No it’s not Hawaii. It’s Scotland and the surfer is Frazer Reid, riding the East Swell at St Andrews on a surfboard he made out of wood. Coals and Newcastle come to mind when Frazer explains buyers have travelled from Newquay to Fife to buy the beautiful wooden surfboards which he makes and sells. Although shipping costs proved a bit prohibitive for the enquirers from South Africa and Thailand.
Reid began making his own boards to save money when he started surfing 5 years ago and, as a furniture maker, wood seemed the obvious choice of material. Although heavier than the foam, fibre glass and polyester generally used, wood is considered by some to be more environmentally friendly. Frazer uses lightweight Scottish cedar to make the hollow boards.
Perhaps even more rewarding than buying one of the boards is to let Frazer teach you how to make your own surfboard at one of his workshops. The youngest pupil so far is a 14-year-old boy who is now the proud owner of the board he made at a recent three-day course. The courses cost around £500 – if you are buying a board made by Frazer then a 6ft board would start at around £600. Somewhere inbetween these two options, are the kits he supplies which are proving very popular.
Back on dry land, skateboards were another obvious diversification for Frazer and they start at around £80 each.
Reid’s FAR Cabinetmaker studio is near Crail if you’d like to visit by appointment but he often participates in the East Neuk Open Studios when his workshop is open to the public. ENOS takes place late November and summer each year.