Twenty years ago BIC Sport launched the first ever sustainably produced production surfboard, opening the sport and market to tens of thousands of would-be surfers by offering them high-quality, highly durable boards at very reasonable prices. BIC Surfboards are designed by some of the world’s best shapers to guarantee high performance and ease of use. Gerard Dabbadie, a French surf legend, has been instrumental in this philosophy. He immediately understood the unique opportunity to bring his shaping expertise to the widest possible audience with BIC Sport’s unique sustainable manufacturing technologies. These exclusive processes allow for unrivaled consistency, meaning every board precisely matches the designers original shape, every time. Dabbadie is responsible for the majority of boards in the BIC Surf range, including the celebrated 7’3 and 7’9. Recently, the 100,000th 7’3 Mini-Malibu rolled off the production line at the factory in Vannes, France. This highly symbolic event was recognized by the European Surf Industry Association (EuroSIMA), which awarded BIC Sport “Brand of the Year” in 2013. This honor applauds not only this unique milestone, but also BIC Sports unique sustainable manufacturing process and the role BIC Surf products have played in helping make surfing accessible and affordable for more people.
BIC Sport also introduced the “one-design” concept to the surfing world with the BIC Longboard Challenge, a professional-level competition launched in 2001. Today the BIC KID One Design contest circuit for French junior surfers is growing this same concept in amateur surfing and is exploding in popularity.
For 2015 the BIC Surf range continues the evolution of the DURA-TEC boards by introducing the new 7’6 DURA-TEC Mini Nose Rider. This larger sibling of the 7’0 EGG - which was a great success in its first year, is perfect for enjoying the fun nose-riding capability of a longboard, while still being as maneuverable as an EGG board for handling the radical turns and tight carves. All DURA-TEC boards continue to be supplied with traction tail pads to maximize performance and comfort for the rider and adding value to the board. The new G-BOARD 7’0 & 8’0 shapes have also proven a great success for surf schools, with the flatter decks and wider outlines making surfing for the first time easier than ever. As a result we have now applied this new shape to a kids board, the new 6’0 G-BOARD EVO, meaning that kids can progress just as quickly as their parents!
Ongoing innovation, while maintaining a consistent product offering that works for all riders, is what continues to make BIC Surf one of the largest single-brand surfboard companies in the world.
Gérard Dabbadie shaped his first board in 1972. A surf fanatic, he worked first on his own riding style and technique, then used the experience and his contact with the top surfers of the day to start creating his own highly personalized shapes that quickly found favor with many top European riders. In 1975 while based in Hossegor, France (Surf Capital of Europe) he created his signature board brand “Superfrog”, and went on to become a full-time professional shaper. With his philosophy of “shaping easy, fun-to-ride boards, for all kinds of conditions, with no compromise on strength and performance”, Gerard wasn’t content to follow trends of the day. He was among the first to build boards using epoxy resin and EPS foam, at the time a radical departure from the traditional mix of polystyrene foam and polyester resin that was much heavier and less durable. A small detail perhaps, but one that really made his name among the pro surfers of the period. 40 (!) years on, and Gerard is as attentive as ever to the detail of how his boards are made.
In addition to nuanced details of board shape and design, which he clearly knows inside-out, what’s behind all the wave-riding fun is an understanding of modern, reliable, 100% faithful manufacturing techniques, so he’s fully confident in the quality and performance of every production boards he designs. Superfrog boards are first pre-shaped using the AKU shaping tool, then hand-finished before being coated with fiberglass and epoxy resin. Two 6 ounce layers of fiberglass on the bottom and two 6 plus one 4 ounce layer on the deck for shortboards, three 6 ounce layers on the longboards.
There is no other board on the market that has so many fiberglass layers, and therefore such strength. Even so, Superfrog boards are amazingly light, the result of 30 years of experience using this construction technology and best quality raw materials on the market, plus the passion to make it happen. But for Gerard, it’s all about shaping and surfing, rather than dreaming up marketing spiel : NO BLAH BLAH BLAH, as the man himself would and does say.