Calvani’s first job in the industry was apprentice to Tom
Stanton, a well-known South Bay shaper and airbrusher. After learning
and mastering the art of airbrushing, he became interested in board
building. In 1988, Wayne Rich gave Calvani his first blank to shape.
Though he continued to make his living at airbrushing, Calvani began
to hone his skills as a surfboard shaper.
Eventually, he moved his airbrushing business to Shoreline Glassing
(Hermosa Beach, CA) and was offered a job by Hap Jacobs to do some
rough-shaping on the side. Jacobs was so pleased with Calvani’s
work that he hired him on as a part-time shaper. Calvani shaped
foam and balsa boards for Jacobs. Dennis Jarvis of Spyder Surfboards
noticed Calvani’s talent and brought him on a job shaping
for the likes of Tom Curren, Shane Dorian and others.
In 1993, Calvani was offered a full-time shaping position at Becker
Surfboards as Phil Becker’s main production shaper. While
shaping for Becker, Calvani created an impressive shortboard quiver
for the likes of Greg Browning, Geoff Moysa, Pascal Stansfield and
others. He was hand-shaping more than 25 shortboards a week in addition
to longboards and mid-ranges. During this entire time, he continued
to shape Jacobs and then Lance Carson and Rick Surfboards. His talent
and passion for shaping traditional longboards became well-known.
In 2000, Dan Bendicksen, head shaper for Bing Surfboards in the
late ’60s, introduced Calvani to Bing Copeland and Mike Eaton.
This introduction paved the way for Calvani to inherit Bing Surfboards.
In 2003, Calvani set up shop alongside Tyler Hatzikian of Tyler
Surfboards. The two worked together for almost one year, but when
Jacobs decided to retire in 2004, he asked Calvani to take over
Jacobs Surfboards. Calvani jumped at the chance. Having considered
Jacobs a mentor and having worked with him for so many years, Calvani
was eager to continue the legacy and tradition of Jacobs surfboards.
Since Calvani has taken over the Jacobs label, he has moved his
shaping bay back to Shoreline Glassing where Jacobs was located
for many years. Calvani continues to shape exclusively for Jacobs,
Bing and Rick Surfboards today.