8' Board

A buddy of mine has been in the market for a new longboard. He couldn’t swing the price of a new board so he’s deciding to build his own with a little help from me. This would be his first board so design is up to me with final decisions about overall shape, ride, fins ect. up to him. He’s hoping to learn some things so i plan on going over the big things like true angles and using a power planer. He’s looking for a board around 8’ and he wants a cruise-y flow-y mellow ride. Something easy to paddle, surf and enjoy in our mushy New England waves. We have nailed down most of the details so far.  The dims are 8’ x 22" x 3". He’s about 180lbs and it being a board with quite a bit of surface area, we decided on a 6oz+4oz deck with a 4oz bottom. 2 + 1 fin setup and we plan on also making a custom center fin (thanks for all the awesome threads Fins!)

The tail on this thing is confusing me though. As noted he’s looking for a mellow, enjoyable, cruising type ride. Maybe a shallow single concave? A slight V bottom? I feel like adding too much of a complex tail will take away from the more classic ride he’s looking for. He’s heavy backfoot so I was leaning more towards a shallow single concave.

Any ideas?



Sounds pretty much like a longboard to me, even if it is just a bit shy of a true longboard.  I like V in the tail on a single fin square tail cruisy malibu type longboard - I think anything that long will end up being turned off the tail.  I see concaves on shorter boards, and performance shapes (yes even longboards) designed to be ridden rail to rail rather than cruisers.  But I’m just a backyarder, so take it with a grain of salt.  Maybe Oldphart can chime in, he does a lot of concaves on his longboards, but I think his are more performance oriented.

Seeing that   “He’s looking for a board around 8’ and he wants a cruise-y flow-y mellow ride. Something easy to paddle, surf and enjoy in our mushy New England waves.”

I would suggest using a blank with less rocker than you think and some volume something like attached ignore my + #'s

  1. basic flat to slight vee

  2. keep as much volume as you can 

  3. Peter Pan rails.

Concaves are energy hogs.

On a eight foot board I’d like to think a round pin, or maybe a rounded squash tail would be pretty cool… stay away from a square tail bcuz it’ll look like a mall board…lol. those look WRONG ! ,:smiley:

I used the 8’0 RP, and the dims are 22.5 x 3 1/8 x 18 x 15. I put concave in the nose to flat to double in the tail with V.  It is flat in the nose and entry rocker with good kick in the rear of the tail. I like this rocker arrangements for mush killers, as too much nose rocker really makes them dogs. I use the 2 + 1 setup you mentioned and love it. Gutless waves I use single, and if it steepens I use the side bites.

If he wants cruisy;  he should be riding a 9 plus footer.  Then it would be a longboard and it would be easier to get “cruisy”.   That Rawson blank is more likley to yield an “Egg”.  I don’t see it as being “cruisy”.    You’d be better off with a 9’1 Y.  Longboard V usually starts just in front of the fin box.  Maybe 2-3 or 5-6 inches and runs thru the box and diminishes as it leaves the box.  The box (depending on length) should be 41/2, 51/2 or 6 inches from the tailblock.   No matter what you shape;  a four ounce bottom glass job is ridiculous for the average surfer.  Unless off course you are looking for future ding repair biz.  Lowel 


I agree. I think a longer board would suit what he wants more. He wasnt interested in anything really over 8’ or so. Hes done some digging around and thinks about 8’ is right for him. The shape will be closer to a funshape/egg then a traditional longboard so again you are right, probably not good to label it as a longboard more a funshape hybrid kinda deal. 

As for the 4oz bottom, ive never had a problem with my 4oz bottoms. I cant speak for everybody but for me so far, lookin good! Maybe well end up putting on 2x 4oz on the bottom just in case though. Dont wanna hit a rock or something in the sand to ruin a board!

Thanks for the info about the tail block. The last 24" of any board seems to be the hardest. 


I glassed mine 4s x 4e deck, with 4e bottom and that is all you need. The glass doesn;t make it snap proof-the stringer does. If you want a cruisy 8’0 (which is saying he wants a 9-0+ noserider type of ride) than you need to make it light as possible.

It’s almost always a shallow rock that gets paddled over that does in a 4 oz. bottom.  The way to look at it is to do what he wants, but caution him as to the consquences.  On a board like that you could shallow concave the nose for the possibility of an occasional nose ride.  Lowel


You actually believe that?

You’ve been a participant here for at least four years. In that time, there have been numerous discussions about breaking strength and what helps improve it (or doesn’t).      

