Tag: Surfing

Board Review – The Lemon Head is Born!

Anyone who’s ever surfed more than once knows that the chase for the perfect wave is never ending. The next part of that statement is once you’ve found the wave, the quest for the perfect surfboard shape is also never ending. That’s why Kona Surf Company is here. Surfers surfing in the surf are three variables constantly changing. Kona is shaping the boards to keep up with the changes. The Lemon Head is a product of an exploration that started as something then became something totally different yet stands alone as it’s own entirely unique surfboard.

We call this the Lemon Head because the wide, round nose creates a large sweet spot. This shape started as a Fish surfboard. Fish boards are traditionally fast and loose in small waves. We thought what do you have to do to give this shape more stability and control? First, we took the Fish and gave it a full, round nose. This definitely made the board more stable but the fish tail was still very loose so we thought what do we have to do to get some more bite out of this tail? Keeping the width of the tail – a big feature of the Fish – we inverted the channel of the split tail and gave it a bat tail! The Lemon Head is born. The wide platform nose is nice and stable and the center point on that bat tail gives you some great hold on the wave. That’s the first part but there’s quite a bit more that went into creating this shape. We are pretty proud of it and we think it’s worthwhile to break it down so you can get excited about it also.

Steve Lis' original Fish surfboard

The Lemon Head is great for smaller breaks. You want to surf this in two to six foot waves. If you don’t want to lug your longboard around yet still want to get out there and have some fun on a small day, this shortboard is a perfect alternative. This is a really cool looking shape. It’s an excellent introduction to shortboards that can be ridden by entry level or intermediate surfers.

The Lemon Head (with Josh for scale)

I mentioned that wide, round nose that provides added stability but it also has a nice amount of kick to it which is going to give you some nice lift on drop ins. The nose rocker is low, not as low as a nose rider but low enough to make paddling really easy. Also, traditional Fish surfboards have a pretty flat entry on the bottom. There’s a honking single concave running under the front of this that is going to push a lot of water fast.

The nose rocker curves quickly into a wide point pushed forward. This again adds stability to the front of the board. It’s great for shifting your weight to your front foot. Additional volume is packed into the dome there under your front foot. That volume tapers off into the rails. With this technique, the 60/40 rails are sensitive all the way through the board. You don’t get that hard edge and it helps dig the rails into the face of the wave and turn smoothly. Meanwhile that heavy concave under the nose transforms into a deep double concave under your feet creating a lot of drive forward.


Length Width Thickness Volume
5ft 6in 20.65in 2.45in 32.31L
5ft 8in 20.84in 2.45in 33.59L
5ft 10in 20.98in 2.50in 35.49L
6ft 21.06in 2.58in 37.86L

That taper on the profile from the center of the board to the tip of the tail is probably the only line left that is close to the Fish. The bat tail keeps additional width on the rear of the board for stability. A little tail rocker, endless options for fins, the center point of that bat tail and a big vee waterflow that is pushing water from the double concave through the fins has got some fangs biting the face of that wave. Based on our research from our surf team, there seems to be two preferred fin set-ups. The combination of the single fin and the bat tail gives you that balance of stability and control. The waterflow blasting out of the double concave through a quad fin set-up also gives you a great balance of stability and control. Single fin is better for smaller surf. Quad fin is better for medium days.

The five finned bat tail.

So there is it, the Lemon Head. You’re going to want this under your feet on weak days where the surf is maybe knee to head high. That low rocker is going to get you into a lot of waves and make it real easy to paddle. The additional width and volume give this board plenty of stability. The waterflow and the fin set up balance that stability with a nice push forward down the line. This board is a lot of fun for all skill levels and we know once you pick this one off the tree, it’ll be your favorite.

Mike Sciarra & His Vision

DSC_0626If you are like me, designs are very important when surfboards and skateboards are involved. Size, rails, thickness, shapes and materials  give you a variety of choices to fit your surfing style, thankfully Mike Sciarra has a gift for designing boards that suit our needs. Since Mike first opened his surf shop in 1969, Mike has concentrated on designs that work ranging from surfboards to apparel.

Kona is looking to the past for inspiration. With the resurgence of apparel, surfboard, and skateboard designs that once stocked the shelves of Kona, are being given a new life and a modern update through Mike Sciarras’ team. By having the most up-to-date equipment and materials Kona is bringing back the past, exciting everyone that has shopped with the company for the past decades. Kona is giving the youths of today the benefit of experiencing the designs that worked for surfers in the 70’s.  The surfing and skateboarding community have always helped out with their feedback. Mike observes,  listens, &  tests.  This is why the Kona brand is popular and lasted so long. Today, Kona surf company does all their design in-house  and is always trying to invent new designs to bring to life. So to get an idea of what Kona Surf Co is about, walk into one of their stores on Rio Grande Ave  and get a vibe for the brand being brought back to life.

The Kona Surf Co strives to live up to this motto. “Taking inspiration from Michael Sciarras’ journey to and from Hawaii the Kona Surf Company is on a mission to build quality products that are designed to help you follow the waves”. They thrive on making your shopping experience a memorable one and to make sure you get the best product that last as long as the stories told around them!

Author’s Note: My life has benefited tremendously from the many years of surfing and hanging out with my surfing friends. It is a positive and spiritual way of life and a good way to have the “natural high”, the waves give when breaking clean and fast. If you have never surfed, visit the Kona Stores and asked for their advice and direction. “Follow the Waves” and come to Wildwood, New jersey and have one of the best experience of your life!


Surfs Up!


Bill Flynn

Author of the book, Surfers Love Story