The Speakeasy could have been Al Capone's paddle board
It was just last year that we heard about The Bootlegger, a retro mahogany stand-up paddle board made by Minneapolis-based artisan Kevin Fitzke. While it's a beauty to behold, it also costs US$3,299. Well, Fitzke is now back, with the less-pricey but still-classy Speakeasy.
Like The Bootlegger, The Speakeasy was inspired by wooden boats and airplanes from the 1920s and 30s. Whereas the former board has an almost boat-like prow and a recessed cubby hole on the deck, however, the latter has a more conventional look – that said, it is made in the "barrel back" style of classic Chris Craft motorboats.
The Speakeasy is constructed from stained Lloyds-registered marine-grade mahogany plywood, which is impregnated with epoxy resin and bonded together using a two-part epoxy. All of that wood is covered by a two-part yacht-grade urethane clear coat, along with a protective layer of fiberglass on the bottom. Aluminum and PVC trim elements also help protect against dings from the included custom carbon fiber/kevlar composite paddle, or from car-top carriers.
Users stand on a 5-mm-thick foam traction pad, and are able to secure items such as coolers using deck-mounted tie-downs. A custom-made carbon fiber/honeycomb composite fin on the underside keeps the board tracking straight through the water.
The whole thing weighs 33 to 36 lb (15 to 16 kg), a figure that would be higher were it not for the board's hollow-core construction. It measures 10' 4" in length (3,150 mm), 32 inches in width (813 mm) and is 5 inches thick (127 mm).
If you're interested, The Speakeasy is currently the subject of a Kickstarter campaign. A pledge of US$2,500 (which is also the planned retail price) will get you one – along with the paddle – assuming it reaches production.