Ang Slabbert got some cool pics from the skate park launch on Heritage Day. Such a cool event. Shot to the Madiba Bay Development Agency for building the park - it's such a bonus for our beachfront.
Launch day saw plenty of demo's by the free-runners, trickesters, skaters and BMX'rs, legend Miki San on the mike and spinning the decks, and VonZipper & Element giving away loads of amazing free goodies which had the kids on full stoke-alert.
Pretty damn fun day all in all.
All images Angela Slabbert
Check out more shots from the launch day <here>
The skate park at Kings Beach finally got to have it's official launch on Heritage Day. Mandela Bay Development Agency (MBDA) were the peeps who put together the whole skate park development - and must say that the whole surf & skate community is mighty stoked that we now have such a cool park. Makes flat and onshore days just a bit more bearable!
Props to VonZipper and Element for putting up kiff prizes and to Red Bull, Miki San & Guns n Lazers for MC'ing and making it a jol. There were great performances by Execution Style (Bboys), Sabotage Elite (free runners), BMX's and skateboarders, and loads of lighties having an absolute blast.
The event also marked the launch of the newly formed Madiba Young Bloodz Skate Academy. MYBSA is a social development program aimed at getting previously disadvantaged kids off the street and involved in skateboarding. If you're able to donate any old decks or skate parts, or would like to purchase boards at reduced prices to donate to the program, give em a holler here.
Check out some more skate park launch pics <here>
Thursday was a pretty good way to cap off a really fun week of waves. Some 16 sec period swell made it round the corner at Cape Recife and lit up the reefs.
As usual, whenever there's good surf, there're also some funny sideshows that go with it, so here goes....
Local shaper guru Dennis Ellis drops us a lil article on fins and fin systems. From 1 through to 5, and FCS to Futures...gotcha all covered.
By Dennis Ellis
Fins are important little bits of your surfboard. If you’ve ever knocked one out while surfing, you’ll know just how important. Think of them as the tyres of a car. They give traction, control your speed and help you through direction changes.
If you’re driving a Ferrari, there’s no point in putting on cheap retreads, and if you drive a rusted old Isuzu bakkie, it’s silly to put Pirelli’s on all four wheels at 2 grand a pop. What I’m saying is, choose the fin and fin system that best suits your surfboard, your abilities and the type of surf you ride.
If you’re a beginner, you’re going to be whacking them out, get cheapies. Cheap and nasty. Don’t worry too much about the type of system, you’ll break them all.
And here’s a fact about fins, if you crack them really hard on something, reef, sand or your mates head, they’re going to come out. Even if they’re glassed on.
The original fin systems were designed for the fin to snap off without damaging plugs or board, but this seldom happens, the forces and variety of angles are just too great. The real advantages of the systems though, are traveling and changing a board’s performance with different size and shape fins.
It really does make a difference and this is the beauty of fin systems. With 3 different types of fins, you can essentially have 3 boards in one.
Like anything, the way you look after your direction finding friends will dictate their lifespan. Check that they’re still tight from time to time. If you come to a grinding halt on a wave by riding into something, at least give them a wiggle afterwards to see that they’re not going anywhere.
Taking your fins out after every surf isn’t a good idea. It’s fun, but adds to the wear and tear on moving parts. Everything has a lifespan, make those little grubscrews last as long as possible.
Cos they sure can be a mission when they strip. Most stripped grub screw problems are normally because of a bad or overused fin key. So before trying any other option try and get hold of a brand new fin key, it maximizes the chances of grabbing hold. If that doesn't work get an Allen key of slightly larger size than your regular fin key. If still no luck and no fin is in the plug, try using a small drill bit, following the same direction as the screw being careful not to damage the thread of the plug. Hopefully the grub screw may exit the plug. Nothing worked? Bring it to us...we'll fix it!
When a fin bends, some of the drive you are trying to translate from your feet to your board is lost, and you’ll have a slight wafting feeling, especially off the bottom on a fair sized wave.
In small surf this can be fun, tailsliding and all. But if the surf is serious you need a fin with serious stiffness/and or a bit more area.
