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Drawing Board – Danny Kiebert/Bill Stewart Camel Toe

Bataleon co-owner Danny Kiebert is definitely the man to talk to about how their boards look; since coming up with the brand’s famous three-finger motif – which highlights the Triple Base Technology that all their boards use – he’s essentially designed the entire range. This version of the Camel Toe powder board was borne out of a chance meeting with legendary surfboard shaper Bill Stewart.

How did the collaboration with Bill come about?
It’s actually a funny story. We were in California to run the graphical ideas by our sales guys and team riders over there. When we were in San Clemente we thought we’d visit the Stewart’s Surfboards shop. While we were looking at some of the longboards with beveled rails, an old dude walked up and started explaining them to us. It turned out he was Bill Stewart himself, and we told him about how we use a similar idea in our snowboards. He was like “Snowboards? I made a snowboard back in ’81!”

Did you get to see it?
He took us to his house and he pulled out this crazy-looking board that was like nothing we’d ever seen. But it had steel edges, a sidecut, camber and a crazy three-dimensional base with channels. He’d made a wooden topsheet, then shaped the base out of foam and then glossed it. We were blown away. Most snowboards back then were a piece of wood with a rope. This even had a swivel binding on it, and he’d stuck on a piece of doormat for the back foot. It was like discovering a missing link in snowboard history. It looks super cool as well; he was one of the pioneers of using airbrush art on surfboards. 

So is this design an exact replica the artwork from that board?
Yeah, there’s the outline of the original board, plus the graphic on both topsheet and base. We couldn’t put channels in the base – he could on his because the base was made out of foam – but graphically it’s an exact copy. 

Why did you put it on the Camel Toe?
We wanted put it on one of our boards to pay homage to this board of his; and if we were stoked on it then surely there would be a lot of other people who’d feel the same. We thought that it should go on the most ‘surfy’ board we do, the Camel Toe. He was like, “that’s a sick name!” The guy has that sense of humour too. He had a surfboard called the Fartknocker, and a follow-up called the Deuce.

How were you able to copy the design so faithfully; did you have to take the original board back with you?
Bill has a while graphic design team that works on his surfboards, and they did an amazing job translating the graphic so that we could put it on a snowboard. I gave them the outline template and they did it super well.

Has Bill ridden it yet?
No. From all the shaping he’s had a hip replacement, so he’s got to be a bit careful. But his son-in-law is Erik Leines, and he’s been riding one all winter. He’s super stoked on it. Actually, Bill never even rode the one he made, because they never allowed him on the lift when he wanted to give it a try. He went back home, threw it in the garage and never did anything with it. But the plan is to go ride it. It’s one of a kind and it’s glossed, so it’s kind of fragile, but Bill said, “fuck it, I don’t care,” so we plan to ride it carefully in some powder soon.

Has this experience made you want to try similar collaborations in the future?
We approach everything we do with an open mind. Maybe this was coincidence, or maybe it was for a reason – depends how deep you want to get into it! We get approached about colabs a lot, and if it makes sense then we’ll do it. We are actually developing some more stuff with Bill, because he’s such a fun guy to hang out with. He’s so full of crazy ideas.

Drawing Board

  1. Drawing Board – Jono Wood/CAPiTA Horrorscope
  2. Drawing Board – Sean Genovese/DWD Pro Model
  3. Drawing Board – Danny Kiebert/Bill Stewart Camel Toe
  4. Drawing Board – Akomplice/Ride Helix
  5. Drawing Board – Michiel Walrave/Lobster Freestylebaord
  6. Drawing Board – Dustin Ortiz/YES The Greats
  7. Drawing Board – Schoph
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