Malcolm, Duncan, Terry

  • Bonzer (bon-zer), adj. Australian (NZ) slang; extraordinary. unique.
  • Archetype (ar’ki tip), n. The original pattern after which a thing is made; model or first form.

The Bonzer is the archetype of the modern surfboard. It was the first tri-fin surfboard (Dec. 1970). Although unbeknownst to us, others were working on a three fin design of there own. There was a big difference between the two fin setups. They had half moon shaped side fins placed behind the center fin, and our keel shaped side fins were placed forward of the center fin. Almost four decades of success for the Bonzer, and almost three for the Thruster, we have demonstrated the archetypal nature of our original design concept.

There are two main characteristics that establish the Bonzer as an archetype.

  • Our establishment of the triangularĀ arrangement of the three fins, with side fins placed forward of the center fin. The side fins were placed 10 1/2” to 12” from the tail and 1 1/2” to 1 3/8” from the rail. They were also towed in toward the nose at what has become the standard angle
  • Our design and development of the single to double concave (double through the fin area) bottom. This bottom contour was designed to work in conjunction with the fins to organize the water flow through the tail area.

We hope this peek into the Bonzer archive will be of interest and provide an expanded perspective into the evolution of the shortboard.