Here are questions we regularly hear about the SurfLoch WaveSystems™

How do the SurfLoch WaveSystems™ work?

Surf Loch’s wave science replicates the ocean’s natural wave creation process by using continuous mono-directional wind, i.e. fetch, to create authentic ocean surfing waves and swell patterns.  Surf Loch mimics this wave creation process by using a combination of vacuum and pressure via large fans (blowers) to create “wind” within a bespoke dimensioned concrete box (caisson) to controllably push water down in the caisson to make the wave crest, and then elevate/lift water back up in the caisson to make the wave trough, in a repetitive time cycle corresponding to desired wave or swell period.

An opening in the bottom of each independently powered caisson communicates out in pool to allow elevated water in the caisson to release and deliver the wave motion energy. A wave pulse or swell is created once the energy flux is transmitted out into the pool which then travels through open water and shoals/breaks over custom designed reefs (pool bottom contours) that results in a perfectly peeling, ocean quality, high performance barreling wave.

Surf Loch LLC is the only surf pool manufacturer that can simultaneously create expert, intermediate and beginner waves at the same time. With a single wave energy pulse, we create a wave that breaks two, or even three times down the length of the pool. The primary break, which is the larger and more advanced wave, breaks first (either left, right or as an A-frame); then, reforms into an unbroken swell which shoals and re-breaks as a smaller intermediate / beginner wave that reforms into a swell to break a third time, or rolls to lap upon the shore.  Our system is highly efficient and profitable, where waves roll cleanly through the pool without producing adverse chop or backwash.

Why choose SurfLoch WaveSystems™ vs any other competitor?

If you want a surf pool capable of: 1) creating consistent and safe high performance wave on demand; 2) enjoyed by all ability levels; 3)  the smallest physical footprint; 4) the best energy efficiency;  5) the highest wave frequency;  6)  the greatest economic value; and 7) incredible profit potential…then choose Surf Loch.

    Superior Wave Technology
  • Wave Performance Versatility: Fun waves for all ages and ability levels within the same surf pool footprint. We make all types of waves: Hollow barrels, open faced high performance & air sections, reeling point breaks, slow easy rollers, or straight riding foam ball cruisers.
  • Better Wave Frequency: Seconds not minutes. High wave frequency = higher rider throughput capacity = highest profitability potential. We have the ability to produce one wave almost every eight seconds whereas our closest competitors can only produce one wave per minute.
  • Safety: No in-water obstructions. No nets or fences  in close proximity
  • Efficiency: Multiple equipment packages that can be powered by electricity, natural gas, solar, and other renewable energy alternatives
  • Minimal Maintenance & Repair: No underwater moving mechanical parts and easily replaceable equipment components
  • Greater Fault Tolerance: NO SINGLE POINT OF FAILURE
   Unmatched Development & Venue Operations Experience

Surf Loch LLC understands your business model like no one else. In the 1980’s, our founder and CEO, Tom Lochtefeld, co-founded/developed three Raging Waters water parks, and operated two of them, including the large Los Angeles facility. In the 1990’s, Mr. Lochtefeld invented the popular FlowRider® and FlowBarrel® sheet-wave attractions, now found in 35 countries with over 200 installations.  The locations range from water parks, hotels, shopping centers and resorts, to private residences, cruise ships, and even royal palaces! Through our Wave House® surf lifestyle venues, we have additional direct expertise in venue design, real estate development and operations, in locations on several continents. Collectively we have over 30 years of experience of building and successfully operating artificial wave technologies and venues.

   Original Wave Tech & Surf Entertainment Pioneer

With the successful deployment of his invention the FlowRider® and its spectacular big brother FlowBarrel®, Tom Lochtefeld soon broke more new ground – this time as a surf entertainment pioneer. He created a portable version of the FlowBarrel®, with sections that lowered via hydraulics into 13 customized shipping containers, including electrical, chemical and filtration equipment, and an enclosed water tank underneath.  This previously undreamt of engineering wizardry was used by SWATCH and Siemens for year-long media-sensation promotional tours all over the world, with world-class professional athletes showcasing the sport of Flowboarding, and big name concerts for a wild combination of waves and music. The synergy of waves, music and food and beverage was a harbinger for Wave House®: the original surf entertainment complex with music, retail, events, F&B and sports programming on artificial waves. Today Tom Lochtefeld stands as one of the pre-eminent artificial wave pioneers in the industry.

