the Pretender 7-10

I’m working out of town and seldom home, but I’ve ordered a blank, sketched up a plan shape, then transfered my drawing to a full length template.

As usual, I draw the board on grid paper, 1/4", and I use a scale of 1:12, so 4 squares = 1 foot, makes it easy. I draw some 3" grids on Masonite, and just freehand the shape using my sketch as a guide. Its an imperfect method, which is fine with me, I watch the curves more than the numbers. I cut the shape out rough, and then sand the final shape. My philosophy is simple: if you can’t shape a flat piece of Masonite, how you gonna shape a surfboard?

I’ll be using the US Blanks 8-2 A, as I like the volume, and I like the rocker. I’ve built 3 different shapes from that blank and all three have worked well for me.

My plan now is a big-boy board, 8’ by 21 1/2", shallow single concave, quad fins, with a short board kinda shape. 10" nose and 15 1/2" tail. But thick with lots of volume, rail channels as a step down from the thick deck to a thinner rail. Another in my “swan song series” of boards for the aging surfer (me, haha)

Some of the details are still undecided, but for the most part I’m sticking with design parameters that are familiar, nothing too different than whats already working for me.

The main difference will be the pulled in nose, and the single concave. And I think I will move the back fins in toward the stringer just a little, to see if that loosens it up a bit.

I like it already. Hooray for a build thread!

Yeah J!
Maybe I shoudn’t do this…
Eh Huck, that outline just jolted me.
The Hulk! 8-2 B X single concave. Photo’s may jog your memory.
Hey you even foddled the thing.
You are welcome to ride it for awhile for some feed back.
If that takes any fun away, no worries!

love to give it a spin! my conversations with you were one reason I decided to try a single convave. I did remember that board, and your test rider’s positive comments. The Hulk!o

The hulk planshape has kinda parallel rails through the middle, not too different from my banana boat board, and thats what I’m trying to get away from on this one. I wanted a nice curve through the middle of the planshape, with less width / foam up front.

8-2 BX - is that the blank? Much different from the 8-2 A? Steve is gonna pick up the blank for me, and he’s got your 8-8. I figured easier to get it from him than me, he’s in Oxnard.

thanx jrandy, I figured it was time to do something besides just delete spam around here! Don’t know when I’ll actually get to mow foam, but I can work on fin layout and graphics in the meantime.

Conceptually, its the little brother of the 9 foot beachcomber, one of my current favorites. Both boards are wide point middle, but by pulling in the nose a bit I pushed the curve of the rail back into the back half, giving it more volume back and less front. Hopefully making for a bit more curve to work off in my turns. Kinda going for a bit more “thruster” feel, but don’t want to give up my quads - love them quads!

We’ll have to hook up, (I think I know your situation).
BTW just an old mind shooting from the hip, so too speak…
I used the 8-2 A X the hulk is 3 3/4!
I can duck dive it, ah Dust, no so good!

Do you have any particular fin templates in mind , Huck ?


Would you consider putting in two back FCS plugs, for a 4 +1 option ?

How wide will the tail pod ("tip to tip ") measurement be ?

Likewise , I LOVE to see
a surfboard build photo thread , on a surfboard design forum !!

Hey Ben I have not decided on my exact fin layout at present, nor on any specific fin template. It will be set up as a quad, so are you asking if I would add a center plug in back for thruster option, or did you mean for 5-fin option? I had not considered either at this point, but am open to suggestions.

My last few builds got moved to errors and bugs cuz there was so little interest here in general discussion, but this go around I decided to subject y’all to my boring detailed build thread regardless of whether there is any interest or not, haha.

Really good looking outline, Huck, and your meme definitely applies to me! I need to step it up with the templates. I like your graph paper method, I’ll need to try that on my next board.

thanks jballen there are some good threads in the archives with all kinds of suggestions and differing methods for coming up with the curves, I just use what works for me. Had a little time to kill in the dentist’s office today, came up with a model name: the pretender - its not really a shortboard, but its pretending to be one. I have another 8 footer with a kinda shortboard shape, and nobody ever guesses the length correctly, the shape throws them off. I threw together a concept logo for this board, based on an old favorite TV show.

For a thruster , a quad AND a five fin option , Huck !

Cheers !


i second that, yew for build threads and from one of the best…

ok Ben I would be up for that, sure. Matty - have you picked up your 8-8 from Steve yet? He’s got my blank, I just need to find time to get over there and pick it up. sk8ment - thnx, it means more than u could know.
So I guess I’ll change the thread title once I actually get going on this, wish my life wasn’t so tangled up right now! But I’m gonna figure a way to get this done in spite of everything!!

