Treasures from the vault -Melbourne 78-80

Well , Peter Bradford contacted me today , 3 years after I started hassling him for photos of the GFI ramp /Moomba demos etc.
He has delved deep under the house to uncover these long lost images from circa 1978-1980. The shots cover the first GFI 1/4 pipe, maybe 7 1/2 feet high, the second version - an 8 foot wide, 9 foot high brown pantser with maybe 18 inches of vert, the Coles demo ramp from Moomba 1980 - a terrifying U -pipe with 4 feet of removable flat vert, as well as Pete Crae’s excellent back yard half pipe.
These pics are only about half of what he’s sent me and he reckons there’s more to come…I love it when this stuff comes to light.
Before the net, stuff like this would just mold away in someone’s shed but now we can all check out the pics, hopefully see some photos of our mates, maybe even one or two of ourselves to stroke the retrospective ego. More than that, they’re just time capsules of the 70’s and 80’s and the wacky ramp designs of the times- 4 foot of vert, no flat, 8 bloody feet wide ???
Anyway, check out the pics, many more to come once I’ve Photoshopped them into shape

Take a look at this bastard- skinny, tall , no flat and a little too flexy for comfort… road trailerable demo half pipe

Chris Hatten well up on the extra vert section. This 4ft x 8ft section could be dragged off by crane and coping /ledge dropped on in place- very NASA for 1980…

An unusual angle of Johnee bustin out a hand plant- can’t think of anyone else that could do this at the time…the trick was only invented like 18 months earlier

Johnee up on the vert section

And a wheeler shot from below…it really was a whole heap of vert

Wedge rock n rolling during one of the packed Moomba demos in the gardens near Flinders street on the Yarra

Andrew Tennant - power house, blunt intrument and well ahead of the game in 1978/9. He’d shake the ramp so it skittered a few inches across the footpath every time he hit it

Andy again, slashing a grinder on wide Indys

Brad Smith was very smooth, a mellow softly spoken guy who had a great surf/skate style

Karl getting all methody on his tweaked backside airs. Not the trademark Eastaway vest and hat…always a part of his style


Peter Bradford himself going frontside on the first GFI ramp. Note the home made safety gear and another Alav style hat- late 70’s rock on… … eeling.jpg[/IMG]

Peter Crae’s half pipe was ahead of it’s time- really rideable, 10 feet wide with flat bottom, thick, smooth ply. Excellent local ramp, and his mum always fed us too. She even seemed to like us hanging there, which was kinda weird…smelly, noisy bastards we were

Sorry, missed one- here’s Skull has returned Karl wheeling his backyard halfpipe. This thing was 9 1/2 feet deep or more with 8 foot trannies, maybe 6 or 8 feet of flat…was well ahead of it’s time really. No platforms (hadn’t been invented yet) and the ply covering was pretty patchy as we were all like 15 or 16 and couldn’t afford to buy materials.
It was completely cobbled together from planks, struts and bits of scabbed masonite and ply. Nothing unusual about that at the time, except for how damn big it was…
Because the ply was so shitty, fakying to height was pretty much self defeating…so we’d do “sitting drops” off the top of Karl’s garage to get a speed boost.
It made perfect sense then, but I’ve gotta say dropping into a 10 foot deep vert bowl starting off my arse on the coping doesn’t really gel for me anymore

great find!

thank’s for posting,i love this sorta stuff… 8) 8) 8)

oh em gee…that is wild stuff…skull wheeler is mental.johnee is a different animal than your average or even above average skater.

Awsome find, thx for posting them up Noel. I just love the old B/W pics, they give you that pioneering history kinda feel.
Loving it.

Fantastic find, keep them coming. that stuff should be put into a book with everybody’s little stories. Maybe a moss book as wedge talked about a while back.

Rad Noel, love seeing the real old stuff. Always remember you Melbourne guys telling us the tales of the various GFI Radlands ramps, it’s so insane seeing shots of 'em and the crew all these years later.

The big Coles Moomba ramp of course brings back fond and frightening memories. 14 foot high with all that vert, and I remember you could feel the hinge where the vert joined the tranny when you went over it, & the whole thing only what, about 8 foot wide, not to mention the associated instability of it all - was just mental.

Which makes the shots of Johnny, where he’s skating without a helmet, doing a wheeler and what looks like a cess slide right at the top - some of the raddest shot of the time.

One of the most incredible memories I have from all my days of riding, is the final of the 1980 Moomba contest - Johnny & Wedge busting for 1st place in the final head to head, full Moomba crowd and hype, and Wedge realising he had to pull something miraculous out of his bag, clambering up the back of the ramp, balancing precariously at the top, and then attempting an elevator drop in… to full slam at the bottom. I can still feel it Wedge, and I was only watching :open_mouth: :smiley:

Gotta pick you up on this though Noel. Johnny’s wearing his Manly Skate City Staff shirt in that shot. There was at least 1/2 a dozen of us doing inverts in Sydney at that time. Me & my bro’ Russ learnt 'em way before, on our driveway ramp when the Bobby Valdez Skateboarder issue was still current. I took 'em to Pymble pool and got 'em hand on the lip and out of waterfall the next day.
Like Duane Heketa learning FS ollies the day he saw Gelfand in Skateboarder, and later Biff with the BS ollies. That’s how skating was in those days, before video & the web !

