Got a rousing response to that Foss Foam post earlier this week. No surprise. A plume-helmeted knight holding a blank on a beach in Santa Monica with what appears to be a Grecian hooker at his feet? Surf history clickbait does not get better than that.
Former Surf Guide writer and Topanga Beach four-striper Bob Feigel commented on the EOS Facebook page that Guide ran an whole different set of Foss Foam ads during that period. I pulled the mags this afternoon, and sure enough, out popped over a half-dozen more Foss full-pagers. These are actually a bit older. That first batch, which all ran in Surfing, came from ’66 and ’67. The ads below ran in ’64 and ’65.
I learned a couple of things. Foss Foam opened for business in 1958, which amazed me. I thought Clark was the only game in town at that early stage. Also, in 1964, the company opened a brand new 24,000-square-foot factory in Costa Mesa, and offered boardmakers 21 different sizes and shapes of blank. Which makes me wonder, and I never would have entertained the thought before this week, but . . . was Foss actually pumping out more product than Clark in the mid-’60s? Seems very unlikely. But a 24,000-square-foot foam-making plant—that’s huge. If anybody can shed some light on Foss and Clark, please comment, I’d love to know more.
Meanwhile, I’m still high on the Foss marketing team. Here are a few of the Surf Guide ads. Enjoy.