Another "my first Alaia" post ;-)

Hi all,

I’m afraid I won’t be doing step-by-step as others have done that so much better than me, but here’s a bit about my first alaias. I picked up two 8’ x 18" x 3/4" blanks from surfinggreen (thanks Grant!). For templates I loaded a few images of alaias I’d found online into InDesign then traced them and manipulated the results until I was happy. I then printed them out “life size” on multiple A3 paper sheets using the tiling printing function. Taped them together and I was in business!

And here’s the result. Almost all the shaping was done with a small block plane prior to sanding and was pretty straightforward. The channel (runs 2/3rds of the length of the board) was the trickiest part - as it seems to be for most first-timers. I used an electric planer to make a flat channel down the middle then blended in the sides with a combo of a small block plane and sandpaper. Finally had my first crack at some pyrography and burnt in a logo (I’m a bass player and have this logo as a tattoo) and the specs (The “Bassic” model name isn’t a typo - it’s another bass reference!). I’ve yet to take this one for a spin…

With the second blank I’ve made three different boards - the first one (below) is a 4’6" prone alaia for me and potentially one for my son to stand on (hence the “Jackson” model name you can vaguely see). I used a similar technique for the twin channels using the electric plane but left them a bit sharper. I’ve taken this one out a couple of times and after sussing out the paddling challenge (definitely using flippers with it) I’ve had a ball. In an excellent omen I scored a small barrel on the very first wave I took off on!

The last two that will come out of the second blank are a 2’ “kick board” for my daughter, and a body surfing handgun that I had enough left over for. Just getting started on those two now.

Just wanted to say thanks to everyone here for the advice I’ve picked up reading so many posts and topics since embarking on this venture a few weeks ago - simply lurking has been an invaluable learning experience.

Looking good chuck! those are some nice boards. Beautiful. I really dig the prone shape. Let us know how the big one goes.

Do you mind if I stick some of those pictures up on the site? Im going to do a piece on people who have shaped their own alaias.

Cheers, Grant.

No worries! I’m flattered :wink:

Just working out what I want for my next order of blanks. I’ve decided against going down the double-thickness “kneeboard” style path I had contemplated (especially after actually taking the “Jackson” out and realising how challenging it is), but will probably play around with some more prone designs.

wow! looks nice!

When is someone gonna put a fin under one of those things eh?



seriously though, on this finless thing, has anyone gone into the “hot-curl” finless designs? Or is it just plank alaia’s at this point?

keep up the “out of the box thinking” stuff!!!

post scriptum: just saw that Surfers Journal article on Carl Ekstrom… begs to question… assymetrical alaia plank??

hrmmm… gonna go for a paddle now…