Repairing a surfboard is a vital part of successful and enjoyable surfing. Surfers who learn to perform basic repairs themselves extend the life of their boards and do not have to pay for costly professional repairs. Surfers should perform basic maintenance, like waxing, on a regular basis as this repairs the wax coating and protects the board, as well as giving the surfer greater control. Other repairs, such as fixing dings and repairing split fins and delamination should be performed as soon as damage occurs to prevent damage getting worse. Surfers should keep their boards in optimal condition for the best surfing experience.
Dings occur when a surfboard receives an impact. This is a common occurrence, however, dings can impact the speed and control of the board, as well as the way it moves in the water. Identify the ding in the board. Clean the area, scraping it clean of sand, wax, and other contaminants. Take medium grain sandpaper and sand the ding and 2 cm around it. Wipe away the dust with a damp cloth. Use a sharp razorblade to cut away all the damaged fibreglass, taking care not to damage any other portions of the board and avoiding cutting the fingers. Sand the edges smooth. If the foam is wet, use a hair dryer on a medium setting to dry it. Take masking tape and tape off a substantial area 2 cm around the ding. This prevents resin from seeping onto other parts of the surfboard.
Use a sharp knife to cut a piece of fibreglass cloth large enough to cover the damaged area. Take a small amount of resin into a sturdy container and add resin catalyst. This causes the resin to begin to set. Cover the ding with the resin and apply the fibreglass cloth. The cloth absorbs the resin and this keeps both the resin and the fibreglass in place. Leave for two hours then check that the fibreglass has adhered and that the resin is hard. Sand the area lightly to create a smooth, even surface.
Waxing a surfboard is a very basic and essential repair. Applying fresh wax regularly in the proper manner improves user control when in the water, improves movement through the water, and increases speed. Use a wax comb to remove all traces of old wax. Removing the old wax is essential as this ensures a smooth, even, long-lasting new coat. Then scrub the surface of the board with a wax stripper to remove all remaining traces. Look at the board in natural light to ensure all the old wax is gone.
Apply base coat wax, which is a hard wax, to create a durable base coat. This hard wax creates a bumpy coating that adheres to the board and is long lasting. Push relatively hard when moving the base wax across the board to ensure the wax adhered to the board. Continue adding base coat wax until the bumps are readily apparent. Then take softer top coat wax and smother the surface of the board with it. This softer wax is less durable than the base coat and does not last as long, but it provides a steady, tacky surface for the feet. Surfers should apply top coat to any areas where it has flaked away, every time they plan to take their board in the water.
A split or delaminated fin occurs when the top layer of lamination or the two halves of the fin split apart. This significantly reduces the sensitivity and control of the board and puts the fin at risk of snapping off, causing further damage to the board. If the split is extensive, the fin needs to be removed completely and a new one added. However, minor to moderate splits and delamination are reasonably easy to repair at home.
Ensure the foam inside the board is dry before attempting the repair. Mix resin with a small amount of catalyst. Take a large syringe with a large gauge needle and suck up the resin. Turn the syringe with the needle facing up and tap it to remove air bubbles. Insert the needle into the delaminated area and fill the gap with resin. Cover the outside of the fin with masking tape to protect it from resin. Take two flat pieces of sturdy wood and place one on either side of the fin. Place a clamp around the fin, with the jaws resting securely on the pieces of wood. Leave for 24 hours to dry. Remove the clamp and the wood. Users may need to sand the fin slightly to thin it down a little.Surfboards
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to look for surfboard and surf supplies bargains. As well as learning to surf, you really need to know how to perform basic repairs and maintenance. This saves you money and significantly increases the life of your surfboard, as well as making your surfing experience more enjoyable.