pressure dings

I fairly constant moan I hear from people who have just bought new boards is that they get pressure dings in the deck, often on their first outing into the surf.

The general response from board builders is one of it’s ok, it wont leak, just wax it. To me this totally inappropiate as my experience is that the top skin will soon come away from the foam core leading to all the usual nasties.

Obviously, a triple layer of say, 6oz is less likely to be a problem, but even then I have seen the usual ‘burger’ dents in boards.

Has anyone out there looked / tried using a skin that is both lightish and able to withstand dents? Are pressure dings an inevitable consequence of using polyester, with it’s low modulus of elasticity? Or would a deck patch made of kevlar do the job?

Bert ( among others, and I’ll apologise for the omissions now) has been doing some interesting things with higher density foam inlays and/or laminations, cos if the foam underlying the glass isn’t dense enough, you’ll have to go pretty heavy on the glassing to make up for it. But this involves tooling, labor, investment and skills that most manufacturers are unwilling to get into. Hell, they are selling boards now, and if the easily stomped boards are selling just fine and there’s few if any alternatives, well, they figure screw the customer.

Me, I reccommend to anybody with a new board that they get themselves stomp pads, real quick. Soaks up some of the heel impact, spreads it out a little. But that’s kinda like a wheelchair approach: yeah, it takes care of some of the problem but it’d be better if there wasn’t a problem in the first place. Heavier glass plus stiffer foam at the surface of the shaped blank, that’d take care of the problem. Carbon and kevlar and such - ok, they have considerable tensile strength, but they deflect just fine unless you have a very thick, heavy lamination approximating that of polyester/fiberglass. No real gain for the higher expense and difficulty. Epoxy is somewhat stiffer, but it too costs more.

This actually has some bearing on the ‘resistance to change’ topic too - as you mentioned, the deck dents lead to delams which in turn lead to expensive repairs, breaks or most likely having to buy a new board. One notorious example, the H__ies and the St____rts, are famous around here for deck delams and lousy glassing in general. But they are selling and they even have lots of repeat business. And the measure of success is whether or not they keep selling their badly made boards, not whether or not the boards fall apart. Planned obsolescence, y’know?

Why? Well, the general run of surfers ain’t exactly sophisticated about materials and manufacturing processes and such. They are here on Swaylocks, yeah, but this is a small subset of surfers as a whole. The general run of the surf biz…well, don’t get me going on that.

Ah well… life is a carnival… just gotta stay clear of the sideshow.


Surftechs also pressure ding, and they have the thickest skin of any board out there that ive seen. A heavy heel or knee shot and it will ding. Like you said its becouse of the soft foam core at the surface. i just accept these dings as part of the deal, but yes, they soon take on water and turn brown on a poly board. The guy who creates a blank that is easily shapeable but is also highly ding resistant, will have a monopoly of the market. I wish some one would hurry up and do it.

but would a harder blank be too stiff?