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  surfers : bob mctavish 

Bob McTavish
(14 May 1944 - )
Home: Mackay, Queensland
Beach : Gold Coast, Queensland
Competitive Record
Queensland Champion 1966?
Duke entrant 1967 (in place of Nat Young)
Surfing
surfer, shaper, designer, writer, philosopher, windsurfer,
Shaping
Joe Larkin Surfboards, Qld
Scott Dillon  Surfboards, Brookvale 1962
Hohnesse  Surfboards, Qld
Cord  Surfboards, Qld
Keyo  Surfboards, Brookvale 1965 -1967



Bob McTavish Plastic Machine
,
Kevin Platt Model

Advertisement.
Keyo Surfboards 
19 Sydenham Road, Brookvale, Phone: 93 1699

Surf International
,
Volume 1 Number 1, December 1967, page 4.

Morey - Pope  Surfboards (USA)1968
San Juan  Surfboards, Byron Bay 1968
Bare NatureSurfboards
, Byron Bay 1968
Dale Surfboards, 73 Winbourne Road Brookvale 934965  1968.
 
Advertisement
Dale Surfboards, McTavish's Forms, circa 1968.
Surf International
Volume 1 Number 10 page 36.
October 1968 ?
Bennett Surfboards, Brookvale  1970 -1973
Julian Rocks Surfboards, Byron Bay  1973?
Bluebird  Surfboards, Byron Bay 1973
Sky  Surfboards, Byron Bay  1974 - 1984
Classic Surfboards by McTavish, around 1977
Pro Circuit Boards 1990 :molded epoxy boards.
McTavish  Surfboards, Byron Bay 1999
Other
Illegal immigrant Hawaii 1962,
Conversion to Jehovah Witnesses 1973?

Catalogue Entries:
1966 # 36 Keyo Thin rail 1966 Keyo 
Malibu 9 ft 4 1/2"
Bob McTavish Tailor Made
#224 
1969 Dale 
Roundtail  7 ft 10'' 
#228
1969 #69 Keyo Tracker by
              Bob McTavish 1968  Keyo
Tracker  7 ft
#69
1971 Bennett - Bob McTavish Tri fin 6 ft 8 1971 Bennett 
Tri Fin 6 ft 8 ''
#9 
1972  Bluebird
Pintail, 7 ft 1''
# 215 
1979  Sky 
Flyer Pintail, 6 ft 10''
# 22 
1980 #23 Sky - Bob McTavish Mini Malibu 7 ft 2 1980 Sky 
Mini Mal  7ft
#23 
1999 #80 Bob McTavish Mini Mal 8 ft 3 1999  McTavish 
Mini Mal 8 ft 2''
#80 
1968
Markings
Scott Dillon Pintail:

.829. 
7ft 8'' 
"MAC"


Bob McTavish Surfboards
1975
Po Box 47, Byron Bay.
Bob McTavish Surfboards
1976
Byron Bay.

McTavish Quiver, June 2207.
From left to right:
Keyo
Dale
Keyo
Bluebird
Sky

Web Pages
McTavish Surfboards-Byron Bay, shaper Bob McTavish, since 1991
Mac-T Surfboards - softdeck/rail boards, manufactured by Outer Reef - soft foam beginners boards
Welcome to Surftech -high tech longboards with models by Dale Velzy, Reynolds Yater, Mickey Munoz, Robert August, Randy French,Wingnut, Michael Junod & Bob McTavish. California based
Santa Barbara Surfing - Tim Maddux's site centred on Santa Barbara, California.Featuring Rincon. George Greenough territory.
Snake's Surfing Page-personal page by Bruce Gabrielson on surfboard template history, coaching, surfboard repair, links, and wave pools. US. Alternative version of the Shortboard Revolution/development.
Books
Nat Young : History,pages
Nat Young : Nat's Nat  , pages
Arhens : Good things Love Water , pages 102, 105 and 109.

Magazine Articles by Bob McTavish
Despite some dispute during the last 30 years about Bob McTavish's design ideas and his surfing performance ('the Spin-out King' - 1968), in the field of Surf Philosophy his contribution has been unequaled. An infectious sytle (reminiscent of the print contributions of Mickey Dora), intensive  analysis and over-the-top enthusiasm for his subject  has produced some excellent work. Examples of  magazine
articles include...

1967
Bob McTavish : Bob McTavish is in this wave. He probably had a plan to get out of it.
[Photograph, black and white: Outrageous left barrell - no surfer/board visible,no credit]
Surfing World  January 1967 pp 15 to 21.
The definitive manual for longboard riding circa 1967 detailing turns (4), stalls (5), acceleration/speed (8) and a few tips (6).
Accompanying illustrative photographs (12, all of   Bob McTavish) includes the much reprinted Headless McTavish, Alexandria Headlands 1965 by John Witzig (Figure 2.Curl Acceleration Turn).

