Testimonial Date: 28/07/2018 - Board Type : Custom
Hi Grant, the board you made me earlier this year has been superb and was undoubtedly money well spent. All of my best surfs during my Indonesia trip were on the step up you shaped me and I am thoroughly satisfied with how you successfully integrated all my requirements into the surfboard you made me. It paddles exceptionally while simultaneously feeling as lively as a tiny shortboard underfoot on larger waves. Unfortunately, due to time constraints with university, I wasn't able to use the board as frequently as I'd like prior to coming over here, however now that I've finished my studies this should change promptly. The board has performed exceptionally during the limited surfs on the northern beaches as well, and I am stoked with its ability to surf solid days in Sydney. I still find big surf challenging, however with your board the big days don't feel so daunting and I am not so anxious in the surf.
I also see myself improving at a substantially faster rate than I otherwise would have had I stuck with my shortboards. I suspect my enthusiasm for the board will grow as my confidence and ability improve in bigger conditions and am excited for all the great waves I'm going to catch with it in future.
James/Northern Beaches, Sydney
Surfer: 23/72kg/6'2" Board: 6'10" X 19 1/4" X 2 1/2" Rounded pintail Semi-Gun Thruster.

Note from Grant: I built this board for James for sizable surf in Sydney, and for his trip to south Sumatra where he emailed me from today. His previous experience in big waves had not been great as he had been riding much shorter boards. In bigger surf you need to get in as early as possible, and to do this you need length and appropriate volume. Good Semi-guns are complicated and require a particular combination of variables (see Semi-Gun page for details). Every time I'm in Sumatra the majority of guys turn up with "step up" boards which are way too short. Then they are forced into late take offs and suffer sometimes serious consequences. James and I are acquaintances, and have surfed together mostly at Avalon. He had seen my boards, seen the Sumatra videos and was happy for me to guide him through the order. He is a very bright guy as well which made the process most enjoyable for me.

Testimonial Date: 11/04/2017 - Board Type : Custom

Hi Grant,
Surfed the 8’ board today. Nice solid waves, with the bank a long way out. Long rides down the beach and hard to get back through the break, so paddling was a challenge for me. The waves were clean and lovely. The board paddled so well, with super easy entry into the long lefts. I felt great off the bottom and fast through the turns, even cutting back with clean smooth release in direction changes. Mate I could not be happier, it is a lovely board, suited to my needs in that kind of surf. Thanks so much for all your efforts and professionalism in crafting a great shooter for an aged surf nazi.
Kind regards,
The half-hearted man.
Les/South Coast, NSW.
Surfer:59/5'10"/83kg Board:8'0" X 20 1/2" X 2 15/16" Pintail Gun
Note from Grant Miller: Les is a good surfer with a heart condition affecting his stamina. He wanted a board with more volume for 6'-8' decent surf down here on the South Coast. It's got more foam than he needs for his weight to compensate for his diminished paddling ability now. Nevertheless I made sure it was not too bulky, and that it retained appropriate sensitivity through the rail foil and distribution of foam throughout the board. I'm really looking forward to watching him surf it this winter. He seems very happy with the outcome.

Testimonial Date: 07/03/2017 - Board Type : Custom
Hi Grant,
Surfed the board this arvo. Really enjoyed it. Paddled great, responded well.
Chunky messy waves…really sucky but fins felt great, with plenty of flex.
2 7/8 is great thickness and extra width, no problem.
It was a new fresh experience. Thanks mate.
It made my old boards feel superseded.
Regards,Les/South Coast NSW
The half-hearted man.
Surfer:59/5'10"/83kg Board: Semi-Gun 7'0" X 21" X 2 7/8" Thruster rounded pintail.
Note from Grant Miller: Les bought this board from me yesterday second hand after it was traded in. He is a very experienced decent surfer who has been in the water his whole life. He has a heart condition now which means he no longer has the same degree of stamina. There is more volume in this board than strictly necessary for his weight, but I thought it would be ideal to enable easier paddling/early entry and yet still surf well. For approximately the past 20 years he has ridden boards built by another local shaper, and so this is his first board from me. So far so good it seems.

Testimonial Date: 13/05/2016 - Board Type : Custom
Hi Grant

Forgot to provide feedback

went down to raglan on saturday. it was around 6 foot!

farked up my timing off the rocks and got caught by some big sets. the board survived a massive beating on debut.

