Meet Ellis, aka “Ratcat”. A man who collects and rides a diverse range of Moonshine shapes, designing his surfing experiences with the same care and precision evident in his work as a Chippy.

Besides carpentry and hand crafted surfboards, Matt also takes pride in his restored 1982 Landcruiser Hi47, which he recently drove around Australia with his girlfriend Jess and two faithful kelpies Malcom and Valerie.

Join us as we chat with Ellis to explore the symbiosis between his work, travel, and the thoughtfully assembled Moonshine quiver that accompanies him through life.

Tell us about yourself. What do you do?

I'm Matthew Ellis a carpenter in the South West of Western Australia loving anything ocean and old/vintage.

Have you always lived in Dunsborough? Where did you grow up? I grew up in Sorrento but ever since getting my license I would be down Yallingup way any chance I got surfing, fishing and just having a epic time with mates that lived in the area.

Can you share how your journey with Moonshine Surfboards began?

I met Jack many years ago while we still both lived in Perth wasn't through surfing just more running a muck haha. It wasn't until I saw the crafts he was creating down south I realised I needed one. I was always on a performance short board never completely gelling with them as I wouldn't classify myself a performance surfer. It wasn't until we built jack his first own shaping and sanding bays in Vasse I finally acquired my first craft and it changed my view on surfing quite quickly.


How did you first get into surfng?

Wasn't until early years of high school I started surfing all my mates were into it and it just went on from there. I was always in and around the ocean my whole life but wasn't until my teens that I really started getting around surfing. shortboards.

Describe your Moonshine quiver. 

My moonshine quiver is ever evolving. Some would say it's near to perfect but I reckon squeeze in a few more in the near future. Although I have most bases covered for all sorts of conditions.


Living in Dunsborough offers access to some incredible surf breaks. Can you tell us your favourite local spot?

I've been trying to dial in my quiver to allow me to surf what ever is on offer locally. You can chase waves all day down here and drive hundreds of kilometres without getting in the water looking for the perfect wave so having boards for any sort of wave on offer helps. My favourite wave is a beachie that has sand at the right place at the right time with minimal crowd and there's a few around, very hit and miss at times although when you score with just your mates it makes it all worth it.


You recently drove around Australia, can you share with us one highlight or a hot tip from this trip? 

Hot tip don't do the Northern Territory without aircon haha. Me and my partner, Jess did a lap with our two kelpies in search of what else was out there. We acquired a 1982 Landcruiser hj47 off an epic couple locally that did similar to us when they where are our age almost 20 years ago. Took a while giving the old girl a bit of love as she had been sitting in a shed for 10 years but was well worth it. There were many highlights. Just being on the road was amazing not knowing what you would stumble upon next - waterfalls, gorges, empty beaches, uncrowded waves. Some of the places we saw were out of this world. Packing minimal is the best tip but a bit hard when you have so many boards, fishing and dive gear and two dogs hahah

As a carpenter, do you find any parallels between your work and your approach to board selection and design?

Honestly I think that's why I'm so drawn to jacks boards. His craftsmanship is second to none, I don't really have to think about much which is great. We just chat about an idea we both think is going to be mental and then I just let the man work his magic. I get as much enjoyment seeing him stoke out on a board he has made for me.

Favourite bevvy at the moment?
Favourite bevy that's a hard one there are a few. Emu export is my go to all rounder, Bundy when me and jack have our meetings or are together in general and if the cocktail shaker is out a Pina Colada

Bottom’s up!

Ellis has just acquired a Moonshine Big Iron. A new shape now available. Made to order.