Tuesday, October 4, 2016

Five foot South Swell and a Saturday morning at the Wedge

First few to sneak through. Photo Mike Paskin
When we arrived at 7:40am
Photos from Saturday Oct. 1, 2016

The Wedge is Southern California's calling to that crazy, short ride, pounding, quick rush, kind of wave. The proper wedge wave near the jetty is a pronounced left that breaks with just about any sort of south swell over 4 foot. It was until recently was it ever really to popular to attempt to surf it, but now a days more and more people are lurching for that rush of attempting to get as shacked as possible before ending up on the beach with a mouthful of sand and/or a sore ass.This weekend was no different and I thought I would have a go at it. I called up my Mike Paskin who has been shooting barrel and shore break shots for the last few years and he was all about it! We attempted to get to the Wedge early but still didn't get out int he water till about 8:30am. The proper peak at the jetty was packed and not to many surfers. So we opted for the next peak down which is known as Cylinders and is predominately a right, which I like better since I'm regular footed. The next two hours were epic trading off barre with a few other crazy's and one of my favorite pro surfers!
My buddy Ryan Croteau on an early one before we got out. Photo Steve Dillon
Myself Brian Daigneault on the bigger one I got that morning. Photo Mike Paskin

Inside one few feet form the sand, Brian Daigneault. Photo Mike Paskin

Mason Ho is one of those surfers everybody cant watch enough, whether its his interviews, crazy edits, or a wsl wildcards. Here he is on a layover in SoCal between trips and decided to hit the wedge for his second time ever. Photo Mike Paskin

One of the deeper ones I got, Brian Daigneault. Photo Mike Paskin

Mason Ho just gliding into a closeout barrel in 3 feet of sand and  hundreds of gallons of water. Photo Mike Paskin

Thursday, September 8, 2016

100 Days Central America Ep2_Mainland Mexico

In Episode 2 David and I have just landed off the ferry and onto Mainland Mexico. Where we will be encountering some of the best waves of the entire trip, places we have dreamed of surfing like Pascuales, Nexpa, and Puerto Escondido while more adventure ensues. Meeting new friends, a few truck problems, and of course lots of surfing!

Follow along on 100DaysTravel.com and @bdagz on instagram/snapchat to see behind the scenes adventure before the next episode comes out!

Special Thanks to:
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Music by:
The Gringoz- Let It Go
311- Flowing
The Terras- Threads

Thursday, August 4, 2016

One 30 second long wave in El Salvador

After an all day drive and search for this wave, we showed just before dark and camped on the point. Woke up to about 25 guys out at 6:30am in the water, so waited until 8:30am and got out there to grab a few to ourselves this was one of the good ones!

Wednesday, July 13, 2016

100 Days Central America Ep1_Baja

Departing June 8. 2016 from my home in Huntington Beach, California I am attempting to drive my Toyota 4Runner all the way through Central America.... and back home. In this first episode released of my newest adventure/project 100 Days Central America myself and my mate David Elliott make our way down the Baja Peninsula. In the 8 days or so we spent in Baja we had everything from car breakdowns, almost running out of gas in the middle of the desert, and camping on the beach surfing an epic right point. Follow along on 100DaysTravel.com and @bdagz on instagram/snapchat to see behind the scenes adventure before the next episode comes out!

Monday, July 11, 2016

100 Days Central America Official Trailer

#100DaysCentralAmerica is a vision of a n epic road trip I wanted to do from California to Panama. This Summer that dream is a reality since the departure on June 8th. Follow along on www.100DaysTravel.com

