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Chris Garrett – Phantom Surfboards

Sep 16, 2016  ·  3 min read

By Kobi Facto

If you don’t move in the “Surfie” circuit then you might not understand the true depth of our surfing culture and history on the glittering GC.

Chris Garrett is a true original. A bloke who grew a business from a simple desire and simple life. A keen surfer who wanted a custom surfboard yet could never quite get what he wanted from local board makers at the time. So, he took matters into his own hands – literally. He hand-shaped his first board in 1979 and acquired the bug from the get-go. The ‘Phantom’ as his friends call him, set up a surf factory/showroom in Burleigh Heads in 1984. Said shop became an iconic surfers landmark for the next 20 years. As well as producing top-notch foam craft, the location also played as a hang out for wayward surfers, artists and alcoholic BBQ mongers on any given Friday.

Chris, who is probably one of the most experienced shapers out there and is known for his open minded approach to shaping boards, then moved his work to his home, a simple farm relatively off the grid. He raised a family, reared a clutch of chickens and grew his own veggies, shaping day to day as he has always done.

“I’ve never really been focused on the pro circuit, as I’m more interested in the normal person who wants to better their surfing”, says Chris.

“That said, I still managed to attracted some top pros over the years and they have had some fantastic results with my boards.

Nick Wallace and Dave ‘Rasta’ Rastovich won junior world titles while riding my boards. Neridah Falconer won the Hawaiian Triple Crown one year. In the past I have worked with the likes of Kieren Perrow, Andrew Murphy, Andy Irons, Dean Morrison, Parko, Jamie Mitchell, Serena Brook, Paige Hareb, Aimee Donahue, Mick Campbell, Raditya Rondi, Lee Wilson, plus a few more that I forget and helped them fine tune their equipment and to better their game.

Currently I’m very excited to be working with a young grom, Josh Grange, his brother Locky and my perpetual team rider and all round waterman, James Billy Watson”.

The approach with Chris’ boards is personal, He works one-on-one with clients to perfect their dream board. Sounds simple right – but a service that is lacking.

“It has allowed my customers to individually fine tune their boards so they can surf with the freedom that they’re looking for and to share in the stoke that has kept me frothing for all these years…. open hearted, open minded and ready for the next challenge…let’s play”!

 


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