WORDS BY SHAWN TRACT
What is the difference between the re.Bowls and v.Bowls from Ryan Lovelace? A lot of people have been inspired by the v.Bowls that Lovelace and a crew of Rincon groove-stylists have ridden with generation- transcending style for the last seven years. But with the creation of the re.Bowls a number of questions arise: What’s the difference between the two designs? Which one do I want first? And would I want both in my single-fin quiver?
The Trimcraft brand/project is one that keeps 100% hand shaping alive. The brand features both new and old designs, and is a sort of mentorship to some of the best local up-and-coming hand shapers. The re.Bowls is a Trimcraft model that stems from its predecessor, the v.Bowls, but better suited to a wider variety of waves and surfers. Where the v.Bowls demands a lot of your attention and has a steeper learning curve (“It’s easy to surf, but hard to surf well,” is my favorite quote from a friend), the re.Bowls has a little more rocker in the front half, more down rails for planing speed on less pockety waves, and a flatter deck line that still allows for smooth rail to rail transitions, but is a bit less hypersensitive. The idea was to pass this design to the Trimcraft guys in hopes of providing something technical for them to shape and extremely approachable and applicable to surf in a range of waves while keeping a lot of the bones of the original v.Bowls intact.
re.Bowls With the re.Bowls, you can increase your soul surfing style points 1000 percent from the first wave you catch. It surfs nothing like a short-board, fun-board, long-board, or fish; however, the bottom contours are more normalized to what you’re used to riding, which is a single to double concave with V. Though the board will make you groove, which is the epic reason you got it, pushing down through bottom turns and cutbacks feels more like something you’ve felt before. The beauty of the re.Bowls is that you can ride it easily from the first wave on, and as you learn how to lean and groove in your rail-to-rail transitions you can learn the art of single-fin style at your own pace.
v.Bowls The v.Bowls, on the other hand, is not a board that is going to be pushed around—it is what it is, not what you want it to be. This is where the beauty lies. Lovelace, smiling from ear to ear on his v.Bowls, recently said to me “I’m in no hurry to get anywhere fast.” He was in the perfect Zen trim, just letting life happen— no trying, just feeling and flow. “If I had to sum it up,” Lovelace says, “I would say the re.Bowls is going to be a better board for all around surfing. Slightly more conventional the re.Bowls lends itself well to a really wide audience of surfers. It also allows for very smooth stylish surfing in a diverse range of subpar to very good wave conditions. Conversely, the v.Bowls is more difficult to master in your first few sessions but holds an extremely unique mind-opening ability in the long run, which is why it’s developed such a cult following. Hopefully they are a gateway into each other, as any good pairing is.”
Shawn Tracht is a positive energy ion constantly creating and igniting stoke. By day, a school teacher, by afternoon, an amped surfer, and by mid-evening and night a loving dad, coach, and husband. His passion in the surf industry is diagnosing the idiosyncrasies of surfboard design.