Monday, June 13, 2016

100 Days Central America: Baja Part 1

Average 3:30 Minute Read

     I departed Huntington Beach and arrived in San Diego on Tuesday evening we had a couple drinks and passed out to wake up Wednesday morning and get on the road crossing into Mexico. Before crossing the border we stopped and exchanged some money and got our car insurance which was about $140 for 6 months. I bought 6 months because I might be driving the truck back through Mexico and it was just cheaper that way. After crossing the border the next step was to find the immigration office, I needed to get a vehicle permit for my truck to take it on the ferry that goes from Baja to Mainland Mexico. En route to finding the office I took a wrong turn and ended up in the border line at Otay Mesa. We sat there just bummed thinking are we really about to sit here for 2 hours and have to turn back around and recross into Mexico! Well I wasn't going to let that happen, I through it in reverse and drove about half a mile in reverse dodging cars, pinatas, and people to get outta line, illegal yes but saved about 3 hours. When driving on Baja you do not need this but you need a permit when crossing over to Mainland Mex. I plan on spending about a month in Mexico so I also got a tourist visa which is also needed to get on the ferry. All of this cost about $70 for the vehicle permit and the person's Visa.

     As I had explained in my recent blog post I put new rear leaf springs and shocks on my truck to hold extra weight. But it was still saging in the rear and I wanted to get fixed before we kept going down Baja. So we drove around Tijuana to try to find a shop, of course translating what we needed and what need to be fixed was very hard. After about an hour we found a shop called Baja Custom Offroad and they were Legends, not only did they speak English but they knew exactly what to do. Remove the rear leaf spring bracket and move it back about 3 inches which gives the leaf springs more room for travel and a wider base to bump up the back end. After about 5 hours, $160 and a couple Tecate beers later it was finished and no more bottoming out! We were back on the road at about 8:30 p.m. and made it to Robert's k38 Surf hotel just 30 minutes away.

      Robert who was away at the time has owned this hotel for over 25 years, his son Russ now runs it when he's not around. Russ is a legend as well we chatted about my trip, his world travels, some photos he has taken and the new boat he purchased he was working on in the driveway when we arrived. All of this happened before noon and then Dave finally woke up and we hit the road again trying to get as far south as we could while the waves are flat. We made it all the way to Santa Rosalita an epic fishing Village set up with whole beach to camp on. When we awoke there was perfect waves peeling down the point, only problem was they were only 1 foot tall so not surfable haha.

       The Baja Peninsula is much longer and bigger than I could have ever imagined, I've been down here once before about six years ago but I still can't believe how vast and open it is. Now technically day three of the adventure we made it to the Sea of Cortez side of the Baja Peninsula where we found an epic little bay we stopped to have a dip in the water after 6 hours of driving that morning. Hitting the road again hopefully trying to make it to La Paz that evening we stopped to grab dinner. David had mentioned he wouldn't mind driving since I had driven the last 2-3 days so I said sure why not the road is pretty straight what could go wrong. Well a lot went wrong haha about 5 minutes after getting behind the Wheel, David was shifting into 4th when....

Monday, May 23, 2016

4 Runner Rebuild PART 2

Average 4:30 Minute Read 


     I left off in the Summer of 2015 in the last post where I had done all the engine work and some suspension. Well since I got back from a recent trip to Australia for a month I had the fire to get sheila ready for anything this upcoming summer 2016. I Finally felt like I was ready and have the time to do my dream trip, an epic surf trip driving to Panama, the end of the North American Continent!

     First thing is first I had been really really wanting to get some new paint on the truck for sometime now and I had a vision of what I had wanted. Since black is hot and just nasty I really wanted to go with a tan or desert sand as its called. Heard from a friend and after some research I found some reasonably priced military grade paint off a jeep restoration website called Gillespie. The other paint I used was just from Home Depot called Truck bed liner coating about $8 a can. Took me a solid day to prep the truck, between sanding, bondo, sanding, and more bondo. But once I got here all washed off and dried, I then acetond the whole car free of dust. Step two of the new paint job was lot's of
Moments after I finished painting!
taping and prep. The taping off took another few hours as well, For the painting equipment I just bought a small cheap gravity fed sprayer from harbor freight and it worked great!

