Board measurement check, and questions about epoxy resin.

I’m starting to finalise plans and sourcing materials for a board I plan to build in the near future. Since this will be my first experience with shaping and glassing a board I know mistakes will be made, but I’d like to go into it with a solid plan to maximise the chanches of having a board I am happy with at the end. I’d really appreciate if you guys could look over this design, and give any feedback as to what could be tweaked/changed to better suit the vision I have for this board.

I’m 5’10, 160lb, my surfing abilities are far from stellar. I’m just now starting to do proper lip hacks, and cutbacks. I mostly ride mushy beachbreaks in the 3-5ft range, so I’d like this board to be optimised for those conditions. I’d like it to be easy to paddle, fast down the line, and realatively easy to maneuver. I plan on riding it with a 2+1 fin setup. My current board is a 5’8 hypto krypto which feels a little too buoyant, and the nose and tail rocker feel a little too flat. Both things I hope to remedy in this shape.

I’m mostly looking for feedback on my rocker measurments, but general feedback is also very much welcome. Is this rocker okay in the context of the above information? 

Note: the tail will mostly likely be a swallow tail, and not what is shown in the image below.

Also an additional question. For those of you living in Australia, what epoxy resin do you use? I was looking at the stuff below. I like the fact that it can be used for lamination, filler coats, and hotcoats. Thoughts?


Never seen a product of theirs that wasn’t excellent quality, so I would expect their Epoxy Resin to be likewise.

All of the surfboard epoxies can be used for for all stages of glassing. Some do fine on their own, some benefit from an addition of a small amount of solvent or a mixture like Additive F from Resin Research. Stuff like dust or a dirty fingerprint can make filler and gloss coat epoxy ‘fisheye’ to the dismay of the glasser.

I would also be curious as to people’s thoughts about the epoxy+acrylic blends. Are you going epoxy over a regular PU blank ro an EPS one?

As to the shape, I cannot comment, too small for me as I would need at least one for each foot. Spend whatever time is needed to refine your design and tempaltes shape into smooth curves. Do not underestimate the importance of good stands and lighting for helping see the shape of the work in process.  Read through the Greenlight how-to stuff.  Be accurate in your measurements for mixing epoxy.  One does not ‘waterfall’ epoxy like polyester during lamination, it is more of a spread and soak thing.

Try to seach for some build threads from BB30, Resinhead, and Stngray. Stingray had one thread that was an awesome timeline/how-to including surf breaks and time with the family built around glassing a board.



Design is a highly personal decision and once you step way from the retail board design track there’s always going to be a certain amount of “try it and see what you thnk” involved.  

With that said, I have a couple observations about the design that you may or may not intend to be doing.  

Firstly, the rocker.   What you have there will surf.  But if one of your comments about the hypto krypto is that you think the rocker is too flat then I’d like to point out that you can’t get too much flatter in the nose in a 5-8 length than the 3.3/4" you’ve got.  If you bump it up 1/4" to 4" that will be a nice moderate rocker.  Some builders might add more than that in a 5-8 length.   Be mindful of the point that the rocker in your design has to more/less fit the rocker in your blank- at the length that you’re cutting it.   .  I normally pick the blank and any rocker adjustments first before I commit to a specific rocker curve in my design.   

If this is your first board then try to stay away from having to significantly alter the blank in the rocker.    Blank comes first.  If you just follow the blank’s rocker that’s usually a good starting point.   


Secondly, If you’re going to go for a swallow tail then you’ll need hard corners in your design at the tail.  Maning, take the curve out of the tail tips.   We normally cut the swallow as one of the last steps in shaping.  You’ll basically cut the swallow after you’ve finished shaping everything else.   Personally, I wouldn’t suggest a swallow as a first shape, especially if you’re going to glass it yourself.   Getting that inside corner clean in both shape and glassing takes some additional skills.  

Thirdly, In your shape it looks like you could use a little more curve in the front 24" so there isn’t that corner between the nose cuve vs the middle curve; and similar for that bump in the rear quarter at 24".   A subtle adjustment outward from the tail tip control point will make that curve fit your middle a lot more cleanly.  Unless we’re adding a hip or a bump or wing to turn off of in the rear quarter we’re otherwise always looking for the nice unbroken curve from front to rear.   It’s always all about the curve.   


BTW, a 14" tail is probably too narrow for a 19" wide board or a 160# surfer.    15" for a 2+1 or quad setup is pretty good and that can readily be pushed to 15.5".  It you were heavier I might even push it to 16".   As far as the curve goes, more curve is for control but that control comes at a cost of speed and drive.   So for a 5-8 length you might do better with a flatter curve.  Just remember that small adjustments will make a big difference, so try to avoid doing anything extreme.   