- had to let it go and dive under.

however i eventually got out.

the board paddled well and it was nice and stable on takeoff -even when i was halfway down the face on one wave before i balanced properly.. super forgiving

i caught one screamer. the board stuck in the wave well. i could stay nice and high and it was also easy to turn when needed. really happy how it performed in big waves (for me)

off to shipwreck bay for surf trip with mates tomorrow. looking forward to trying it in other sorts of waves. i think it will go well


greg/New Zealand
Surfer: 41/5'10"/85kg Board: 7'0" X 21 1/4" X 2 3/4" Roundpin Semi-Gun
Note from Grant Miller: Over the years I have shaped a number of boards for Greg, some for small waves and others as all rounders. He is a competent surfer but has lower back problems with accompanying stiffness, which causes problems at take off as he is naturally late on his feet at times. He wanted this board for bigger surf in NZ and for an upcoming trip to Mexico. I made it wider than most shapers would for a Gun, as I wanted him to have more stability on take off particularly. It also has a bit more volume than strictly necessary for his weight, again to provide stability but also to enable him to paddle in nice and early in big surf. Rails are reasonably fine for holding power under pressure and to allow appropriate sensitivity. After his first surf he sent me the email above.

Testimonial Date: 13/05/2015 - Board Type : Custom
Hi Grant,

Thanks for your call yesterday. Got back from the Mentawais last Monday and had a ball. I got your board out only once as it was a little small up until the end of the week.
We got to Bankvaults on our second last day and there were solid 6' sets running through and I started out on a 6'4 and was struggling to get on early enough. I changed to your board and the difference was amazing. Easy paddle in and a good speed.
I am looking forward to getting onto it a lot more this winter. We need more swell!

Thanks for everything. You've been fantastic the whole way through and I love the board.
Kind regards,
Michael Holden/Northern Beaches, Sydney.
Surfer:40/5'9"/76kg Board:7'2" X 19 1/2" x 2 5/8" Rounded pintail Thruster.

Note from Grant Miller: This board was built specifically to surf waves up to double overhead plus, both in Indo and back here in Australia. We wanted a board which paddled Michael in nice and early so that he could set himself up for the wave ahead. So many surfers go to Indo with undersized boards and suffer accordingly. They are forced into late take offs and get caught behind fast breaking sections. All this is totally avoidable with the right board.
It may be trendy at present to ride shorter boards. But when you are paddling out into serious surf on the trip of a lifetime, you need the confidence that only comes with riding a well designed Semi-Gun.

Testimonial Date: 09/06/2014 - Board Type : Custom
G'day Grant,

Finally got some decent swell to test out single fin orange.
Good Friday I got a decent size left at a lake entrance near home and the board went fantastic on my back hand.

But the rest of the Easter weekend I surfed my favourite right hand reef break down the coast and the board came into its own.

I had to remember I wasn't riding a thruster and once I got the muscle memory happening for the single fin I had a ball.

Thank you again for exceptional first class personal service and making me a board that once again makes me look better than I really am!

Paul/South Coast NSW
Surfer:48/105kg/6'1" Board: 7'0" X 22" X 3 5/16" Single fin wing pin with 10" finbox and 5 1/2" base, 7" deep Brewer fin.
Note from Grant Miller: Paul came to me with the brief "I want to relive my youth." I pulled out my old templates from my years shaping at Hot Buttered Surfboards in the late 70's and early 80's. Essentially I replicated the outline, foil, rocker and bottom contours from that era, and added modern rails. Martyn Worthington did a magic fade with colour and Steve Zoeller finished things off with a beautiful glass job. A truly beautiful board.

Testimonial Date: 17/09/2013 - Board Type : Custom

Used my semi gun 7'x 20' x 2 3/4" for the first time today in clean 6' surf. In one surf I can say it is the best board I own. From the first wave it went well, but every single wave was getting better, found the sweet spot and for a large board it turned really well and made those waves really easy to surf. The board could not be more user friendly. I was in control all the time and it gave me a lot of confidence, every wave I was taking off deeper... I made a few late drops that normally I would not have. Grant made me exactly the board I was looking for, at the end of the session I left the water feeling a better surfer than when I went in.
And very very happy!
Thanks Grant!

Surfer: 42/5'9"/84kg Board: 7'0" X 20" X 2 3/4" Rounded Pintail version.
Note from Grant Miller: This board is very very similar to my own 7'0" Semi-Gun, just widened out and a touch thicker. I have been developing and refining this design over many years in the varied waves of Mexico, Sumatra and here at home. It is built to paddle in early and then get going quickly, and at the same time have plenty of manoeuvrability.

