June 09, 2022
Words by Royce Cansler
Video by Joe McGettigan
It’s hard to say when the last time was that surfboard designer and manufacturer Bing Copeland and Bing Team Rider David Nuuhiwa sat down together to discuss board designs and multiple aspects of wave riding… so, we thought it was about time.
A few weeks ago, at the urging of The Surfer’s Journal staff (based on their recent article on David), and the enthusiasm of the staff at Bing, we made it happen. Bing and David reunited….and it felt so good.
On a Saturday afternoon Bing and David gave a group of friends, surfers, surf historians and surf-stoked groms fascinating insights into what it was like surfing and building surfboards in Hermosa Beach in the 60’s and into the 70’s.
From stories about Bing’s humble beginnings with other South Bay surfboard designers like Dale Velzy, Rick Stoner, Hap Jacobs, Dewey Weber, and Greg Noll to the historic days of the “Men and their Models” in 1967, when many believe classic longboard design and longboard surfing hit the top of its game flowed like fine wine and were appropriately consumed.
David shared how he had been welcomed to the mainland from Hawaii by Donald Takayama (then surfing and shaping for Bing Surfboards) and Bing. Together, they developed the Bing David Nuuhiwa Noserider, one of the top selling if not THE top selling surfboard of the era. Following the Nuuhiwa Noserider, Bing and David introduced the David Nuuhiwa Lightweight, which also shared the spotlight as one of the top models of the period. For Bing and David, these two Bing Surfboard Models required around the clock production to meet the demand.
The Noseriders and Lightweights set the standard for design back then and are still sought out by talented young longboarders today. For collectors around the world these boards still bring in thousands of dollars when you can find one.
David also talked about his transition from longboards to Fishes and the speed he was able to generate from surfing them that set him apart. About that time surprise guest, Mike Hynson, showed up and the two of them discussed Mike’s downrail designs at length, how it changed board design overnight and enabled waves to be ridden at an entirely higher level than before.
We could go on, but you can tell the impact this reunion had on the audience was special and unique. We were treated to a rare exclusive afternoon with three Icons of Surfing.
A big mahalo and aloha to Bing Copeland, David Nuuhiwa and Mike Hynson, for a reunion that won’t be forgotten any time soon… and it felt so good.
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