OUR STORY - SAFARI SURFBOARD HISTORY
Becoming the dominant surfboard manufacturer in Africa required the efforts of passionate surf professionals over a period of 56 years. Founding the company were South African Surf Legends Max Whetteland and Baron Stander, who together in began shaping Safari Surfboards in a small workshop off Umgeni Rd, Durban, using the best materials available at the time.
Spider shaped his first board in 1965 at the tender age of 16 and founded War Surfboards before joining Graham Hynes at Safari as their main Shaper in 1972, following the departure of Andrew Ogilvie.
He is still in the shaping bay or on the beach everyday and has become one of the world’s most experienced and prolific shapers. Spider's creative approach to surfboard design developed through his relationship with Shaun Tomson. Their partnership broke with conventional design and the results were boards which suited Shaun's style of manoevering far back in the barrel.
Spider in the SAFARI SURF shaping bay 1976.
GUNS BLAZING INTO WORLD CHAMPS -1977
In 1975 Shaun was making headlines in Hawaii on Spider's Pipeline Gun when he took the Pipe Master's Title, following with the World Championship in 1977
These victories brought world wide attention to Spider's shaping skills. Spider's Pipeline Gun features in the Quicksilver Masters Collection of boards that revolutionised surfing over the years. Under Graham's leadership Safari led the surf scene in South Africa and the rest of the world.
World Champ Shaun Tomson. 1976 Pipeline riding the Spider “Pink Banana”. 📷: Jeff Divine
The "Pink Banana"
A young Shaun Tomson with a Spider Murphy twin fin, next to Warren & Richards. 📷: Mark Richards - The Daily Telegraph.
SPIDER - CONSIDERED ONE OF THE WORLD CHAMPIONS OF SHAPING
Having shaped boards for more than 20 World Champion surfers over a 54 year period, Spider has developed a consultative style that has and still does bring out the best from some of the world's most innovative surfers. He is still shaping on average 10 custom boards a day and if you are lucky enough to have a factory tour you will see him in action.
Shaun and Spider in the SAFARI shaping bay.
Spider with his board templates. 2010
THE FUTURE OF SAFARI
The future for Safari is continuing to use the collective experience of our team to ensure your board is personalized for stoke maximization, irrespective of your age or experience.
We welcome walk-ins or emails to firstname.lastname@example.org to help you choose the right board.
Some of our most exciting on-the-go projects are:
An ECO drive where we are creating bricks from waste material, offering ECO poxy, using ECO glues and ECO shipping/packaging material. We are on the lookout for more ways to be eco friendlier.
A shop & factory overhaul. More parking, more Safari and surfing history and a completely unique experience that will be worth the visit for locals and tourists.
Our new online store where you can order your board and surf accessories. Look out for new boards & new exciting surf accessories we will be launching online.
Up & coming Shaper's Sam Christianson & Oliver Packham are set to make their own footprint at SAFARI. They are creating their own world-class boards already in demand by locals and competitive surfers.
The current SAFARI SURF Manager, Admin & Shaping Team. BACK: Jeanine, Charlene, Rosie, Monika. FRONT: Duncan, Tash, Spider, Cara
SPIDER'S MAGIC TOUCH
To keep things fresh Spider regularly meets with our up and coming groms. Training with them daily gives him inspiration for new ideas and encouragement to dig deep into his wealth of experience. Safari’s groms are dedicated and over time have developed unique styles that are the formula for future champions. They grab onto anything new and different and strive for new levels in their surfing every day.
Spider is in the ocean at first light every day, testing new designs and techniques. His rigorous training and healthy lifestyle enables him to surf Safari’s Pro Models at their limit and understand fundamentally what makes them work. This dedication is critical to the feedback loop which goes into the shaping bay, where he is constantly improving and refining his performance shapes as well as innovations in fun board design.
Safari will continue to fulfil our customer’s highest expectations through our combination of surfboard design and hands-on experience in selecting and designing the right board for you. This is our future and yours.
Spider with up & coming groms.