Being a surfer is not only about riding waves but also about fixing and repairing your surfboard.
And this part of surfer’s life is quite essential since by fixing your surfboard, you can get some knowledge about how the surfboard is made, its foam, bend and other features which, in their turn, can help you become a better surfer and establish a special relationship between you and the surfboard.
Moreover, fixing the dents of the surface by yourself can save your time and money, while the surf stores will do it slower due to a lot of jobs they should fulfill and it will be a bit more expensive.
Despite the first time fixing a surfboard may seem a complicated process, with more practice, you’ll know all the secrets of it. Here are some useful tips to help you fix your surfboard in the simplest way.
Prepare Your Fixing Kit
Firstly, fixing a surfboard requires some things. In the surf stores, you can buy a special toolbox for fixing with most of such items in it.
The usual list of them looks like this:
- Face mask: to impede the dust input in your nose and mouth
- Acetone: to clean the surface of the surfboard
- Razor: to cut off the foam from the surface
- Sandpaper: to smooth the surfboard surface
- Sanding resin: to fill in the dings in the surfboard
- Q-Cell: to add to the resin to fill in the dings
- Catalyst: to mix with resin to make surfboard glass
- Cup: to mix substances
- Fiberglass: to make the surface strong
- Tape: to designate the work area on the surface
- Wax comb: to clean up wax in the fixed surface area
- Paintbrush: to apply the resin to the surface
Cut Off Rotten Space
When you have all the necessary things, you can start fixing.
Your first step is removing the damaged area with the help of a razor.
Be sure that the surfboard to fix is dry and you don’t cut off the extra of it. In the case of fixing an old surfboard, the removed area of the surface may be larger.
Cleaning and Sanding Step
After removing the damaged area, clean the surface being fixed. With the help of a wax comb, remove wax and any other dirt from the surface, then wipe the area with acetone and sand it.
The surface should be quite rough, so it is reasonable to use low grit sandpaper to fix it.
The surface will be able to clutch with your further fixing substances.
Designate the working area to fix with the help of tape. So, you can see that all the fixing materials will stay in one place.
With this step, you finish preparing the surface and start the fixing process itself on the clean and rough working surface.
Q-Cell Mixing Step
Into a mixing cup, put 1 oz (ca. 38 gram) of resin, then, in a slow way, add Q-Cell there stirring it. When the substance becomes quite thick like paste, add a catalyst in the amount of 10 drops and mix it all up.
Then, you can fix the ding with this stuff. The substance will replace the damaged foam from the surfboard surface and all that material you cut off.
Q-Cell Pouring Step
Use the substance you’ve learned to make in the previous step. In a slow manner, put it into the ding.
It’s important that the paste should fill in all the space and every crack in the ding. Avoid any bubbles appearing within the Q-Cell paste because it will cause the holes in the surface when the substance dries out.
One more important tip for fixing: pour a bit more of the paste so that it appears as a small mount. After that, using the sandpaper, you can align it as you need.
Make It Smooth
The next step you should take when the paste dries out is the following. Sand the mount and make the surface to fix smooth.
However, you can leave a cavity because when you cover this spot on the surfboard surface with a coat, there may be a bulging element.
Mixing and Applying Fiberglass
Then you should glass the fixed area of the surfboard. From the fiberglass sheet, cut out the form you need minding that one piece should be bigger.
Then stir together 1 oz (ca. 38 gram) of resin and catalyst in the amount of 10 drops. Wait for some time to pass till you see that the substance hardens which means that it’s a high time to apply it to the surfboard surface.
Do it with the help of a paintbrush. Take a sheet of fiberglass prepared, put it on the spot you need to fix, and put a coat on it.
A layer should be thin. Make sure that fiberglass absorbs it.
Repeat the process with one more fiberglass sheet. The resin should be spread equally, and fiberglass sheets should be strongly stuck to the surfboard.
One More Time Sand
Wait a bit until the surface of the surfboard area under fixing has hardened to sand it. Make it as smooth as you can without any sharp edges.
The surface should become flat. Though, avoid the damages to the fiberglass and resin cover you’ve made; it may cause the short life of the surfboard in the future.
One More Coat
This coat is applied not to make the surfboard stronger but to prepare the surface to finish that will influence the whole appearance of it. So, put on one more layer of resin on the surface of the fixed area.
But this time, the coat should be hot.
Again, you should mix the resin with a catalyst but add more of the latter ingredient. It will increase the temperature of the mixture.
After applying one more coat, it is time to sand the surface again, but with a special technique.
To polish the surface, add some water to it and sand making circular movements.
You’ll see the reaction of the powder and water in a white substance appearing. Wash the surface and enjoy the result – the shining and lustrous coat of the surfboard surface.
Time to Surf
Congratulations! You’ve finished fixing the surfboard.
Leave it for some days to be sure the resin feels well and bonds with the surfboard. Then check it up and try to ride the waves on your fixed surfboard!
To Sum Up
This step-by-step instruction explains to you not just how to fix your surfboard but how to save your time. With it, you can only imagine how long and exhausting it may be to repair the surfboard in a special place where there is a line of such damaged surfboards.
Making it by yourself lets you ride the waves again in a short time. Despite the first steps, it may be a bit messy, but with regular practice, it will get easier and easier.