How to Build a Surfboard - Epoxy and EPS Construction
On this webpage you will find information on how to build a surfboard from scratch.
On my youtube channel I have a variety of videos of me building surfboards but in this video series I hope to show you each step and explain how I am doing it. By no means am I an expert and I am learning as I build new boards.
If you are thinking about build a surfboard but don't know where to start then these videos should help you out. This surfboard will be made from EPS foam (Styrofoam) and epoxy. The first few videos show how to make your own blank from raw materials, if you already have a blank you can skip to the shaping steps. The shaping and glassing steps can be applied to a polyurethane blank as well.
The videos can be long but they are truly aimed for the beginner, so I try to include as much detail as possible but time-lapse some sections that are tedious.
This board took several months to complete working on and off. The board surfs awesome, a real different type of surfing with a single fin surfboard.
You can view the whole playlist here: https://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PLHeE1mcmnNBSXs0ymSgrxwF5od6gqvX07
Video 1 - Introduction
This video is an introduction of how to build a surfboard from scratch. Covers where I build, lighting, stands/racks and what to expect in the video series.
Video 2 - Shaping Tools
This video is about tools used for shaping a surfboard, you can easily shape a surfboard using just few hand tools.
The most useful tool is called a Surfoam and is available at most hardware stores.
Video 3 - Foam Types
This video goes over the two different types of foam that can be used for scratch building a surfboard: EPS (Expanded Polystyrene) and XPS (Extruded Polystyrene)
Video 6 - Making the Rough Blank
This video shows how to glue together the stringer and blocks of foam to make a rough blank. Also covered is some tips around setting up the blank for hot wiring if you are planning on using a hotwire foam cutter (optional).
Video 7 - Hotwire Cutter
This video gives an overview of a bow hotwire foam cutter. Completely optional tool but is very handy for removing bulk foam from the rough blank.
Video 8 - Hot Wiring the Blank
This video shows how to hotwire a block of EPS foam into a surfboard blank. This step is optional if you do not have a hotwire foam cutter.
If you don't have a hotwire cutter, start removing the foam by cutting chunks out with a saw or removing foam with sandpaper, rasp or Surfoam.
Video 9 - Tracing the Template
This video covers where to find surfboard templates and tracing out a template on a surfboard blank.
Video 10 - Rough Shaping the Blank - Part 1
This video shows how to take your hotwired blank or rough shaped blank and shaping it so it is ready for marking the rails.
Video 11 - Rough Shaping the Blank - Part 2
This video is a continuation from part 1 of Rough Shaping the Blank.
Video 12 - Marking Rails - Part 1
This video shows how to take your profiled blank and mark guidelines called rail bands. The rail bands is where you will be removing foam. If you are having problems shaping the rails of a surfboard, this video will help you. Just remember this video is guidelines, I encourage you to experiment, it is not necessary to follow the same measurements as your board will be different, e.g., shape, thickness and type
Video 14 - Shaping Rail Bands
This video shows how to remove the foam from blank that have been marked with rail bands.
Video 15 - Shaping a Concave
This video shows how to shape a concave into your blank. This is totally optional and not recommended for your first board.
Video 16 - Blending the Rails
This video shows how to blend the rails after you remove the foam from the rail band marks. This is the final step of shaping a blank into a surfboard. This is where it all comes together and starts looking like a surfboard.
Video 17 - Fin Setups
This video covers fin setups for surfboards. I go over different fin setups that you can use on your board. Specifically around the most common surfboard fin systems. These are just a few, there are many more out there.
Video 18 - Installing Futures Fins Boxes
This video shows how to install Futures Fins Boxes. Typically you need a Futures Fins installation kit (expensive), that has special router template plates to router out the proper shape and depth. But there is away to do it without the special kit by using just a router or even a Dremel.
Video 19 - Sealing the Surfboard Blank
This video shows how to seal the surfboard blank after final shaping before artwork and glassing.
Video 20 - Artwork
This video shows goes over different ways to decorate your board.
Video 21 - Types of Fiberglass
This video goes over types of fiberglass and glassing schedules.
Video 22 - Cutting Fiberglass
This video shows how to cut the layers of fiberglass, getting ready to glass the board.
Video 23 - Working with Epoxy
This video goes over working with epoxy, tips and suggestions.
Video 24 - Taping for Cut-lap, Mixing Epoxy, Glassing Prep Work
This video show how to tape the board for a cut-lap.
Video 25 - Laminating and Fiberglassing the Bottom
This video shows how to laminate, also called glassing the bottom of the blank.
Video 26 - Trimming and Flattening the Bottom Lap
This video shows how to trim the cut-lap and remove the tape and over lapping fiberglass.
Video 27 - Cutting Fiberglass for Deck and Taping Cut-lap
This video shows how to cut the fiberglass for the deck and goes over the relief cuts for the nose and tail curves. Also how to tape the bottom for the cut-lap.
Video 28 - Laminating and Fiberglassing the Deck
This video show laminating the deck of the board.
Video 29 - Trimming and Sanding Flat the Cut-Lap
This video shows how to trim and sand the deck cut lap to blend into the existing glass on the bottom.
Video 30 - Taping the Rails for the Bottom Hot-Coat
This video shows how to tape the rails, getting the board read for the hot-coat.
Video 31 - Bottom Hot-Coat
This video show the process for hot-coating the bottom.
Video 32 - Deck Hot-Coat
This video shows the process for hot-coating the deck.
Video 33 - Installing Fin Box
This video shows how to install a bahne fin box.
Video 34 - Installing Leash Plug and FCS Plug
This video goes over different types of leash plugs and how to install a leash plug.
Video 35 - Sanding the Hot-Coat
This video shows how to sand the surfboard after the hot-coat.
Video 36 - Gloss Coat Deck and Bottom
This video shows how to do a gloss coat.
Video 37 - Final Sanding and Polish
This video show how to sand and polish the gloss coat to a shine.
Video 38 - Pin Stripe
This video shows how to do a pin stripe.
Video 39 - Finished Retro Single Fin Surfboard
This video show the completed surfboard!