What’s cool about the CAD programs is that you can tweak a design endlessly before committing to it.  Most programs have a 3-D simulator which enables you to render your design in 3D and rotate it on a 360* basis to look at it from all angles.    Just to illustrate what I’m talking about in making adjustments, I took the liberty to run your template up and tweak the curves a bit and to square off the tail block a bit for the swallow tail.      I’m not suggesting you use this particular iteration, nor will I give you any numbers because after all, we want you to do your vision and your ideas, not someone else’s.    

Classic Gdaddy gold.

Good analysis and constructive comments.  The OP would do well to pay attention to GD’s comments.

Thank you for such in depth and construtive feedback. Will definitely make the changes you suggested!

For inspiration, this shaper has been doing stubbie 2+1s for a long time.




I was planning on using a PU blank. From what I’ve seen this shouldn’t be a problem, am I correct? I have saved both the greenlight “How to build a surfboard/glass a surfboard”, and stingrays glassing timeline in a folder, both invaulable resources.

PU blanks with epoxy resin are just fine, also preferred by some. I live in mid-America so EPS is locally sourceable and PU is not.  Starting with a commercial blank will relieve you of the blank-building process.

I was also going to mention that it is easy to get overwhelmed with infomation and/or opinion via the internet. Sticking with something like the Greenlight how-to for a first board could provide some clariity until you have some hands-on experience to ‘filter’ some of the ideas you will encounter.

One thing I’d like to add to the 2+1 design is that you might want to give some consideration to how you intend to ride the board, what your stance will be like and how you’ll turn.  Then design the entire board around what you’re trying to do.  The mistake I’ve made in the past (and which I try to avoid now) is in approaching the board design somewhat separately from the fin setup.  Like trying to stick a 2+1 cluster on a thruster shape.   It kinda works, but not as well as a board that’s actually designed to be ridden further forward and with a closer stance.   

Look at the website above and watch both of the vids on the 2+1 page.   The shaper Neal Purchase Jr is riding in the top vid.  He is pretty good sized and he used to compete as a pro, but his style on these types of boards is more similar to riding a single fin except he doesn’t move around a lot.  His stance is forward and he’s doing more hula in his turning motion.   So he actually foils his boards to surf from that position  - he uses more of a fish foil than a thruster foil.   More 80s (flatter and chunkier) , less '90s (more rockered, more finely foiled).   

The surfer on the bottom is Rasta.  He’s big into twin fins, which also use a closer stance than the thrusters.   

The point being, you want to aim for a design that will fit how you intend to surf the board.   

Bumping this thread up as I’m now trying to choose which blank to buy which accomodates my plan. I’ve updated my design based on the previous suggestions (thanks gdaddy) and now am going for 2 inches of tail rocker and 4.25 (ish) inches of nose rocker. My theory when picking a blank was to set the tail rocker at 2in on the blank and then cut whatever ammount off the nose to make the overall length of the board 5’8, then add the desired nose rocker. In theory this does two things.

  1. it lowers the entry rocker of the boad - as the rocker breaks from a point further up the board.

  2. It preserves more volume up front - something I would really like as I want this board to paddle well.

I’m having trouble however fitting my plan into blanks. I’ve probably made about 10 blank files off measurments from various manufacturers websites, and every time when I apply the above strategy, the thickness in the nose wont accomodate the rocker I wish to add (after taking into consideration the thickness I will be taking off from skinning the blank). Basically I want to add more rocker than the thickness of the blank at the 5’8 mark. Am I missing something? How can I solve this problem? How do you guys lower the entry rocker and conserve thickness under the chest when shaping from a blank? 

The best I’ve been able to do is the first picture below (the second picture is the blank from which the first comes from). To me, the nose rocker doesn’t look curvy enough, its too straight. Is this just me, or is the rocker pictured below fine?

Again, thank for your help.

Edit: I think that my problem might stem from how I’ve been making my blank files from the manufacturers measurments. I’ve added nose and tail rocker from a single point in the center. I just realised blanks rockers probably have a flat  spot in their rocker that is a little front from center? Meaning the rocker measurment at the 1 foot mark (in the first picture) would be lower. If so, this would solve my problem. 


Hey SkyBlue,

I’ve just laminated my first board with the SurfSet epoxy - so far so good! It works great for the home shaper, because it’s almost odourless. I talked to two shapers who use it commercially and they are super happy with it. Not cheap but you’ll probably use less than you think - I reckon you can get 2 boards plus repairs out of the 3L kit, maybe more if you’re maing short boards?

If you have questions, give John at Sanded a call. He was very accurate with volume measurements for glassing, and talk over the temperature issues with him, as I had to end up heating the bay as our West Aus temps have dropped in the last few weeks.

What blanks are you looking at? I went with Burford because it was easiest to get a hold of. I took in some essential dimensions and my supply man helped fit it to a blank. End of the day, once you have a crack with the planer you’ll start to make it work.

Happy shaping!

Hey mate, 

Cheers for the info on the resin, sounds like good stuff. I’m currently looking at mostly SouthCoast blanks, but I’ve been tinkering with blanks from shapers as well. As you say my issues will probably work themselves out one way or another once I actually get after it :slight_smile: