I hear so many people talking about bringing step up boards when they go somewhere sweet to surf like Pr and whatnot. So what exactly are they? Is it like a bigger shortboard? How do you determine what size is right. I'm not planning on going to PR any time soon just wondering.
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Thread: Step up board
Apr 11, 2011, 12:15 AM #1
- Join Date
- Aug 2009
- Southern California
Step up board
Apr 11, 2011, 12:35 AM #2Senior Member
- Join Date
- Feb 2008
A good step up board will be very close to your every day shortboard, but it will paddle faster and be more controlled.
The obvious way to do these things is to (1) make it a little longer or possibly thicker to add some foam, and thus paddle power. Important in a step up not only because bigger waves are harder to get into, but also because there are likely to be stronger currents and longer distances to paddle etc.
And (2) pull in the tail and possibly narrow the board out a little, this will give you greater control in bigger/more powerful waves. In a step up board your priority is no longer generating speed and being loose. The wave is already giving you more power then you need, and the emphasis shifts to keeping all this speed/power in check.
Just take a look at some popular semi-gun/ step up shapes, i think a lot of guys only get step-ups 2-3 inches bigger than their normal shortboards.
Apr 11, 2011, 01:17 AM #3
Typical step-ups are a bit longer, perhaps a bit narrower but not necessarily, a bit thicker, a bit more rocker, a bit narrower nose and tail, and usually have a rounded pin. They also move away from single concaves and move toward single to double with some vee. Fin choices are personal, but you can get away with slightly smaller fins... some people don't, some do.
As stated, it's about handling. You're not talking a bout very large surf... just bigger or faster surf. You still want to have your step up perform, so the changes are subtle.
Apr 11, 2011, 01:39 AM #4
so like when someone says they rides a 6'0, but brings a 6'2 or 6'4 with, those 2 extra boards are considered the step-up boards?
Apr 11, 2011, 01:54 AM #5Senior Member
- Join Date
- Feb 2008
Each shape of board is just a little different then the last, and those are just broad categories. There is an infinite amount of possibility for personal preference and fine tuning. A "step-up" has less to do with size, more to do with shape, i could have a step up in the same exact dimensions as my regular shortboard, but maybe just with a round pin tail instead of a squash.
Apr 11, 2011, 02:14 AM #6
i've always understood that step-ups should be more or less the same, width & thickness wise, as your regular shortie, just a bit longer. for example:
my standard shortie: 6'4"x19.25"x2.5 w/ a round tail or 6'3"x19.25"x2.5 w/ a squash (i'm on the bigger side)
my step up: 6'8"x19.25"x2.5 w/ a rounded pin
the bottom contours are the same...it's just longer. those extra 4" get me into waves a bit earlier, which is nice on bigger days. & by bigger, i mean i don't break it out until the surf is running 10-12ft. i'll ride my standard up till a couple feet OH, then it's step-up time (as a general rule...it really depends on the conditions).
& i actually like a bit more fin area on it, w/ stiffer fins as well. where i'll ride the pc g-am's in my standard shortboard, i ride pg-7's all the way around in my step-up. the am's have a smaller center fin & a bit more flex to them, while the 7's are stiffer (being solid fiberglass) & all 3 fins are the same size. like someone else said, i'm not looking for speed or maneuverability, i'm looking for a bit more control. the 4 extra inches & more pulled in tail does that more me.
Jan 3, 2012, 10:44 PM #7
given your height & weight (about 192lbs), i'd say a 6'8" would be better than a 6'6", even in 10ft. the extra length will paddle faster & get you into waves easier. if there's a current, the extra length will also help you battle that.
then again, i prefer to err on the side of going too long as a general rule. i'd rather have too much foam than not enough.