Fiberglass versus Epoxy performance

I have two Ricky Carroll longboards in epoxy (a PLB model with quad fins and a chined rail and the JQ noserider) and am considering getting one of the JQ noseriders in fiberglass. I have never had a fiberglass board before and was wondering if anyone could tell me how much of a difference the performance between the two would be? 

My epoxy JQ noserider is 9’8" with a 19 1/2" nose

Thank you in advance for any information

You are probably asking the wrong question, are you saying or implying your epoxy surfboards are not made using fiberglass?  Because that would be extremely improbable.

A more likely scenario would involve comparing a surfboard made with EPS foam and epoxy resin / fiberglass, vs. a board made with polyurethane foam and polyester resin / fiberglass.


Thank you for the correction. 

How would the EPS foam / epoxy resin compare in performance to the polyurethane foam / polyester resin board. I am really not sure what type of foam Ricky Carroll uses for his blanks: the boards that I have are extremely lightweight (when you consider that they are 3 1/4" thick) and have epoxy resin.

I have heard that heavier boards are easier to noseride and wanted to check and see if there were any other pros / cons before get one

I don’t ride EPS / epoxy boards generally, but I create and ride boards made with polyurethane foam and glassed with epoxy resin.  They are heavier than the EPS boards as a general rule, and I like them just fine.  PU/PE boards have been the industry standard for ages, I like them fine too, but I think they tend to be a bit more brittle than boards glassed with epoxy resin.  And some people say they are prettier, too  :slight_smile:

It really depends on how much money you spent at Costco last week…and honestly…how big is your belly?

My fiberglass boards go just fine. I’m told that you can buy a Costco board and a grill for less that 200…and return them at the end of summer for a full refund…at 3 1/4 thick it’s a win/win deal…epoxy is awesome…Costco too!


What about borrowing one to a friend ? (a polyester board).

The usual statement is “epoxy stiffer / polyester more flex”… but it depends…

The easiest way would be to find some poly board to test it… they’r the standard so it shouldn’t be that hard.

GL & HF,


You already have two boards that were made with fiberglass. There is no such thing as a “fiberglass board”. Most surfboards are made of some type of foam, then laminated with fiberglass using either polyester or epoxy resin.


As for longboards which the OP is riding I prefer PU/PE construction to a surftech sandwich style make. The surftech style is too light and too stiff for my liking for any kind of bump and wind. I’ve seen quite a few eps/hand lain epoxy boards that have snapped in half. I reckon most of those are glassed with far too little cloth and not enough density to the blank as most HP longboards for “rippers” are usually done regardless. 

have ridden HPLB’s in both.

epoxy - lotta pop, easy to throw around, twitchy nose riders.

PU - predictable feel, better glide and more stability on the nose

I have a 5 fin HPLB in my quiver that is fun as a 2+1, absolutely flies in walled up surf as a quad.  If it broke, I would have it cloned using the superior vibration control of a PU blank, glassed with epoxy for superior strength.

Glassing schedule, same amount of epoxy “resin” + same amount of cloth (“fiberglass”), over same density and volume of foam (PU or EPS) = boards that “weigh” the same.

One cubic foot of 2.0 pcf EPS foam weighs the same as one cubic foot of 2.0 pcf PU foam.  pcf = pounds per cubic foot.

I’m not gonna argue with your calculations, but the simple fact is that I have purchased standard off the shelf US Blanks poly blanks in different densities, and I recently purchased a US Blanks 2# EPS blank, and the EPS was much lighter.  I think the lightest poly blanks (US Blanks differentiates density by “color” code, orange is lightest) are close to EPS in weight, but that density is available only in shortboard blanks, whereas the 2# EPS blank I bought was the 9-4 B, IIRC

If anybody can show me how 2.0 lb of EPS weighs less than 2.0 lb of PU, please do.  I am not interested in “arguments” or hearsay, just unbiased proof.

If George Gall, Greg Tate or bb30 can substantiate that (weighed true density) 2.0 pcf EPS is lighter than 2.0 pcf PU, I am all ears.

Weigh “equal” volumes (same dimensions) of “foam (only)” from blanks that are “reported” to be the same density – with an accurate (same) scale.  If the manufacturer is loose with their reported density, it will show in the measured unit volume weight.

