Riley Balsawood Surfboards are focused on creating the best balsa wood surfboards and providing the best services to ensure the highest levels of customer satisfaction since 1996.
The Riley Balsawood Surfboard story started after the founder, Mark, had spent several years working as a carpenter after finishing his apprenticeship and was ready for a change. He decided to pack a bag and a couple of surfboards and head off on an extensive trip through Mexico, Central and South America.
Two months into the trip he had broken his Polyurethane (PU) surfboards. Being frustrated by this he stumbled upon some balsa wood in Ecuador. Being a carpenter by trade he quickly shaped up a balsa wood surfboard then and there.
After his first trial sessions he quickly saw the potential in balsa wood as a surfboard material. So a year after leaving Australia he returned to Sydney – with a container full of balsa wood sticks. And in April 1996, Riley Balsawood Surfboards was founded.
Riley Balsawood Surfboards first started out crafting beautiful, high quality retro style 50's and 60's Solid Malibu surfboards. During the early years Mark was also testing and developing the best foam cores to use with balsa wood. After three years of research and development he was convinced he found a true alternative to polyurethane surfboards. Recycled EPS foam in combination with a 2-3mm balsa "skin" made the surfboard super light and extremely strong. These surfboards performed great in the water and inevitably attracted a lot of attention from surfers, word spread fast and the rest is history.
Riley Balsawood Surfboards carefully select and source their balsa wood from Ecuador and PNG, Mark runs the entire operation from the balsa wood selection to grading, cutting, laminating, shaping and finishing off the surfboard.
As commitment to reducing their impact on the environment they have started growing their own Balsa wood trees here in Australia.
They are very proud of hand crafting all their products right here in Australia. On top of this Riley Balsawood Surfboards supports a huge number of charities and not for profit organisations.