We’re not alone in our admiration for heralded Northeast Florida surfboard shaper Mike Whisnant’s craftmanship. A shaper with nearly a half-century of board building experience, who has, of late, embraced our latest era of experimentation, Whisnant buttered his bread for decades as one of the Atlantic Coast’s most respected and accomplished builders of the high performance blades de rigueur of the 90s and 2000s. But the Whiz is no one trick pony. Before boards went narrow and paper thin, they’d been long and chunky, short and mono-finned, shorter and dual-finned, etc.
That is to say, Whisnant’s been there, shaped that. Such experience has lent him a bag of tricks to deploy on shapes capable of turning even the most marginal surf conditions into magic. And since teaming up with Derek Jackson, AKA Useless Toys–whose glasswork is turning heads from Smyrna to San Diego–Whisnant’s boards seem to emerge from the bay with even more magic.
So when we heard a rumor that this dynamic duo was being wooed by Santa Barbara mad scientist Ryan Lovelace, we certainly didn’t find it far-fetched. And last week, the coconut telegraph that is Instagram brought us confirmation of the rumor, as Whisnant and Jackson were suddenly all over Lovelace’s feed.
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The one and only Davey Smith reviewing the newest @trimcraft_surfboards lineup addition – we’ve been dangling this carrot in front of your face for a while and fear not, feedback has been goooood as the season has thrown a lot of conditions out way already. There’s a LOT of new Trimcraft news to share, especially this week as @whisnant_surfboards and @useless_toys arrive for a solid visit to plug their minds and hands into our designs and join the team – Mike and Derek will be operating the new wing of the Trimcraft family out in Florida, which I’m REALLY excited to announce! Keep an eye on the @trimcraft_surfboards page all week for updates and a look inside the collaborative effort as it unfolds! 100% hand shaped 100% of the time – there won’t be any file sharing or Dropbox files to send for this shindig 🙅🏼♀️😘 just straight up planers and shadows ⚡️🤙🏼
As a primer, Lovelace’s offbeat, yet highly shreddable designs like the narrow-nosed, super-vee-bottomed mid-length, the v.Bowls have been piquing the interests of inquisitive surf enthusiasts for years. When he opened his retail operation, Trim Shop, a handful of years ago Lovelace expanded his reach beyond his custom order clientele, which, aside from making his unconventional designs accessible to a larger audience, only accelerated the demand for his handshapes. Lovelace’s next expansion was Trimcraft, a curated selection of designs by Lovelace, San Deigo twin-fin connoisseur Rich Pavel and “Mr. Pipeline,” himself, Gerry Lopez, all made by the Trimcraft handshape team of John Oppito, Joseph Yee, Michael Arnold, and Alex Lopez (Gerry’s son).
Now Whisnant and Jackson have joined the squad. Jackson will head up Trimcraft’s Florida HQ and glass, while Whisnat will mow the foam. Keep your eyes peeled, as you’re bound to see more Trimcraft sticks ’round the beaches of Northeast Florida in coming months. For now, you can read more about the Trimcraft operation, here.
Congrats Mike and Derek. You’re making us proud!