Epoch Bits: Wheels Of Fire, Toy Machine, Mike Occhilupo & More

"Epoch Bits" is Havoc TV's bygone surf, skate, and music column. Every Wednesday, we dive deep into the depths of these radical subcultures that forged the way for those of us raised on a surf and/or skateboard.



November, 1987 - Santa Cruz Skateboards releases game-changing skate video Wheels of Fire. 

The video marked the fact that street skating was about to take over and vert skating was starting to fade out. Wheels of Fire also was the first skate video to showcase Santa Monica local Natas Kaupas as one of the most legit skaters destined to leave a mark on the sport, and featured Christian Hosoi seriously ripping and straight killing like only he could do.


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November, 1981 - Rodney Mullen shows us how to do a Stationary Ollie Pop in Thrasher Magazine. 

Each issue, Thrasher Magazine would feature a pro-skater in their "On Board" series that would go through the steps of nailing a popular trick.


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November 1987 - SURFER Magazine features Mike Occhilupo and reveals that the surfer spent $40,000 on coke that winter alone.

From his earliest years as a pro, Occhilupo was one of the sport's most beloved and unique figures: warm, childlike, giggly, easily upset by violent movies, and a routine mangler of words and phrases. In 1987, however, he began showing signs of instability: he bought a penthouse in Cronulla and sold it a few months later, moved temporarily to the North Shore of Oahu, announced his retirement, made a comeback, then quit again. Alcohol and cocaine were his go-to vices.


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November, 1995 - Toy Machine was running this hilarious ad with the company's founder, Ed Templeton, pictured and strongly encouraging skaters to pick up their newest board.



November, 1953 - This historic photo of a Makaha wave ran on the front page of the Honolulu Star-Bulletin.

Thomas Tsuzuki photograph is credited for being the catalyst for big-wave riding as we know it. The beat-up old black-and-white photograph shows three guys sliding down a big wave at Makaha.