I will get round to my 'snapped mal to mini Simmons ’ thread too , Huck !

the us blanks 8-2A is a monster, so much foam - I love it!! Took me forever just to get my blank and cut out the outline, cuz I’ve got too much distraction in my life lately!

Anyway, there it is, kind of a departure from my usual wider nose shapes, but a definite little bro to the beachcomber.


skinned the blank after work today, stuck indoors in the pouring rain. I just love all this volume, scheming ways to keep as much as I can but still have the rails and foil I want too!

Good God…

Think I informed you, Got the 8-8 back and the Stubby is safe in the inside rack.
Same here, foam poor and plotting…
Just upside down with boards till sales pick up.

I really don’t want to spoil the party…
You were under the influence of the “Beach Comber”

What I know is…
Somewhere way back when, Velzy was still ditchin’ the IRS.
And surfaced with some rad shit…
The “needle nose” caught my eye.
Made a 7 something “carrot model” complete with an orange (Greeno) flex tail about 6" long.
Surfed it at Malibu 'bout 3-4. 1st wave drop in get to the bottom and set up the turn.
The board just pivoted rather than the smooth arch I was expecting.
I continued, only way to ride it was really extending and following(in slow motion) my left hand.
Gave up and gave it to my girlfriend.
Funny thing that was the only board my wife ever rode…
Ah, that I made!
Oh no, I am not done…
In the late 70’s I had a mate down at McCoy in Newport.
Guess what???
The “no nose”…
I will tell you this
mass and balance…
Your blank is thick, Shit, I used the 8-2 a X.
My thoughts further will be held in check…
But God knows I’m a sinner!!!

the 8-2A is a monster of an over inflated blank. I love it for that reason. Never tried an AX, couldn’t imagine that I ever would, the 8-2A has enough foam to float a family of four, according to one of my instagram buddies, haha. This is no close tolerance skin it and glass it blank, this is a foam block masquerading as a blank, a true sculpting challenge, to separate the men from the boys, the shapers from the scrubbers. OK enough of that, but really, what is anyone else using this blank for? SUPs? Fishing boats? I have to wonder, but I’m just glad it exists, this being my 4th board from said mother of all blanks. I almost want to start a fan club!

So I wasn’t really intending this as an offshoot of the beachcomber, it was designed all on its own, and only at some point did I realize hey this is different from all my other boards but not so different from the beachcomber. Which is OK, the beachcomber is becoming a favorite in a variety of conditions, mostly in the 4 - 6’ point break down the line stuff, especially when the lineup is crowded. I’ve had a few nice comments / compliments from strangers on the board, most recently a week or so back when a guy walked up and said Hey I was watching you in the water that board seemed to be working really well for you. Always kinda makes my day as a shaper when somebody comments on a board like that.

The design was driven by a desire to push myself outside my comfort zone, to make an 8 foot surfboard shape intentionally different from any other 8 footer I’ve ever seen. The nose was just a result of wanting to take volume and float and surface area out of the front end, for a board that is intended to be ridden from the back. All the foam is in the back half, so to speak.

If its pivoty that’s ok, its kind of my goal that this be a more pivoty type shape, but its intended as a quad, so probably won’t be as pivoty as a thruster version might be, being as quads tend to be more drivey down the line, in my experience anyway. Hopefully it will be a blend of the two.

I also wanted a board with a single concave, V being an asset for rocking a board from rail to rail, but this board with the pulled in nose shouldn’t need to rely on that, there being very little nose to push around, so just one single concave, with two fins on each rail, It makes sense to me, the balance of lift and control.

The nose looks pointy in plan shape, and I ended up pulling it in a bit more than my initial sketches, but in 3D it doesn’t seem as extreme as it looks in the plan shape pic.

It should resemble a shorter board in plan shape, and I’m just trying to push the boundaries of volume and length on a fairly common planshape, to see what happens. Never know until I try.

Mass and weight will be per my usual, meaning I like a little more glass and weight than most guys, and volume (mass) as well, of course.

BTW, sorry I had to patch some dings in the 8-8 but that happens when you ride these things, I had some fun with that one, in some decent size waves too. I would have made it look a little prettier but just never got the time.

Will get the stubby soon I hope, will be spending some time with my brother in simi valley soon so I hope we can meet up one of those times, he’s a control line airplane nut, I bet Dustin would just trip on those things they are really fun, be nice if we could all meet some time. If he likes the cars I bet he’d love the planes, a little different than radio, which I’ve never done, but I used to fly stunt control line a lot as a kid and its a rush. Especially as my brother likes to build performance engines for these things, haha. I’m building my first model in 40 years, hope to have it in the air soon.

I’m frothing on this build.