How big are the waves?

We can go as big as your budget, land, and local government regulations allow. However, our wave systems are designed to create multiple waves ranging from .5m to 2.5m+ (1.5ft to 8ft) within the same footprint, separated by break zones associated with rider skill level.

Can we adjust the wave height?


The advantage of a SurfLoch WaveSystem™ is that it generates multiple waves of varying heights and shapes with a single wave energy pulse. Our controls allow wave height modification, as desired.

How much does a SurfLoch WaveSystems™ cost?

SurfLoch WaveSystems™ equipment and design packages can range anywhere from $1.5M to $10M+ not including the underlying real estate. Typically, the wave generating equipment accounts for less than 50% of the total investment while the majority of funds will be allocated towards construction and infrastructure. The design output and cost of any wave system is ultimately a function of desired wave height, performance, frequency, and overall pool size. The process of developing a new surf pool comes with a lot of variables and challenges such as regulatory complexities, infrastructure improvements, permit timelines, multiple partners, and a lot of perseverance and commitment. Building a surf pool requires a developer with experience in real estate and access to financing.

How many waves per minute can a SurfLoch WaveSystems™ produce?

Although we can generate waves at a faster frequency, we recommend 1 wave every 10 seconds, or 6 waves per minute, or 360 waves per hour for maximum rider throughput. This is more than 7 times the amount of waves than any other system on the market. Surf Loch’s wave periods are customizable and designed to best suit the preference and desired performance for each operator/venue.

How many people can ride at a time?

Depending on the surf pool design, anywhere between 1 and 100+ riders can safely surf at a time. Our SurfLoch WaveSystems™ are always custom-built so depending on your venue’s needs we can increase the capacity to whatever you’d like.

What type of waves can you make?

Surf Loch has the ability, depending on the model, to create perfect A-frames, left or right point breaks, beach breaks or any surf break you can imagine, e.g., hollow barrels, open faced high performance & air sections, reeling point breaks, slow easy rollers, or straight riding foam ball cruisers.

Do you use regular pool water or salt water?

We can accommodate all water types, so long as meeting local regulatory standard.

What are the space requirements for a SurfLoch WaveSystems™?

The smallest model is our Learn-to-Surf Series at 5,000 sq. ft. (500 sqm). There is no limit on maximum size, we love to go big!

Can we heat the water in your pools?

Yes we can. But in surfing tradition, wearing a wetsuit is normal for the majority of the surfing community.

Can you build a wave pool indoors?

Yes, we can. No problem.

Is it easier to learn to surf in a surf pool than it is in the ocean?

Yes, it is. In ocean surfing, conditions are ever changing, resulting in unpredictable schedules and complex wave variations. That’s why surfers need so much time in the ocean to master even the most basic skills. However, in a SurfLoch WaveSystem™ all these variables are eliminated, so you can focus entirely on your technique and improve quickly because you can repeat the moves with the exact wave desired. Plus, you don’t have to worry about crowds, nasty locals, cold water, rip currents, or sea creatures.

Do you have to know how to surf before entering the pool?

No you don’t. Beginners can learn at the smaller breaks on the secondary break, advanced surfers will be attracted to the primary break with bigger, more challenging waves.

Is the SurfLoch WaveSystems™ safe?

We design our pools with safety in mind, however, surfing is a participatory action sport that carries an inherent risk of injury.

Can I get insurance for this type of recreational venue?

Yes you can. Surf Loch has made waves for 30 years. We know the industry well and have great success at recommending insurers that provide reasonable premiums on our products. We will work with you in developing a surfing risk management program catered to your venue.

How can I make money on a SurfLoch WaveSystems™?

We create wave pools that maximize profits. It’s in our core philosophy with everything that we design. We have several suggested business models and we would be happy to advise whether a SurfLoch WaveSystem™ will be viable for your market.