1967
Bob McTavish : The Wild and Wonderful Days of Noosa , Part Two : National.
Surfing World March 1967 pp 18 to 25.
Anaysis/comtemplation of one break (70%) and one wave (other 30%).
Black and white photographs include Bob McTavish at National Park sequence, bottom turn, top turn, noseride. p 23.

1967
Bob McTavish : On a bit of what's going on.
Surfing World August/September 1967 pp 37.
Performance and design circa 1967 (early-mid).
Notes Brian (sic) Simmons, George Greenough, Midget Farrelly, Ted Spencer and Bobby Brown.

1967
Bob McTavish : Writing in the sun is a cinch.
SURF INTERNATIONAL Vol 1 No.1, 1967-8? p 9.
Performance, design and artificial reefs.
(The first three issues  featured a one page article each titled and by Bob McTavish, Nat Young and Midget Farrelly)

1968
Bob McTavish : Ladies and gentlemen and children of the sun.
SURF INTERNATIONAL Vol. 1. No. 2 1967-8? p 9.
Ground breaking analysis of surfing performance that rejects the accepted approach (Detailed in Bob McTavish is in this wave. He probably had a plan to get out of it. See above): and  establishes the dictum "BREAK OUT FROM THE STRAIGHT LINE."..
In design this is achieved by: "Elimination of two feet of board."
Also note: "Farrelly, Spencer, Young, Platt and this kid were all riding considerably different styles of units at time of writing, six weeks before news-stands." - my emphasis.

1968
Bob McTavish : A plastic drinking straw.
SURF INTERNATIONAL Vol. 1 No.3 1968 p 11.
Bob McTavish's account of the Honolua Bay sessions, featured in Paul Witig's Hot Generation and Eric Blum's The Fantastic Plastic Machine
Vee bottom experiment Honolua Bay, Maui December 1967
Detailed wave analysis, the 'borrowed' (from Phil Edwards) much quoted/often parodied "A GIANT CATHEDRAL AND I AM THERE."  and Dick Brewer shaping conference.
Also note the "reported" demise of Ted Spencer's Little Red: "Ted S. had his 8'9"pintail in one piece till it was two pieces."

Surf International
Vol. 1. No. 3  February 1968.

Page 27

[1] Bob McTavish is one of the best of the Australian surfers that are currently leading the sport of surfboard riding into the new realm of total per­formance.
A combination of highly technical boards, and an uncanny insight into the moods of waves, combine to create McTavish the surfer.
In the first of this sequence of three photo­graphs, McTavish carves a long driving turn down the face of the wave.






[3] After rising high into the curl, as the wave becomes more critical, McTavish drops with the breaking wave to set up the last section of the ride.





[4] McTavish puts his board into a fantastic turn at the base of the wave. The fin, par­tially clear of the water is clearly visible.
The whole side of the board is buried and it is on the rail, more than the fin that he makes the turn.



Another photograph from the sequence [2],
 published  of the same edition of
Surf International on page 34


Bob McTavish/Little Red, Honalua Bay
          '67. John Witzig.Click for Photo details.

1968
Bob McTavish : California.
Surf International Vol. 1. No. 6  May 1968  Pages 8 to 11.
Mat riding Rincon with George Greenough, California.
Hawaii and Sunset Beach on a Ryan Dotson Design 7'10" x 19".

1968

Bob McTavish : Rincon.
Surf International Vol. 1. No. 7  June 1968  pages 10 to 11.

1968
Bob
McTavish : Indian Head.
Surf International  Volume 1 Number 9, pages 42-45, November 1968.



1968
Bob McTavish : My Surfboard.
Surf International
Vol. 1. No. 9  November 1968  page 46.



Right:
Bob McTavish,
Indian Head, 1968.
page 45.



1968
Bob McTavish : 23'' to 19''.
Surf International Vol. 1. No. 10  December 1968  page 9.

Chis Brock, George Greenough, Dog, Garry Keyes
and
Bob McTavish.
Wilderness factory, 
Angourie - Byron Bay ?, 1969.
Surfing World
Volume 12, Number 5, 1969.

Bob McTavish.
Wilderness Surfboards,
Angourie, 1969.
Surfing World
Volume 12, Number 5, 1969.
Photograph : ?

1970
Bob McTavish : Alexandria Headlands 1953.
SURF INTERNATIONAL Vol. 3 No3 1970 pp 40 to 43.
Noosa Nostalgia 1963, with some notes about design and waves.

1970
Bob McTavish  : "Well, California again. Didn't expect it, did enjoy it..."
SURF INTERNATIONAL Vol 1 No. 6 1970? pp 8 to11.
Mat riding Rincon with George Greenough, California.
Hawaii and Sunset Beach on a Ryan Dotson Design 7'10" x 19".

