Signed in resin

This has come to mind recently since I have been following the latest debate over “hand shape vs. cnc”… I have read through a great many posts (maybe all) and couldnt help but notice that there is a lop sided pool of consideration within the different facets of the board building biz. This is actually something I noticed quite sometime ago trying to make a living working in various factories.

Most shapers that are exclusive to shaping only seem to have a great deal of respect and even admiration for their chosen “glasser”. But this does not seem to be the case when turned around. The glassers typically (not all) have some choice things to converse about when it comes to the shapers. I remember standing in the doorway of the lam room when I was a kid and the laminator flinging resin at me as he grumbled through his respirator. Probably cause I kept bugging him for a job. Later on I found that he was one of the coolest dudes ever just a little rough around the edges when working.

The hot coater was the exact same way. I learned alot from those guys, I wish I had taken notes. For me personally I like the process of shaping a blank into something that I had invisioned. But the glassing is something that I have also seemed to enjoy. Although  a space to be able to glass in now a days has seemed to escape me. I never had a chance to laminate much but always wanted to and would still love to sharpen that skill. I’m pretty sure one would have to have boards of their own to lam as opposed to a laminator teaching you on one of his customers shapes.

Then there are the fin systems that require jigs and experience to avoid disaster with your newly shaped sled. This is also something that for me  I have not had nearly enough experience doing. Would definately like to change that as well.

I have had the opportunity to hot coat some sand a bunch and polished a shit ton. I really dont like polishing but at the time it seemed to not be so bad. With the skills that I have picked up along the way I am able to do a complete but not on a productive level and I’m sure with plenty of flaws.

Oh well I guess its good that I am drawn more toward the shaping end of things. Although I am very respectful and blown away by the quality of some of the glass work that I have seen. So thanks laminator,thanks hot coater/gloss expert,thanks fin box guy and thank you sander for the skill that you all seem to leave like a signature on every board you touch!

Every bit of building surfboards is a craft involving multiple skills no matter how you do it.    


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…hello man, in these words you sound very humble and honest.

Pretty good that a shaper say that and gives the crew a credit.

I see everyday, more now, with internet and all these rookie and newbie shapers, shapes that are mediocre but have “success” due to the crew.

Only ask to the senior glasser in a pro shop and you see how many poor quality shapes (that sometimes they need to “re touch” here and there) bring to the shops.


Also, this internet time seems to convert some hipsters rookies (if they are from good ole California) in world wide “stars”; it s like a big combo of shapers, film makers, gear makers, etc that massage it and promote each other and for other rookies that have less ideas but like the style, etc, the only way to stay “in” is starting to copy everything…copy even the standing up right stance for the photos!

They do not really inspire in the whole thing or better inspire it in the roots, they only copy the stuff

Hey Kory, glad to see that some still respect the resin flingers and the dusty ol’ sanders. After I learned the ways of resin through ding repair. I was fortunate to befriend a guy named Keith Swanson. (El Perico). Not only did he show me some of the best waves in So.Cal and Mexico, he taught me the finer points of laminating and fin and hotcoating. These were the days before fin systems and all fins were glassed on. Meticulous he was tacking on fins. Laying them up with perfect staggering of the cloth. Butter smooth Hot-coats.

After he quit and went to work for Donald, I was given the opportunity to fin and hotcoat 8-10 boards a day. That was big time for a 18 year old. Fine tuned all he taught me. I did that for quite a while.

He did teach me quite a lot.

Hank Byzak taught me even more about laminating. I still use these skills daily. I still love to get in there and use that resin and fibreglass.

Joey Baldwin taught me how to lay-up fin panels.

Glen Erickson taught me how to do the cleanest glosses. (No zits or runs).

Kenji Kubota taught me how to foil fins.

Jon Hansen and Nick Adams taught me how to sand a board properly. Edges you could cut your fingers on!

Far too many to list here. They deserve their names mentioned too!

For that I am grateful.

You are right, the glassers make these guys look good. Those boards are only as good as the glass-job.

Volan, Tints, Opaques, Cut-laps, Inlays, Etc…

Love them all! Still doing them to this day. I try to teach these things to all that will listen.

A truly successful shaper is only as good as the crew who glasses his boards.

I raise a toast to the glassers, the UN-sung heroes in this business. They deserve it!

Yet deserve as much praise as the shapers.

Thank guys!

Barry Snyder

Im still a glasser and a shaper.

And proud of it!

Hey reverb… In all honesty the crew deserves it. I have so much to learn and am always eager to pick up on new skills. I’m stoked that I can do what I do now,but… I want to do better. Peace

What up Barry!! That pic is classic! I have nothin but respect for the entire process and guys dedicated to building a better board. I feel fortunate that the guys that were willing to show me a few things actually did. Sometimes it was a bit painfull do to the brutal honesty of the older veteran craftsmen way of setting me straight. But being humbled is a good thing. I miss being in the factory surrounded by all things surf, resin fumes and the whine of the planer/sanders. Its crazy to me what a surfboard becomes. The spark of thought on a particular outline or thickness to how light or strong or what type of ride you can get just from fin placement all the way to being in the water and actually surfing the thing that you created. I dig it to say the least! I will definately be attempting to tap in to your wealth of knowledge to learn more and get better at building bad ass surfboards. Getting ready to build a top and bottom  rocker template with the help of the rocker bar you built for me. I love this shit!! Thanks 

long live the rebellious American craftsman!!

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Thats’ the coolest rocker jig I ever saw!

" Kenji Kubota taught me how to foil fins.   "

  hi Barry !


  any chance of him coming to swaylocks ?


 or you , doing a little footage on that please , as 'Ruckusman' seems to have left the building ! [.....but , hopefully , NOT the planet?]


  cheers mate !