Vintage Surf meet 2019 coming soon !

Vintage Surf meet 2019 coming soon !
Free to take part
We buy interesting old boards 60s/70s/early 80s in good condition. Email . Also wanted - Surfing UK , British Surfer and Surf Insight magazines .
Above photo - copyright Rennie Ellis photographer archive

Monday, 20 September 2010

Tim Jones' Chateau '41 twin fin

I bought this board from a guy near Port Talbot in Wales, his kids had been learning on it and he wanted to move it on as it was pretty heavy. I jumped at the chance since I didn't have an early twin fin. Was stoked when it arrived, its so different from my other boards - seriously chunky slab of tail, down rails from tail to nose and seemingly inadequate un-canted fins. A slightly mad experiment in board design, and a rare UK (?) survivor of a short lived trend.
I had never heard of Chateau '41 surfboards so asked around; Pete Robinson thought it might be from the Channel Islands, which would make sense with the French name. So I decided to do some detective work - in other words I typed Tim Jones surfboard into google. Anyway it turns out a Tim Jones runs a surf school in Lanzarote and shaped a few boards earlier on in his career. I emailed him on the off chance this might be one of his shapes ; Tim replied the same day -

'Dear Al

Absolutely classic ! I was stunned seeing my old board. Your right I did make boards for years and still design and make some for friend and clients but this was my board bought in 1970 or 71 and it was shaped by Alan Williams under the Ch√Ęteau 41 label in Canton in Cardiff. I was 13 or 14 I think when I got and I know its cost a fortune new… 28 GBP ! Custom and being an arrogant little sod and thinking I was so hot I got him to put my name on the bottom. Alan later went on to make Williams Longboards, but that was way way later.

I sold it for a profit , typical, about 3 years later but I have some photos of me riding it and with it on the beach at Gennith and Woolacombe , I have attached two of them. I think in the one in the wet suit I was 14 and 15 in the other and I do have some shots of it somewhere where its brand new !

It was modeled on Corky Carrols ( http// 4th question down ) twin fin ideas which went out of popularity quite quickly. They had no tilt or cant to the fins so fun as they were they “ tracked “ just got stuck in the one direction sometimes. Check out these related models for the period .

It’s at least 39 years old and here are the obvious questions … how did you get it ? Have you ever surfed it , Do you want to sell it ? I keep the photo of me with it in my wallet… ha cant believe it !! Still riding twin fins !
Best wishes Tim.'

Through the magic of email and a bit of luck the board's history comes back to life, thanks to Tim. And yes I do feel a bit guilty about owning it after reading Tim still has a photo of it in his wallet !

Tim aged 14 & 15 with the board when it was new ,1971 /2


  1. Fantastic Al! Totally loved that post.

  2. Cheers Si, I thought it was one of the better ones too

  3. hi just had a board to day of a friend and it is a chateau 41 just asking how old is it and is it rear ???
    thanks from andrew

  4. my email address

  5. Have a 41 in my garage exchanged a 6ft bilbo 6ft for it .Not the best board to learn on