Morey-Pope Surfboards
(USA)
1965
Bob Cooper (USA) Blue Machine model,
1968
Bob McTavish Tracker model

1969
Bob McTavish Power Dude and  Big Mac models




1969-1970
Several designs, the Tracker, the Big Mac, and the Power Dude shaped/designed for Morey-Pope Surfboards, California.
Double spread advertisement, Surfer March 1970:


In 2010, McTavish comment pasted on swaylocks by "Dave":
Quite a treat seeing an old Dude..
 I designed it in 1969 at Saticoy, east of Ventura, along with the Big Mac, two very hot boards for the time.
Richard Deese was the shaper, and Morey did a many hundreds of them.
The template was gunny, because the Big Mac was so hot-doggy and short, they were designed to be a pair.
- Bob.

Note that there was some reported difficultly in retailing these boards "with (very uncool) cartoons on them."

1970
Captions for photographs in Tracks magazine Vol1 No 1 1970.

1971
Bob McTavish : Streaks and Slugs.  [Surfer Tips]
SURFER  Number Forty Five (Vol.No.?) December 1971? .
Discussion Pocket Rockets versus Eggs, designs and technique.

1972
Bob McTavish : Pods for Primates Part 1 : A Personal History of Surfboard Design
Tracks magazine 1972?
Reprinted in The Best of Tracks 1973?
Informative and inspirational, a major influence on this site.

1972
Bob McTavish : Pods for Primates Part 2 : A Personal History of Surfboard Design
Tracks magazine 1972?
Reprinted in The Best of Tracks 1973?
Informative and inspirational, a major influence on this site.

1976
Bob McTavish : Classic Design
Backdoor No. 12  December 1976, page 40.

1977
Bob McTavish : Spoons 1977
Surfing World Magazine Volume 24 Number 4 January-February ?  1977, pages   64 - 65.

1977
Bob McTavish : Modern Malibu
Surfer Magazine Vol 18  No.4  1977, pages 102 - 103.

1978
 Bob McTavish : Ace in the Hole : The Asymmetric Story.
Seanotes magazine August/Septerber 1978  pages 38  - 39.

1980
Bob McTavish : A Decade of Design
Tracks magazine January 1980

Magazine Articles About Bob McTavish
1. Eccentrics SW
2.Interview SW 1972
3.Paul Gross :  in Surfer magazine
3.Australian Surfers journal

Magazine Advertisments Featuring Bob McTavish

Film (Appearances)
Hot Generation 1968
The Inner Limits of Pure Fun  1970
From  Thoms: Surf Movies  (2000)
2009 
McTavish, Bob:
Stoked!
Hyams Publishing.
PO Box 171 Huskisson, NSW 2540, 2009. 
www.hyams.com.au
Hard cover, 431 pages, black and white photographs, Some of My Friends, Glossary, Index.
Review
Bob McTavish's enthusiasm for surfing, and life generally, permeate Stoked!, covering his surfing career up to 1968, which leaves open the possibility of a further volume covering the next 40 years.
While the formative years in Queensland as a member of Caloundra Surf Life Saving Club are highly interesting, for the reader who has closely followed McTavish's numerous media contributions, many of the stories from the 1960s are extremely familiar.
Indeed, in some cases their re-telling here seems to lack some of the freshness evident in the original versions.
As expected, there are some minor errors in dates or spelling (Milner, not Millner, page 38) and a tendency to somewhat overstate the author's impact on the surfing industry.
This is evident in the account of the Vee bottom board during 1967 (Part 8) - Midget Farrelly had already established the "lightweight" stringerless as an industry standard by 1966 and he played a major role in the radical reduction in board lengths.
In 1973, McTavish wrote: "At the same time Midget's shop at Palm Beach was running stiff competition with us at Keyo's. As we'd cut 2" off, Midget would cut 4" off, then vice versa."
Significantly, he rejects the commonly held myth that his and Nat Young's plus nine foot V-bottom surfboards taken to Hawaii in December 1967 initiated the Short Board Revolution (pages 383 to 396).

2014
McTavish, Bob:
More Stoked!
Harper Collins
Level 13201 Elizabeth street, Sydney, NSW 2000, 2013.
www.harpercollins.com.au
Soft cover,
533 pages, black and white and monochrome photographs, Appendix.
Review
More Stoked! does not continue directly on from the earlier book, but reprises some of that work in sections one up to about five or six, and unfortunately, the tendency to overstate the author's impact on the surfing industry is again in evidence.
Also, many of the photographs are printed on a grey-blue paper which substantially diminishes their clarity.


.#9p Bob
          McTavish Tri fin, Bennett's Factory 1971
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home catalogue history references appendix

Geoff Cater (1999 - 2016) : Surfer Biography : Bob McTavish.
http://www.surfresearch.com.au/sMcT_Bob.html