& a dream


"I broke my board in Carcavelos and ordered a new one. I was so excited with my new board, a yellow retro fish, that I started to explain Afonso an idea that I had some time ago: the wax would get the board all dirty and would hide the whole design, and how cool it would be to have an alternative to that...  


Afonso said that he had a material that was able to turn into a grip, and that it was transparent. At that point we started to try the material on my board,  just as a personal solution to solve my problem. With the enthusiasm of friends with my board and our solution led us to think that this could be a product. So we started to look at the product from a different side, collecting more professional feedback and making adjustments. One year later Van der Waal was born."



Van der Waal

Van der Waal was born in 2015 and its parents are Martim Dornellas and Afonso Silva, two old time friends who came up with the idea of creating a product to use on surfboards that would be as effective as wax but that wouldn’t stain the boards or mess with their design.

Here are some of our most important moments... 



Martim broke is board at Carcavelos and ordered a new custom board. Martim talked with Afonso, an old friend, about an old idea of replacing wax.
Later this year, we did our first tests on materials with a circular cut. Later on we tested a diamond shape glued to a unique sheet.


_First tests on different shapes and materials


We started our first tests with a hexagonal shape, which worked better. With entusiasm from friends, we decided to produce 20 units to give them to test.
We also started to consider our solution as product that could be commercialized.
In the middle of the year,  with feedback collected from friends, a new and improved version of Van der Waal was available for purchase - Performance Series, on our website and social media channels.
In September we did our first online sale. We made such a party with this unique sale and we will never forget that feeling.
Later that year, we were invited to offer Van der Waal to all CT surfer. We never imagine that one day we would be able to offer Van der Waal to legends like Mick Fanning or Kelly Slater


_ Website and social media live
_ Product presentation at the QS10000 Billabong Pro Cascais 
_ Product reviews on Surftotal and Beachcam, two major surf websites in Portugal
_ WSL CT Peniche 2017.
_ Francisco Morais CT qualification comemoration video:  https://vimeo.com/194420787 


Based on our costumers feedback we started to test new materials:  
At the same time, we were surprised with articles on The Inertia, Surfing Sections and SurfBunker.
As Martim love's the smell of wax, we decided to launch a special edition wax stenced. Despite we didn't sell a single pack, we had so much fun making this video... 
Later, and to celebrate 1 year after our first sale, we decided to invite some friends to an amazing surfing day


_ Longboard pack launch
_ Build your own pack launch
_ Production of new boxes
_ Featured in Surfbunker article Top Three Reviewed Products for 2017


Based on a survey we ran about Van der Waal 1.0, we stopped our online sales and focus for a month on a new version of Van der Waal, tested last year.
On February of 2018 Van der Waal Performance Series 2.0 was ready for purchase.


_ Featured on Surf Europe Mag - The Hottest Surf Products of 2018
_ 1000 packs sold


Driven by our customers' feedback and by our aim to produce a more eco-friendly alternative to surf wax, we started to research and test new materials. We needed a softer material, lighter and thinner, with high grip levels. After a lot of research and tests, we achieved what we aimed.
As a small company, we don't surf in money, and to avoid defrauding current sales, we decided to launch a crowdfunding campaign to get the funds necessary for full production of a new version - r.Evolution Series.


_ r.Evolution Series launch
_ Indiegogo Campaign
_ New website and boxes


the founders


Martim always worked with digital marketing, went through several agencies as a designer and later as a creative director. He surfs (badly) whenever he can and is responsible for all Van der Waal's image and communication. Besides that, Martim is the founder of Projecto Amelie and this gave him an extensive experience on how to annoy Afonso with cheap philosophies of how a company should behave in society.

Afonso work experience has been made in the field of advertising assemblies, space event decoration and the entire digital production of all materials needed to carry out the work. This gave Afonso an extensive experience on materials e their behavior, which made possible to materialize Martim initial idea. He is responsible for all the production and research of new materials.


Van der

In physical chemistry, the van der Waals' forces (or van der Waals' interaction), named after Dutch scientist Johannes Diderik van der Waals, are the residual attractive or repulsive forces between molecules or atomic groups that do not arise from a covalent bond, or electrostatic interaction of ions or of ionic groups with one another or with neutral molecules. The resulting van der Waals forces can be attractive or repulsive."

So when we started our first tests, Van der Waal figured out as the perfect name for our product.

(Photo and text from Wikipedia)


Johannes Diderik van der Waals


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a clear non-skid alternative to surf wax, easy to install and that requires almost no maintenance. It’s crystal-clear which means that your surfboard will always look like new, and it doesn’t melt, so your board will never stain other surfaces it comes in contact with, such as your surfboard bag, your car or your clothes.