Next up in our Industry Masters series is one of the most well respected shapers in the World, Keith Teboul.
Name: Keith Teboul
Getting into shaping
Back in 87 we started the company Quatro and I began shaping when we were two years into it. I just wasn’t getting the boards I wanted from Sean, so I decided to shape a couple of boards myself. I ended up doing that and then just shaping, shaping, shaping and slowly but surely other people started to come and order boards from me too. It just kind of went from there!
I was learning to build the boards with Sean down at our little factory in Kihei, so I had an idea of what a board looked like but when I started I didn’t know exactly what to do as I hadn’t done the shaping part before.
My first boards looked just about ok and worked just well enough to make me continue and from then I was hooked.
When I was a kid in high school I used to watch a shaper shape; I never thought I’m going to be a shaper, I just loved to watch him, I used to go every day after school. I think that gave me the basics, they were engrained in me from a young age.
I came to Hawaii after this and worked in HiTech for 8 years, started Quatro and then we just kind of moved along together: Sean, Francisco, Jason Prior and I. It was a great opportunity for me to have an outlet for the custom boards straight away with Quatro.
Inspirations and current shapes
Most of what defines the shapes I make comes from me and from surfing. There’s a number of shapers I really look up to: Matt Biolos from Lost, Jason Stevenson from JS Sports Australia, and the fact that I’m a windsurfer and surfer too of course means I can really go out and test how the shapes are working.
A lot of what I do on the custom side of things now goes into the production boards; I used to be fairly far away on the custom side of things, especially with my own personal boards as I used to ride with a lot more rocker. But now I’m riding pretty similar boards to the production, mine just tend to be a little shorter and a little more extreme. What we’re riding is a lot closer to what we’re putting on the market.
We’re getting to a stage where boards efficient enough for the market and radical enough for the professional wave sailors, which is an incredible place to be.
Day to Day
I usually come in around 7.30am or 8.00am, this means I can get in about two hours of shaping before we open the doors to the shop. Then once we’re open I continue to shape, but as customers come in I take some time to speak to them too.
Depending on the conditions I usually try and get done by about 12.00pm so I can get down to the beach and go sailing for two or three hours, then I’ll usually be back by 5.00pm and work for a couple more hours.
That usually gives me enough time to get the work done for all my guys; we try and keep a steady flow of what we’re doing through the week. Every week is pretty much the same to be honest!
Every day I might get a couple of bottoms ready, shape a couple of rails and fine shape a couple of boards, plus maybe shape a surf board too.