     Now the painting begins I started on the roof and worked my way down, after each coat I took a bit to sand it down lightly with 800 grit, then blow it off and wipe it down. I did 3 coats then spent another few hours taping it off to spray the truck bed line along the bottom. After a long weekend Friday-Sunday from sanding, bondo, taping and painting I basically had a brand new truck! Everything came out pretty solid I was really happy with my new skills haha. Once the painting was done the list was endless, first up some sound deadner. I went with once again a reasonable alternative off amazon. Cleaned all the inside out vacuuming and simple green and then let dry so the noico sound deadner would adhesive properly. This stuff will help with not only sound but insulation keeping the metal body cooler and less rattling!

     The next big step was going to be making shelves and storage on the inside paneling. I wanted to
Rack installed
make storage on the inside paneling to get as much room as I could out of the inside. It took me about three days to build out the inside paneling and make the new door panels. I bought carpet from a electronic store that is usually made for sub woofer boxes and it's really easy to mold and bend over and glue down to all the wood paneling. During this time I had found a rack on Craigslist.org for about a hundred bucks after checking it out I made the guy I deal for $85 and it was mine. I knew it was going to take a little bit to get the rack looking like I wanted it to, I got some proper brackets bent out of thick steel from my welder. I also got some expanded mesh metal for the bottom of the rack once I cut it to size I took it to the welder and got it all done at the same time. When the inside paneling was finished I moved on to rebuilding the control center under my dash. I wanted to redo the dash so that it was clean and easily accessible to redo wiring, see the gauges, and simplify the switches. To do so I basically removed all wiring that had been wired into the cab from my led bar, lights, horn, etc. I installed a fuse block to run one positive and one negative from the battery and into the cab. On to that fuse block everything was attached like the lights, horn, triple socket 12v accessory plug, LED Bar, switches, gauges, fan, inverter, etc.

Skyjacker 4" soft ride rear leaf springs
    Once finishing up all the paneling and wiring I decided to throw in the new seats I got. Well there not new, got them from the junk yard but there in good condition and will work much better with the setup I'm trying to do with my rig. I changed from one rear bench seat all the way across to the 50/50 style seats. This way I can have one up and one down to make room to fit in more surf boards inside the car.

     One of the last big monkey's on my back was putting the new leaf springs on the rear to hold more weight. It was not going to be an easy task but needed to be done, I had already ordered the new Skyjack 4" leafs so all the parts were ready. Took about 4 hours or so with the help of my mate and dad to get the truck lifted and stable, pull off the tires, u bolts, leaf eyebolts, and replace everything. Not an easy job but beats paying $500 bucks to a shop, and now the truck will ride smooth and not sag with the added weight needed for the trip.

     Well guys that is where I am leaving off on Rebuilding my rig Part 2, Part 3 will be out in a few more days and as of now I am 9 days away from departure!

Tuesday, May 3, 2016

Rebuilding my 1985 Toyota 4 Runner PART 1

The day I bought her, May 2014
 Average 3:00 Minute Read


     Hey everyone since this has been a pretty big project to take on for myself with really no car mechanic experience prior, thought I would share a bit about my 4 runner rebuild. First off I bought her (sheila) for $2100 in Chula Vista, California. I had been looking for a solid few weeks for a car since I came home from a few month trip to Australia carless. I always liked the look of these older 4 runners and when I found out how reliable there are it was a no brainer. I also knew what I was getting into buying an older car, and that is exactly what I wanted, a project I could be proud, gain some knowledge, and have a hell of a time in!

     First things first I put some proper floor mats in :) got this idea I had seen in my buddy from Australia's van. I started with little things like the a rack I found on craigslist.org from a newer 4 runner, I just bolted and sealed mine onto the roof. I also bought some bumper ends to finish out the front bumper worked out great. After a few months I took a bit of a hiatus and did some more traveling but always thought about her and the vision I had to turn her into an expedition vehicle.

