Heading off on a surf trip, I want to be sitting in the plane seat, thinking of the gorgeous weather and surf conditions I’m on my way to. But all too often that anticipation is ruined before take-off when I look out of the window and see the baggage handlers throwing my board bag onto the plane with no regard for the fact that the joy I’m hoping to experience on my trip is entirely reliant on the fragile contents of that bag. Turning up at your destination, only to find your boards are damaged and unsurfable is an all too common story, but thanks to Crypt Cases, these might be a thing of the past.
We spoke with Drew Boyles, the Founder of Crypt Cases to find out about “the first ever, hard travel case with collapsible technology”.
How did Crypt Cases come about?
I have been a surfer for 27 years, and 8 years ago, I travelled to Oahu, Hawaii with my oldest son, Ryan. We used a sleeping bag, bubble wrap, sock bag, and a coffin to protect our boards, and handed them over to the baggage handler, hoping for the best. When we arrived at the North Shore we pulled our boards out and my son’s brand new, indestructible Firewire surfboard, was broken. The nose had snapped off.
We thought: there has got to be a better way.
So we developed and patented Crypt Cases, which is a collapsible storage case for the action sports industry. Our final launch Case is our fourth model, we have put a lot of thought into the design and we have an incredible team to continue improving it.
Could you tell us what a Crypt Case does that all other (soft) cases don’t?
Unlike soft cases, Crypt Cases are the first ever, hard travel case with collapsible technology that guarantees your board arrives safely anywhere in the world. Crypt Cases patented design combines rigid hard case security with collapsible convenience for easy storage.
What are the main features of Crypt Cases design?
The hard case has great durability and protection. We like the telescoping design, its transportability, and multi-board functionality. The case holds up to two standard boards and a step-up board.
- The total length of case is 7’5″
- The maximum width of the case is 13″
- The maximum depth of the case is 25.4″
- Holds up to 2 standard short boards and a step up board
- Tough, rigid and scratch resistant plastic
- Aluminium reinforced ribs
- Locking segments for maximum board protection
- Recessing pull handle(s)
- Detachable carrying strap
Who is involved with the project?
The Crypt Case team is an impressive group of passionate surfers and engineers.
Kent Maul and I surf together, and he brings more than five decades of his love for surf and entrepreneurship to Crypt Cases. Kent has worked with the world’s top surf brands in the areas of design, production, and manufacturing. He has surfed across the world and has experienced all the different board bags and airline mistreatments.
Kent’s favourite surf trip?
Kent’s favorite surf trips spots are Tahiti, Indonesia, and Costa Rica.
Neil loves the engineering challenge of creating Crypt Cases and being part of the innovation of a new, innovative product with a low weight and cost. Neil enjoys everything in the details – from optimizing the layout and functionality to providing surfers and athletes with a convenient, attractive case. Neil is a mechanical engineer who has worked in the aerospace industry for the last 15 years. Currently he runs Kinetic Analytics, a custom design, analysis and manufacturing house. He also co-founded Green Dynamics, a technology manufacturing innovator. Neil holds a master’s degree from MIT and a bachelor’s degree from UC San Diego.
Here at Johnny on the Spot, we love to hear of brands that make efforts to support our environment. I understand you were the co-chairperson of Surfrider Foundation for the Malibu/Santa Monica chapter?
Yes, I like what you guys are doing. I think if you spend a lot of time in the water, you can’t help but take notice of the environment and water quality.
The Surfrider Foundation is dedicated to the protection and enjoyment of the world’s ocean, waves and beaches through a powerful activist network. They have a staff of nearly 50 people working on campaigns that champion for policy and fight legal battles for our coasts, bring awareness to issues facing our ocean, provide critical support and raise money to make everything happen. They all have an appetite for adventure—like me, and share a common passion for our beloved ocean, waves, and beaches.
Where is your dream surf spot?
The next one! I have a goal of surfing every country in the world in my lifetime. I have a surf trip booked for Ecuador in May which is exciting as I’ve not surfed there yet.
I think the ultimate trip for me would be a boat trip with 7 of my closest friends to the Mentawais Islands. I was fortunate enough to go a couple of years ago with Martin Daly, a legendary captain who discovered that island chain and introduced it to Tom Carroll back in the ‘80s. I think it would be good to go back with my buddies and our Crypt Cases.
What are your plans for Crypt Case’s future?
We’re focusing on surf at this time because that’s what I love. But there are other opportunities to transition this project into different industry verticals down the line. There’s so much crossover with snowboarding and skis. We can see it going beyond that – endurance racing, bikes, hunting and more.
Any words of inspiration for surf entrepreneurs like yourself wanting to start up a new project?
Words of inspiration for surf entrepreneurs?
Find a trusted mentor – ones that will be brutally honest and that you can count on
- Address an opportunity vs. something you’re simply passionate about – see how you can make the product work for you and the market
- Perseverance – be willing to push on or change/adapt an idea along the way
Like I said, we’re on our 4th version of our case, and we’re not going to market with anything that is less than a safe protective case for surfers.
Where can people find out more about what you’re doing?
We are doing a limited release here (USA) in early spring to start, and then we will take it to the market late spring/ early summer.
We’ve funded everything to the point to have working cases, testing, and mid-spring fundraising for launch. At this time, we are not 100% positive we will be continuing with the crowdfunding campaign, as the market conditions are such – and preliminary interest being very strong – that we may be able to do direct to market and bypass the crowdfunding portion of our original business plan. This final decision is still being evaluated. The goal, regardless, is to have our product available to consumers for purchase online by late 2017 and possibly at select retailers.
English graduate and musician with a 9-5 job, who finds a lot of happiness in surfing and yoga. A singer on my own: https://soundcloud.com/ophelia-xerri or with my band Bareknuckle Beatbox.
And don’t forget to check out our app, Johnny on the Spot. It’s a personal, private diary that will help you keep a record of your surf sessions and learn the best time to surf all your favourite breaks.