Testimonial Date: 01/04/2011 - Board Type : Custom
Thanks Grant for the board you made me a few months back. I've had plenty of decent waves to ride it in and it goes really good.
The quad set up really livens it up and its fast through turns and feels loose without any loss of control.
I've had a quad before with a more straight fish like planshape and found it a bit restricted through turns but the curvier planshape on this one you made feels a lot better.
I haven't ridden it as a single yet but I put some smaller back fins in it and mucked around with it but found that the M5's and M3's you put in it feel the best.
As always it was great to deal with you and the board came out exactly like I wanted it.
The overall finish and glass job is excellent as usual.
I hope you enjoyed your Indo trip. I will be booking in for next year.
Stay safe and enjoy the rest of your big break.

regards Sean South Coast
Board : custom quad egg
7'6 x 22 x 3

Testimonial Date: 05/01/2011 - Board Type : Custom
Hi Grant,
I just wanted to give you some feedback on my boards. As you know I have been surfing for only 24 months, I am middle forties, not brave and not skinny either and so this new pastime has been a real love hate thing. I started on Pinkie that you shaped based on my beginner status, an 8ft 2 mini mal, chunky and very pink and she gave me the confidence on my first fibre glass board. I do not know any of the terminology so all I can say is I could paddle the board easily, catch waves, stand up and stay up all on a board that I could carry and not have to drag!!!

After this came Sam a smaller board who I love and he allows me to make bottom turns and make my rides longer. He is 7'6" and lighter to carry and smaller than my first board so I felt I was getting somewhere. Now I am riding another Pinkie, 7’2, narrower and weighs like a feather and is great for turning.

All along from the very first time we spoke about my surfing, you have had a plan for my boards and as I have progressed you have gently reduced the length and width of the boards but still given me the stability I need to maintain my confidence.
Your standard of service and care could not be any better and I could not be happier and want to thank you for your expertise and encouragement.
Maybe in a year I will be riding a 6’10!!! Yippee.

Fi/Palm Beach, Sydney.
Surfer:45/57kg/5'4" Board: Custom Minimal 7'2" X 21 1/2" X 2 3/4" Squashtail.

Testimonial Date: 23/11/2010 - Board Type : Custom
Hi Grant,
My condolences on the passing of your mother. I read the tribute to her that you
wrote on your website and she was obviously a very inspirational woman.

Thanks for the call about the 6'9" you made for me to take to the Mentawais. I
didn't really get to try it out in the waves that would test its limits and the
couple of days that I should have used it, I paddled out on the smaller board
and managed ok.

Not having surfed a board that size for a while, it took me a bit to find how
best to surf it with regards to foot placement etc, but once I sorted that out
it was great. I felt confident laying it over on a bottom turn both forehand and
backhand. It was super responsive in turns and I don't think that I caught a
rail at all. I tried it with a couple of different fin combinations but settled
on FG-5s as the best fit in those waves.

The other board I took was a stock board that I bought from you a couple (or
more) years ago off your website. It is 6'6", 19 3/8" and 2 1/2" V-Skate and was
the board I used the majority of the time on the trip.

On the last day I surfed it in well over double-head high conditions and it
handled it fine. The thing that might interest you is that I rode that board as
a quad the whole time with fg-7s in the front and some home-made rears that are
slightly smaller than an FCS GX. I was amazed, make that stunned, by how much
hold it had in the bigger waves. I only took it as my smaller board because I
had surfed it in some small surf at Currumbin Alley before the trip with that
same fin set-up and it was just a rocket but still loose.

I've now had all my Millers except the 6'9" (which is just too beautiful to mess
with) converted to quads using the Bruce McKee formula and they are all just

I think the thing that I've noticed most about riding your boards in quad
format, as well as the sensation of increased speed, is that it seems to have
freed the tail of the board up without any loss of hold. At first I dismissed
that as just the excitement of having something new to try but all the converted
boards exhibit the same characteristics.

As you may remember I have always ridden your boards with big fins in the front
and a small fin in the back, so maybe the quad approach with that same style fin
set-up just happens to suit my surfing. I think I mentioned this to you when
telling you about the first quad conversion, but the other thing I've noticed,
and this was apparent in the Mentawais, is the way the quads seem to hold their
speed during a drawn out turn or cutback.

I've made turns on the converted boards that, had the board been in thruster
format, I would have never have got the board all the way around. Now obviously
that's mainly related to my skill (or lack thereof) level but if a design factor
helps me have more fun, then I'm not complaining!

