APS3000 Machine & Stringerless Blanks

Has anyone had any success in cutting a stringerless blank on an APS3000?


Go here.


I recognize those fingers and tennis shoes!!


I forgot to ask. What foam and density did you use? Also did you chop it and half and glue it back together? There seems to be a line running down the middle of the board in the second photo.

Back again. Does anyone know if stringerless EPS needs to be superfused to hold on an APS3000?

Yes, it can be done on the APS3000 machines. Depending on the density of the foam there might be a few extra things you have to do. If the foam is not very dense a lot of guys have been putting spackle on the areas where it is held by the vacuum cups. From what I hear that seems to work the best. But a lot of EPS should hold to the vacuum cups even on the older APS3000 machines.

Depending on the density and type of EPS foam, you might see some burning on one side of your board. This is due to the cutter only spinning in one direction on our older machines. A little harder to scrub out but not the end of the world.

To handle things like stringerless EPS, very hard EPS, EPS with parabolic rails, etc, we’ve made the following improvements to our Aku Shaper machine:

high quality spindle motor - to spin the cutter in both directions which leaves even rails and no burning

improved holding system - to handle the different flexing of boards with and without stringers

more advanced cutter - which leaves an even smooth finish


Do you have to respackle and let dry before machining the other side? I’m assuming the spackle will be taken off the first side once it is cut and will not stick when flipped without respackling.

Yea, the bottom of the board gets taken off with the cut. When the board is flipped it sometimes holds. If you have a problem there sometimes what works is spray glue on pieces of paper where the cups go.

Are you blanks not dense and the air sucks through? Can you hear it?

Let me know and I can ask some of guys that I know do this a lot.

Are you working with the guys that have the machine in NZ?


That is where I have my preshapes done. They were having difficulty in getting the blank to hold and gave up in the end I think. Not sure what density EPS they were using either but I’m pretty sure it wasn’t superfused.

Any CNC Machine will cut EPS. Use Gorilla Tape over the foam where the vacuum cups hold the blank down. The spray on paper method will work but if you use too much the EPS will disolve from the solvent and make a ugly mess. Have them slow the feed rate to 60% of the normal speed and give them a $10.00 tip for their troubles.They will save you time. I have cut 100’s of EPS with no problem.Stingerless 1.0 pound density. Like I said use gorilla tape and slow the machine down. Pay the cutting house for their time and don’t be a cheap skate.


They were having difficulty in getting the blank to hold and gave up in the end I think

so how many kiwis does it take to change a light bulb;)

anyway simple solution surfding

good stuff

ados contact spray adhesive is eps friendly

i use it to attach my hotwire templates

sooooo much better the anything else

Another problematic variable we’ve encountered cutting stringerless EPS on an APS machine is “deflection” in the nose and tail resulting in variations in rocker and thickness in the last 18 to 24 inches in the nose and tail both top and bottom.

So many improvements, unreal. With the “old” APS3000 we can not cut even rails? My EPS will burn? Do you realize that you are insulting all the APS3000 owners?

Improved holding or more complicated holding? Nothing wrong with the “old” way of holding a blank. It is Simple, efficient and error proof. A more advanced cutter? Heard it spits the dummy the moment it touches a bit of aluminum.

Hi, I am Steve Del Rosso, I do have a board label in Western Australia and I do have 3 of the “old” APS3000 on the Gold Coast.

I have been lurking on Swaylocks for years and love it. Thanks a lot guys for all your input and info.

I bought my first APS3000 some years back and I do cut the boards for Murray Burton, Darren Handley, Simon Anderson, Luke Short and others. None of these shapers would accept uneven rails. This problem has nothing to do with the spindle cutting whatever which way. Line up your machine properly and she does a great job. I have seen boards cut on a local Aku machine, well mate, they are not better than what we are doing.

Heard on the grapevine from the US the whichever way Aku spindle is not lasting too well either so I better stick to my simple, trusted grinders.

Miki has over time always upgraded my machines to the latest technology. Stuff that makes sense, that make the operation easier and improve the product. And Miki did not even charge me a cent. My oldest APS3000 is now on the same standard as my latest machines and she can cut PU, EPS and balsa without any problems. I did cut a balsa gun for Mick Fanning, she did an amazing job. Everybody was stunned.

And you should see how Miki did upgrade the Shape3D program, mate. There is every function you can dream of to create the perfect cut in whatever material. Why change the machine?

I worked many years in the mining industry and I learned that the simple stuff works and complicated stuff does not.

I know that JS cuts big numbers of stringerless EPS on his “old” APS3000 machines, block foam and US foam. He cuts them with even rails and without burning. JS is known to be super fuzzy so there is no spindle problem.

