Dusty Payne's Qualifying Quiver
Weight: 165 lbs
Standard short dimensions: 6'0" x 18 3/8" x 2 1/4"
(From left to right)
5'10" x 18 5/8" x 2 5/16" Channel Islands Whip
6'1" x 18 1/4" x 2 3/16" Channel Islands Rookie Step-Up
6'0" x 18 3/8" x 2 3/16" Channel Islands Rookie
6'2" x 18 1/4" x 2 3/16" Channel Islands Proton Step-Up
6'4" x 18 1/2" x 2 3/8" Round tail
For my step-ups I keep the dimensions about the same as my normal shortboard, up until I hit 6'8" or 6'10", then we'll go a little wider and thicker.
Big Waves, Small Board
Mostly I try to ride the smallest board I can in bigger surf, but it depends on where you are. Like Pipe is super steep, so I don't like to ride too long of a board out there. You need something big enough to be able to catch waves, and generate paddling speed. Also, if you know a break really well you can get away with a smaller board. Like at Honolua Bay [where Dusty grew up surfing] I'll pretty much use a 6'2" up to about ten feet, just because it lets you in really easy.
I got a real magic 6'0" Rookie, and then a magic 5'11" Flyer. Those boards helped me qualify this year, and in fact, I only used those specific ones during heats. They're both at Channel Islands right now so they can copy them. They've taken small wave boards to a new place, with boards like Dane's Dumpster Diver, and lots of others.
What models are you riding most?
During the WQS I rode the Rookie a ton. Also, Flyers a lot, and the K-Whip. They're good boards for one- to- two-foot surf.
How much of a chance do you give a board, say if it doesn't go well on the first surf?
Oh I'll ride a board a bunch, because you never know. You could ride it in bad waves, and then take it out in good waves and it could turnaround and be magic. So I'll give a board a good week. But then again, the average board only lasts me two weeks, max. They make them really light, with a single sheet of four-ounce cloth on top and bottom.
What'd you ride at Sunset this year when it was giant, and you qualified?
I used a 7'2" that really big day, the day they were claiming it was the biggest day they'd ever held a comp at Sunset. I used that just because I didn't want to be left in the dust by the other guys.
Were you thinking that was a big board?
Yeah, I felt like it was a pretty big board, for me. But I used a 6'8" the next day.
So you've made the tour, are you planning on taking any non-standard shortboards with you next year?
Actually yeah. I worked on this Pod thing with Yadin Nicol. It's a weird rounded nose thing. We took a normal shortboard nose and attached it the bottom half of a Pod, and I'll be using that. It's a 5'8" and it works really well in one- to- three-foot surf, so I'll be taking one of those just about everywhere.