There are so many different fin shapes out there, its mind numbing. Don’t bother too much with the rake, tip etc. The main aspect is the surface area of the fin.
Big for big people or waves, small for tiny people and tiny waves. Big fins will give you drive and tighten your board, small fins will make it loose and decrease drive.
Fin Number: 1,2,3 or 4. Or 5
These characteristics are general, they can vary hugely by fin positions and sizes. You have plastic injection molded fins (the bottom of the range FCS, Futures & Gas fins etc), which are flexible and cheap. Then you have fibreglass molded fins such as Gas & Scarfini. They're much stiffer fins at a good price. Lastly, you get the fibreglass CNC fins like the Kinetic Racing, certain FCS & Future models, and Maisch. These are all super stiff, but have a higher price tag.
So many out there, ironically the most popular (F.C.S twin tab),are not always the strongest or best. That title probably goes, or went to O’Fish’l, a brilliant single box under glass system which didn’t have grub screws. They are no longer around but have morphed into Futures, with a single grub screw. Simple, strong and light. But a nightmare to get (cheap) replacement fins and the fins are pretty pricey.
The new FCS II, which doesn't require a grub screw looks really interesting too. Just click it in and you're good to go. No doubt with a hefty price tag though.
Every board has an ideal fin, and they can vary from board to board. Play around a bit. Start with a big fin and get smaller until it clicks. Change them in different conditions to get the most out of your board.
Keep the system the same in all your boards, and most important, don’t ride into stuff (especially people).
PS - ever wondered why sometimes your fins hum? Simply put, pressure differences result in turbulence, which results in vibration, which gives you the hum.
Here's a great explanations from Swaylock's Forum, by a reader called Kirk:
"As water flows around a fin there are different pressures on each side of the fin. Water flows meet up at the trailing edge of the fin, and in cases with very different pressures, vortices or turbulence can be generated. These vortices push and pull on the trailing edge of the fin, causing it to vibrate. This vibration creates pressure waves or sound. Think of it as your voice when you blow air across your vocal cords. Have you noticed that your fins hum at certain points while you are surfing, for example during a bottom turn on a fast wave? The vibration hum can be amplified or louder in cases of resonance. In fin terms resonance happens when the pushing and pulling from the vortices causes the fins trailing edge to move back and forth how it wants to move naturally. Or more technically, resonance can be defined as the circumstance when the force applied to the system is equal to the damping or resistance of the system at the systems natural frequency.
How do you fix it? Sand the sides of the trailing edge with a 100-150 grit sand paper (give it a few passes) and then surf it, if it still hums then give it a few more passes with the sand paper. The idea is to minimize the pressure difference at the trailing edge by sanding off any imperfections that may have been left from the production process. Make sure you don't sand too much, the more you sand, the sharper and more dangerous the trailing edge gets."
Pretty sure most of you will have seen the cool street art that has just gone up on the wall at the Something Good car park - the one immortalized by the infamous "Don't live here, don't surf here" graffiti a while ago. I caught up with Joff, one of the artists behind the spray can, to find out a bit more about the project, and street art in PE.
The wall you guys have just done at Something Good looks amazing, how did that come about?
A few of us have been talking for a while about pushing street art in PE , and have been doing more & more live art shows around the city. So we teamed up with some of our favourite artists. One of the artists, Nathan Sanan, spotted the wall made contact with the right people and we began to paint! Myself, Quintin Weyer, Nathan Sanan & Pola Maneli did the wall together.
Must have been a pretty cool experience doing live art – get you get any interesting interaction with the public?
I have been doing quite a lot of live art recently and you always get you fair share of entertainment, from chasing people who have stolen your cans, to drunk folk trying to “help” you on your wall but in general people are just amazed at the process and you find people sitting and watching you for hours.
You’ve done a coupla other live installations – tell us about those.
It started when Nathan contacted me about doing a live art show for the Feiyue shoe range event , it was really cool and interesting to paint during a party as you get to meet such a lot of people as it seems to break a social boundary and acts as a good ice breaker for people to come up and ask you questions. So there was a really good response to that which lead us to do a live art show at the architecture department at the university recently and then the Something Good Wall!
