The Scoop on Wetsuit Gloves

Posted in Jack's Surfboards on January 31st, 2013

Even if you surf in Southern California, there’s a good chance that your hands get cold at the end of long sessions. It’s normal—your extremities lose heat fast, and even if the water’s in the high 60s it can still take a toll on your fingers after a while.  That’s where wetsuit gloves come in. You don’t have to surf in Alaska or Patagonia to appreciate keeping your hands warm, and gloves also give your hands a bit of protection from sharp fins and reefs.

quiksilver-glovesOne of the biggest decisions in picking gloves is how many finger slots you want—that is, whether you want mitten-style gloves, gloves where all your fingers are separate, or something in between. If you’re surfing somewhere moderately warm—somewhere you typically wear a 3/2 wetsuit—then a standard five-fingered glove like the Quicksilver Ignite will do the trick. If you typically wear a thicker wetsuit, lobster-style gloves, like the West 2 Finger Mitten, provide a nice compromise between warmth and flexibility. And for those of you dodging ice in the lineup, we carry full mittens like the Rip Curl Flash Bomb 7/5.

Thickness isn’t quite as important with gloves as it is with wetsuits, but it’s still important to consider.   In general, it’s better to err on the side of getting a thicker glove. Having that extra neoprene won’t really affect your performance when you’re paddling or standing up or grabbing rail in the barrel, and it’ll keep your hands warmer so you can keep surfing longer.

Picking the Right Wetsuit for Kids

Posted in Jack's Surfboards on January 25th, 2013

body glove kids wetsuit

Kids Body Glove Pr1me 3/2 CZ Fullsuit

It’s the heart of winter right now, and if you’re a parent you’ll know that it’s one of the toughest times of year to keep kids active and entertained. Even if you live here in Southern California, it can still be rainy or cold for days at a time. It probably won’t surprise you that we think surfing is one of the best ways to get outside with your kids in the winter. Even when the sky’s a bit grey and drizzly and there’s a bit of wind, it’s likely that you can find some kid-friendly waves close to home.

With a good wetsuit, kids can stay in the water just as long in the winter as in the summer. 
Kids are particularly prone to colder water temperatures, so when the water temps drop or the wind starts blowing, it’s crucial that they have a quality wetsuit that fits them well.

We often recommend the Kids Body Glove Pr1me 4/3 CZ Fullsuit. This also comes in a 3/2, but the extra neoprene in the 4/3 keeps kids warm even during the heart of winter. And since most kids have flexibility and energy to spare, the added thickness won’t hinder their paddling or surfing.

We also carry XCel’s extensive line of kids’ wetsuits. If you’re looking for a budget option, the XCel SLX Offset

Kids’ Xcel Infiniti X-Zip2 5/4 Hooded Fullsuit

Kids’ Xcel Infiniti X-Zip2 5/4 Hooded Fullsuit

3/2 Fullsuit is a great value. Or if your kid is surfing some northern beach—or is just extra-sensitive to the cold—the Kids’ Xcel Infiniti X-Zip2 5/4 Hooded Fullsuit is one of the best kids hooded coldwater wetsuits you can get.

When you’re picking out a wetsuit for a child, it’s important to get a good fit. We have an extensive sizing charton our wetsuit, so if you measure your child beforehand you can make sure that the wetsuit will be a perfect fit.

Looking Forward to the 2013 ASP World Tour

Posted in Jack's Surfboards on January 19th, 2013

association-surfing-professionals-logo1One of the great things about being a fan of competitive surfing is the short offseason. It seems like the Pipe Masters competition—and one of the best world-title races in years—just finished up, and we’re already less than two months from the 2013 World Tour kicking off at Snapper Rocks on March 2. Here are a few of the things we’re looking forward to on the 2013 World Tour.

New Cast of Characters
There are a few new rookies on tour for 2013. Sebastien Zietz is in after tearing through the Vans Triple Crown on his home court. Nat Young’s in via solid performances at Prime and Six Star events. Taylor Knox retired with style. Patrick Gudauskas, Yadin Nicol, and Heitor Alves are all relegated to alternate positions for the year (which means they stand a good chance of getting into a few events). We’ll miss seeing some of these guys at every event, but we’re excited to see how guys like Sebastian and Nat fare against the current top pros.

Sophomore Season for Last Year’s Rookie Class
Along with that, 2013 should see last year’s rookies—John John, Gabriel Medina, Kolohe Andino—hitting their stride on tour. For Kolohe, that might mean making the final series of a few events. For John John and Gabriel—well, no one would be that shocked if either of those guys won the world title next year.

Parko, Kelly, and Mick
For a few years there it seemed like Parko might go down as one of the best competitive surfers to never win a world title. But in 2012 he put together one of the most consistent seasons in recent memory, capped with that victory at surfing’s center court, Pipeline. And Kelly and Mick gave Parko a good challenge throughout. With all three of these guys still somehow at the peak of their powers, and with one of the best crops of young tour surfers we’ve ever seen, the 2013 World Tour might be even better than last year’s—and we don’t have to wait long to see it.

You Should Be “In a Relationship” With Your Shaper

Posted in Jack's Surfboards on January 7th, 2013

shaper1 Would you ask a professional golfer to help you learn to swim? Or a professional chef to build your house…of course not. You would ask someone who is experienced and skilled in that field to perform the task at hand. This idea should be carried over to who is shaping your boards. You shouldn’t have a shaper who solely longboards shape you a thruster for your trip to Indo; just like you shouldn’t have a shaper who has never cross-stepped on a single fin shape you a board for your trip to Scorpion Bay.

Don’t get me wrong, I am a huge proponent of shaper loyalty and my shaper, Jeremy Covington (Surfboards by Jeremy), surfs like I do and because of that he has shaped my last five or six boards. But if I ever get the inclination to charge big waves I will turn to a shaper who has experience shaping big wave guns. Try to do more than just know your shaper, but surf with your shaper. Not only will you be stoked and be able to give immediate feedback as to what works and doesn’t work, but he will be stoked to see the rails, the tail, the rocker, the nose and, most importantly, your surfing in action.

If you don’t have a relationship with your shaper at least know how they surf. I don’t know Matt Biolas from …Lost surfboards but I see him at Lowers enough to know how he surfs. If you don’t live near your shaper at least know where your shaper is from. Shapers shape what they know, some know point breaks so their boards are better suited for that type of wave, some shapers surf heavy barrels and their boards will typically be better suited for fat barrels…of course they will be able to shape a board for other conditions but it won’t be familiar or comfortable.

The guys on tour practice this very idea. A lot of the guys switch shapers as the tour travels around the globe because they know that the best boards are going to come from the guys who know the wave best. So next time you head into Jack’s surf shop or order your next board from your trusty shaper, make sure to do your research because you’ll have more peace of mind when the times come to put the money down.