heeeeeey im shaping my first board and i was wondering if a stringer is totally necessary. it seems like it would be alot easier to just go on with out it for my first shape, make things a little easier. BUT i could be 100% wrong and i probly am. but its my first shape, what do you guys think is best ? the dimensions will be about 7’2’’ x 21’’ x 2.5’’ would a stringer add more strength, and what kind of wood should i pick up if i do

thank you much!

PU or EPS?

Wood stringers give some strength and rigidity to what otherwise would be a super flexy foam slab. Wood also helps the board maintain “memory”… the shape it returns to after it flexes. Bass is most popular, but redwood is nice and cedar is also common. Lately, I’ve been using a lot of laminated stringers in EPS blanks, and they’re easier to trim down than a solid peice of bass because they’re much thinner. Just keep the block plane blade sharp, as you will be dealing with some end grain. A typical 6’2 blank has a 1mm laminated stringer, while a 7’6 will have a 3mm stringer, which is equal to a much wider peice of straight grained bass.

There are a number of stringerless boards out there that people love and ride great. I like stringers…and I’ve tried wood, pvc, and fiberglass. For me, I like the feel of wood the best.

thanks alot bro. i think ill definetly go with a stringer. is there any specific type of glue used to attach it to the eps ? also do you trim the stringer and shape that into the board or shape the foam around the stringer and then just trim it down. haha, im not sure if that made sense but thanks for the help.

take care

You can use a polyurethane glue to attach it to the foam. Either Gorilla Glue or Elmer’s Ultimate. It’s up to you, but Elmer’s is a little cheaper and a lot of people recommend it.

If your stringer is higher than your foam, plane it down until it matches. Then start shaping the foam. Whenever you make a couple of passes with a planer or surform or whatever and take thickness out of the foam, use a hand plane to take down the stringer a little bit. Try not to leave it until the very end, I did that on my first board and as a result the stringer is a little high in places.

a stringer helps also for symetry! :wink:

I shape the foam and the stringer at the same time…kinda…

After I cut the outline, I get the thickness and foil I want with the electric planer, shaping the foam and stringer together. Then I rough out the bottom contours, rails, and deck. When I start to blend in all the angles, I use the sanding block and block plane alternately, fine tuning until the shape is nearly complete. Then I finish sand and use the baby block as the next-to-last step. The final step is (cutting out the swallow, if desired, then) tweaking the tip of the nose and tail with both tools.

oh…except for doing the concaves…

Specifically, I generally like to shape single concaves along the stringer first using the surform to get the depth I like, paying close attention to the stringer rocker, then bring the foam down to the stringer level.

since this is you first you might as well just have the rocker hotwired into the eps go stringerless add some extra cloth to the bottom lam and surf it till it dies because if you are into shaping it won’t be your last or just buy a eps blank from a supply store and hell stringerless boards are fun as hell to ride.

much thanks to everyone!!! ive never been on a surf forum where people are actually helpfull. thanks for the info and ill let you guys know how it turns out, hopefully the first of many shapes to come