked up a website citing well known people who were born in 1941, and it netted some interesting results...including Bob Dylan.
OK, I don't want to go off the rails here with cultural analogies and such. But I've always found it fascinating that George conceived, built, and rode the first flexible spoon kneeboard in 1965...
And, 1965 was the same year that Dylan "went electric," casting aside his folkie persona in favor of heading up a band with electric guitars, an electric organ, and a drummer...
While Dylan's transition was unpopular with many of his fans, what followed over the next few years was a burst of timeless originality and creativity. The same could be said of Greenough's flexible kneeboard riding during that same time frame, resulting in his well-documented influence on surfing.
The difference between the two artists is that electric guitars had been use by musicians since the early 50's. What Dylan did was take an established form of popular music -- electric rock and roll -- and utilize it in previously unthought of ways.
Greenough, in comparison, invented surfing's electric guitar. Shorter boards had been around since the dawn of surfing. But George brought so much design insight and raw surfing talent to the table, nothing that came before him is even remotely valid in terms of explaining why surfing changed in the late 60's. He was Les Paul, Chuck Berry, Little Richard, Elvis, Miles, Aretha, The Beatles, The Stones, Dylan, Hendrix and Zappa rolled into one. And he did it all wearing the disarming mask of innocence.
Does this look like the guy who would change the sport of surfing forever???
George was burning off long, accelerating turns on a kneeboard when everyone else was still knee paddling 10 footers...
To put things into perspective, try googling "surfing 1965" and see what you come up with.
Aside from a very cool image of a kid standing on a paipo board at Waikiki...
...it's all hot rods and 30 pound D-fin longboards. Not that there's anything wrong with that. But there was no precursor to Greenough back then. No harbinger what was coming next. No time-line of progress that would lead one to conclude that if it wasn't George back in 1965, it surely would have been someone else a year or two later. Because no, it wouldn't have been someone else. Even today (55 years later!) mainstream surfboards haven't caught up to where he was in the mid-60's.
George is a one-off, and we're lucky to still hare the lineup with him...
And George's revolutionary mat riding propelled that aspect of surfing to undreamt of heights...