When getting mentally prepared to throw yourself over the ledge, or stroke into an open ocean bomb, having a shaper who knows the feeling certainly doesn't hurt if you're looking for peace of mind.

So what's on Rusty Surfboards’ scion, and mastermind behind the new step-up model, “The Blackbird,” Clint Preisendorfer's CV? Well, as a lifeguard at Tavarua, he'd often spend six hours a day in the lineup at Cloudbreak—where he first homed in on Rusty’s “Slayer” model, a board with which the Blackbird shares a fair amount of DNA. And when massive NW swells light up Northern California’s most exposed beachies, he’s also known to heed the call. 

In our newest installment of Design Forum, Preisendorfer walks us through the Blackbird model, an elongated, voluminous step-up, designed for finding big barrels from Black's Beach, SD to Ocean Beach, SF and beyond.