SHAPERS CORNER - LUKE HART
A peek inside the lives of some of Europe’s up-coming board builders.
Other than [surfboards] I tend not to create anything really, save for the odd scene at home when I’m made to go food shopping.
Cornwall-based surfboard shaper Luke Hart (or Harty as he’s referred to by most) has built a strong reputation among the UK’s top pros over the last 5 or so years. With the likes of Stokesy, Tom Butler, Mitch Corbett, Cain Killcullen and current rookie CTer Glen Hall onboard his newly launched Fourth Surfboards label the buzz keeps getting louder so we had the 26-year-old Newquay foam mower answer some questions.
Name: Luke Hart aka Harty aka Tina
Home: Newquay tr7. No place I would rather be. Such a cool place to be around.
Shaping since: 2006. Feels like yesterday but yeah looking back it’s been a while now! Still winging it though ha...
How did you get into surfing? Well, originally I’m a city boy from Reading and used to come down to the coast with my mum a lot. Then I got in trouble at home so decided to go and stay in the Quay for a bit whilst things settled down. At the time I was a boadyboarder just shredding it up on my lid. I was 16 and just loving being in the sea. When the waves aren’t barrelling bodyboarding isn’t very fun, so I started to jump in on foamys. I didn’t fully 100% commit to full time standing on a board until I was about 19 and a bit though. Bit of a late starter, got me legs eventually haha.
And shaping? I worked as a laminator at Ocean Magic for a year with Nigel Semmens, and I was just really in to the whole process of making a board. I would watch him for hours and slowly but surely over the course of a year he taught me how to use the machine and it all came from there.
At the time Tom Butler was doing the Pro Juniors and I used to notice things wrong with his equipment which I thought needed changing. After a few mates rates boards and some for myself I decided to make a few for Tom and he really liked um, next thing I know Stokesy wants a couple and ended up getting some really solid results on his first 2 from me.... the rest is just hard work and good luck from then till now really and I’m stoked on it all, so lucky to be where I am now.
What were you on before you started shaping your own? Ha my first board was a 6'4 spider twinny!! I had two M5's in the back and was a very dangerous slider!! I want to publicly apologize to the small Asian man I ran over at Snapper on my trip to Oz, he may still be picking fibre glass out of his teeth! Then I got on my friends 6'0 Clayton which was a thruster followed by anything I could get my hands on. I love trying out different boards, the fun in surfing for me is finding out new stuff about your surfing through equipment so I try not to surf the same board longer than about 6 months.
Any other shaping influences? The first name has to be Nigel Semmens. He gave me my start and I’m forever grateful for it. Then getting to work so closely with the late great Mark Neville was a real experience as he was such a technical wizard. Then internationally I would say Matt Biolas has a great outlook to it all, forever the inventor be it high performance or easy surfing crafts he is the master at knowing what should work, and his concepts seem to transcend through every other shapers work at one time or another. My approach to shaping has always come from my team’s ideas though so gotta give the boys some love. Thank you.
To what tunes does the magic go down to? Well my latest playlist has a bit of gangsta rap, (Gotta keep it real) a few love ballads and a bit of the all mighty Ben Howard thrown in to. 'Bitch better have my money' followed by 'Don’t go changing', by Billy Joel and then 'The Wolves' by Ben would be a good little mix up.
What keeps you stoked? My family, they give me something to look forward to everyday I wake up. Surfing with my friends. Watching my good friends and team riders achieve there goals on my boards. Boxing, I have a fight coming up soon so been training like crazy for that. Good food, where i live, pretty much everything haha I’m always stoked!
Anything else you enjoy making other than shred sticks? To be honest I hate anything to do with D.I.Y at home and my job is a pretty fun hobby. I like hand shaping weird boards outside of work, but other than that I tend not to create anything really, save for the odd scene at home when I’m made to go food shopping.
Anything been bugging you in surfing/the world? Poor marketing. Bad judgement, lack of funding, the rich staying rich the poor staying poor, and everyone who thinks moaning and whinging gets you anywhere. Oh and inspirational quotes on twitter, I’m not sure why but they really annoy me.
When was the last time you kooked it? I tend to kook it at least once a day. Yesterday was a good one, I forgot to put Corbett’s new guns in the van last night for him to pack to take to Ireland. So I think we are gunna ship um over now as he has had to leave with out them...
What do you wish you had more of? Magical powers.
Your fave surf destination? Pumping low tide Fistral with all the boys is very hard to beat for me. But best place I’ve travelled to is probably Lakey Peak, it’s a goofy footers heaven.
How did your last session go and what were you on? Fistral, low tide real windy about chest high but super fun. I was on my 5'10 x 20 x 2 1/2 fourth hartichoke set up as a quad with the mayhem fcs fins, and it was flying. Quads are fast, and once you work them out its hard to go back to thrusters in average waves. I’m loving mine at the mo.
For more info on Luke Hart's shapes head over to www.fourthsurfboards.com.