Building a Board

Well it looks like this is a good time to give you all the update on how my board-building project went.

First, a little review. I have been surfing an old 60’s style Team Becker. It’s 7’4″, kind of half- way between a longboard and a bonzer.

It has a round tail, and a very wide, round nose, with a large concave.

These characteristics give it nice watch-catching ability, even in small surf, good handling, and it nose-rides like a champ. The board I just got finished building is based on this design, and has almost all the desirable characteristics of its predecessor.

I chose to copy this board because I like it a lot, and the guy who owns it wants it back! I went to Monterey Bay Fiberglass and purchased all the materials necessary which ended up costing about $150.

I then had a shaper here in town shape the blank, which cost $70. I was fortunate enough to run across one of the guys who used to glass for the Haut,and he basically taught me how to laminate.

I paid him for his time, bought him lots of beer, and ran him around town for a couple weeks ( he doesn’t have a vehicle ) in retrun for his help. In the meantime, we have become good friends, and this worked out so well we plan to build another board.

The next board will be a 9’3″ shaped by Doug Haut, and glassed by me and Jeff Thompson. One other stroke of good fortune: Jeff happens to be a personal friend of Jimmy Phillips ( of Pack-Your-Trash fame ), he talked Jimmy into designing a custom logo to put on my board.

I paid Jimmy for the work, but I can tell you that I got it at a very handsome discount. I took some pictures of the new stick before I waxed it, and plan to use the scanner at work to digitize a few and will post them to the surfing GIF mailing list.

The board came out really nice, and it surfs like a dream. :-))))))) Yaahhooo!! So I guess I ought to address the questions asked at the beginning of the article.

First, it helps worlds if you can find someone experienced to help you. My board woulda been a giant resin barge if I hadn’t had Jeff there to bail me out of some really sticky ( literally! ) situations.

Failing this, at least get someone to let you watch them glass a side or two so you can see how laminating is done. Second, you will need a place to work. A spacious garage is what I used.

You will need an enclosure of some sort for the hot coat and gloss coat, otherwise the resin may do nasty things like split or get bugs in it.