Surfboard Monogamy – The idea of a one board quiver

by Pascal
Published: Last Updated: one board quiver

Allround board, quiver killer, or one board quiver. Call it what you want. one board quiver

But the question is: Is it even possible to have a one board quiver? Especially in times of Tinder!

The answer is yes! If you’ve got the right board, you can surf it in a big variety of waves. This is especially useful if it comes to your travel board.

As a travel quiver, three boards would be ideal

travel quiver
The perfect travel quiver

°One board for very small waves. This can be a groveler, a twin fin, a Mini Malibu or even a longboard

°Your everyday board.

°Your step-up or gun

But sometimes you don’t want to travel with such a heavy bag. Or you can only bring one board for whatever reason. A board you trust in, and know well enough to surf in whatever conditions the ocean throws at you.

But if you have the chance to take out a Longboard or a Fish on a small day, do it. Or take a Foamboard to catch a few waves. Once it gets a bit bigger, ask a friend if you can borrow his semi-gun. If you surf different shapes and styles of boards, you start to understand how little details affect the way you actually surf and how it feels. Even if it feels weird sometimes, it will help you to become better.

Riding different boards helps you a lot to understand surfing better. Doesn’t matter how good you are.

If you bring two boards, what would it be?

I usually take two surfboards with me. Always my normal everyday high performance shortboard, and depending on the destination, something for bigger days, or something for when it gets small. My go-to board, ( everyday board or whatever you want to call it) is actually my well-proven one board quiver! I can surf it in tiny waves, but I know it works well in bigger waves too.

My go-to board is actually a step down board! A board that is made for less than perfect conditions. If the waves get absolutely perfect, you can surf everything! Sure, having a board for those days would be even more fun, but how often do you surf flawless, powerful waves? A step down board works good on most days, makes it possible to surf in very small waves, but as you know it so well, you probably feel comfortable on it on the bigger days too. For the last few years, my go-to board is the Fusion by Luke Studer. (I had two, and both were great!) It is a replica of Channel Islands Flyer. I didn’t include it in this list, even as I think it works great in almost everything.

So if I’d go to Chile, I’d bring this one, plus my “Semente The Hitch” as a step up. On the other hand, on a trip to the Dominican Republic, I rater bring my Twinny as a second board.

One board quiver

pascal christen nias
My (Luke Studer Fusion) Step down board on a step up wave…

How nice would it be, if you could travel with only one board! A single board bag with a one board quiver inside! A board that works in small waves, but at the same time, a board you feel comfortable to paddle into bigger waves.

Over the last years, a lot has happened concerning surfboard shapes and materials. People like Kelly Slater surf big Pipeline in Hawaii on boards that are shorter than six foot. A decade ago, no one would have ever thought this could be possible. So how can it be?

One thing that most of those quiver killers or one board quiver have in common is that the widest point of the board is more towards the nose. In doing so, you’ve got more volume under your chest than in a more traditional shaped shortboard. It helps you paddle faster, and take off earlier, which boosts your wave count in small waves a lot. On bigger days, however, more foam under your chest helps you to get to your feet before it gets too steep.

OK, here are a few suggestions for possible partners for your next trip, or your one board quiver… Cheating allowed!

And if you have one of those boards or another idea for a one board quiver, please share it with us in the comment section.

Hyden Shapes, Hypto Krypto 

Hypto Krypto tinder

Probably the most famous of all “one board quivers.” It was the most sold model a few years in a row worldwide, and I’m sure you’ve seen it in Line-ups on all continents. It doesn’t matter what the waves are doing; it seems to work. But then again, with someone like Craig Anderson, this doesn’t come as much of a surprise.

You want to surf this board extremely short, what might feel weird until you get used to it. The other unique aspect of this board is the specially developed and patented technology, what makes it really strong.

I’m curious how it feels, but I’ve never surfed it myself. Not yet. But I’ve seldom heard someone talking bad about it.

Lib Tech, Air e Ola 

liptech tinder

The main reason for most people to buy a Lib Tech Surfboard is because of how strong they are. If you want to travel with only one board, you want your board in the water, and not in some ding repair shop.

Lib Tech has a lot of different shapes and most of them are made to have fun in less than perfect waves. But with the “Air e ola,” they made a high-performance shortboard, which works fine in small waves, but you feel comfortable on it in bigger and steeper waves as well.

