Building a Board

Discussion in 'Mid Atlantic' started by soulrider, Jul 23, 2010.

  1. soulrider

    soulrider Well-Known Member

    Jul 19, 2010
    Well i dont live near the beach anymore, and i only drive down if the swell is head high or bigger. but i always have the urge to surf. so i have filled my freetime with board building. i had just been making and selling alaias but now i started making a fiberglass board. I have made a 5'11" fish that is 21 inches wide and stays wide through most of the board and nose and only 2 inches thick. it has very little rocker maybe 2-3 inches at the nose and 2 at the tail. Once i have glassed it i might start driving to va beach more often because i wont need as big surf. anyone have any shaping/building stories? or tips
  2. Mitchell

    Mitchell Well-Known Member

    Jan 5, 2009
    Cool! Ive made a bunch of fishes in the 5'5" to 6'0" range for myself over the years. Some have been absolutely magic, others didnt work for me and were gone after 5 sessions. 2 inches of tail rocker is actually more than average for a wide 5'11" fish. As a comparison, my 5'10" ...Lost Round Nose Fish has about 1.5" tail rocker. With only 2-3 inches of nose rocker i bet it looks flat as hell but you know what - that will suit those small flat faced VA beach waves perfectly. you wont believe how much speed/glide you can get in waist high mush on a wide 5'11" with low nose rocker.

    Just one tip - you sound like you only have a rough idea about the advice is to actually measure the rocker accurately at some point. The best way to refine to your board building learning curve is to take measurements of critical aspects like rocker, thickness, fin placement etc so if this board feels too flat rockered, too much can only make adjustments in board number 2, 3, ...if you have a baseline.
    Last edited: Jul 23, 2010

  3. soulrider

    soulrider Well-Known Member

    Jul 19, 2010
    sweet man, thats why i really wanted a fish, cuz i ride a shortboard so i didnt want to go long :p
    so you build a lot of boards? where do you try them out?
    well im not exactly sure how to mesure the rocker because everyone does it different but im gonna measure it right now its 1" in the tail rocker and 2" in the nose.. i was just doing what i thought looked and felt right for a fish :p after reading like 50 articles on them haha
  4. rDJ

    rDJ Well-Known Member

    Jul 23, 2007
    I had been making boards for myself and my friends for a while. Along the way I picked up some actual customers. Some of those customers have become friends. Everyone should try making a board. You learn a lot about board design, construction, and your own surfing. It also teaches you about ding repair, which saves you a bunch a dough.
  5. Mitchell

    Mitchell Well-Known Member

    Jan 5, 2009
    not a lot, but i think the last one I made is #21. Its an EPS 5'9" x 20.5" x 2 3/8" quad fish and its the best board ive made based on a half dozen sessions in the waist high last couple weeks.

    I know of only one way to measure rocker (without investing in an actual rocker stick). Get a long flat strip of wood or metal and hold it TANGENT (touching the board at exactly the midpoint) with the exact midpoint of the bottom of the board (on the stringer) then measure up from the nose (as the guy in the picture is doing, and then the tail). Look at his hand...he is holding the rod at the midpoint.


    Here are a couple of my boards:

    Last edited: Jul 23, 2010
  6. nickzilla720

    nickzilla720 Well-Known Member

    Jul 28, 2008
    I really want to shape my own boards. But live in an apartment studio, so I got no place to shape! I've considered renting a studio in the city just to shape a board! Anyone face this kind of dilemma?

    PS. Nice boards!
  7. zach619

    zach619 Well-Known Member

    Jan 21, 2009
    Hey Mitchell,
    I am thinking that this fall, I want to begin shaping. I am going to OC MD/Jersey Shore for a week and then to Maui for like 9 days. I want to buy a good starter shaping book. Something that reads well and isnt just a shaping for dummies guide. Anyway, I want to read up on shaping for the couple weeks and get to work on it when I return. I have worked with my shaper a few times while he was doing my boards, so I get the basic steps and how it all works, but I want to put it into application.

    I figure that starting with a log will be the best way to go. I figure that a larger, wider board will have less critical riding differences based on slight rocker changes and overall dimensions, where if I try and start on smaller fishes etc, then every detail would be magnified if done incorrectly. Does that make sense?

    So, I almost never ride long boards. The one that I own is old and beat up, so I kind of what to base the new log after the one I already have, so I can look at the dimensions, rocker/concaves etc... use that as a visual guide...

    So, I figure that I may actually get a board that I would ride and may actually perform well, rather than making 6-7 shortboards before I finally figure out how to tweak it...

    So, any recommendations on books or info to help prepare for it would be cool. I will just go through my shaper to get materials. He buys in bulk, so I figure I can get fin boxes and blanks and everything through him....

    Any advice would help... I know there is HUGE learning curve with shaping, as my shaper explained that it took him about 15 shortboards to get the desired results that he wanted... So I want to start simple and ridable, and then work my way down to the shorter, high performance boards I ride daily....
  8. zach619

    zach619 Well-Known Member

    Jan 21, 2009
    By the way, both of those boards looks sick man! Nice detail!
  9. mexsurfer

    mexsurfer Well-Known Member

    Jul 14, 2008
    While theres a thread like this now... what concaves would be good for a twin keel retro fish?
  10. live4truth

    live4truth Well-Known Member

    Feb 9, 2007
    Here are my two recommendations:

    This is the first and only book I have been introduced to that was actually it front to back and then a couple more times before you start. It was one of the most helpful guides I was ever read..

    Next, Tons of beginner threads and a lot of information (almost too much at times)...just search a subject and start reading. Pros to bros post on that site that provide a lot of perspective on the art and science of board building. My first board was a biscuit at 5'8"x20"x2 1/2" and I used sways as a reference guide.

    For me, board building has become a bit of an addiction and mitchell is allowed me to know a ton about board construction, design, and what I want in a shape...

    Post up your board trhough the stages or when finished...look forward to see it!
  11. zach619

    zach619 Well-Known Member

    Jan 21, 2009
    Wow, that is a pretty amazing little 66 page resource. Thanks a million. That will more than get me started. That covers all the bases for the designs I am looking to start with. Longboard, then fish etc... So, I won't need to get into new design ideas and concepts until I somewhat master the old school basics of shaping. Just printed the book. I will probably read it like 4 times by the end of the weekend, but its a great start. Thanks again.
  12. soulrider

    soulrider Well-Known Member

    Jul 19, 2010
    sweet stuff guys. thanks for the tip about measuring rocker. ive been video documenting the boards creation so since i ordered my fiberglass and fins from wa they will be here sometime next week and ill finish the board. im gonna go ride it and get some fotage of that theni will post the video up here
  13. mop

    mop Well-Known Member

    Jul 24, 2010
    Some day we'll have pre made shaping rooms to rent. and tons of passion good luck.
  14. StuckInSIC

    StuckInSIC Member

    Jul 24, 2010
    i made a board in high school as my "senior project" and living in PA, not too many people i knew could really help but this website gave me so much information-

    also, the author was very informative and responded to numerous emails and answered many questions i had. the board didn't turn out all that great but once i get enough money i definately want to try again.