....my next ..."mal-adjustment".....

now the “Auslocks” board is finally finished … [hoooorayyyyyyy !!!]

there’s this for me to adjust … and shape. And glass. And fin. And ride

the bottom…


the deck…

[ from a 9’2 Burford blank]

…this is the ‘roughie’ that resulted from a 15y.o. girl being let loose on "Hicksy’'s blank. [No offense intended , Rachel …THIS girl DIDN’T know what she was doing . You , however , obviously have a good clue …how’s YOUR board coming along , by the way ?]




yes, i love mal’s!

I think this one belongs to a freind of Alex Knost. (photo without permission, “sprout”)

Hey why don’t you give that mal of yours a swallow tail, that’d be cool and “chippy”.

and what art work (if any) have you planned. (inlay?)

well , I have LOTS of pigments , one tint , some spraypaint , fabrics …who knows WHAT may result …"Balsa’’ , I’m looking to you , mate !

cheers !


first step …


second step …

change the tail shape .

third step …

even up the bottom.

then …

skin the deck

shape the rails

keep enough thickness for a 12" [long] finbox

[the fabric may be used in the fin[s] I make for it , I think …]


but first …save money for the cloth , resin , box[es / plugs]

Chip, yeah, first step is re-templating, trying to keep what max width can be kept. Try to get some hips in the last back third of the blank, ending into a rounded pintail. From the hips up to the nose, you should try to draw almost parallel rails, but not quite: that’s the hard part in templating a longboard, it’s such a long curve, it’s difficult to keep some curve into something that’s basically a straight line…

thanks Bill !

what would you think of a squaretail on this board ? [I will be shortening the tail area , to get enough thickness for a box , and was wondering …

Also , what size of fin do you use in , say, your 8’ 6" + mals ? ( cheers, mate, for your help ! )

…“Platty” , too , if you’re out there , please …what thoughts do you have ?

cheers mate !


Ben, if you go for a square, you’ll have to shorten the blank a few inches, but why not? How long is it right now?

Type, depth, rake, base-length and position of your fin(s) depends (as you know: YOU are the fin wizzard here, aren’t you?) upon what kind of tail, what width, rocker, is it a “performance” longboard, an “old school” noserider, a longboard gun, are you the “powerful” kind or the “mellow” one, a.s.o.

I suggest you determine your planshape and rocker first, then ask for a fin consultation from Halcyon or Blakestah. These guys ARE the fin experts. I am not.

thanks Bill …

here’s what I’m thinking …tell me if this sounds about “right” for a mal I can turn , yet noseride too [no vertical lip bashes …I’m a “cruiser” [ or, so I’ve been told …“stubs” , you ****** !]

18" [ish] x 8’6- 8’10 ? x 21 1/2 " [all I’ve got left, unfortunately, after the butchery] x 14"

…tail pod , not sure …4-6" , maybe ?

10-12" finbox

2 fcs plugs each side [no 5 finners this time!]

legrope plug

fairly flat bottom

fin[s I will make for it…] 7 1/2 - 9" [+ ?] deep , 4 " [maybe] to 6 1/2" bases .

different ones…

raky ,


differing templates…all fibreglass , one or two wood cores to , possibly .

small side fins .

…sound like a [good] plan to you ?

cheers , ‘pote’ !



Ben, if you go for a square, you’ll have to shorten the blank a few inches, but why not? How long is it right now?

I “THINK” it’s around 9’ still , but about the back 6" or so inches is “too thin” [for a box] , and “lopsided”, kinda .


Hmm, blank looks interesting… Some rocker and blank profiles/options. If you go to Clark foams website, they still have a PDF file with all there blanks on it, if not I go it and can send it to you. It will give you a number of options, the 8’10" Stewart will give you a good start, it’s pretty thin at the tail with more thickness towards the front of centre. Knock 2" off their max width outline all around will give you a nice profile to make your outline. I wouldn’t worry about the box being forward a bit, especially if you are going for the 12" box, you have loads of options, further forward will make it turn like a demon, by going with a squirrel shape fin you won’t loose drive either, while you could also retain the pintail which will further enhance turning. On the other hand if you want to retain noseriding ability and are worried about the tail being jittery with the fin forward, go for one of those Ben Lexcen type winged fins design, if you can make one…they make it stable on the nose!

