Over 20 years ago, BIC Sport launched the first ever mass-production board in the history of surfing, at a stroke opening up the sport to tens of thousands of new surfers, offering them a winning combination of quality products at a reasonable price. To guarantee the level of performance required from a good surf board, BIC sport called on the services of some of the top board shapers to develop their new prototypes. One of those shapers, Gerard Dabbadie, quickly understood and believed in the idea of opening the sport upto the biggest possible public, and the use of our industrial processes to produce totally faithfull production copies of his original designs. Nowadays he’s still here, the man behind most of BIC’s surf board designs, of which his legendary 7’9 and 7’3 models have now seen over 100,000 units produced and shipped from the poroduction facility in Vannes, Brittany.
In 2013, Eurosima awarded BIC Sport its «Brand of the year» title. In 2015, the Surf Manufacturers Trade Association recognised BIC Sport’s achievements with its Ecoride Gold award for its environmental commitments in the design, but also in the manufacture of its products.
BIC Sport also invented a totally new concept, organizing national and international «One Design» competitions, such as the Longboard Challenge in the early 2000s, open to any and all professional surfers. Today, 15 years later, the BIC KID One Design, a one design surf competition open to up and coming young French surfers, stays faithful the «one board for all» concept in amateur competitions. This discipline has seen a record increase in numbers in 2015, with more than 100 young surfers turning up et every BIC KID event. And in a similar vein to the BIC KID One Design, the 2015 Monitors Challenge saw the top surf instructors from south-west France battling against each other, all riding the same board design : the highly popular 7’0 EGG DURATEC. And the instructors showed once again just what a quality board the EGG is, the ideal board for surfers to progress their level.
For 2016 the BIC Surf range continues to evolve. Debuting this year is the new PAINT Softboard range, featuring six colorful, fun and comfy shapes, ranging from 4’11’’ to 8’0’’, designed to give anyone the opportunity to have a go at surfing! With soft construction and graphics that POP, these surfboards help you show your true colors at the beach all summer long. DURA-TEC boards receive new graphics to compliment the newly arrived 7’0 Egg and 7’6 Mini-Noserider. The G-BOARD range continues to prove great success for surf schools, with flat decks and wide outlines making surfing for the first time easier than ever. The new 6’0 G-BOARD EVO is the perfect first board for kids, and experienced surfers have been adding it to their quiver as a playful, super soft summertime board! 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.
Constant innovation, a coherent product range with something to offer all levels of surf rider, both of these elements figure in the BIC Surf DNA, making BIC one of the biggest single brand surf manufacturers 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 polyurethane 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 board 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.