Let’s start with a disclaimer: don’t buy a particular type of surfboard just because some page on the internet told you to do so.
The surfboards you buy and hang on to should match your style and ability of surfing and the types of waves you’re able to surf.
With that out of the way, we can address the question of how to build your perfect quiver.
What’s a Surfboard Quiver?
Quiver is just a quick way to refer to all the surfboards you own without outing yourself as a board hoarder. Just kidding, the more boards the merrier.
An ideal quiver consists of a variety of surfboard lengths, shapes, designs, and setups that will provide you with options for the different types of waves and conditions you surf.
Your quiver will likely change overtime as you progress, outgrow boards, or refine your style and find an interest in different types of surfing. Selling your old boards is a part of the process.
How to Build the Best Quiver
If you’re just starting out as a beginner surfer, forget about building a quiver. Find a single board you like that works well in a variety of conditions. As you progress and are comfortable with the fundamentals, then you’re ready to start exploring.
As you progress in surfing and your experiences in the water and your thinking about waves evolve, you’re probably going to be happier if you have boards and equipment that will allow you to enjoy the ocean no matter the conditions.
Your perfect quiver will be versatile. Think about all the times you were surfing the wrong board and think about all the waves you plan on surfing – this information will be key to unlocking the right mix of boards.
It’s also a wise choice to experiment with used or borrowed boards as you build out your quiver. It’s a lot easier on the wallet to find something second hand to make sure it works for you before shelling out for a brand new surfboard. Craigslist, used board racks, and demo-days can be great places to start.
With your personal preferences in mind, here are some tips on building your ultimate quiver.
A good place to start with your quiver is a surfboard that you like to surf in a variety of conditions.
Depending on your style and skill, a good all-rounder surfboard could be:
These are boards that are going to work for you in small to big waves and crummy to good conditions. Something for everything.
Small Wave & Mushy Wave Boards
When the waves are small or powerless, having the wrong board can be extremely frustrating. But with the right equipment, you’re going to have a blast.
Good small wave and mushy wave boards include:
Boards for Good Surf
When the waves get good, you’re going to want a surfboard that lets you take full advantage of the conditions and your style. This might mean something that can handle steeper drops, faster sections, or more vertical surfing. Or it might be a longboard with speed and maneuverability.
Some good board choices for good conditions may include:
- A performance longboard.
- A shortboard.
- A hybrid.
- A fish.
- A mini-mal.
Boards for Big Surf
If you’re surfing big waves, you’re going to need something that can handle the juice. This is where a step-up surfboard would come in.
If you plan on paddling into really, really big waves – you’ll need a rhino chaser.
Miscellaneous & Experimental Boards
You’re likely going to find certain design elements and setups that you really enjoy, and they’ll probably going to find their way into a bunch of your different surfboards over time.
It can be good for your surfing and curiosity to branch out a little too. If your quiver is starting to look a little bland, might be good to make some room for something totally different – maybe an asymmetrical surfboard or an alaia.
Your quiver can go beyond surfboards too. It’s all about enjoying the ocean and experiencing the waves in different ways. Some other good additions to your surf quiver may include:
- Swim fins.
- Body boards.
- Surf mats.