Hi! Wood_Ogre here

Went down to to see the balsa wood that Ambrose had a while back and he introduced me to Swaylocks. Have been lurking for a while to see who is who and whats happening. A lot of good information here. With everyones permission I would like to play too! In July I harvested my first batch of balsa here. Milled it and stickered it to dry and some of it I put into my solar kilne so now I have some dry wood to work with . Have been in contact with Paul Jensen about building a HWS . Thanks Paul, You are the man!! I need to try posting some pictures to see how that works so I will start with three balsa wood pictures. Cut logs , Logs on truck and milled wood. Thanks for letting me play! Aloha , Wood_Ogre

Welcome, Wood Ogre!

ooh this has all the makings of a great step-by-step thread!!!

self cut Balsa wood, HWS, Ambrose & Paul J mentioned already…

I can just tell I’m gonna enjoy watching this one take shape!!!

Welcome wood_ogre!!!

can’t wait to see what you create…

balsa you naughty naughty frenchman … glad to see you still er have your magazine collection !

“wood ogre” , [great name , by the way , mate !]

WELCOME mate !

always good to have another Hawaiian online …you guys are always doing INTERESTING stuff here , I reckon !

" With everyones permission I would like to play too!"

hahahah classic !!

And yes , I would be keen to see photos of a hollow wooden surfboard [“h.w.s.”] in action in Hawaii …I can’t recall having seen THAT here yet ?



enjoy your time here , mate …and , as my current “signature” says …

Interesting topic. Did you grow the trees? If so, what are the growth rates? I like the idea of going from seed to surf. Welcome aboard.

Aloha Ogre,

As a fellow wood guy and balsa board builder, I also say welcome.




Wish I had balsa plantations in my back-yard…

Actually, wish it was tropical here, surf like Hawaii… women like France…

But, Paulownia grows well here, easy to get my hands on that!

Women - not so easy. :frowning:

If anyone feels like turning this into a “how to mill your own” thread i’d be stoked.

I get Paulownia very reasonable prices, about half what you’d pay to get little short sheets of balsa from the hobby suppliers.

Been using it for rails, but I’d love to cut some into 3mm ish (1/8) sheets for the skins as well.

Can get a cabinet making outfit to cut it down, but the cost of that is more than what I paid for the wood!!

I can’t see any other decent option to get such thin veneers…


known the ogre for arh to many years .

oquiet worker of mucho mas telents.

has a camera you shall all be blessed

with the results of conflabulatarianistic

ethical and cosmic input into the

swaylahol tropical punch.

the seeds came from costa rica via dan shook

grown in kapahi I think.

M has back round in oregon surf Kwaj ,V.N ,

so many stories untold a rich and varied well of expertise

we are blessed with this here ogre’s presence.

welcome aboard the good ship swaylatulus

captain Nemo Paler will return soon

your cabin is aft on deck between

the joinery,and the captain’s galley

signed significantly,


oficer of the day

Dont’ forget to ambrose messure, and weigh it so you can lay it out… He said it was important! Ha! Taylor

ps. did he get his going, done??? Post some pics amcIII


I get Paulownia very reasonable prices, about half what you’d pay to get little short sheets of balsa from the hobby suppliers.

Been using it for rails, but I’d love to cut some into 3mm ish (1/8) sheets for the skins as well.

Can get a cabinet making outfit to cut it down, but the cost of that is more than what I paid for the wood!!

I can’t see any other decent option to get such thin veneers…


Kit, I have a whole garage full of Paulownia planks, precision milled and sanded to exactly 3mm, they are in lengths of 8 feet or so, most of them have been stained but it sands off very easily, Silly has used some, I’m also using it for decks but you are welcome to some, I am in Putaruru.

There are some pictures of the planks on my Paulownia board project thread.



Wood_Ogre here again. I need to find some time to figure out posting pictures. The ones I posted were to small. I would also like to get Paul Jensens blessings before posting any board building pictures. I am useing his information as a road map but will do some things different because I have different skills and machines. Right now I have to get to work. Aloha, Wood_Ogre

…blessings be upon thou…


That sounds like a pretty good stash you have there.

I do remember reading some thread about that opportunist haul…

I won’t deplete your supply any though, thanks so much for the offer!!

You really do have paulownia in your back yard, Raglan also, now how about those french girls… :slight_smile:

Sorry, one track mind.

The guy I get my wood from has his plantation just outside of Hamilton actually.

I’ll be heading down in the next couple of months to buy a tree trunk or two, I may have to drop in and check out some of your creations! (And hit you up for a few tips!)

Cheers mate


OK- One Hallow wood fish is under construction. Thanks to Paul Jensen. Made the building form then bent 2 layers of ply around them for the inner rails. Didn’t care much for using the 1/8 ply as it was to stiff and I can see the possibility of this braking so I will change this next time. Because I didn’t like the ply I didn’t use it for the frames (ribs) instead I laminated two 1/8 " strips of poplar with 4 oz glass cloth between. Turned out very strong and I discovered that after the glass was dry and for a couple days this laminate was very bendable. The epoxy resin changed the PH of the wood enough to make it more flexable. When it dried a few days it became very stiff. So this is what I will do on the inner rails next time. Allso I can sandwich the glass between two 1/8" strips and after drying over night run it through my thickness sander and by taking more off one side then the other I can increase the bend considerably.( thin side in, thick side out) Next time I will make my frames and inner rails thinner by laminating and then thickness sanding. Instead of glueing my inside rail to the frames I cut 3/16" x1/4" notches in the frames and glued in poplar strips to make chines. Then I clamped the inner rails on and marked the rib location and scribed the chines then took it off and drilled and sawed off all the extra wood. Was very easy to do this way. Then glued the inside rails to the chines and frames and trimmed to exact fit with a router and spoke shave. These chine strips are about the same thing as Pauls router strips. There may be the possibility of elliminating the inner rail if I make the chines 3/16" X 3/8". Will try that next time. The bones are now finished and it is time to make some skins. You can see my bones standing in front of the balsa log that will be made into skins.

Hello to you also Wood_Ogre.





nice BIGGER photos there , sir ! [?“photobucket” to the rescue ? hehee]

That is looking GREAT … can’t wait to see the finished board , and hear how it holds up in Hawaiian POWER !!

cheers ,


OK! Thanks to chipfish 61 I got good photos. Didn’t get them in the right order or get captions with them but it’s a start. I hope to get the next ones right! Pic #1 is the inside frame sitting on the two skins whick are ready for glassing on the inside. #2 Glueing up skins, the joints are taped then folded open so epoxy glue can be brushed on the joints. you can do several joints at a time. #3 this is the frame beside the balsa log that is to be cut into skins. #4 inside rail being glued to frames.#5 after glue is put on skin joints, skin is layed down and clamped with Bar clamps, squeze out is scraped off. Wax paper laid on and gravity clamped with cement blocks. When they are dry (over night) they are untaped and run through my thickness sander. They will need only a little hand sanding before glassing the board. Thanks again chipfish61! I was ready to give up utill you helped me out!! More to come ! Aloha- Wood_Ogre

Looking good Wood Ogre. You’re really motoring along. I guess proper workshop = fast HWS build.

Have fun!