Thursday, July 30, 2009

Hollow wooden board building with Paul Jensen at The Eco Village

Chris Walton and I outside the Eco Village

Monday morning 10 budding board builders will start their week long journey of building a hollow wooden board under the instruction of Paul Jensen. Paul is known as the guy who kick started the modern interest in building hollow wooden surfboards again. This will be his 10th class world wide , spreading his board building method and knowledge . He has travelled widely in the last couple of years with his classes. Chris Walton the managing director and creator of The Eco Village at Currumbin will also be doing the course. He sees this as very good fit with what he has achieved and is building at The Eco Village. I will keep you updated on the guys progress through the week.

Tuesday, July 28, 2009

Watt's Wood's , what timber weighs ?

Watt's Wood and Mouldings in Queensland have a great guide on their website to show what different timbers weigh. And then gives you a rundown on what it is used for and what sizes they have in stock. All very helpful when deciding on what you want to achieve without adding too much weight and also what density different species are.
Check it out at : These and other suppliers are on the right >

Vented leash plug... now here is a neat idea

Now this is a well executed idea that saves you drilling two holes in you board.

" Greenlight's "VXV" Vented Leash Plug provides full time Gortex venting of your wooden or EPS boards without an extra part to install in your deck.
EPS boards contain very small air pockets between the foam beads which expand and contract with changing tempertaures. If a board is dinged while surfing and water gets in, additional heat (leaving your board on the beach or in a hot car) will cause the water to change phase in to steam and extert pressure on the fiberglass skin - pushing the glass away from the foam (delamination).
Or if you leave the screw done up on your wooden board and leave it in the sun or the car , it may more than delaminate on you , it may blow apart.
The VXV is the slickest solution to relieving internal pressure in boards - both EPS and hollow wood boards.
The vent's screen size allows air (steam) out of the board to relieve internal pressure but will not allow water molecules in! No need to open and close the vent as needed in other surfboard venting systems. Just install and forget it... "

Each vented leash plug includes an install kit and instructions.
Check out:

Monday, July 27, 2009

Solid agave by Eli Mirandon

This is an Agave plant that they make Tequila from and they also have a stem that grows unbelievably fast then flowers.
This stem when dried out is a very light weight woody fibre , great for boards. You will see old ones dotted around in gardens and all of a sudden they flower and this is the result.
From this rough looking collection of Agarve stems can come some beatuiful grain patterns.
Love the rustic look that it has. Some wood all glossed up is just not the same.

A classis Eli Mirandon twin pin with bamboo fins. We had one of the original ones at the Fish Fry this year.

Saturday, July 25, 2009

The Alaia piggy back

Now here is a guy who is thinking outside the square. I only hope it's not going to catch on at crowded beaches.

Friday, July 24, 2009

Tom's off to the UK to shape Alaias

Tom’s living the good life in Noosa , but this summer he’s dragging himself out of paradise and around Europe, making it to Cornwall in August 2009. He’ll be hosting three alaia day workshops at Revolver in Newquay (01637 875730 Details as follows:

Dates: 21, 22 & 28 August, 10am start.
Cost: £325 per person (£100 deposit on booking). Places are limited to 8 people per workshop.
Includes: partially shaped alaia blank; the tools and guidance (provided by Tom and apprentice Matt) you’ll need to shape your blank; lunch (Tom’s legendary chilli, if you’re lucky); alaia DVD; private screening of Tom’s favourite alaia moments on film, plus Q&A session.

You might even get to catch a wave with Tom if the conditions are looking good.

Come along and share the stoke.

Details and pics grabbed from Driftsurf

Thursday, July 23, 2009

The Japanese boys are getting right into the Alaia

As was seen at the Japanese Fish Fry last month , the boys in Japan are really getting into the Alaia. I think even here in Australia we are going to see a lot of them this summer. As you can see there are new ideas being tested here with the channel bottom, now that should take the slide out of the sucker. Check out Naka and his mates at -

Wooden boards fetch big bucks

At the Hawaiian Islands Vintage Surf Auction that is on at the moment, a few records have been broken. A Bob Simmons foam and wood sandwich board from 1949/50 sold for $40,000 . A 1955 Matt Kivlin 10ft 4" Balsa board went for $39,000 along with a Tom Blake 13ft 8" paddle board for $20,000. Interestingly enough they are all on their way to Australia. Be nice to see the Simmons at the Fish Fry or Wooden Board Day. Oh well you can only dream.

So guys you never know the board you build in the garage today may be worth a whole lot more sometime down the track.

