Study Hull is a new photo-journal blog series on Korduroy with Maker Kahana Kalama as he test pilots a variety of surf crafts and shares his insights into the mechanics of each board and how they perform. For more of Kahana’s daily surf expeditions and more, follow him in Instagram/Twitter – @kahanak
Photos by Garrett Highhouse
On this particular sunny southern Californian Saturday, we turned up at the carpark to discover that the swell had yet again been overhyped. Instead of overhead perfection we found soft, chest-high peelers and a perfect opportunity to test out the 5’6″ Kookbox Kimura, shaped by Jeff Mccallum.
The first surfboard I ever owned was a 7’2″ single fin my dad bought from the local Pennysaver in Hawaii. He intended for my older brother and I to “take turns” on it, which in actuality resulted in me sulking on the sand while my brother taunted me from the lineup of our local break in Kailua. In any case, whenever I think of a single fin, I have a hard time flashing back to some of my earliest rides on that board. It was heavy, slow, non-responsive and virtually impossible to maneuver.
One of the first things I realized when I picked up the Kimura was how light it was. Despite excessive volume and the beautiful glasswork, it still felt about as light as any other standard short board in my quiver. What I discovered after catching my first wave on the Kimura was that it actually rode a lot like a short board. It had a surprising amount of drive off the bottom, and it linked turns seamlessly. As long as the wave had enough beef, you could even put it on a rail and get it into the air.
The biggest difference between this and a standard thruster was that the rail threshold was just a little more limiting. On a couple of the bigger sets of the day, I got a little cocky and attempted to side-slip into the critical spot on the wave. This, more often than not, concluded with a humble body surf to the beach to retrieve my board.
In any case, stoke levels were high and I was pleasantly surprised by this board’s amphibious nature and ability to offer new experiences on our ocean canvas. If you have any interest in this board, hit up the fine gentleman at Kookbox Surfboards at http://www.kookboxx.com.
The opinions and views expressed in this column should not be taken too seriously. Kahana is in no way a certified surf coach or an expert on surf by any means. He does not live at the beach and he falls on more waves than he makes. We highly encourage you to demo a board for yourself and form your own opinion.