Is it easy to blow foam

Is it easy to blow foam? surely it cant be that hard!!! Is’nt it just a concrete mold that seals when the mix is added. I figure that it would take a bit of practise to get it going and to get the mix right. I remember seeing an old surf movie where the guys were having fun trying to get the mix in the mold before it expanded. When is someone going to come up with the do it yourself blank kit. What a saving that would be for the average sized board builder, like if you were to say that it might cost you half of the retail price at an average of 25 boards a week(mid sized board buider). for here that would be 25 times $30 ($750) $750 x 52 weeks a year = $39,000. You could give a grommet a pretty good wage and still come out on top and no waiting for blanks. Has anybody heard of such a product, I would buy it just to see if I could make it work.

It is easy to pour foam, HOWEVER it is not easy to make it consistant. Not even worth your time. A lot of people have tried and failed. The current makers can sell it to you for cheaper than you could make it. Their is more to the process than raw material costs. Oh yeah, you where going to use a Grom? The foam density that is used in surfboards is very light oh yeah it is also white. And most 2 to 3 lb foams are not as strong as surfboard foam. Go for it.

if it was that easy, more people would be doing it.



if it was that easy, more people would be doing it.

that’s what some people say about making surfboards, and they never even try it. have you (or anyone you know) tried to make their own blank before? last i saw, jim phillips was using a bead foam blank that a friend of his made…it got me curious about making a mold and giving it a try, but i haven’t put any time or research into actually making it happen.

you just answered your own question,

“it got me curious about making a mold and giving it a try, but i haven’t put any time or research into actually making it happen.”


i know i’m guilty of the same thing…i was honestly asking if you know anyone who’s done it before…i guess i’m not that adventurous and would like to hear a success story before i go out and put a lot of time and money into making a mold and whatnot. i’ve already got the inspiration to do it…now the next step is finding some hope.

Quote "

Let me say to any of you that have ever harbored the thought of TRYING to pour your own foam, think of the worst surfboard building disaster you’ve had and multiply by a hundred. Do you remember Bopal India, site of a Union Carbide plant, where thousands of people were killed when an accidental cyanide release occured. They were producing a chemical at the plant that is called TDI, a crucial chemical in Polyuerethane foaming resins. When it reacts, it gasses cyanide, foam as it expands, exerts hundreds of pounds of pressure. The molds are solid concrete, reiforced with steel and outfitted with hydralic clamps to keep them shut during the actual “blowing” of the blank. Mold release paper has to be used to keep the foam from marrying the mold. And least of all, the foam must be poured without being filled with more holes than foam. Why do you think there are only 2 polyuerethane foam surfboard blank builders in the US. They are professionals and we still get blanks that have problems,ah, go ahead, give it a try. Whatta’ ya’ got to lose."

End quote.

here’s the thread;search_string=blowing%20foam;#107827


If you want to make blanks make EPS blanks… that’s real easy. There’s WAY more to making urethane blanks than meets the eye.

absolutely…in fact, i’d like to shy away from PU foam more…especially now that i’ve discovered the joys of RR. i’m thinking of giving steve forstall a call and seeing if he might care to sell me one of his blanks for a 9’0" rounded pin (more performance-oriented board) i’ve got in the works…but aside from that i’m still using clark for all my current projects. can’t seem to find an EPS foam that gives me the weight i like for my classic logs. but the blanks jim was using were nice and heavy…just the way i like. when he resurfaces, i might have to hound him for more info on 'em.


“if it was that easy, more people would be doing it.”

Now there’s a saying that I have to give a smart-arse answer to,

“surfing must be that easy, seen as though more and more people are doing it”

"The current makers can sell it to you for cheaper than you could make it. "

Thanks Sluggo for your words of wisdom, I must remind my friends of that when they next ask me how much it is to make them a new board. By the way, a grommet is a term for a young surfer who needs a bit of cash to get his folks off his back about going surfing. (well that is what it used to mean, these days the folks want you to become a pro and spinout at the judges if Duke Junior does’nt get lucky with the right waves).

EPS foam sounds like the better way to contruct consistency, I think that I will give that a go.

I always thought that being a small time board maker was about trying to invent a better board, not about having to emulate what has alredy been done is my reply to to the “foam is 2 to 3 pounds and white” comment.

My belief is, that there is always room for improvement on a man made product.

As for the quote of “there is only two people in the USA that can make consistent foam” Man, these guys must be as smart as brain surgeons or rocket scientist, and if they are, why are they waisting time making foam.

I guess that these guys are not going to shell out there massive knowledge of pouring foam into a conrete mould just so that some other scalper can come along and steal their thunder.

Shit I’m a smart-arse

Like you’re dumb enough to CONSTRUCT a concret mold for every 6" of board length, then a couple thicker for fish or BGTris, some with flatter rocker, some with standard rocker, and then a couple of log concret molds!

You got nothin to do at all?

