Shaper’s All-Natural Boards Bring Sustainability Back to Surfing
Surfers are some of the most ardent environmentalists, yet their sport is awash in petrochemicals and carcinogens, from neoprene wetsuits and urethane leashes to polyurethane boards and epoxy. Danny Hess thinks there’s a better way, and he’s made bringing sustainability to surfing his life’s work.
The 37-year-old surfboard shaper is making waves in the $7 billion surfing industry with his adoption of salvaged wood, natural finishes and organic resins. Hess wants to transform how surfboards are made — and how they’re used. His boards are built to last, an anomaly in a sport where surfers might trash a board or two every season.
“What I’m trying to do is build heirloom surfboards that are passed on from father to son over many generations, rather than these disposable things that we’re just consuming,” Hess says. “The idea is that you just buy one and take care of it and hopefully you don’t have to come back and buy another surfboard.”
Danny is a super nice guy and a very talented craftsman. His surfboards are works of art, meant to last and to look beautiful in the water. They also happen to work very well.