|Addendum to a Paipo Interview with Jeff Chamberlain
December 2013 - Los Osos, California (USA)
Update by Rod Rodgers
Photos courtesy of Jeff Chamberlain
has been paving the way forward and pushing the outer limits in paipo
design... pushing those limits longer and far wider and might as well
say deeper, as well, with volumes of prone riding craft comparable to
those of modern day longboards. His experimentation continues.
Jeff filled us in on how the newest design tweaks to the Mega Platter have been evolving.
took delivery of a new L41 quad bellyboard/paipo/prone surfing tool —
same basic genre as my previous efforts. The designer of these boards
uses a computer so it's very easy to continue to progress along a
chosen design paradigm... with the computer you know that what you WANT
to get changed will, but the rest of it will stay the same.
The basic board:
I hate wax so had Kneelo Cove
(*Costa Mesa, CA) fashion up a custom rubber traction pad for the deck.
KC builds a lot of the pads for the world wide kneelo crowd, and I love
getting the traction without having to smear the petrochemical goo on
the deck to achieve it.
- 6'3" x 29 inches x 3-3/8 inches (tail measurement of 23-1/2 inches and a nose measurement of 24-1/4 inches),
- EPS foam with epoxy glassing (by the Stretch glass factory in Santa Cruz, California),
- Futures Vernor Quad Fin system,
- Rubber deck pad (which really makes the board thicker and floatier), and
- Volume is somewhere between 71 and 75 liters of floatation as measured by the computer program it was designed on.
On this board, I requested the following changes:
9. Your newest boards in 2013 appear to be moving more towards deeper
double concaves and quad fin set-ups. What has prompted these changes?
Any other changes underway such as materials, rails, rockers? Are
you tailoring your boards for different types of waves?
- Make the two huge concaves a bit deeper (*to hopefully rev up the 'engine' that drives this board...),
- Take out half the tail rocker (*to try and increase straight line trim speed...),
- Move the fin cluster forward (*to loosen the board up), and
- Increase the vee in the
middle of the board which is actually the "ridge" between the two big
concaves (*to make going 'rail to rail' easier on this 29" wide
I think at this
point, I’ve got the template, shape, and thickness down to what I want,
and so the logical next steps are to experiment with the "engine" of
the board, the deep concaves, and see if there’s anything I can do to
produce more lift or speed. The other area I’m looking at is
experimenting moving the fin cluster forward a bit. Most kneeboards
that you see these days have their fin clusters way far up on the
boards, and that makes sense to me; they turn from so much further up
than a standup surfer. And really, that whole concept is very much what
I’m doing by laying down on the board, so it only makes sense to mimic
their success and see if moving my fins up produces the same kinds of
On my last board, I did
reduce the tail rocker a bit to see if that would help speed up any
straight line trim, but I think you need to leave a little there for
turnability. All of this stuff is beginning to get pretty subtle, and
some of it I’m doing almost out of a logical progression kind of
mandate, I’m not sure some of the small stuff is going to be able to be
felt. And I’m honest enough to admit that. But it’s all super
interesting to me and worth trying out, bit by bit. The construction
I’m very happy with, which is EPS with epoxy glassing and a custom
rubber traction pad covering the entire deck. I’ve hated wax for years
and with these traction pads, it’s nice to be able to finally shed that
part of the petrochemical paradigm.
The Board: Land Views
It's all pretty brand new for me. I got some great waves the first
session on it, and it's running good, but it'll be a bit until I can
really suss it out. But with these changes being relatively "small" in
nature, I expect it'll ride "mostly" the same, which is always a
The Board: In the Water