art on boards

I want to draw on a surfboard that is already finished. Can I use permanent markers to draw directly on the bottom of the board? What are the best types of markers to use and how long will it last without rubbing off from use? Should I then use an spray on acrylic coat over the art to seal it in? Thanks any suggestions would be appreciated

Hey JT, To do it right will not be easy, you’ll need to take your time - it pays to invest time for good looks. but, If you feel you’re not up for the challenge - I wouldn’t try it. I’d use a resin compatable pen (check out “ZIG Opaque Writer” - usually find in art/craft stores - DO NOT use permanent markers, they are not permanent when used with resin - they smear) lightly sand the area for artwork with something like 200 grit sandpaper just to roughen-up the surface a bit. This will help the artwork stick to the board. Apply the art with pen or acrylic paint. If you screw up - you can remove most medium with acetone and paper towels. But only use as a last resort - some paint colors will stain the surfboard’s surface after being removed with acetone. When your done with the artwork, let it dry well. Now… here comes the hard part. Apply some clear resin (you can get a few ounces with the purchase of a ding kit if you don’t want to purchase more than that (the stuff found in the kit has a surface agent which will allow the resin to fully cure to a hard surface for sanding). Mix the resin up with the appropriate amount of catalyst (CAREFULL - this stuff will stick to everything and will cause blindness if gotten in the eye - use goggles/safety glasses - and plenty of ventilation. Acetone is used to remove partially and non-cured resin - remember this stuff sticks to everything. Apply the kicked resin with a disposable (natural bristle) brush to the area you sanded. Try your best to get the resin evenly coated in the area your working - this will pay off big time when you begin sanding. Then, after mostly cured - about a day, sand the newly applied resin with a sander (if available) or by hand with 220 - 300 grit sandpaper. BE CAREFUL…(especially with the power sander) Sand just enough to feather in the new resin to the original, but don’t really sand on the original resin if you can help it. BE VERY CAREFUL that you do not sand thru to the fabric, use a very light touch and GO SLOWLY - sand only as much as needed - no more. If you have a gloss coat surfboard(the surface is shiney) you’ll need to sand a little more with finer grit sandpaper, say 500,600 or so. hand sand to remove the slight scratches the 220-300 paper left. The use some rubbing compoud (3M makes a great compound) and a cloth to buff the surface you’ve been working on to remove the 500-600 grit scratches. At last - use some type of boat/car polish/wax to bring the surface to a shine. You may even want to polish the whole board while you’re at it. You’ve spend the time to do it right, might as well make the whole board shine. If you’re planning a to cover the whole side (deck or bottom) with artwork - use the steps above but rough up the entire surface (deck or bottom) to mid rail. tape off at the mid rail line and apply kicked resin over the entire surface - once the resin has cured about 30 minutes, remove the tape. Sand as above, but feather in at the mid rail line. This will make a cleaner, more uniform surface for the entire deck/bottom of the board - and will typically turn out better (harder to tell the artwork was not original). It would also help if you had an older board around you could practice on before attempting to modify the board you’ll hopefully be very proud of. Good luck ,remeber to go slow and be careful!

why not a can of Krylon ulra clear gloss acrylic, Cheaper faster less mess works with Zig,posca, sharpies etc. He runs the risk of ruining his entire board by putting resin on the bottom and not knowing how to sand properly or worse off sanding through his art. My votes for pens, POSCA or any other type of water based marker and acrylic clear coat, POSCA and Clear coats are what LOST uses if thats the effect you are going for.

i believe herb has a take on floor polish too which will seal it from rubbing off easy.

Thanks for the advise…in regards to the second suggestion about posca and krylon. Does the Krylon change the performance of the board at all. How do you apply it evenly without getting drips. Thanks again.

krylon is just spraypaint, use several thin light coats

OOPs forgot to say, you wont even be able to tell its on your board.