Tuesday, December 21, 2010
Saturday, December 18, 2010
He was over this morning to drop something off, and I asked him to help me photograph my latest project. I had him hold it up while I snapped, and he suddenly noticed this:
If it looks familiar – that’s because it’s the same shape as the family board. It’s an all-around fun board, can be ridden by little kids like a longboard in mushy waves, by bigger kids a bit more aggressively, and really rips for big kids. It will allow her to either enjoy surfing once in a while as a fun thing, going to the beach and riding the foam straight in, or allow for progression towards more proficient surfing.
Thursday, December 9, 2010
Saturday, October 16, 2010
Friday, October 8, 2010
Friday, October 1, 2010
The latest out of the shop is this unique alaia. Based on the success of the omilu model, I made some changes that I hoped would be beneficial. First, more wood. The omilu was a bit to thin and too light, making it flex more than I would like. Additionally I don’t feel like it would hold up to overhead waves. Also, maintaining more width throughout would help in catching waves and planing. The omilu tended to downshift once off the face. While fairly easy to maneuver, I felt it was too loose – particularly when in the flats, where it was a chore to keep it from spinning out.
So, I developed the uhu. Very little wood was removed from the blank – just enough to give it a nice outline.Unlike the narow waist of the omilu I went with a “stinger” tail, keeping the board wide up until the last 20 inches or so where the tail steps in. For control I went with a Catch Surf setup – rounded 70/30 rails up front and hard, inward-canted rails in the tail (Catch Surf hand-makes finless soft surfboards which are really taking off). The bottom is the standard single concave, with the addition of a couple of channels in the tail to help keep it straight.
So how does it work? I took it out on a nice chest-high day at an empty reef break out by the Coast Guard air station at Barbers. It was perfect alaia surf – long, gentle lines with reforms and multiple sections. The board performed beyond expectations. It was markedly easier to catch waves than the omilu, allowing me to get in earlier and really set up my rides. It tracked straight – almost too straight, and I really had to use a shortboard-like technique to turn it, unlike the omilu which really needs a light touch. The only negative was that it really wasn’t any easier to paddle than the others (alaias are a MAJOR arm workout). The extra wood didn’t make a difference – it was essentially neutrally buoyant weight. The positive side of that is that you can duck-dive the thing about 6 feet no problem, and actually “swim” underwater with it.
As for the graphics…after cutting the outline, it just looked like an uhu (parrotfish). I bagged my first uhu a few weeks ago (granted a red-phase, not a bicolor) and that sealed the deal. I just wanted something interesting on the back so I made some camo stencils and went with an aquaflage scheme. The logo is again just a reflection on my current obsession of spearfishing. I couldn’t bring myself to put a camera mount on the nose – it would just ruin the art.
I’m really excited about riding this board this winter. This will be my “co-number one” along with a “normal” shortboard I’m making for more critical surf.
Friday, September 24, 2010
The newest model is a twin-fin fish that I’ve called the Manini (the Hawaiian name for the convict tang, one of themost common reef fish). This one has a nice wide bat-tail and low-to-medium rocker to keep it going in smallish surf. This one is a kids board which will allow my 10-year old to progress from mini-longboards and funshapes up to proper short boards. It’s still got plenty of volume and length for her. At 6’ it may seem small but fish are generally ridden 6”-12” shorter than ones “regular” board due to their design. Take a mini-mal, cut 6’ out of the center and there’s your fish.
Wednesday, September 15, 2010
Monday, September 6, 2010
Saturday, September 4, 2010
That’s what I’m calling these two boards.
“Big Brother” is a 9’0 longboard, full and thick, for my oldest brother.
“Little Brother” is a high-performance 6’5” shortboard which will be my winter board.
Since they both are new shapes I’m starting by cutting the templates out of 1/8” ply:
Monday, August 2, 2010
Sunday, July 18, 2010
Tuesday, July 13, 2010
This fish is essentially ready for glass after less than 2 hours work shaping (I'm going to put color, fin plugs and a leash plug in).
Friday, June 4, 2010
Wednesday, May 5, 2010
Friday, April 30, 2010
Sunday, April 25, 2010
The bending jig used is actually for an iako (outrigger crossbeam). I’ve modified it for a nice double-bend. Since my last 2-ply paddle failed (see the video here) I used 4 laminations on this one; two lams of douglas fir in the interior and mahogany on the outside. Here is is just out of the jig:
From there, it’s a whole lot of hand-shaping with a small plane and a spokeshave. Here is some sequentials:
The blade is douglas fir with mahogany highlights. I made a temporary jig to glue up the “wings” on to the shaft.
I used the same blade template as the last paddle, as I really liked how it felt both paddling and surfing:
The blade was covered with glass set in epoxy:
From there, once the epoxy was dry, I sanded and filled with urethane, and she’s ready for her premiere.
Wednesday, April 21, 2010
From: Charles James
Sent: Wed 4/21/10 8:37 AM
With regarding you and your company,Am Charles James And I will like to know weather you do carry Planer Board do you have them TX-22 Special Planer Board in stock available for sale,for me to make a purchase of it. If yes i will appreciate alot cool let me know the size and the types as well as the prices arrange you have in your inventory plus sales tax Excluding Shipping & Handling Because it will be Picked Up and Shipped international to West Africa (Accra-Ghana) Do you accept credit card as a method of payment and what term?
Wow, I'm fresh out of planer boards, Mr. James (or is it "prince James"?). I promise the next time I work up a batch of "TX-22" boards I'll make one for you. As soon as I get that $8000 bank draft from Ghana.
I may have to design a new shape called the "TX-22" as it is kind of a cool name...
Tuesday, January 26, 2010
This video was shot with the new GoPro HD hero camera, which gets my highest recommendation.
What a beautiful spot. Life is beautiful.