The other thing I wanted to mention is that I only use side fins with a flat or
an inside foil in the rear as I'm looking for the side fins to provide more lift
and a bit of drive than being concerned about the ability to transition between
Thanks again for providing me with boards that have helped me enjoy my surfing
so much over the last few years.


Testimonial Date: 13/03/2010 - Board Type : Custom
Hi Grant,

As I get older and wiser and maybe a little heavier I have realized that all of the boards I see in surf shops are probably only good for 50% of the surfing population. Guys are riding boards that are not suitable for them and unfortunately are becoming overly frustrated with their surfing experience. This was certainly how I felt. Interestingly I am not alone in this train of thought and I now see others following your shaping ideas.

Killing time today waiting for the kids I spent an hour looking at Al Merrick's shapes in Mona Vale. Most surf shops have a limited range of boards that fit my line of thinking. Indeed, last year's Channel Island's range only had 2-3 models I would have been interested in. However, this year, a good half of Merrick's boards are suitable for my style of surfing. All of his boards have increased in volume. The dimensions are truer than many other shapers. Lots of guys say their boards are 2 -1/2 inches thick but it must only be the measurement at the stringer. Once you move away from the stringer the planer has taken most of the volume away.

Sorry about the ramble but I thought you should know that one of the world's top shapers has realized what you have been talking about for years.

Now to my boards.

F-SKATE - 6'6" X 21 5/8" X 2 3/4"
I spent a good proportion of the summer on the F-SKATE and hardly used the V-SKATE. I only did this because I was having so much fun on the F skate. It did exactly what I wanted. I was after a board I could use when surfing small waves with my son. At 6'6" and very wide it is really easy to paddle. I caught every wave I wanted. It manages to go across flat sections well and in 3 foot plus is really easy to turn. At times in the smaller stuff I found that it lacked looseness so I began to experiment with fins a little. I changed to M5s in all 3 positions but felt there was not enough drive (at my ability level anyway). I put the M7s back in the sides and put an M5 in as a centre fin. This loosened the board up quite a bit and I now use this as my standard setup. In smaller conditions or when surfing a small point break like Tea Tree at Noosa or Mona Vale basin I have been using the M7s as side fins and have used a small GX fin in the centre. This has really changed the way the board works. It still has plenty of drive but is really loose as well.

This board does exactly what I wanted it to and it certainly has a place in my quiver. My next F skate, however, will probably be around the 6'4" x 20 1/2" x 2 -1/2" . This is an inch wider and the same thickness as previous boards by another shaper, however, the true F-SKATE thickness is more to my liking. I would use this in small waves that had enough power not to warrant using my current F-SKATE.

V-SKATE - 6'7" X 20 1/2" X 2 3/4"
After spending too much time on the F skate and realizing I was surfing it in bigger waves that would have been much more suitable for the V-SKATE, I finally put the F-SKATE away. Once again the V-SKATE paddles onto waves so effortlessly. After only riding it a few times I even managed a 2nd in my division at my local boardriders' club. (My highest result ever against guys I have surfed against since being a grommet). This particular day was a pretty solid 5-6 foot and I had much more confidence than ever before. The result on the day said a lot about the board. In waves up to this size my V-SKATE is great, however, on this day I found the extra width made the board a bit "skittish" I was only using M5s so I could have handled it a bit better with a different choice of fins perhaps.

Once again this board has done exactly what I wanted it to do. It paddles easily, turns on a dime and has plenty of drive. My next V-SKATE would probably go back to 6'6" x 19 1/2" x 2 1/2" or ( 2 3/4" ) . This would give it a bit more down the line hold but still provide plenty of volume for paddling. I would also add a little more of a double concave through the tail. I would consider a square or another rounded pin tail.

Thanks for all of your help and guidance.


John Engel/Narrabeen (45/84kg/6'2")

Testimonial Date: 07/01/2010 - Board Type : Custom
Gday Grant
Just thought I’d drop you a line to let you know how the board is going. I’ve taken it out a few times over the last few weeks and have been absolutely loving it. The paddle power and the speed of it are simply awesome, it works exactly how I wanted it. It took a little while getting used to the single fin on my first surf on it, I kept trying to turn it hard on the rails like I do on the V-Skate and got spat off a few times as it tended to spin out a bit on the tail as I was surfing it in pretty solid 2 metre waves. The biggest thing to get used to was the sensation of speed, it goes so fast down the line compared to the V-Skate – bloody awesome!!

