Brandon Blackmon from Florida is surfing and hoarding a little since 1979, but 10 years ago he started collecting more seriously. 53 boards later, he is a notable collector.
Who are you? Where are you living?
Brandon Blackmon. I live in the town of Yulee FL an outlying area of Amelia Island which is just north of Jacksonville FL.
When and how did you start collecting?
I still have my first surfboard from when I was 9, a Newport Paipo Shoe that I found abandoned under the Bogue Inlet pier in Emerald Isle NC in 1979 and I still have surf T-shirts from when I was a teenager so I guess I’ve always had hoarder / collector tendencies. My current serious surfboard obsession started about 10 years ago when I saw a craigslist post for a Rabbit Bartholomew HOTSTUFF. It was in pretty rough shape but just looking at it brought back all the good memories and feelings I had from growing up surfing in the 80’s. I went over to the guy’s house, Rick Algee in Jacksonville, another local collector and bought the board along with a giant 7’10” WAVE TOOLS quad. When I was a kid I remember seeing these new crazy flouro airbrushed boards in the shops so seeing them now gives me a nostalgic feeling from back then.
Which was the first board of your collection?
WAVE TOOLS and HOTSTUFF mentioned in last response.
How many boards do you have?
I honestly didn’t know until last year when I was in Nicaragua on a surf trip with the guys, my wife and son decided to look in all the stash places around the house garage and shed to count boards. The text I got from her read “You have a serious problem! Why do you need 53 surfboards?”
Which is now your most preferred board?
My favorite board is a mint 5’10” TOWN AND COUNTRY with full 80s spray shaped by Greg Griffin. It looks like it’s right off the surf shop rack in 1984.
Are you surfing your vintage boards?
I do surf and enjoy some of them. It’s not a requirement for me like some collectors to ride them all. I go for any board that looks cool and has the 80’s sprays that I like which sometimes means I get boards way too small. I have a FOX that is only 5’1” but fits perfectly in a small wall space that would be wasted otherwise.
Which one do you like to surf most?
Best rider currently is 6′ G&S E Duck shaped twin fin. I’m always changing though. So many of them feel like my favorite new rider after the first time taking them out.
Who is your favorite surfer from the 60’s-90’s and why?
Mark Occhilupo. I think Occy’s comeback is one of the greatest in sports history. To this day by watching his occast and heat commentary, he is still one of the most entertaining guys in the surfing industry in my opinion.
Who is your favorite shaper from the 60’s-90’s and why?
I’m no expert on shapers and have a lot to learn. I usually go for boards just by the way they look. I love sprays and bright 80s colors and lots of lams. For this reason it’s hard to top Peter Schroff. His boards from the 80’s were at the top of the list for me as far as performance and looks. He gets an extra nod for cutting up a popout with a chainsaw is his underwear on an instagram video last year too. Very entertaining!
Where can we see your boards?
I usually post new ones I’ve dug up on instagram and on Vintage Surfboard Collectors Group on facebook.
One of the best things to come from collecting vintage surfboards for me is getting to know other collectors through the various groups on the internet or swaps. Sharing new boards or potential finds with each other is a great way to pass time while waiting out flat spells. I also really love the hunt and competitive aspect of beating out the other guys scouring the internet for that next great garage find.