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it Seems that was yesterday when Hugo Lopez-Asiaín started making surfboards with his brother Gabi in the small basement of his home in Madrid. The year was 85 and he was only 19 years old. Over 35 years have passed and Hugo continues to develop the same task, though now as a way of life. Marks the 30th anniversary of the creation of one of the hallmarks of surf boards most recognized at the national level: Full&Cas Surfboards.
the Eighth of ten brothers, Hugo always stood out from a young age for his incredible skill with the hands.
“My father was an architect and the whole family we have always had a great artistic vein. I loved to disassemble old appliances, toys, radios and even the bike of my sisters. Always got outstanding in pretecnología” , has Hugo with a laugh.
Like many families in madrid, the Lopez-Asiaín veraneaban in Santander. There Hugo and his brothers discovered water sports and quickly was hooked to windsurfing. is “The return to Madrid after the summer vacation was tough. After three months holed up in the water, we could not think of anything else, so we decided to find a way of not losing the thread” . That was how Hugo and his older brother, Gabi decided to start making windsurfing boards in the basement of his home.
it Was the following summer when they discovered the surf. is “The father of my cousins in Madrid was a pilot. On one of his trips, brought in from Puerto Rico a surf board, a MR (Mark Richards) with which we spend all of the family trying to learn to surf. From there it all began” , explains.
Full&Cas: a dream, a dog and a girl
In 1988, Hugo and his brother Gabi is installed in Santander. So, while Gabi starts to work in an advertising company, Hugo begins to devote himself to the manufacture of surf boards and skate full-time in a small workshop in which they also designed t-shirts, something that had already begun to do in his stage in madrid, under the name of FULL&CAS. “The name came from our dog, a great dane named “Full” and “Casilda”, my platonic love of adolescence,” says Hugo.
Two years later (1990), the business relocated to a larger ship and spacious, acquiring a greater company philosophy. Would come into play the first workers, all legendary surfers of the time –Humberto Echagüe “Peto”, Carlos “Surfito”, Gaspar Bezanilla, Jose Serrano, Eduardo Lopez-Dóriga “Chore”, Roberto Flores, Javier “Babi” Rubiera, etc.– and would sell to the surf shops. In addition, it would open a shop of his own in the centre of Santander: “Billy Willy” (1991-1995).
mechanization, a development pioneer
In the year 2000, the factory moved to its final location: a large industrial warehouse in the Polygon of the Cross of Maliaño, on the outskirts of Santander, where asentarían the foundations of the current company that, a year later (2001-2002), would add a great novelty to the manufacturing process: the integration of a numerical control machine to run the preshapes of the tables and that was a incredible breakthrough in the production. Designed by the engineer brazilian Luciano Leão, that was the first machine of machining tables for computer in Spain and second in Europe, after that of Barland in Biarritz (France).
In 2007, Hugo locates to an Italian engineer, Massimo Morini, specialized machines, machining industrial windsurf boards. Between the two give way to the design of a revolutionary machine of numerical control, which proposed a model that is more open production, and integrated programs of design of tables in 3D. is “I had always had it in his head that the key was in the mechanization of the processes. Without a doubt, this machine and its subsequent improvements over the years would set a before and an after in our manufacturing process and customization of tables” , explains Hugo.
The fatal fire
on 20 November 2013, the factory Full&Cas suffered a terrible fire on the verge of result in the definitive closure of the business. “We were working and all of a sudden they set fire to everything. It was possibly a short circuit in one of the engines. In a matter of minutes it burned everything, even the ceiling of the nave, was left with only foot walls. Fortunately, there was no personal injury,” says Hugo. is “it Was hard but we did not think even for a moment. Had to rebuild it all and get ahead.”
Built on the previous one, the new factory Full&Cas incorporated new and modern facilities, as well as important safety measures to become in one of the factories of tables most modern in Europe.
“we took the opportunity to modernize everything and improve in all aspects. Our production capacity is better, the quality of the tables is better… In that sense we have come out winning, although this has not come out for free” , explains Hugo.
custom Tables-the key to success
The customization of tables has always been the hallmark-defining Hugo López Asiaín: “the mechanization of The production process allows us to offer the customer virtually what we ask for. From our site you can configure a new table from scratch: custom sizes and shapes, to adapt the materials, customize the colors, choose the systems of keels…” , points. is “in Addition, the in-house manufacture allows us to minimize the production time and adjust the costs. The process of production of a surfboard is about 4 days, so that, in a week, the customer can have your new table at home, and at a reasonable price”.
At present, Full&Cas sells thousands of tables a year between Spain, France, Italy, Denmark, Germany and Portugal.