If you have a few uneven spots through the centre, with thicker areas on the rails, go for a longer concave on the bottom from the nose…that should give you some glide…with a turn of speed possibly( like the Stewart hydrohul), you might end up with a very nice, lightweight stick which has a bit of volume too and is durable. Personally I find Bruce Jones weight guide for volume very useful.

Hope this helps…

thanks for that , ‘kudu’ …

nice to hear some options .

I’d be interested to see the Stewart outline you refer to …

cheers !


Hey Ben. I tend to agree with Balsa. Keep it as parallel as possible with hips. Wide point behind centre. 18" nose 21/22" wide 15" tail are in the ball park. You may need to fiddle around with the tail dimentions to get the hips in. The rocker will depend on the type of waves you plan to ride. If the waves are fat and without much wall I would keep the rocker flat. If the waves are hollow and faster then you could add more rocker. If you plan on alot of nose riding a pivot style upright fin will work better than a raked fin. Set idealy with the tip past the pod.

How thick do you think the tail will be? You can afford to sand some of the fin box down. Having a fin box is the way to go. That may sound strange coming from someone who rides traditional boards 90% of the time. But it allows you to set the fin where you want it to suit the conditions and style in which you want to surf the board.platty.

thanks very much Dave !

it really is great , the expertise we have online nowadays !

yep , I like finboxes …no persuasion needed there , THAT’S for sure !

I will need to work out / measure the nose and tail rockers when I’m next up at Grant’s .

I would figure once I cut 6-8" off the tail , then I “SHOULD” [hopefully!] have enough tail thickness to get the box into , with sanding / grinding / routing the top of the box off .

How thick a tail is needed on a mal , really , I wonder ?

Scarborough , where I will be riding it , is a strange wave for a mal , I guess …a lot of the time it is simply a shifty sucky shallow tiny borderline closeout .

Some days it’s a slightly onshore , more rolling , mushy type of wave . [Your average summer beachbreak , often , in other words !]

But I do what to give mal riding a good go , and if I find I like it , would like to use a FULL blank one day ! [pity that girl , and the bloke before her , butchered it , really !]

well , thanks for your help guys …

any other comments / suggestions / feelings / thoughts …on the outine , fin[s] , rocker , wide point placement MUCH appreciated . Like I said before , I’m new to this , so any mal riding advice also welcomed ! [and yes , I’ve watched “the seedling” , “quiver” , “endless summer” , and “surfing hollow days” , trying to pick up some pointers ,

but I have an open mind in regards to hearing what you guys share !

cheers !


There’s this strange un-writen rule in California that a “longboard” has to be 9’0" or longer.

I don’t know why…

haha …

well, I live in west australia !

[so I don’t need to be anal about my board’s length]


Hey Ben, why not make TWO 4’5" longboards?

Oh, BTW, the usual fin-box is 1" deep. Thus your tail thickness (using a box) should be at least that. A bit more, actually…

the finboxes I use [Aussie ones] are just over 1 1/8" deep , actually . I figure I can lose at least 1/16" of the top of the box , once the hole is routed. [“Hicksy” did similarly with the “Auslocks” board].

cheers Bill !


Well, “chip”, what’s the deal with the mal ? did that head injury cause permanent damage , or something ?

oh right , you’re 45 now, I forgot. Old men ride mals, eh ?


yep… I put a nice zimmer frame on layby today .

Might join the croquet , lawn bowls , or bingo group next week . (At least I know how to RUN bingo [a few years head start already ] )

…thanks for your kind thoughts Cecil !