This site is not associated with "Grain" surfboards but it is a forum where you will be able to learn everything baout building hollow wooden boards. I am currently on my 5th build. I use cedar since paulownia is extremely hard to get where i live. I say forget buying any type of kit. If you have a table saw just buy raw lumber and mill your own strips. You will alsp need a jig saw to cut out your spine and rib templates. There are also other ways to uild these which you will find on the site. Tat website is a must read for anyone looking to get into building wooden boards. A board typically costs me about $150 to make but i do everything from scratch. If you want to buy prefab pieces you will pay a premium. I find half the fun is creating the board 99% yourself so you are truly riding a one of a kind board. You can download AKU shaper and use Jadali's hollow board template maker to create your own board template and design. This way you control everything.
That's cool rid. Although to match the CNC precision and optimal weight-strength ratio you would probably need a band saw, thickness planer, couple routers, spindle sander and a drill press with forstner bits, otherwise I think it would take forever and come out somewhat sloppy. How precise are you getting yours with just a table saw and jig saw?
Let's be honest. How precise do you really need to be? If the board looks allright and floats, it will surf and still perform. As you begin to shape more and more you begin to acquire more skills and tools. Some essential tools you will need are, hand planer, lots of sand paper, glue, some clamps, a hand saw, a trisquare, chisel, and spoke plane (for rails depending on which method you use). Research as much as you can. Watch youtube videos and think it out. Exactness and precision are not necessities when creating a board that will work and look good. Think about it this way, the person who made the first surfboard shredded and had a whole lot less knowledge and fewer tools.
I come out dead on. You will not use the CNC dims to create a board you will design a board with AKU shaper and then import the .brd file into a separate plug in that produces a spine and rib template.
I resaw cedar stock to 1/4 inch and rip it to width. I then glue up my deck and plane it down to 1/8" (I forgot to mention I use a planer) you do not need this though. A jigsaw will cut out your spine and rib template dead on if you take your time. You will have to read up on the method to create rails and shape your board but its not very hard. Below is a photo of the last board I made. all I used on this board was a table saw planer, jigsaw and hand sander
Lastly, I plan on making a larger mini simmons but since this is my first one, I'm going to skip the concave throughout and go with a flat bottom.
I think you should totally give it a go because it's an amazing process. My advice goes along with most others that have replied that you can build a board with your own materials...but why?
Companies like Grain Surfboards are experts at the process. That's all they do, build wood boards. If you are going to put many many hours into building a completely flat bottom board how happy are you really going to be with it? A flat bottom board will only ride well in certain conditions. There is a ton of pride in building a board so that will be a given but you don't want to put in 50+ hrs and then say, I wish it had this and that. I spent a week up in Maine building one of their boards(actually the CI Biscuit) and it was awesome. While I was there I said a few times, "I can't imagine doing this at home." The instruction and advice was stellar. The board turned out great and it's fully functioning and beautiful.
If you look at today's modern boards they are all(most) shaped off of close tollerance blanks with built in rocker and foil. Not a single shaper out there would call that cheating. We just realize that someone who has many more resources than us has developed a blank with thought and science that makes it much more likely to perform the way we want.
Don't consider it cheating if you go with a premade Grain blank kit because they are just there to help you. All of us who shape have something in common and that is that we want to be connected to our passion deeper than buying a board off the rack. No one will fault you for going to home depot and buying your own stuff. It's totally commendable for trying and that may be all you need to feel good about the final product you make yourself.
I tried to attach the basic outline and stringer shape. I drew these out on graph paper then moved them over to the classic design program MS Paint. The hardest part about it was making the grid but now I can pull measurements at every inch to the tenth of an inch.
I'm going to go with version A.
Questions, comments and critiques welcomed. I probably won't start the build until after Thanksgiving so I've got some time for revisions.
You can certianly pay a hefty sum to get a grian kit or you can do the research yourself and create something just as good. http://www.grainsurf.com/forum/ this site has a ton of experienced builder willing to help it also has step by step instruction.
You can build contours into the bottom of your board very easily. Create your design and template using AKU shaper and Hollow Wooden Template maker together. You will have a file that you can print at staples and cut out your template so you can transfer it to wood. There is plenty of info on that website about how to use these programs.
I would also not suggest using poplar for your spine and ribs. Marine ply is fine. I use 1/4 ply and its plenty strong.
So i've been moving along at a cautious pace with this board. I decided to use sapelle on the deck and poplar inside. I wish i would have used plywood rather than the poplar but live and learn. The sapelle has been great to work with and I'm excited to see how it turns out... I've got a couple cool aesthetic ideas to try that should really play well with the color of the wood. The fins are decorative cedar scraps from a closet or something that the neighbors were throwing out.
I cut the sapelle into 1/4" strips then glued and clamped into 8ish" boards. Gonna glue these 3 up to make the bottom tonight. IMG_0176.jpg
This is a "medium-simmons" since i'm 6'1" 215lbs with my winter weight on. The board is 6'6" x 23 3/4" x 3 1/2".IMG_0168.jpg
I wanted to make all of the lightening holes with the paddle bits but it wasn't working so i jigsawed them out instead.
The next step is rigging some sort of rocker table and glue up the the frame. The ribs and stringer fit together pretty tightly, should I force them together with a rubber mallet or sand them out a bit before I set them?
It's been a fun process and i've enjoyed learning about each step, attempting it and then learning what I could have done earlier.