After my first surf I was considering adding the extra couple of fins to make it into a thruster to enable it to key into the bigger waves on the turns but have now decided to leave them off because I have started getting used to the different feel of it and I quite like the challenge of having something different. I like a lot of diversity as I reckon it helps improve my surfing because I’m the kind of person that can go a bit “stale” if I stick to the same thing all the time

In smaller stuff it works an absolute treat, I spent a morning out at Point Leo in small fat little waves and it went beautifully, picks up waves with ease and responds well to weight shifting to get more speed or hold back to stay closer to the pocket.

In short mate I love it, thanks again for making me such a great board that suits what I needed so perfectly.

Best regards

Andrew Hatch/Victoria

Board: 8'6" X 22 1/2" X 3" Dedicated high speed malibu with maximum paddle power. 2 plus 1 fin setup.

Testimonial Date: 16/01/2009 - Board Type : Custom
Gday Grant,

The 6'4' you shaped is fantastic. Worked an absolute treat in Sri Lanka - could go from top to bottom easily, it suits me perfectly. Its got great speed and the round tail makes it nice and loose in the small stuff. Sometimes it goes a little wobbly in the big stuff because of the tail, but most of the time goes great in big surf.
Definitely the best board so far. Thankyou very much. Hope you're enjoying the summer.

James Cripps (Northern Beaches/Sydney) 6'4" X 19 1/4" X 2 1/2" High performance.

Testimonial Date: 12/06/2008 - Board Type : Custom
Hi Grant

I LOVE my board! Perfect weight and size for me and its fast! The paddling was no problem either.

I put on a smaller skeg, making my turns easier.
My first day out with the board was at a break at the North Shore and I got my first barrel!!
I can't wait to take it to surf Fiji in September.
Next time I am out in Hawaii (in July) I am going to try the 6'6 Waterskate I got from you previously.
You are the best! Your board design makes me surf better and I love the way it handles.
Thank you Grant.
I LOVE my board.....Seriously Stoked.

All the best
Rhonda (UK/Australia) 8'0" X 22" X 2 5/8" rounded pin mid length Malibu.

Testimonial Date: 02/04/2008 - Board Type : Custom

Thanks for shaping me a great custom made semi-gun (7'3" x 19 7/8" X 2 3/4") for my trip to Sumbawa.It got me into (and out of) just about every situation I put myself into, in the "magazine picture" quality surf we encountered on our trip. The fact that I'm 54 and only half fit didn't seem to matter-just paddle, point and shoot!

Notwithstanding reef and rock bottoms, nothing more than a few small dings,and it was the only board I surfed.

An exceptional piece of equipment.

Kind Regards,
Andrew Doyle (Eastern Suburbs/Sydney)

Testimonial Date: 17/03/2008 - Board Type : Custom
Hello Grant,

I've finally managed to get some good surfs in on the new board and it's been great. I went across to WA for a 10 day surfari with a friend and we had an awesome time in head high waves, strong offshore winds and friendly locals.
The board was perfect, very easy to paddle (once I got my body position correct), super stable on the take off's and loose on the wave. My surfing improved leaps and bounds after a few days, even my mate commented how much I had improved after some solid days surfing. The board was very forgiving with multiple sweet spots and just let me concentrate on improving my riding.
Thanks for shaping me a great board to match my ability.

The only negative side would be the difficulty in duck diving, being only 75kgs and with a poor technique I found it very difficult to sink the board but I guess there is a lot of volume there to push under the water. You can't have it all..!

I think I'll be in touch towards the end of the year for one of your F-Skate models, something a bit smaller with less volume that I can grow into and go and conquer some bigger waves. I've got the bug big time now...!


This board was an egg shape requested by Mark....6'8" x 22" x 2 7/8"....hence his challenge in duckdiving it.

Testimonial Date: 01/12/2004 - Board Type : Custom

Its a gem.....should have thanked you earlier. Have only surfed it once in 6 - 8 foot grinding Cokes in the Maldives and it was the fastest I have ever gone on a surfboard (felt like it anyway).

When I got it I was amazed at how close it was to what I wanted - so the long phone calls were certainly worth it, thanks very much. Still unsure about the colour - its pretty loud - but every one who sees it likes it. Not too worried about that though, I am stoked with the shape and dimensions.

Used G7000 side fins and G5 back fin. What do you think? Seemed OK at the time, but would be interested to hear what you would put in it.

Waiting for the next big swell.....

Best Rgds

Darren (Cabarita/NSW)