Shapers are modern day artists, they take a raw blank and sculpt it into the beautiful piece of art we call a surfboard. Think of Al Merrick as Michelangelo and Matt Biolos as Lorenzo Ghiberti, famous sculptors for those of you who haven’t picked up a book in awhile. It used to be the only way you could get a quality custom board was to surrender your creativity, and a months worth of rent, into the hands of one of the skilled foam sculptors of our time. Not anymore. Disrupt is your chisel, and your mind is the blank marble slate. They are giving you the ability to become Donatello and create your own version of David.
Based out of Bondi, Disrupt is focused on 3 main ideas: educating people about the construction of surfboards, creativity, and innovation. They’re currently using a combination of 3D printing and CNC shaping to help you create the perfect custom board at a fraction of the cost. At the moment, full-scale 3D printing is still too costly due to a lack in commercial materials, hence the CNC shaping. To help improve 3D printing Disrupt is working with Australias largest 3D printing company researching and experimenting with different materials to lead the revolution of the surf industry.
If you have your dimensions dialed in on your magic stick and a 3D printer you can design your own 3d modeled shred sled. Then, when you’re finished digitally shaping the perfect board, Disrupt will print out a scaled version so you can physically see your masterpiece and edit your board if need be. Cool right? If you don’t trust yourself to create your own board without any help, have no fear. You can chat with the crew and give them an idea of what you want and they’ll do the dirty work. Once they’re finished, they’ll print you a scaled version and have you ok it, before moving on to full scale shaping.
Using 3D modeling software creates the opportunity for virtually unlimited creativity. Disrupt encourages you to be as creative as you can be with designing your board. Whether it’s putting some abstract art on the deck of your board or something really weird, like embedding someone’s ashes into a board or putting in an ipad with inductive charging. Yes, they’ve done both.
As for innovation they have developed an app that can be paired with sensors placed inside the board to help you progress. The sensors include: pressure, accelerometer and gyro. After a surf you can download the data to your phone via Bluetooth and see if your rail to rail transition is harder and faster than the session before. These sensors could also have professional surfing implications. Instead of subjectivejudging through the eyes of the judges, objective data could be used to reveal which surfers are really turning harder and surfing faster. Lastly, envision a transition like the music industry has made. Hardly anyone buys CD’s anymore, it’s all about digital files. Using 3D modelling software the idea is that shapers all over the world can put their shapes onto the internet to be purchased. Say you want a board from a shaper in Australia but you’re in Canada; it’d be as simple as going on their website, buying and downloading the file, then printing it out.
Currently they are accepting orders in Australia and Europe, but hope to establish a presence in other international markets soon!