Thanks heaps for going to the trouble to post up all the pics dude. If you got more, love to see… :smiley:

awesome shots Noel - thanks for sharing - got any borry rooves in yer kit? :open_mouth: mk

good work noel had been trying to get those shots from bradford for at least five years. and sorry errol it was g.f.i. radlads. sac would kill us if he heard us call it radland being (sac) a radlander . never forgoten the day we showed up at the opening of doveten wearing the g.f.i. radlads t shirts and sac telling us to piss off you cant wear those tees where the radlanders.
g.f.i. ramps.

first was my ramp 6ft high 1ft of vert 1/4 pipe.
no.2 was brad smiths. 9ft or ten foot 2ft of vert 1/4 pipe.
n0.3 bradfords sign written g.f.i. 1/4 8ft ,1ft of vert 1/4 pipe
no.4 bradfords the one andrew tennant is rockin rolling on.which was towed on a trailer to comps and demos.was 9ft 1 1/2 of vert. this is the ramp we had for hey hey its saturday morning show 2 weeks after the don lane show with johnny and ching etc. this ramp ended up at melton in the freestyle area . was the first ramp in melbourne to have a metal 1ft wide piece at the bottom to stop the bottom where it met the road so as to prevent the bottom breaking.
no5.was the moomba half pipe 9ft tranny 1ft of vert with out extensions on plus the extensions where 4ft x 8ft wided.

also between ramps 1 and 2 brad smith built the flat bank half pipe thing that when you rode it noel you split your head open on the garage door had 3ft flat bottom.
ramp no.6 was the half pipe brad smith had in his backyard 8ft high 1ft of vert ten or twelve foot wide.
when andrew and tony mead skated ramp no,3 we would have to have 2 or 3 poeple sitting under the ramp to stop it moving and tipping over.
alot of thanks to the bradford family for one mr b. building us two brilliant demo ramps and getting us the gig on hey hey and at moomba when most parents didnt want there kids to have anything to do with skateboarding.
karls 1/2 pipe was between bradfords no.3 and 4.
john french,s half pipe was i think just a lttle before.
we also had at about the same time as 3 and 4 ,vanders half pipe. just before john crae,s half pipe.

thanks noel .peter also has video of moomba that was showen on the news and at the city square to promote the skating where they interveiwed everybody plus i know there is more hope he can find them.


absolutly uummm filthy… :smiling_imp:
andrew tennants grind shot is awesome!! :exclamation:

Thanks Noel for posting the gems, stoked to see the ramps and the challenges to progress back in the day is a true effort considering how good we all have it today.
Even though I’ve been fortunate through all you lads with the stories and history talks, can somebody post the deal between the groups, radlands, gfi, Sparx, etc and what it all means and what localized it or was there violence between the factions.
That will make it abit more interesting… :smiling_imp:

skull…lay that story about was it frankston??skaters versus homegurls… :wink:

thanks for posting noel, love it

Love it,

As promised, here’s a few more…by the way Adrian, I should have put a note on that Johnny statement -“no-one else round here”.
As I’ve often said, Sydney was clearly ahead in 78-81 and yeah, inverts weren’t so rare up there. John was still kickin arse though…
anyway, here’s a mixed bag- mostly Andrew Tennant, Pete Bradford Brad Smith , one of Maryt Kent in there, Steve Hill is in 2 of the black and whites too. You know who you are…

See you guys in an hour or two at Franga for some skating and Squid action

noel photo no1 andrew
no2 peter
no3 peter toe tap i would have taken that
no4 steven hill
no5 marty
no6 brad
no7 steve hill
no8 brad
no9 andrew
no 10 andrew
and my trucks where trackers with alva wheels that ludi put a conical on for me.tracker extracks i never had indys till i started skating again in 2000

RAD shots ,fuck hard anoth scrap,n up some cash to get a train ticket,camera what the fuck were they.Nice ramps ours were piece,s of shit till we got one built from channel 9 for the boyz (Rad-Land) went on Don Lane show(may he rest in peace nice man)i just got out the hospital with broken fingers so i watch the show on the tv anyway.Again got no shots would be some out there.Many crew came and skated,wished i could say the same about the ramps in these photo,s,Seemed to always be a problem when we would travel for hours to skate and get the same shit ,you guys cant skate.Glad that shits all over and we can all get together from different suburbs,states ,countries, and RIP IT UP.This isn,t a beef thats how it was Peace.

You guys where all spoilt, in the salubrious surrounds of west heidelberg all I had was this shitter. All timber acquired under the cover of darkness :wink:

That’s about what my driveway quarter loked like Fletch. Still bear the scars of riding it…

R A D pics Noel :smiley: