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The Surfers

Textbook by

Howard Jennar

The Surfers Textbook

The Surfing Industry Surfboard Development

The primary aim of The Surfers Text Book is to present a very difficult craft in simplified terms so that an individual of little experience and knowledge can produce a surfcraft with a high standard of quality. Many alternatives are included to cater for a range of abilities and equipment availability. The principles of surfboard construction involve foam centre glass fibre skin lamination and the procedure can be used with little deviation to make a longboard, surf ski, sailboard, rescue, paddle or nipper boards.

Several topics associated with the use of fibre reinforced plastics (F.R.P.) have been included in this revised edition in order to give the reader a greater understanding of the safe and appropriate use of materials and equipment and an appreciation for the history and development of the sport which has spawned a rapidly growing industry.

The opportunity to include a chapter on Joe Larkin making hollow plywood longboards (which he made back in 1958 prior to the introduction of polyurethane foam) could not be missed. This combined with his wealth of knowledge on our surfing past had to be documented for the sake of our own historical records.

If you are a keen surfer or a person simply interested in the surfing culture, you will find this a unique ‘coffee table’  display book.

The book is ideally suited to students and teachers in universities, TAFE colleges, schools, employment training centres and other learning/teaching environments as a reference text or simply for individuals who wish to 'have a go' at making his or her surfcraft.



Surfing became part of my life at eleven with my first board that Dad bought from a second hand furniture shop for $15.

Surfing the Tweed Coast and competing in club and school events pushed me to improve myself. Mixing school and surfing was not always easy.

In my HSC I had to take assignments away with me to ensure I achieved my priority of finishing school. In California for the World Junior Titles I won the Under 18’s and the next day had to go to the Australian Consulate in LA to sit my first HSC English exam.

Thanks to teachers like HJ, and books like his, surfing is getting more of a go in schools. Kids can make boards as their major works in Design and surfing’s profile in school sport is improving steadily.

At school at Kingscliff High I made a guitar in Design and Technology. Maybe if I get some free time I can use this book to help me make a board myself. I found the information
on the evolution of the surfboard fascinating!

Steph Gilmore

Photo of Steph ©

What People Are Saying About Howard And The "Surfers Textbook"

“Howard Jennar has been a leading educator in the field of surfboard construction for over a decade. He established the Surfing Technology unit as part of Southern Cross University’s Diploma of Sport Management (Surfing Studies) and has been a lecturer at the University since 2004.


The surfboard is integral to the surfing experience and Howard’s latest book ensures that both the science and the art of surfboard construction is well documented.”

Jak Carroll

Course Coordinator, Sport Management (Surfing Studies)
Southern Cross University, Tweed Heads.

Winner of Pioneer Award at the 2005 Australian Surfing Hall of Fame awards.