Miki has improved the cutters and the new ones love to eat EPS. And they do not mind to eat a bit of aluminum when the operator was too long on the piss over the weekend. Shit will always happen.

EPS without stringer will deform cause of gravity. Your “improved” holding system will not change that. But a good operator knows how to adjust for it, ask Miki and he will tell you. In Shape3D you can even get the Z values for nose and tail, deck and bottom.

Use fast drying spackle to seal the vacuum area and they will stick like sh… on the machine. Or paper and wallpaper glue if you are not in a hurry. Miki told me a few tricks on how to increase the vacuum power on my “old” machines and I saw some giant ocean canoes he did cut on his "old machines. EPS stringerless, 1#.

As far as I am concerned, you started this whole Aku thing with stealing Miki’s invention. You argued Miki is only a front man you have removed; everybody knows that this is not true. A lot of stuff on your website is false, APS3000 machine owners are not Aku machine owners and you show pictures of stuff cut on the APS3000. All your references are APS3000 related but you forget one thing: APS3000 is Miki, the inventor and the passion behind it. And he worked out how to hold stringerless EPS on the APS3000.

Steve Del Rosso

Dear Steve,

What software are you using to cut your boards on your 3 machines? Shape3D or our software? Its my understanding that Miki is trying to sell machines to people with pirated versions our software. This is a horrible business practice. Whether or not you think machine is Miki’s is fine, I’m not convinced, and that discussion has already been had. But there is no question that the software is my father’s and my invention and our property.

For him to be selling machines to people and not telling them the truth about what they are getting and what they really own is absurd, and also copyright infringement.

When we decided to stop being partners with Miki you had wrote that you didn’t want us to contact you again, as based on your rhetoric in this post, it is clear that you’re in Miki’s back pocket. I am almost positive he pushed you to writing this post, I know exactly how he works (of course this will be denied). I will even go so far as saying the he wrote part of the post for you, this claim is based on the grammar and wording of your post (and of course all of this will be vehemently denied). I worked with him closely for almost 6 years. He’s a hell of a salesman, but his ethics are suspect.

Look I’m not going to get into another discussion on Miki and our relationship, for those interested, there is long thread on this site some time ago which covers all this.

I’m glad you like the machines that you currently own, that’s good. But, I’ve seen a lot of these machines in action, APS3000 and Aku Shaper. Improvements have been made to the machines, as expected on any piece of machinery, and the results are better boards. APS3000 machines still cut very good boards, no doubt, but with time and people working, improvements and adjustments are made to the machinery and software. Now on our newer machines, the boards come out more accurate, handle blank imperfections much better and don’t drift. A good attentive operator, as you claim to be, can get either machine to cut very nice boards.

You wrote:

EPS without stringer will deform cause of gravity. Your “improved” holding system will not change that.

Yes it does, we compensate for that.

When people who are very experienced with CNC machining see our machine in action, APS3000 or Aku Shaper, on of the first things they comment on is how impressed they are on the motion of the cutting file. That is from the software. Every board cut on every machine that uses our software has that technology. Hence, pictures from boards cut on our older generation machines and our new machines on our website. The software is an important part of the equation, it tells the machine where to go.

Bottom line is Miki lied to us and stole from us so we stopped working with him. At the same time he was lying to all the other people he worked with so they stopped working with him. You know them, there’s are a handful of them in your backyard.

I wish this post could have been more about surfboard technology and less about this shit.


and the truth is in the eye of the beholder…

Any machines in Norhtern France, Belgium or Germany?

Talking about terrible business practices, how about stealing the hardware design from your partner? How’s that for business practice?

my suggestion for swaylocks users is to use boardcad

it is free and will export brd and dxf files

this argument is about one thing


money making and ethics dont seem to go together very well

Any machines in Norhtern France, Belgium or Germany?

No sorry, no machines in those areas.

And you’re right about the truth.


Talking about terrible business practices, how about stealing the hardware design from your partner? How’s that for business practice?

Wrong, that is incorrect. My ex-partner cooked the books and my current partner designed and engineered virtually everything, from day one.

But wait a minute, aren’t you the guy, maybe with a friend or two, that took our software, decompiled it, and then packaged it into something with another name.

I’ve seen the source of BoardCad, you guys were so lazy that after taking our code, you didn’t even change the names of the methods. There are unique things that we named that are currently in BoardCad. BoardCad looks very similar to Aku Shaper (APS3000), the feature Ghost Board is a good example.

That’s actually fine. I still refer people to BoardCad when they have a situation that calls for some of the features you offer.

But don’t you fucking dare talk to me about ethics. You’re clearly blind. I’ve been through the wringer, didn’t enjoy it. Now things are a lot smoother.