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Surf Gear Reviews

Best Surf Gadgets For 2018

Must Have Surf Gear And Gifts

Surfing is a fairly simple sport – there is no need for lots of fancy gear and equipment.  If you have a board, you can surf.  However, technology and innovations have made our surfing lives much more comfortable and easy.  From tide watches to the Pickle, there are so many gadgets that can make certain parts of your surfing ritual not only easier, but more fun as well.  Whether you’re looking for some surfing gifts for someone special or want to add to your own colelction, here are a few of our favorite and best surf related gear ideas and gadgets.

The Pickle

Removing wax from your surfboard can be a messy process.  You have to let the wax heat up in the sun, and then you have to scrape it off in varying degrees of messiness.  Getting every bit of wax completely off after the initial first layer was a process involving smelly chemical wax remover which was a mess in its own right.  I used the stuff once, then never again.

If you want to get all the nasty dirty wax buildup off your board and have it looking like new, then The Pickle is just what you need.  This simple device is basically a nylon bag with fiberglass dust inside.  The dust reacts with the wax and dries up the oils, and with a bit of rubbing the wax falls off in easy to remove flakes.  I didn’t think it would work very well, but when I tried it I was amazed at how easy it was to get the last remaining wax off my board.  I always have one of these on-hand in my surfing gear box.

Board Buddy Surfboard Carrying Handle

Let’s face it, sometimes carrying a wide longboard is tough work, especially for those with shorter arms.  The Board Buddy is a handle that grips the rail of a longboard and offers a much more ergonomic way to carry your board.  This makes carrying your board over longer than usual distances a breeze.  I know there are a few breaks that I hesitate to longboard because carrying my board strains my arm and fingers.  The Board Buddy solves that problem and relieves tired fingers and forearms.

Inno Boardlocker

This is probably one of the best accessories I have ever bought for surfing.  The Inno Boardlocker makes putting boards on the roof incredibly easy and safe.  No more messing around with awkward straps that buzz in the wind, or being worried that someone is going to run off with your boards while you go into the store or grab a bite to eat for lunch.

The Inno Boardlocker attaches to your car’s current racks (yes, you do need factory or aftermarket racks) and has a very easy to use ratchet system that incorporates rubber coated stainless steel wire to hold down your boards, and a lock that enables you to secure your boards to your car to prevent theft.  I bought my current set of Boardlocker racks almost 10 years ago and they are still working.

Hitch Safe

Locking your car and securely leaving your key somewhere is one of the risky issues associated with surfing.  I used to hide my key on my car at my old home break, however experience here in Southern California has shown me that nothing is safe these days.  People have literally had their cars stolen from my local surf spot in Encinitas because criminals will watch where surfers leave their keys and then go and steal the car once the surfer gets in the water.

The Hitch Safe is another one of my must have surf gadgets.  The only issue with this is that you need a hitch that will accommodate the safe.  However, if you do, the Hitch Safe is am amazing thing to have whether you’re surfing, snowboarding, or just heading out to a bar or restaurant and don’t want your keys in your pocket.  As long as I have a car with a hitch I will have a Hitch Safe.

Leatherman Thruster Multitool

“Does anyone have a fin key?” “Anyone have a wax comb?” “Anyone have a screwdriver for my log fin?” All of these common questions will be answered with the Leatherman Thruster Multitool.  This “pocketknife” for surfers is the ultimate multitool designed to keep on hand in a surf bin or glove compartment.  The tool includes a bit driver for fins and screws, a wax comb and wax scraper, bottle opener, and carabiner/eye hook to attach it to your backpack or other carrying accessory.

Leatherman Thruster Surf PocketToolLeatherman Thruster Surf PocketTool

No Tool Center Fin And Longboard Screws

I hate fishing around for a screwdriver every time I want to remove or change the position of my longboard fin.  Enter SBS’s “No Tool” Center Fin Screws.  These things are genius, and you’ll never need a screwdriver if you want to tinker with the placement of your longboard fin, or simply remove it for traveling.  This makes it easy to slide your fin around in the box, even during a session!  Especially if you really want to dial in the fin placement on your log, you should definitely get a pack of these handy little screws.

Grill Mount GoPro Mouth Holder

Surfing and carrying a GoPro in your hand simply don’t mix.  GoPro has a range of different wearable mounts, but the chest mount and head mount were always awkward for most surfers.  The ye olde wrist mount was also cumbersome.  Enter the mouth mount – there are a number of different iterations of this, but the Grill Mount is the most versatile.  I’ve tried ones with a snorkel type holder and it was a bit difficult to deal with, plus it allowed water in when I would duckdive.  The Grill Mount solves the problem of not being able to talk while using it, and also offers the ability to custom mold the mouthpiece to your teeth.  Pretty cool if you ask me!  Using the mouth mount takes a bit of practice but results in some really fun point of view shots.  Once you’re up and riding the wave you can also easily take it out and hand hold it.

The Pro Standard Grill Mount - The Best GoPro Mouth MountThe Pro Standard Grill Mount – The Best GoPro Mouth Mount

HangAir Wetsuit Drying Hanger

Drying your wetsuit out can sometimes take quite a while.  This is a bummer, especially in the winter when all you want is dry rubber on a cold day.  The HangAir Wetsuit Drying Hanger is a really cool device that basically incorporates a large fan in the middle of a very wide hanger.  The fan pushes air through the wetsuit, decreasing drying time quite a bit.  You will be able to extend the life of your suits if you’re used to drying them in the sun just to get them to dry out.

RinseKit Portable Shower

No doubt you’ve seen someone with one of these in the parking lot by now, but what you may not realize is how helpful it is.  At spots with no showers or faucets it can be a pain in the neck to rinse off or get the sand off your feet.  A laundry or gallon water bottle can do the job, but once you’ve used the RinseKit it’s hard to go back.

This isn’t just for surfers either – you can use it for tons of other water sports, on boats, to wash your dog, and for camping.  It’s a great utility that belongs in everyone’s gear stash.

Grass Changing Mat

Ever wish you could change on a nice lawn instead of the dirty, sandy parking lot?  Now you can always have a freshly cut section of grass to change on with the Surf Grass Mat.

I personally love these things…it beats stepping on a towel and it’s super fun.  Kids really love this, and it also doubles as a doormat for camping.  These make a perfect gift for yourself or your favorite surfer.


Hayley Gordon

Hayley Gordon has been surfing for over 20 years. Riding both shortboards and longboards, she's traveled the world to surf but mainly sticks to her two home locations of San Diego and Long Island.

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Carson Henderson
6 years ago

OMNA Tourniquet Surfboard Leashes need to be on the list for 2018.

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