And ya, a “few” practice pours…like 3 for each different shaped mold, as curetimes and expansion rates depend on volume as well as mix.

You have no idea what you are thinking of getting yourself into.

LeeDD, below your name it says veteran, is this because you went to war for your country or does it mean that you are just some old kook that is trying to make out to the rest of the intelligent squad that you know what you are talking about. For a start blanks do not have to be blown to the right rocker, they are bent to the desired rocker once they are blown and cut in half. As for the lengths, if you are stupid enough to think that you need a blank for every 6 inches of board, well, thats your problem. But remember that blanks are blown deck down so that the major strength is in the deck not the length. I am pretty sure that the expence of waste can be overcome for atleast 18 inch of mold and besides that you can block a molds to make it shorter. Next time read the question, I asked if someone new of anyone who was selling a blank kit, which usually means that the product is tried and tested(unlike a lot of the boards that are made these days by people who dont even surf).

Lee DD is a very noble person. Foam blanks are very toxic. Meditation will calm the vexed person.

Obviously your boards are made from Budda Stix, something less toxic Maaan(did I say Maaan right dude)

Anybody could blow foam if they really wanted to.You could also make resin,fiberglass,sandpaper,planers,sanders and cars.The technology is avaliable to anyone that want’s it.It all basically boils down to the cost factor.It was a good honest question though. RB


Actually Gordon Clark is probably one of the smartest people I have ever met. And yes I do deal with Rocket Scientists on a weekly basis. One of the most eye opening experiences is touring the Clark Foam factory. I have toured a lot of manufacturing facilities for a lot of industries, and Mr. Clark’s facility is very impressive. Walker, that is another story.

I know what a grom is, I just cant believe the suggestion.

And yes, due to longboards and funboards, surfing has grown easy.

Last, you should not be selling your boards on price, that should be the last reason someone buys your board. You should sell it on Value and Benefits of a custom board. If you don’t know how to do this, learn. There are plenty of good books on the subject.


Hi DustyL…

I didn’t write that title below my name, so I don’t know the reasoning.

I did volunteer for an 8 year hitch in the Army.

I don’t know anything about blowing foam or molds, I’ve only shaped about 500 surfboards, made fairing and seat plugs for Yamaha, spoilers for Ford, and hatchcovers for Catalina Sailboats, so don’t use any of my reasoning for any basis of knowledge or fact.

And since I"m in the construction business, don’t consider I have any knowledge of blowfoam insulation for custom houses either!

I don’t know nothin!

Ahhh. Swaylocks- the only place I know of that a couple folks can get heated over a subject such as building surfboard blanks. Great. Dusty- I went through a blank building “phase” a while back. Went out, bought some 2 part polyurethane pour foam, and played around with it for a while. Learned a ton of stuff about foam… to everyone reading this this thread- I highly recommend the experience- a small 2 part foam package is cheap if you have access to it, and the learning experience is worth it. Number one thing I learned about polyU foam- It’s a f*@king pain in the ass. It’s sticky as hell and some how or another it always seems to get all over everything, and you end up with these little sticky balls of foam growing all over everything. The working time is about 40 seconds- that includes mixing- the “cream” phase as it is called I believe. When it goes off, it goes off! I never got over the amount of foam that comes from a little bit of resin. A little bit in the bottom of a dixie cup and a minute or so later you have foam mushrooming over the top. The way I figured it, you could make an open top mold out of cardboard, mix up a gallon or so of polyU and dump it in there, smooth it out and let it go off. I think you could yield a usable blank that way. It would be a mess though. A couple more things about 2-part. Number one being the fact that it is a brown color. You can add pigment to it, I ended up using reds and blues- using white always resulted in a light coffee (with milk in it) color. It always seemed that adding a lot of pigment made the foam act weird and unpredictable though, it never seem to go off the same. Other thing- The stuff I was using (2 lb) tended to be very porous and sucked up a TON of resin when I attempted to laminate it! In the end I never made the blank, though it would be a fun project- I don’t have the time. I’d love to see a guy do it and post the results on this forum though! Best of luck! -Carl

Finally a sensible answer, thankyou Carl, this what I wanted to here about , not some excuses of it being too hard to even have a go at. Such negativity from a bunch of guys hoping to share and increase their knowledge, or is this a site just filled with braggers.

LeeDD, I cant work out if 500 boards is meant to impress me or truley show little you know of the subject.

Sluggo, if name dropping is your only source of knowledge please dont reply to my questions.

I still cant work out how you arrived at the theory of selling my boards at a price and not what they are worth and how that applies to asking a question about blowing your own foam.

Carl, having a go sounds like a true learning experience and alot of fun.

The world is full of people are too scared to have a go, they listen to other negative people who give pissweak reason as to why you should’nt have a go, but it’s not my world.

i think a grommet is a small metal object that resembles an asshole. So, to be polite, some people are called grommet