The most critical element to prevent snapping is the foam to glass bond. Secondarily, it’s the tensile and compression strength of the laminate. People have done some fairly controlled tests in this area. To improve snap resistance via the stringer, it takes a significant increase in stiffness and size of the material used. Wood stringers don’t help a whole lot in that regard.

As far as a 180 lb guy having an 8’0" as his longboard/cruiser, I am very skeptical. My noserider is 8’. I weigh 150. The board is not really light (contrary to other people’s ideas).  I can knee paddle it with ease. It has generous volume and full rails. Sharp edge in the tail with a ‘toilet seat’ flat bottomed nose. Slight V around the finbox. Glass job is 8 oz volan top and bottom with 8 oz knee patch and fin patch. Triple 1/8" spruce stringers (for looks, not strength)

I would do something closer to 8’6- 8’8, and lots of volume with the thickness closer to 3-1/2

That 8-2a blank is a beast - huge amount of volume. I believe you could get a 4" thick board out of that blank. Do a search for mahady’s lineup killer he builds from that blank, very nice big guy board and well liked by his customers.

Plenty of foam in that blank. But, the overall blank in my opinion works nicely for big guy shortboards under 8’0, Eggs and tweeners".  definitaly not a Longboard blank, even if you are calling an 8’0 a longboard.  On Maui I did a friggin’ fantasic combo board out of the 8’2 A.  Could be set up as a Quad, Thruster, Twin, Single or a 2 plus one.  Left enough meat in it to float 225 lb. local boys.  Lowel 

Yeah, I hear you.  I guess my point was more along the lines of the intended use.  At that point I didn’t even notice the blank, prbly because I read on my i-phone and pics don’t always come up on it, so I just responded to the question is single to double concave the ideal bottom for cruising mushy waves - only when I went back on computer and re-read I noticed the blank was the 8-2A.  Then I had to go back and see what made me think longboard, and then I saw that he said 8 footer for cruising mushy waves.

That blank has quite a bit of rocker, and a pulled in nose.  Mahady is using it for a “big-guy shortboard” type shape.

But I don’t even know if the original post was asking about which blank to get, I thought he already had his blank picked out, but now I don’t even remember what the original question was, I think I need a cold beer and a nap LOL



I guess I didn’t exactly tyoe what I meant, but I do believe that a thick stringered board with a lighter glass job is more snap resistant than vica versa. If testing data indicates otherwise, I stand corrected-I’m only speaking from my own personal experience. Also, he’s using it in “gutless” New England surf, so there’s really no need to have a heavy glass job for his intended use.I have used this glass job for years on this sized model and I’ve yet to snap one. Of course, I’m not taking out in macking barrels, etc., but my point is that to get an 8’0 ride like he wants he should make it light. I can either cruise(single) knee high waves or rip(2+1 setup) my 8’0 in waist high waves no problem. I believe the rocker is about 4 nose by 2.25 tail-the flat rocker with kick in the tail is what gives it the mush killer performance. I’ve been using this model for about 10 years.

the blank i think hes getting is the 8’2" you all have brought up. Unfortunatly around here ordering blanks is kind of impossible, unless other people put in orders and you have like a 15 blank order. We are limited to buying blanks off of surfshops and the one local proshaper we have. He was the head shaper at Aloha surfboards for a number of years. Works at Nor’ Easter surf shop a little ways from Marshfield. 


McDing i thought about a shallow nose rocker. I read some articles about nose rockers and i wasnt sure if the overall length would be enough to make even a decent noserider. I was planning 5 1/2" of nose rocker and about 2 1/2" in the tail. Im not sure if a nose rocker would change those dims much. 


About volume, volume is our friend in this one as mentioned before. I might kick up the thickness if the blank allows for it and my friend is okay with that. Hes picking up the mystery blank (either 8’1"EA or 8’2"A) tomorrow. When we get it ill be sure to update you guys on the plan 


thanks for all the great info



There are a few really good shapers in New England. Unless you’re talking about a guy whose initials are RB, I’m not buying the ‘head shaper’ thing.


You can “believe” whatever you choose to. that doesn’t mean it’s right.





Right. Until he paddles out at a rocky spot. Many folks don’t realize that except for the Cape, just about every good spot in New England has a rock bottom.

And, as far as lightness equalling “cruise”, I beg to differ. Mass = inertia = momentum.

Lightness = more float = less drag = more speed. I’ll agree with your opinion on the weight = more strength against the rocks, though. To each their own, I guess. I dig the light boards, especially in small weak surf. Also, hitting rocks usually means ding repair regardless of how heavy the glass job.