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Meet Thomas Bexon, founder of Thomas Surfboards


Based in the coastal town of Noosa in Queensland, Australia, Thomas Bexon makes surfboards for a living.

After featuring Thomas’s work in our recent Outdoor Collection campaign, we were inspired by the craftsmanship and passion behind the Thomas Surfboards brand.

Here, Thomas shares his story, the art of surfboard making, and where to find the best surf in the world.



Creating Thomas Surfboards


While surfing is loved around the globe, designing and making surfboards is anything but ordinary. For Thomas, the path to building his business began as a hobby with no intention to make a career out of it. 

"Thomas Surfboards started about 20 years ago as a hobby. I started making surfboards in my mom's garage as a teenager. And then it was a side little thing for a long time,” Thomas shared.

"About 15 years ago, it turned into a full-time job, where I worked for other surfboard factories and made my stuff on the side. It's organically grown from there, and I never thought it would end up the size or scale it is.”

Best known for longboards, Thomas Surfboards has become an extensive range, giving options to every preference.

“I got into longboards originally because it was what I was interested in riding myself,” Thomas explained. “We've also got world-class longboard waves where we are, so it made sense."

“At that time, there wasn't really anyone making the kind of boards I wanted to try and experiment with and ride. I decided to have a go at making it instead of going to a factory."


Captured in the Thomas Surfboards factory.


The design process


From simple foam to a beautifully crafted, watertight design ready for the waves, there are many steps to making a surfboard. 

"You start with polyurethane foam blank, which we get from a company on the Gold Coast,” Thomas explained. “Then you either shape it by hand, with a planer and hand tools, or with a CNC machine and finish by hand.”

“After the shaping process, it goes into glassing, where it gets laminated with resin, fiberglass, and another layer of resin. Then you install the sanded fins and finish with another layer of resin.”

Aside from the design itself, Thomas's main focus is on producing exceptional quality and taking care in every step of the board building process. 

“There's a lot of back and forth in the process and little steps along the way to make it watertight and look pretty before it's finished.” Thomas shares. “There are a few types of moulded plastic boards in the market, but the majority of surfboards available are built by hand.”

Like any hands-on, creative field, the process of building something by hand gives the work a special layer of meaning.

“You take it from a bit of foam to a finished surfboard and build something with your hands. It's rewarding making something and seeing a finished product.” Thomas shared. “It can be a bit monotonous, but it's also therapeutic. You put your headphones on, listen to music, and get in the zone.”


Featuring the King Cabana in Salt King Cote™ Frame and Deluxe Shade Cloth – White.


Bringing Australian made designs global

Entirely made in Australia, Thomas retails around the globe and recently opened a retail space in Indonesia.

"I've been going to Indonesia for ten years and doing little shaping trips and building boards for other people,” Thomas shared. “The opportunity to get our own little space there came up, and it just made sense.”

“We send all the boards from our factory here in Noosa over to Bali, which been a good point of difference. Because they're made in Australia, the quality is better than anything else available.”

Known for building the absolute highest quality custom surfboards, the Thomas Surfboards team has become a go-to for surfers around the world.

“The higher-end, quality boards have always been our focus,” Thomas shared. “Being picky on the quality control side of things has helped the business grow, especially in markets like Korea, Japan, and the US where quality is really valued.”

With no official apprenticeships available in the industry, learning to make surfboards remains a mostly self-taught field. 

“Every surfboard shaper I know started in a backyard shed or a garage as a hobby.” Thomas shared. “Or as a kid, sweeping floors in a factory like ours, and then it's just time. You work your way up. You make your own surfboards on the side until one day they're good enough that other people start wanting them.”


Featuring the King Cabana in Salt King Cote™ Frame and Deluxe Shade Cloth – White.

The board shaping process, captured at the Thomas Surfboards factory.


Finding the right board


The three main types of surfboards are longboards, midboards, and shortboards, each coming with pros and cons. 

“A longboard is normally nine feet or longer and is primarily used for smaller waves,” Thomas explained. “You don't have to work to get speed. You stand in the middle of the board and trim and glide along the wave. I guess it's more of a graceful approach to surfing.”

Thomas began creating longboards exclusively, and the range has since expanded to cater to different preferences.

“Midboards cover all bases and can be used in anything from smaller to bigger waves. It all depends on the shape and style and the type of waves they are meant for.”

“Shortboards are a performance board. They're meant for going up and down and round all over the place. There are still many styles, but generally, they are for a more athletic, competitive surfing style.”

Outside of the standard boards, the Thomas Surfboards team can also build entirely custom-made designs.


Featuring the King Cabana in Salt King Cote™ Frame and Deluxe Shade Cloth – White.

Captured at Noosa in Queensland Australia.


A love of the Australian outdoors


While Thomas has been lucky enough to travel the world to experience the best surf on offer, the Australian waves will always be close to his heart. 

“There are a few spots in Indonesia that are beautiful. Sri Lanka, Southwest France, and Japan have some really good surf,” Thomas shared. “My favourite place to surf would be home in Noosa. There's also no place like home.”

“One good thing about surfing is you kind of forget about worrying about anything you need to deal with. You can just go and have fun, smile, and enjoy yourself.”

Follow Thomas Surfboards on Instagram or visit the website.

For more outdoor inspiration, shop our Outdoor Collection, explore the King Cabana, or discover more articles.