Airs On Trees: Bosiny Cracked The High-Performance Wood Surfboard Code  - Stab Mag

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No foam necessary. Photo: Philip Baske

Airs On Trees: Bosiny Cracked The High-Performance Wood Surfboard Code 

Feat. Paulownia wood reinforced with Kevlar, these boards are as light as PU and loaded with spring. 

Words by Brendan Buckley
Reading Time: 4 minutes

In partnership with Bosiny

The first wave I caught on a Bosiny surfboard resulted in my body flopping to from the lip to the flats while the board shot like a missile toward the sky. 

Perhaps this is not how you’d expect a surfboard review to commence. To be fair, it was also not how I expected the board to behave. 

Even though I’d thoroughly investigated it before paddling out, I couldn’t shake the idea that a wooden surfboard would come with that complementary dragging-an-anchor sensation. As a result, it seems I leaned a bit too aggressively into my turn, inviting the outcome described above. 

Turns out, this board isn’t just maneuverable — it’s proper springy. The same thing happened to me on my first wave riding an EPS/epoxy/carbon fiber meal-deals seen all over the market today. 

“We wanted to create a wooden surfboard that can perform as well as anything else,” says John Railton, who co-founded Bosiny with Alex King. Both are surfers from the UK. John’s background is in music and management, while Alex has been making fine furniture for decades.

“We’ve been wanting to do this for about 15 years,” Alex told me. “We had an experience in which we both snapped fairly new boards in the same session, which sparked this idea. We had some theories about how to make boards more durable while still performing, but we didn’t really have time to try to bring them to life. Then COVID came, and work slowed down for both of us, so we finally got our shot.” 

Lovely piece, but we’re happy Alex shifted his focus to boards. Photo: Mark Brown

“We started by researching things more seriously and found a connection between literage and weight — basically, there’s around .1 kilogram of weight for every liter you see in a finished PU board. For example: A 30-liter board will weigh right about 3 kilograms (6.6 lbs). Of course, high-performance boards can be less, thanks to different blanks and lighter glass jobs. But when we looked across a whole spectrum of PU boards, that’s what we came up with. So we targeted that volume/weight ratio as a starting point, and our boards actually ended up lighter than that.” 

However, he says, they started much lighter than that. 

“Our first boards were super light, but they weren’t strong enough for us. The most difficult thing was to get the right balance between weight, durability, and performance. You can take materials away to make a board light and flexible, but that makes them weaker. Or you can make a super durable board that doesn’t surf well due to the added weight and reduced flexibility.” 

Halley Batista, stinging a section and stamping his approval. Photo: Bosiny

And how did they strike that balance? Testing, testing, and more testing. 

“We tried a ton of different flex patterns with our internal wood structure and eventually came up with a unique composition that offered an incredibly strong and lightweight core to our board. We found that the skins were harboring most of the weight, so this was the next component that we focused on, and we started to experiment with different combinations of carbon, flax, straight-up glass, and kevlar to reinforce the boards. We found that Kevlar had everything we needed. It’s flexible, super strong, and light. 

Overall, their boards are 99% organic. The skin and skeleton come from paulownia wood grown locally in Spain and are internally reinforced with Kevlar. The skin gets a 4oz layer of glass with Change Climate’s world’s first BPA-free 100% bio-resin on the outside. They’ve got a patent pending on their construction method. 

The Bosiny crew have tapped handy surfers in their region as test pilots, and the boards have already been responsible for airs landed, XL waves paddled, and QS heats made. We’ve also heard whispers of Torren Martyn getting his feet on a board or two and loving it. 

Last year, Caina Souza made a heat at the WSL Santa Cruz Pro in Portugal while riding a Bosiny. To our knowledge, it’s the only time someone has made a QS heat on a wooden board — and we’re betting it won’t be the last. Photo: John Railton

Once I’d settled into my Bosiny, it made my PU boards feel less alive. It’s quite addicting to ride. Which is convenient, cause the boys reckon their boards will stick around a while. They put it through surfing’s distinct and rigorously scientific method of testing strength — suspending a board on bricks and running it over with a Toyota Hilux — and the board didn’t snap. Hence, they’ve got a no-snap guarantee on every board sold. If you break your board in half, they’ll give you another one, no questions asked. 

The €1.199,95 price for a shortboard might seem steep, but so are the borderline impossible drops you can try and fail to manage with that no-break policy whispering in your ear, telling you to go. These boards don’t pressure ding. And, perhaps most significantly, they won’t lose their flex over time — there’s no foam to beat up. 

Bosiny took a “something for everyone” approach to board models for their launch. They’ve got everything from a standard shortboard to logs and mid-length warships for limp, overcrowded pointbreaks worldwide. But their tech isn’t limited to these models — they can do assyms, wings, deep bottom contours, and anything else your heart might sing for.

It’s a more costly and labor-intensive build than PU, but the long lifespan makes it worthwhile. Photo: Philip Baske

Right now, they’re set up to sell boards throughout Europe. For non Euro lords, the Bosiny crew recommend you reach out to them direct for a shipping quote. However, they plan to work with international distributors in the future. 

“I get that people might think it’s another basic wooden surfboard,” says John. “But as soon as you get one under your arm, you’ll see that it’s something entirely new.” 

I can attest to that. 

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