Surf City, Sydney

an Historic Houses Trust blog

Bob Burnside Malibu

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Here’s the board that kick-started modern surf culture in Australia back in 1956, when Bondi boardmaker Gordon Woods managed to convince the visiting American surfer Bob Burnside to part with his Joe Quigg balsa ‘malibu’ and then use it to churn out a handful of plywood knock-offs, called hollow mals, following the same rail, rocker, tail and fin specs. Australians to this day still use the word ‘mal’ to describe a longboard.

MANLY 1956 :: Bob Burnside carrying his balsa ‘malibu’ built by Joe Quigg, in Manly around September 1956, movie still from Greg Noll’s Search For Surf 1958.

BONDI 1957 :: Bondi lifesaver and surf rat Scott Dillon in 1957 with the Burnside balsa ‘malibu’ (circled) and Gordon Woods on the left with one his plywood ‘hollow mals’, built to match. Photo courtesy Gordon Woods.


DEE WHY 1958 :: Gordon Woods with his Quigg ‘malibu’ at Dee Why, Sydney, around 1958. That’s future ad-man Ross Renwick on his right with a Gordon Woods balsa ‘teardrop’, featuring the next generation of pintailed, wide bottomed hot-dogger plan shape. Photo courtesy Gordon Woods.




Written by garycrockett

March 20th, 2012 at 10:06 am

Posted in 1950s

One Response to 'Bob Burnside Malibu'

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  1. Gary,

    Tim Guard was a junior member of the Hawaiian team and left a Quigg bellyboard at Freshwater – love to know if anyone knows what happened to this board or could recall who Tim stayed with when in Sydney.



    Bob Green

    20 Mar 12 at 10:47 am

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