     When getting back home from a trip to Europe in the Spring of 2015 I was determined to get a lot more work done. So I bought an 11' x 17' carport tent and through it down in the front yard as my workshop, yes my parents are very understanding and supportive haha. The plan was to get the engine all tuned up and make sure it was solid first. I started with replacing all the necessities like spark plugs, spark plug cables, cap, rotor, fuel pump, air intake hose, battery, starter, belts, alternator, and anything in the engine compartment that looked a bit sketchy. During the work I did in the engine compartment I also replaced the fuel filter and moved the location of it which I recommend to any owner since its really located in a bitch of a spot! The fuel filter is just above the starter on the passenger side of the engine, when replacing it I moved it to the top of the wheel well with one bolt much easier to access now!

     After all of that I got finished in a few weeks I started looking at the front axle steering and suspension situation. I had a mate come by that knows a lot about all of this stuff, he promptly made a list of all the parts I would need to get her feeling good. I used amazon for a lot of my parts for this rebuild for a few reasons, they have literally everything on there I've looked for, fast shipping, great reviews which really help for parts like this on an older car. Also there return policy is great in case something doesn't fit which only happened few times to me fortunately. For the front end I replaced my tie end rods ( both sides), all shocks, brake pads, rebuilt my 4wd locking hubs with new grease and gaskets, and got my rotors turned.

     The shocks were next after I repainted the front end with undercoating, after a bit of research I ended up picking a Rancho setup. They aren't to expensive and have a good reputation and reviews. The front's are RS5115 and for the back I used the RS5143, the install is super easy. Took lil over an hour to install all 4 shocks, I also used hose clamps instead of the zip ties that come for the boots of he shock. I'd noticed since I bought the truck a rattling sound that kept getting worse and finally came to the conclusion it was the because the bottom of the muffler was rusting away. Found a shop nearby and it was about $150 for a new muffler, exhaust pipe, and a few new hangers, all good now! That portion of a few months about wrapped up the first part of  the rebuild that I finished in June 2015. The next blog post will pick back up in March 2016 a few months before departure of the epic trip.
Here are a few more photos of the project!

Monday, May 2, 2016

30 Days until departure for Central America

Average 2+ Minute Read 

     Hey everyone first off I have been horrible at keeping up to date in between trips and I'm going to hopefully do much better in the coming months!

     This next adventure had been on the list for awhile now. I have been dreaming of an over-landing trip and what better than Central America, the Mexican border is about two hours south from where I live. The rough plan is to leave June 1 take a week going down the Baja Peninsula to get to Cabo, there I will hang out with my family for a few days. The family will be down In San Jose Del Cabo for my sister who is competing in the Los Cabos Open of Surf June 8-12. We would then head up the east cape for some surfing and camping before catching the ferry in La Paz to mainland Mex. From the Mainland its basically the Pan American highway south towards Panama which is kinda the end goal of the trip.

     This adventure will be quite a bit different than any other trip I have done because of the border crossings. I have yet to deal with driving across borders much but I am pretty excited to learn the process and I think I will get it down quick with some of the experience I have. There will be 7 border crossings from California into Mexico, Guatemala, El Salvador, Honduras, Nicaragua, Costa Rica, and finally Panama. I have estimated the trip at being around 5,000 miles and hopefully take about 2-3 months to get there.

     My vehicle I bought about two years ago is an 1985 Toyota 4 Runner,  bought essentially for this exact purpose and the trip is finally happening! Since I bought the truck I had slowly been working on it, but in the last two months I have been wrenching on it every spare minute I have. I got an idea in my head for what I want the truck to look like and function like, pretty exciting seeing it all come together. I will be posting a blog update about the rebuild in the next few days, keep a look out for it.

     So as for now that is the update, come back next week to see the progress on the vehicle and my planning. Here is a quick route I had drawn out so far for the expedition.

Saturday, January 2, 2016

100 Days of Indo // Part 6

In the start of the episode I head off to the airport on my way home to surprise my family for Thanksgiving! But after that the boys get a few more fun waves all over Bali, and the ending footage makes you want to boo your ticket to the disneyland island of surfing right now!

If you haven't yet, get caught up by watching Episode 1 / Episode 2 / Episode 3 / Episode 4 / Episode 5 !

We get back to Bali for the final leg of the trip, hit Kuta for a party night, and enjoy the last couple weeks of the trip.

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