Broken board => Skimboard?

I found a decent sized nose-half of a longboard lying on the beach after my surf in that good sized swell we had the other week. The thing is like 3” thick, but not quite long enough to make something fishy out of (it’s a little over 4 foot). I’m not really into the kneeboard/bellyboarding thing… so I got to thinking, it might make a decent skimboard. Granted I haven’t stepped on a skimboard in over a decade, but I figure worst comes to worst, I give it to some kid…

I searched through the archives, and figured out the basics… including that they’re normally made from sheet foam and molded. Well, I’m not interested in that… I just thought it’d make a fun project and give me some more experience with some foam mowing – regardless if it’s inefficient. Think I can shave down something that thin with the power planer?

I know nothing about the modern day skimboard… As far as skimboard mechanics: Seems they’re FLAT. Now I know, flat is fast, but I’m wondering if this has a bit to do with the fact they’re made from sheet foam. Maybe a little Vee in the nose and tail? Or would that prohibit skimming on the super thin water sheets?

What about rails, hard all the way around… why not a soft 50/50 in the nose? Has there been any experimentation with the tucked under edge?

Again, they’re flat. So these ¾” thick boards have ¾” thick rails… and its proven to work well. But if I have an opportunity to dome the deck, why not sneak a little more volume in the center? I can still have my ¾” rails, and a little more float to boot. Am I asking for trouble?

I don’t know much about modern skimming, but what I’ve seen is quite impressive, kinda a cross between surfing and modern skateboarding. I noticed they can kinda even ‘ollie’. Is there a bit of tail flip put in these?

I’ve read that most of these high-performance wave riding skims have upwards of 3” of nose rocker… how far back does the entry start, or is it just a last minute ‘flip’? I suppose I should get out and look at some modern versions first.

I think that’s it, anything else? sorry for so many questions, I know nothing about this facet of wave riding.


I grew up skimming at the Wedge. Here’s some suggestions:

4’ is a little on the short side, but it will still be fun. 55" to 57" is ideal.

You will want the bottom dead flat from the tail to up about 30" from the tail, that’s where you will start your nose rocker. It should start a lttle bit in front of where your front foot will be.

1" of nose rocker is enough, but you can use more if you like. The rails should be thin and hard, but you can soften them near the nose, tucked would be better. The rails are your fins, so they need to be thin near the tail. S-rails might be good if you want to go thicker. Don’t put any vee or concave or tail rocker in the bottom, it will just stick in the sand on the drop.

I’ve made skimboards up to 2" thick, but with some concave in the deck. My favorite boards were 1.5" thick. The thickness helps with getting out to waves further out. The domed deck probably wouldn’t be a very good idea unless you are able to step perfectly in the middle of the board after the drop.

You will want to glass it with 3 layers of 6 oz. on each side. Don’t worry about making it light. Too light of a board will fly out of position on the drop on a windy day.

Ollies are just like on surfboards, just sink the tail and jump.

Check out and and those are some great skimboarding sites.