Tree to Sea began like all good businesses, over coffee in a cafe. George and myself first met Gary from Tree To Sea when he pulled into our yard in his green 1970s baywindow kombi full of surfboards to say hi and what we were about. Once George got his head out of his engine the conversation quickly turned back on Gary and the fantastic concept that he was part of.
Robert Ivers and Gary Miller were introduced via a mutual friend. They were both experimenting making wooden boards independently, then decided to see if there was any interest out there for others to do the same, so they organised a board building workshop and off it went!
After a year or so they approached another friend Darren Minchin and asked him to jump on board.
Tree to Sea has been cruising along since 2014, holding workshops just about every month for anyone who wants to create their very own surfboard to suit their ability.
They are continually adding new board designs to their range to cater for as many people as they can, with shortboards, fishes, mid size, retro, longboards etc.
“With Darren joining us means we can give each participant plenty of instruction when needed as the ratio of participants to instructors is 2 to 1.
“The best part of each workshop is undoubtedly the broad range of people we meet and we make sure each workshop is a stress-free zone,” Gary said.
There is plenty of laughs to be had and stories to be told at Tree To Sea and the feedback they receive from participants after they have taken the board they built for a surf is such a buzz!
Tree To Sea is such a unique business as it’s possibly the only wooden surfboard workshop held over 2 days in Australia. They make their own range of ECO boards as environmentally friendly as they can and they’re not fibreglassed. The finish they use is a Marine grade varnish with built in sun inhibitor.
Participants come from all states of Australia except the NT and have even flown from as far as New Zealand and have had enquiries from Hawaii.
Tree to Sea workshops have hosted doctors, tradies, scientists, lawyers, Airbus pilots, students and one memorable 50th birthday workshop where the birthday girl and three of her friends enjoyed shaping and a few champers!
Last year they started their build on a range of ECO boards using a pre-shaped recyclable polystyrene blank with plantation grown Paulownia timber which is vacuum bagged to the blank, a recycled cork is then attached for the rail build and shaping. Gary said this method has taken them away from the earlier hollow wooden method but they believe this makes for a lighter/better board overall.
Tree to Sea’s ECO boards are built to be surfed but also look awesome as an art or furniture piece.
One of the funniest moments Gary remembers from one of the earliest workshops was a participant named Jose who was from Mexico. On the second day of the workshop he was complaining how the dried glue on his hands made it difficult for him to roll a joint the previous night. “He kept saying he couldn’t roll it tightly so he had to make it like a taco,” Gary laughed.
At Tree to Sea the guys just want to keep improving the boards and production in the workshops as much as they can. “We get requests to build boards for people and presently we offer a custom shop service and intend to expand this area.”
Here at Hire A Kombi we have seen, held and tested the Tree To Sea boards. We used a gorgeous 9ft board as signage on top of the beetle at the Boho Lux Market and it looked brilliant and caught a lot of attention. We are lucky enough to have a board here to trial in the surf this week so on that note it’s a splendid day and time for us to take out our tree to the sea!
Find these guys on Instagram: @treetosea_aus Facebook: Tree To See Australia
Peace Out x