So who is Joff?
I am Joff
Is street art your main focus? Or do you paint in the traditional sense of the word as well….as in with paints and brushed on canvas?
Street art is fairly new to me, I have been illustrating and painting for a long time now but always had an attraction to get involved in the street scene as I grew up in the skating / surfing /music scene. The last few weeks the street art scene as really burst open for me and am booked up for quite awhile now so it seems to be my main focus for the next bit of my life.
What are your favourite places to paint? Anywhere in PE that your spray can is just itching for?
Hmmm , this could get me into trouble, haha. No. normally when I paint traditional painting style I have a little room at an abandoned house where it’s quiet and I can just do my thing. For the street art I'm currently in talks with a couple of projects that will be popping up around the city soon!
Do you come from a trained art background, as in graphic design or something like that?
No, I'm self-taught . I studied animation and visual effects but that was more focused on the technical side of things and not too much on the creative process. I am still learning everyday and not owning a tv in my house helps me to keep busy with my art.
Your style is really unique. Is it something that’s taken a while to develop – and where have you drawn your influences from?
My style developed when I started drawing with the old traditional bottle of ink and a nib on the end of a piece of wood. The images would come out slightly messy and raw which I loved. It also taught me a style where you have to be confident in you drawing and strokes as I work directly in ink and any mistakes can be very tricky to fix.
I guess that aspect has helped me a lot when it comes to confident lines when spray painting. My influences or inspiration comes largely from music, my painting can be very emotionally driven and music is such a powerful tool when it comes to expressing that that I find it inspires me and when listening to music and it puts images in my head for ideas to paint.
Do you paint solo mostly, or with a crew?
I do paint solo mostly but recently I have been collaborating with some great artists and can see myself working with them a lot in the future.
Artists tend to be multi-faceted – do you also dabble in music a bit?
Yes, I feel extremely lucky to be able to play with the amazing mind and rapper Jean Du Toit and Megan Du Toit who hands down has the best voice to come out of a face! We play in a band called The Cottonfields, and play foot stomping Bluegrass Rap n roll.
Any other cool pieces you have planned for the near future?
I can't go into too much detail at the moment but there is a good few pieces coming PE’s way soon!
Where can guys see more of your work or contact you?
Die Burger ran a front page story on Saturday on the results of an aerial survey of Great Whites in Algoa Bay. So, do we need to keep our toes on the nose instead of dangling over the sides of our boards? Not really it seems. Thankfully!
Dr Matt Dicken, though funding via the beach office & municipality, has been keeping an eye on our toothy friends to see what the get up to in our bay.
Lucky, the aerial surveys via chopper never spotted a white off our surfing beaches - the closest one spotted during the 43 flights the ou's did over a 2 year period was about 4k's north of PE Harbour. Most (80%) of the sharks spotted from the air were in an area 6k's north and south of the port at Coega.
Interestingly, the chopper surveys seemed to show a correlation between low water temps (15-17C) and high barometric pressure as being the conditions that most of the sightings were made. Whether the link between high pressure was just due to the fact that chopper flights were mostly conducted in favourable weather conditions, versus there actually being more sharks when the pressure is high, is hard to tell.
In conjunction with the aerial surveys, a total of 59 white sharks were fitted with acoustic tags between March and November 2012. The sharks were tagged at various sites between False Bay and Algoa Bay. An array of “listening stations” were then been deployed throughout Algoa Bay, which are able to detect the presence of any tagged sharks within a radius of approximately 500 m.
Three of the stations that are of interest to us as surfers are located 500 m offshore from Kings Beach, Slipway and Something Good
Information downloaded from these 3 stations shows 9 great whites were detected in the 9 months between May 2012 and January 2013. Five of them were local boytjies who'd been tagged in our bay, and 4 were ou's that had been tagged in Cape Town or Mossel Bay. Most of the sharks were detected in September (6 of the 9).
So, what does this mean for us?
Well, White sharks are present (although very few) throughout the year close inshore at Kings Beach, Slipway and Something Good....but they aren't resident at these sites and appear to be just passing through. Probably en route to/from Bird Island.