Tuesday, July 21, 2009

It is just unbelievable what some people can do with wood.

I have just been sent what is to me the most amazing looking use of wood to build a surfboard. Not only that but just so beautifully executed. Here is Craig's note that he sent to me with these great pics.
" I thought you may be interested in a surfboard I made last year.
Being a furniture designer/maker I wanted to make a board in my own way. The board is influenced by traditional boat building techniques and contemporary design. I wanted to use a design that I knew worked and would be a load of fun. So came a few conversations with Greg Webber on email, phone and on the main street of Avalon.We decided that his mini twin would be perfect.
The board has only one rib thats the stringer (3mm thick with a carbon external 1" lap), the rest is a multi layered 4mm thick shell of Hoop Pine and King Billy Pine as the decorative outer layer. Which is very rear and considering it is also birds eye King Billy you will be struggling to find any more of that veneer on the planet well except for the two or three other packs that I have. There is no fibreglass on the outer layer."

"I have found that timber is a fibre and when used with epoxy glass is not needed on the outer layer. So timber is basically wrapped around a plug and the taken off. so you are left with a shell like the first photo."

"The two shells are then joined to the stringer. It has hand foiled King Billy fins and solid nose and tail blocks. The board rides well and there is something extra good about riding a board you have made your self out of timber , such a good feeling. I have also heard things like why not just get one of Greg's pu customs seems funny that you would go to all that work. Then f..k mate you should not be ridding that what if you ding it go hang it on a wall. It is definitely a talking point. I must say if I did not have Greg let me use his shape it would have taken me a long time to get a board to work." " We cant take our board shapers for granted. Also the good people at the laminator who helped out a lot and had the joy of me eye balling them as they drilled and set the fin plugs. "
"Anyway will be moving on to the next board soon now that I have my technique down but will use lighter timber for internal and will be hoping to have the board weigh around the same as a pu board."

Is this not the wooden Aviso but better ?

Monday, July 20, 2009

Tom and the tuna. Tom Wegener and his new take on timber boards

tuna fun, alaia fun, finless rocks!! from matt williams on Vimeo.

More wood from Nathan Grey

Another fine example of Nathan's skills. A 5ft 9" twin keel fish. It has a displacement hull like a Sim Fish . Cedar top and Balsa rails and bottom , with a 4 oz epoxy glass job. Check it out August 9th. @ The Alley.

Sunday, July 19, 2009

She's finished...

Tony Crimmins just picked up his latest board from glasser Peter Mo. Pretty nice job. 10ft board and she came in at 11.2 kg. It is a ply frame with 6mm Paulownia skins and 6 + 6 on the deck and 6 on the bottom. As Tony said ... "She should be just the ticket for gliding across a few little sliders at Currumbin."

Thursday, July 16, 2009

Nathan Grey's "New Wood"

Here is a new board from Sydney board builder and wood worker Nathan Grey.
"A 6ft asymetrical fish inspired by Carl Ekstrom, this one was built in paulownia and is a chambered/box construction with queen ebony fins and fin box’s.
And I finished it with a natrual oil burnished in up to a 1500 grit, very slick finish.
It has a slight hull up for smooth entry then with a single concave running down through the fins."
Nathan will be bringing this and other boards with him to The Wooden Board Day on the 9th of August. There are going to be plenty of boards worth checking out. Nathan has built some great boards in the past , but this is raising the bar.

Wednesday, July 15, 2009

The longboard progesses...

Local surfer Frank Kaczmarek is getting into his project to build a wooden version of his foam board that he snapped in two.He is hoping to have it finished for August , or will bring it along to the park anyway. Mate there is a lot of work in building a board for the first time and looks like you are getting on top of it now.Thanks for sharing and we look forward to the finished project.

Monday, July 13, 2009

Some nice woodwork by Bobby Crisp from NZ.

Here are some pretty tidy wood detailing by Bobby Crisp for Wellington in New Zealand. He is currently in Hawaii catching a few warm rays and south shore waves before heading over to the Gold Coast for the wooden board day on the 9th of August. Looking forward to catching up with him and checking out his boards up close.

Wednesday, July 8, 2009

Wood coloured bits...

Mark Riley has been building balsa boards since 1996 in Sydney. He sells balsa and anything you need to build a balsa board yourself. Here are some new pieces to blend with your wooden board. A great idea and they are at great prices . They have longboard fin boxes with side fin boxes set for $37. A thruster set for $32. Quad fin set for $44. Longboard single fin box by itself $12. And Leash plugs are $1.50. They also build a great range of boards.
Check them out at :