The Twice Baked is a small wave surfboard designed by master shaper, Dan Mann. It features Firewire’s Timbertek technology, which is better for the environment than conventional polyurethane surfboard technology, while offering robust construction and lively performance.
As a reviewer, I’ve used the Twice Baked for over a year in a range of conditions, from tiny 1-foot shore breaks to double overhead, solid groundswell. The latter was not a good idea but provided entertainment for spectators on the beach.
My Twice Baked is 5’5″ with a volume of just over 35 liters. It’s super wide, yet you can see hints of performance shortboard characteristics in the squash tail and relatively sleek lines up front. I used a set of JJF Speedfins – in thruster configuration – to boost performance in good waves. So let’s start at the very beginning.
Table of Contents
Why would you buy the Firewire Twice Baked?
The board is a great option for:
Intermediate to advanced surfers who want to have fun in small waves.
Novice surfers seeking a bouyant single board quiver.
Travellers going to places where the waves are not generally very good, but who want to bring along a compact and light surfboard just in case.
I’d qualify myself as an intermediate surfer who lives in a place where excellent waves are relatively infrequent. We mostly enjoy smallish waves that support a thriving longboard community. I’m not quite ready for a longboard, so started looking for an alternative. My requirements were:
Needs plenty of volume for easy paddling
Must perform like a shortboard when the opportunity presents
Beginner to advanced surfers
1 – 4 ft / small to medium waves
Five options – ride as a quad or thruster
How does the Twice Baked Perform?
Paddling out, the Twice Baked is super floaty. If you haven’t ridden very short boards before then it takes a bit of getting used to. However, you’ll quickly adapt to the small, wide profile.
Catching waves is easy and you quickly forget about the extra volume, especially when presented with a fast section. The rails are relatively low performance and you won’t be performing tight arcs in the pocket. Instead, you’ll be better served by lining up a crumbly section and performing a floater or top turn.
A double concave runs from the tail up through the centre of the board and gives you plenty of speed and drive. You’ll love the feeling when traversing gentle sections. You can pump the board if needed but I like to draw S curves and weave through to the reform. I much prefer the Twice Baked to a conventional fish because when you are back in the pocket you can actually manage a snap or two. The rocker also enables you to take off slightly later than many competing boards that tend to be flat as a pancake.
As with any board, the Twice Baked requires some consistent usage to understand how you can push it to its limits. You’ll also discover a thing or two about your own surfing. That’s what I love about experimenting with unconventional surfboards – you learn something from every shape.
From the Twice Baked I learned that you can slow things down and enjoy the cruise. No need to attempt vertical snaps or wild carves. Instead you can be more chill and enjoy the ride. Lazy cutbacks are no problem – and before you know it, you’re through the fat bit and onto a steep wall again. If you’re lucky enough to generate some speed then you can rely on the rocker and double concave to destroy that oncoming section – as you might on your shortboard.
A professional surfer’s perspective
Watch Timmy Reyes take the Twice Baked for a spin in this video. You’ll see how he pushes it to places most of us can only dream – even when we’re on a performance shortboard in good waves. Granted, Timmy could probably ride a door better than most of us surf our everyday board but his surfing provides hope and inspiration.
Highlights from the Twice Baked
Personally, a highlight of using this board was the ability to tuck into small barrels. The board holds a straight line, so if the opportunity arises, you can dig your arm into the wall and catch a moment’s shade quite easily. It’s super stable – a bit of a tank really – so you can exit through the doggy door or curtain with minimal hassle.
It’s super stable – a bit of a tank really – so you can exit through the doggy door or curtain with minimal hassle.
If this surfboard was a car, it would be a Jeep Wrangler. You can take it pretty much anywhere and have a whole lot of fun.
Perspective from Firewire
The Twice Baked is very obviously a squash-tailed little brother to the Baked Potato.
As far as dimensions go, if you ride a Baked Potato you’re likely to ride the same size Twice Baked. There are rather significant changes to the design overall; most obvious being the tail outline, and then the bottom contour. Like the BP, the TB has a double-barrel concave set within a single concave under the front foot, but it is slightly less aggressive and this time I split a concave into V just ahead of the center fin, or about 6-7” up from the tail. I also smoothed out the deck contours to add to an overall cleaner look.
This board is going to want to be surfed with performance in mind- with your foot all the way back, a low center of gravity, and to be pushed hard through turns, as well as when you are generating speed down the line and through soft sections.
Reviews of the Twice Baked from the web
The all new Twice Baked from Dan (the) Mann and Firewire is here and ready for summer time wave sliding. For all of you that fell in love with the O.G. Firewire Baked Potato – we think you will be stoked on this new and improved version.
A highly maneuverable + chubby small wave shortboard.
The Firewire Twice Baked quickly became my go-to board in conditions up to head high. I did take it out on a big day and was woefully undergunned. I managed to paddle into a few waves but in critical conditions – particularly when hollow and barrelling – the board struggles to draw the right lines. Those low performance rails dig and I found myself getting badly rolled. On one set wave a took my JJF Speedfins to the back and ended up out of the water for a month or so. You’ve been warned.
But on anything else – up to a little overhead – this is a fantastic board that we highly recommend. The Potato family from Firewire are amazing boards that balance performance with pleasure. We’re happy to report that it is well worth baking your potato twice. Get into it!
Firewire Twice Baked Review: An excellent small wave performer