International Surfboard Builders Hall Of Fame Inductee Details
For: Randy Wong
Inductee Name
Randy Wong
Event Year
2016
Inductee Location
Inductee Contact
Inductee Brand
Inductee Boardshop
Boardshop Link
Inductee Bio

In 1953 when I was only 7, I hung around the men who built and raced canoes in Kailua Beach, Oahu. My family lived close to the beach and by age 9, I was part of the team. We competed by age divisions and I was the number 6 man (the steersman) on the Kai One Canoe Club. We had to show up because we trained as a team. It required a lot of discipline and commitment. The reason I quit competing was because surfing was a sport I grew to love and could do it whenever I wanted to... When we were not surfing we were either free diving or on somebody's boat fishing or water skiing. Guys were always repairing and building canoes and paddles. I saw I could repair boards and make money with my own business. In high school I used my family's large lot and little house near the beach for an "underground" repair shop.

In 1958 and 1959 boards were mostly being made with the new foams and I began using resin and fiberglass to repair these new foam /fiberglass boards. This meant using fiber glass to make the boards water tight and as close to the original as possible.
Leaving Kailua in the summer of 1964 when I was 17, my older brother Ronald and I took a great trip up to the Washington coast to surf. We drove from Hermosa Beach in a Chevy Nomad with our boards. We camped on the beach belonging to an Indian Reservation on a beach that was like a Malibu surf spot. I will never forget that month long surf paradise and the time with my brother, who is no longer with us.

In winter of 1964 when I turned 18, we moved to Hermosa Beach, the mecca for building surf boards. My first job on the mainland was with Brad Gossett (Brad's Surf Factory) in Inglewood glassing boards for Jacob's Surfboards. We turned out about 8 to 12 boards daily.

In 1969 to 1971, I ran the 2nd factory in Costa Mesa belonging to Grant Reynolds. Some labels were Petrillo, Chuck Dents and many others. We glassed 12 plus boards a day.

In winter of 1971 to 1977 I returned to Kailua and had a one man shop making and glassing private boards. I loved surfing, diving, boating and being in the water every day. Paradise...

In 1979 and 1980 I reteamed with Donald Takayama. We shaped boards and Tony Channin glassed the boards in his factory In Encinitas, California. The labels we controlled were Takayama surf boards and Town and Country (mainland boards) and Tony glassed these as well.

Beginning in the 80's Tony and I worked together glassing under the Channin label. Examples of other labels we glassed for were: Sundeck, Ken Bradshaw's, Mike Eaton's, Corky Carrol's, Velzy's and several others. Once we became business partners, I ran the factory, looking back now that I am retired; I would not trade anything for my years of craftsmanship in the world of surfing.



Autobiography by Randy November 2016

For the complete biography, go to:

Thanks to: http://www.bobbyzeeimages.com/ for the photo

Links