It all started in Brazil around 1966 with the Mansur Brothers, Fuad, Wady, and Elias, living their
California Surfing Dream of the “Laidback Life Style.’’ Their idols were Phill Edwards, Paul Strauch
Jr., and Mike Doyle.
At that time in Brazil there was no surf Industry, nor a single surf related store to buy surf products. This meant that every surfer had to make their own surf wax (melting candles adding a little bit of sand and perfume).
The problem every surfer had with this method was the wax was too slippery, making it unsafe to surf. One day in 1970, the youngest brother, Fuad Mansur aka Fu, received information from a chemist to utilize a special type of material in his surf wax formula. Fuad tested it out and found that it did indeed work, but not nearly enough to meet his desired perfection.
From 1973 to 1987, the brothers dedicated their time to the research, development, and testing of the perfect surf wax formula.
The crew lived inside the lab producing 3 to 5 bars per day (each one a different formula) in which they would test out on their surfboards.
They took each surf session very seriously as they put a significant amount of evaluation into each
wax formula being tested. They would gather on the beach for sunset as they discussed each
individual’s personal experience riding the waves with the different formulas. The wax formulas were rated on a simple scale of 1 to 10, keeping in mind the feeling of security the wax provided them under their feet.
For 14 years they were stuck at level 3, making the 70’s a decade of battles and defeats for Fu Wax.
Edgar Panzoldo, a surfer who works at Fu Wax, said that Fuad invested so much time and money in maintaining the lab and research with his crew for almost 20 years while everyone lived to research and test the product themselves in the water surfing.
(During this 20 years Fuad spent all the inheritance that his father left for him).
In 1987 everything changed.
There was an error in the lab at the melting point of a certain kind of raw material, resulting in the ideal wax texture for super cold water. The Fu Wax Crew immediately packed their bags and drove 1600 km to Torres (south of Brazil, near to icy waters of Uruguay and Argentina) with only 3 bars of 80 grams to test this ‘’Melting Point Error’’ Batch.
They arrived at Torres Beach late afternoon where Fu caught his first wave and for the first time ever felt a sense of security under his feet that he had dreamt of for decades. Everyone was shocked as they realized they had finally reached the level 10!
After surfing for 2 hours in the freezing water everyone went in for a hot shower. Fu, however, continued surfing as he was overly ecstatic with this astonishing grip he had finally
achieved. He continued surfing well after 2 hours as the wax still obtained its strong grip.
It was dark by the time he finally came in as he passed out cold on the beach with hyperthermy. He was hospitalized for 2 days during which he created the Fu Wax Slogan, ‘’Adherence Taken Seriously.’
’Today, Fu Wax is still a 100% Handmade Factory in its homeland of Brazil.
It is operated by Fuad Mansur & Family who have dedicated their lives to developing the perfect surf wax Formula.
The other surfers gave their rights of ownership to Fuad, as he was and remains the group leader, investing money and persevering more than anyone. A product that started as a simple dream to live the “Laidback Californian Surfer’s Life Style” has now become an International
Product of the Surfing Industry, catching waves of gratitude from surfers all over the world.
Fu Wax is likely to be found under the feet of the world’s premier surfers, including (but certainly not limited to) Kelly Slater, Dane Reynolds, John John Florence, Koa Rothman (who forsakes his father’s own Da Hui blend in pursuit of Fu), and literally the whole Brazilian CT contingent. Slater provides Fu Wax for his visitors at Surf Ranch. Despite its current ubiquity, surfers continue to horde their gluey bars from friends, family, and competitors alike.
“It’s like drugs or something,” Kolohe Andino said in 2011. “You have to have it.”