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Surf spot atlas made by surfers for surfers
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Session: By the dawns early light

Written by DrC123 show DrC123 profile

Thursday January 1 1970 12:59:59 AM

Surf spot: Cresent Head, Australia

Surf Trip: The Endless Summer 63-73 ( 15 November 1963 - 07 June 2007)

Session's Rate:

Wind direction: Offshore

Wind Strength: Light

Nb waves ridden: several

Length of the surf session: 2 hours

Surfboard ridden: Longboard

Fins: Single

Waves height: 2m-2.5m / 6ft-8ft

Waves Quality:
- Fast
- Hollow

Waves Shape:
- Walls
- Bowl

Description:

Crescent Heads, OZSunbeam

 

 

 

Wednesday a November dawn in early summer at Crescent Heads on the north east coast of New South Wales, Australia 1967.  The first rays of gold and red upon the ocean revealed perfect lines marching in around the point with sets from shoulder to overhead feathering in the light SE offshore breeze. Warm water, sand and cobblestone bottom lined a rocky headland with a scattering of Pandanas Palms ... no one out!

 

My three mates and I had driven the several hundred miles south from Queensland on PCH in a Sumbeam Rapier (Hitchcock used the marque in the 1955 classic "To Catch a Thief" with Grace Kelly and Cary Grant driving a 1953 Sunbeam Alpine Roadster) owned my Michael Eaves whose parents were wealthy farmers who had seen the writing on the wall in South Africia (think the Mau Mau and Zulu uprisings) and emigrated to Australia. 

 

With our "Joe Larkin" longboards strapped to the roof rack we were seeking the perfect waves pictured in a OZ surfing mag of Nat Young arching on the nose at Crescent like Mickey Dora (my idol) at Malibu. I actually drove that car at 90 MPG on winding mountain road! 

 

 

 

 

We had slept in the car at the campground by the creekmouth in the bay and instead of walking all the way around the point to get out  we began the mile or so paddle out to the line up. 

 

 

After dispatching a few of the smaller set waves two of us tookoff  (both goofy) on a giant overhead peak ... hard off the bottom ... crouching through the bowl in front of the rocks then out onto the long glass wall ... we were climbing and dropping but as the wave boomeranged into the bay into what the locals now call “The Racetrack”  it got faster and faster ... I was inside and low my mate was up high in front and the wake from his board made the wave start to peel over my head  ... I crouched  down and grabbed a rail ... I could see light in the tunnel for a couple of seconds but then I was in the washing machine and making the long swim to the creek mouth. ... he rode it all the way!

 

Would love to go back in time to those waves today ... either lip smacking, tail sliding on my 7’ 2” MR design Twin Fin “SuperFish” or  screaming down the line on my super light, super fast, flat bottom ,down railed  9’ 2” x 23” x 3” x 19” x 14” x 5” 2 +1 (3.25” sidebites + 7” center fin) hybrid ... single stringer, modern high performance John-Luc Robert’s Longboard.

 

The “Joe Larkin” I was riding was typical of that time ... a three stringer 9’8” x 21.5” x 3.5” x 17” x 14” x 6” that weighed a ton ... had a soft rolled bottom and egg rails ... very little rocker and a  9” single fin.  Absolute JUNK ... do not understand people who go out today and order “retro” boards complete with a Hula Girl or some such on the bottom ... we had to suffer through them and to pay over a $1,000 US for a piece of junk that only Joel Tudor or Mickey Dora could ever ride just so they can look “cool”  is beyond me?

 

(Sunbeam Rapier 1956-69) 

Engine: cast iron block with aluminium head

4 ylinders.........................................

4Bore and Stroke...................................81.5mm x 82.5mmCubic

Capacity....................................1,725.c.c

Valves............................................O.H.V.pushrod

Compression atio...............................9.2:1

Carburetters......................................2 Zenith Stromberg 150 CDS

Fuel Pump.........................................A C Mechanical

Oil Filter........................................Full Flow

Maximum Power (net)...............................88.B.H.P at 5200 rpm

Maximum Torque (net)..............................100lb.ft at 4000rpm 

Transmission Clutch..............................Borg and Beck- 7 1/2 inch diaphragm spring

Top gear ratio......................1.0:1 (overdrive-0.803:1)

3rd gear ratio......................1.296:1 (overdrive-1.04:1)

2nd gear ratio......................1.993:1

1st gear ratio......................3.122:1

Reverse ratio.......................3.323:1

Overdrive type.......................Laycock D-type

Final drive.........................Hypoid bevel 4.22:1 

Maximum Speeds (MPH) Mean-lap (banked circuit)..........................98.7

Best one-way 1/4 mile..............................102.2

Direct Top gear....................................93.0O/d

3rd gear.......................................90.03

2nd gear...........................................72.02

1st gear...........................................30.0 

Acceleration times 0 - 60............................................12.0

Standing 1/4 mile...................................18.5

Sunbeam Alpine Roadster:

 

 

For those who've never seen the film, I should explain that the vehicle in question is not the Sunbeam Alpine familiar to many people – the car which eventually became the Sunbeam Tiger, powered by a Ford V-8. The Alpine in "To Catch a Thief" is from an earlier era. More a Grand Tourer than a sports car, it is far prettier than the later Alpine.

The Alpine that made its debut in 1953 was a derivative of the Sunbeam-Talbot 90 sedan and drophead (convertible coupe), which featured a 2267cc 4-cylinder engine and 4-speed transmission with optional overdrive. This car had a remarkably successful rally career, including a 1953 overall victory in the famed Monte Carlo Rally.

Sunbeam Alpine 

 

Buddies:

Created: Tuesday December 26 2006 09:33:31 PM

Modified: Thursday June 7 2007 09:21:26 PM

Hits: 1557

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