Surfing Industry Ready To Ride Wave Of Big Business

Louis Melton
Louis Melton

Aug 18, 2006 10:17 PM

By Beth Hillyer

(KHNL) - It's a story that will give surfers and surfboard shapers something to smile about.

The first shipment of foam blanks has arrived from a new manufacturer called U.S. Blanks.

Clark foam of California suddenly shut down last December due to health concerns about some of the chemicals used to make it's blanks.

But some former employees and new investors teamed up to form U.S. Blanks.

And the long awaited shipment of their first foam blanks was unloaded off the container Friday.

It's almost surprising there is not an armed guard surrounding this much anticipated container.

"You are actually seeing the first quality blanks since Clark shut it's doors," said Hawaii Fiberglass sales Manger Louis Melton.

Clark foam supplied up to 90 percent of the blanks, so it's sudden closure sent waves around the world.

Inside a container at Fiberglass Hawaii are the very first U.S. Blanks off the line in California.

They go on sale Monday, but many are spoken for.

Melton explains, "We have 6-5 which is a very popular board in Hawaii and the 6-5 which is a fish blank very popular board all over the world."

And just what makes these blanks so impressive?

Melton brags, "The formulation is a secret you bet it's one of the best formulations out there and hopefully it will be kept a secret for a long time."

Those with U.S. Blanks say they have taken blanks to a new level.

Now even though these new blanks are lighter than their competitors, you can say these boards are worth their weight in gold.