Off Brand: A Quartersnacks D.I.Y. Build

October 31st, 2014 | 3:20 am | Video & Remixes | 12 Comments

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Ultra Premium Concrete Mix

There is nothing as not-on-brand for QS as a D.I.Y build. Pouring concrete is #manly, but it is not #fashionable. Those guys are core to the bone and have nothing but heart; we’re a bunch of bums trying to drink ice coffee and maybe skate flat. When Levi’s Skateboarding approached us with the opportunity to sponsor a D.I.Y. build, we were completely lost. What do we do, and how do we stay #onbrand?

Thanks to some connections through mutual friends, we linked with the crew at Shorty’s. The solution was to turn the build into one big party. Shorty’s is now perhaps the only spot in the world where ramps are built not only with blood, sweat and tears, but also with champagne. Cabana rap, Ultra Premium Vodka, and buxomly proportions naturally followed suit.

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If anything, this experience heightened already-high levels of respect for dudes who go the distance of building places like Shorty’s. Having never been around for the construction of anything more than a ledge, as an outsider, its easy to neglect all the small steps behind these sort of spaces (e.g. the fact that they have to cut into the ground with an electric saw, and chip the floor out to make the transitions flush with the ground.) Also, a truck full of eighty-pound concrete bags goes way less of a ways than we ever imagined. It’s barely enough for half of a mid-sized quarterpipe. No wonder Home Depot loves these guys so much.

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Pad Dowd. Photo by Collin Sussingham.

Weekend at Shorty’s

October 23rd, 2014 | 5:50 am | Features & Interviews | 15 Comments

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Space in New York is a precious commodity. Lots rarely sit vacant, building foundations are never left undone, and an open area seldom exists without a security booth watching over its perimeter. The Volcano was an isolated incident. D.I.Y. in New York peaks at the B.Q.E. lot, where a few pillars form quarterpipes and banks, which then get backed into by trucks every few months and ruined. A wide open space is too precious for developers to neglect, and neglect is how every great D.I.Y. story begins.

Shorty’s is the most recognizable D.I.Y. spot the the greater New York metropolitan area today (first brought to the world’s attention by Fred Gall’s “Scum League” series), and it sits in an abandoned warehouse amid an industrial zone outside the city. The nearest train station is a thirty-minute skate away. Skateboarders need to go quite far to be left alone these days.

The spot was started by a bunch of locals living not-too-far-away, in the most ramshackle skate house imaginable. After eyeing the space, the original plan was to cement a few barriers and see how much they could get away with in incremental doses. The volatility with these sort of spaces is high: there’s never such thing as a truly “abandoned” space. All it takes is for one person with oversight to get pissed off about it. Luckily, that *knock-on-wood* hasn’t happened. Shorty’s began with a small volcano in February 2011, and has bloomed into three walls of obstacles.