Location: Cardiff-by-the-Sea, California
The Shaper: Don Hansen
Website: Hansen Surfboards
History of Don Hansen Surfboards
Prior to attending University of South Dakota, Don Hansen had never surfed. If his Beta Theta Pi fraternity brothers hadn’t invited him to try surfing in Southern California, Hansen Surfboards may have never existed.
Luckily, he joined his brothers to a surf session in California, where he fell in love with surfing. Of course, he relocated to California where he first learned to shape surfboards through the pro-shaper Jack O’Neill. Later, he would move to Hawaii where he would open up his own surf shop on the North Shore.
Don Hansen would later win 2nd place at a surfing competition at Mahaka, and become featured in both Surfing Magazine and a film called “North Swell”. In 1962, he would relocate the surf shop to California, to expand on the business.
Although Don Hansen is primarily known for his surfing, he has also been known to partake in other outdoor activities including downhill skiing, especially on his trips in Montana. He even won twice at a national skydiving championship. Don was for sure, an adrenaline junkie and always out for the thrill of experiences.
Check out this great detailed overview of Don Hansen’s life written by University of South Dakota.
Overview of Don Hansen Surfboards
It is quite hard to buy (or for that matter, find) any Don Hansen surfboards online. As you check out the Hansen Surf website, they now primarily sell surf & snow apparel and surf accessories from wide range of retail brands.
More recently, the California Surf Museum in Oceanside, CA opened up a new exhibit featuring Hansen’s Surfboards, where you can go view some of his famous surfboards made in the 1960s and 1970s.
Some of Don Hansen’s most boards include (all shaped in the 1960s):
- Mike Doyle
- Super Lite