Polyurethane blanks are more dense at the surface and less dense in the center.  EPS density is considered uniform and is reported with a 10% variance, according to Airframe (Ken).  That is, EPS foam sold as 2.0 pcf could weigh from 1.8 - 2.2 pcf.  I purchased some EPS that was sold as 3.0 pcf.  I weighed a rectangular sheet of that, with uniform thickness.  It weighed 2.25 pcf.  Obviously the retailer was not honest.  A “2.5” pcf EPS foam could range from 2.25 to 2.75 pcf.

Accept. Reject.  It does not affect me.

Based on weight comparisons, I’m guessing the orange density foam is closest in density to 2#, but as I say, not available in longboard blanks. The US blanks catalog doesn’t give density of poly blanks, only a percentage in reference to blue density as the standard.

Are there blank manufacturers that make poly longboard blanks identical in density to their EPS blanks?  Just curious.

Which longboard blanks are you using for poly? For EPS?

I am using XPS sheets for surfboards (1.8 pcf & 2.2 pcf) and EPS for experimental longboard (skate)/mountainboard cores (maybe presses/molds eventually). I cannot tell you about commercially available blanks.

My current project is a 1.25"-2.0" thick x 48" long EPS (2.25 pcf) center-deck inlay (with modification) in XPS.  My preferred surfboards are 7’6" single fins.

Not directed at you Huck.  But we will begin the countdown…

Huck, I ran across this the other day, trying to figure out how dense tow-weight foam is:


To Duck-1 (the original poster who started the thread):  you’ve hopefully surmised by now that you’re going to get a range of answers.  You could narrow the range and maybe get more useful responses if you provided more specific details on the construction of your current epoxy board.  Unfortunately, the phrasing of your question suggests that you aren’t very familiar with the nuances of the very subject you’re asking about.  Poke around and you’ll find  plenty of info and plenty more opinions.  Have fun.

@Stoneburner: for what it’s worth, the last couple blocks of “2 lb” EPS I’ve bought both came in at a true density of 1.85 lbs/cu. ft. 

Now, somewhere in the dusty recesses of my brain I remember reading that the commonly used blanks at the time (this would have been Clark Foam Green or Blue densities, I can’t remember which) averaged around 3 lbs/ cu. ft.  Now, true 3-lb. EPS is kinda hard to come by and fairly pricey.  (You may want to look up my thread in the Industry section about it 5 or 6 years ago, as it generated some interesting feedback.)  Even then, if one had a board cored with 3-lb. EPS and glassed the same as an identical poly board, many say it wouldn’t feel the same.   Different vibration damping characteristics and such.  



For Stoney and Huck…

Ten years ago when Clark foam closed Swaylock’ went crazy…we were told the construction grade block foam was 2 pound (2#). It was not…what everybody was buying and hot wiring was 1.5 pound foam… that was 2005…

…2015…today’s surfboard foam is much better and the specs are tighter. Foam is better, beads are tighter. EPS foam is being blown just for surfboards. Some molded, some block. The hot wired US Blanks EPS foam today are are 1.85 or better. I know that from experience…I can see it and feel it. And I know this stuff for a fact…The Murphy’s Law board that I sent up to Huck is the old foam…The fish I just finished is the new foam… I haven’t tried the Marco foam or the US Blanks Superfused yet…My resin supplier and my pro shaping friends say that’s where I need to go…It’s hard to have a day job and explore everything surfing and shaping…go for it!

Ray man going on vacation man…

When you try to make some foam you quickly understand why final density can be far from what you expected. Pu blanks are in général heavier than nominal density can let hope and EPS lighter. Post EPS blank used are lighter than pu, so for near same board weight more glass is used ended in a stiffer board with less damping feeling but it can be adjust with stringer configuration. With same glass schedule board is lighter, flexible ans breakable.

The weight difference is because epoxy is stronger than poly as a resin. So for the same board, they usually use lighter cloth and so less resin to get a lighter board.

Or, they use same glassing method but with a lighter foam…

The same construction plan (same cloth and resin amount, same foam density) will indeed result in a very similar board weight (epoxy and poly density are both around 1.2kg/L).

But the theory of stiffness of a resin compared to another or it flex won’t be enought to tell you if you want this new board or not… you have to experience it imho.


Regarding the opening posters question , modern epoxies out-perform poly resin hands down . They don’t fit into the standard industry requirements for quick production , but the finished product is much stronger , and also has more performance enhancing elasticity than poly resin ( which is brittle by comparison , and less durable)…epoxy is not as user friendly as poly , but it’s certainly getting closer.