As advertised on their homepage, “The Air e Ola is the perfect high-performance surfboard for aggressive, progressive, fast and precise surfing in all conditions.” Or in other words, it’s definitely not the board for chilled soul surfing down the line, and not as forgiving as the Hypto Krypto. If this kind of surfing is YOU, then you can stop reading right now because you might have found your quiver killer!

It is my personal travel buddy and match (but not the only one), and I like it. If you want to know more about it, and how good it really is as a travel board, ready my post about the Air e Ola.

JS Industries, Blak Box 2 (HYFI Technology) 

js blak box 2 tinder

This Australian Jack of all trade is the weapon of choice of many contest-surfers like Parko, Wilko, Dusty Payne, Julian Wilson or Adrian Buchan. Like Lib Tech’s Air e Ola, the Blak Box 2 is a high-performance shortboard, what makes it a board for more advanced surfers, rather than intermediates.

The HYFI-model is supposed to be super strong, just like the two boards above. In my eyes, this is an advantage, or even a necessity for a travel board or a one board quiver. JS advertises the HYFI technology as a lighter, and at

the same time stronger alternative than to your standard PU board, without compromising flex and durability over time.

(If someone had one of those boards for a while already, I would be happy to hear if it’s what they say.)

Pukas, Original Sixtyniner

pukas original sixtininer tinder

Every time world-traveler Kepa Acero is heading out, he never really knows what kind of waves he might find. But he knows, he will surf. Equipped with the stoke of a grom, and the surf skills of a pro, no water is foreign enough fir him to not paddle out. The board he trusts in every possible and impossible situation is made by Pukas in the Basque Country (where he’s from as well).

The outlines of the “Original Sixtyniner” remind a lot of those of the Hypto Krypto. It is the only option out of the four boards in this short list, which comes as a standard PU board. It makes it easy to have it fixed everywhere around the globe, but it is more sensitive to dings, cracks, and holes. In my opinion, this is a disadvantage for a one board quiver, as you don’t have a backup board for the time, your board has to stay out of the water.

However, what really makes this board special, and separates it from the rest is the center fin box, and with it the possibility to surf it as a single fin. Thanks to this very subtle detail, you’ve got two completely different boards in one!

Chilli, Rare Bird

one board quiver rare bird

The Rare Bird from Cilli Surfboards looks like your typical quiver killer!

It is pretty thick and has a lot volume under the chest. With a slightly pulled in round tail, it becomes really manoeuvrable, while holding in steeper waves.

The Cilli Rare Bird is said to be a great board for lower intermediates as well! It has boxy rails (or soft rails) and a less than an ultra-aggressive outline. This makes the Rare Bird extremely forgiving, and even if your surfing is not always spot on, you won’t be thrown off like on your first round rodeo!

IF you want to travel with only one board, IF you know that you want to surf a shortboard, and IF your surfing is not there (yet) wher you want it to be, this could be the perfect board to progress and learn a lot. Don’t get me wrong! This is not a beginners board! You need to know how to surf. BUT is is not the most difficult to surf board on the market.

Pyzel, Phantom

phantom one board quiver

Not sure if this board needs introduction? John John Florence did more than enough to make everyone know this high performance shortboard. Once more, it is a step down board (from the Ghost model). But as it is such a perfect designed board, you can surf it in a really wide range of waves.

But either way, or because of it, it can be really liberating to travel with only one board, and trust it blindly.

Of course, most surfboard brands have an all-round board in their range by now. And new/ alternative materials make the surfboards stronger every year, if you trust something else than polyurethane = PU. But if we listen to Daniel Thomson from Tomo Surfboards, the only reason why PU surfboards are still looked at as the norm is, because of what materials the big brands are using most. And this starts to change as well. He thinks that once surfers develop an understanding of the feeling of different materials, they will adapt really quickly, and the shapers will have to follow. (From an interview of Surfer Magazine, April 2016)

Of course, you can keep swiping, trying and hoping for something better to come. There is nothing wrong with trying different surfboards, and surfboard monogamy might not be something that can or has to work in the long run. It doesn’t matter if it is in times of Tinder, or during the Longboard Hippie era.

The same board as in the picture of Nias from above.


  • Pascal

    Born and raised in Switzerland, Pascal took up skiing and snowboarding from a very young age. Surfing came pretty naturally after that! He's since written for various Surf Mag’s, captured waves around the world and has even competed for a couple of years.

    View all posts

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