Seasonally, more white sharks were recorded inshore during September than any other month. Helicopter and shore angling surveys of the beaches also seem to support the observation that they're more common close inshore during spring and summer.
These results obviously only covers the tagged sharks. It is of course very probable that non-tagged sharks are also present. So as a result, the number of sharks detected by the study may be a very conservative estimate of the total number of sharks about.
The findings are also only for only 9 months. With continued monitoring and with more tagged sharks in the water it is inevitable that more tagged sharks will be detected at these sites. The guys have already tagged 12 more sharks in May and June 2013 and plan to tag another 8 before the end of the year.
Just cos the sharks cruise past fairly close to shore doesn't mean you're gonna lose your toes....cos at this stage their main behaviour seems to be just cruising. However, it is possible that the proposed fish farm just offshore Pipe could attract more sharks and cause them to spend more time in the area....cos there'd now be a reason for em to hang about. Suddenly a whole concentration of potential food, and lotsa activity in the water. Sharks are quizzy creatures, so a moerse bunch of fish in a cage sure will spark their interest.
What's this mean for us? We don't know yet. But it could well increase the probability of a water user encountering a white shark. Not good. One of the many reasons why I think the fish farm idea sucks.
Thanks to Dr Matt Dicken for the info and images.
Pretty good run of swell towards the end of last week. Friday was the pick of the bunch with both Millers and Rincon firing. Pick of the bunch was the 1.30-2.30pm slot, and after that things dropped off a bit and slowed down thanks to the big spring high.
Nothing like a new board to get you amped. Werner was so stoked with his new fire-engine red Dennis Ellis Boardroom Vetkoek that he paddled it out in 60km/h winds last week in the hope of getting a wave. Luckily the next day the wind dropped off and the swell picked up so he could give it a proper test drive. He's ripping on it. Lots to be said for swapping your traditionally shaped stick for something with a bit more width and volume....specially for PE surf.
The ballies went to Mossels for the SA Masters this past week. Ended up with a 5th, which is good going. Some solid surf meant some solid beatings in amongst the cooking waves. Mush reckons in his one heat he had to duckdive at least 20 times. Dave decided that he didn't want his new 8ft'r turned into two 4ftr's so opted to surf his heat at Inners instead of Outers. Good plan that.
Ou's are starting to get amped for the upcoming Cobbles Classic this weekend. Craig Cuff been spotted shining up his single fin. It's gonna be an awesome event, so make sure you pull in, even if it's just to soak up the vibe. Expects toes on the nose, dead cockroaches, cross steps and hang heels. Logger heaven.
Some kiff new street art has livened up the car park at Something Good, with local artists Steven Carter and Joff doing some amazing work on Saturday arvo. PE's full of super talented peeps.
The weekend heralded the end of Winter and the start of Spring. Pity someone forgot to tell the weather to play ball. PE got smashed by some hectic winds, peaking at 87km/h. Obviously not much in the way of surf in the bay, but if you ventured west you coulda had some fun.
The CYOH crew held the CYOH Surf Off #3 on Sunday in some pretty wild conditions. Rumour had it they had to half bury the groms in the sand so the lighties didn't get blown away. Some amazing prizes won by the guys n gals who braved the gale force winds.
Some equally crazy peeps took part in the first Colour Run in PE, held at the NMMU campus. Entailed a 5k run whilst other peeps sprayed paint on you. Gotto beat a normal boring 5k run any day. Plenty ou's ended up with purple teeth, pink hair and green faces. Kiff. And if you missed the Colour Run, there's a Glow Run coming up on 16 Nov. More <here>
Spring Day back in 1968 saw massive floods in PE. Still today known as THE flood. Water a metre deep in Cape Rd, and turned the Baakens into a raging torrent. It also turned the Sark River (at Humewood) into a mini-Niagara Falls, with water pouring straight over the bridge. Musta made some interesting sandbanks at Humewood for a while....that's if you could brave the sketchy water.
And in other news......Liverpool kicked Man U's butt. Yes please!! Anyone missing Fergie yet??