T-Belly Generation 2

What works and what doesn't. Share design ideas, references and contacts for paipo board builders.
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nomastomas
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Re: T-Belly Generation 2

Unread post by nomastomas » Fri Jul 04, 2014 7:13 pm

I finally found the time to finish-shape this TGG2. At 22-1/4" wide and 2" thick at the stringer (2-1/4" at the thickest part of the rail, the board is both narrower and thinner than previous models. Volume is 21.5L. I kept belly in the front half of the bottom and went flat, rail-to-rail and mid-poimt to tail, in the back half, with the same tail concave. I decided not to use the chined tail rail or the elevated wings. I don't think the performance improvement of these two design features warrants the time and effort to shape them (KISS principle). Remember, I'm trying to keep labor cost down. So, every design feature must have significant payoff to be included. I'm going to keep the quad fin set-up, but will focus on traditional quad fins of various sizes. Again, I liked how the Bonzer fins performed, especially with the larger fin the the front box. But, marking the fin location for the fin box jig is time consuming, so... The front fin box is 1.25" off the rail, just behind the wide-point. The front fins are toed-in 1/4" The rear fin box is set so that the leading edge of the rear fin lines up with the trailing edge of the front fin, but is 1.5" closer to the stringer. Quad fins need some breathing room, and the 1.5" gap provides this. The rear fins are toed-in 1/8". The 1/4" front x 1/8" rear is pretty standard for quad surfboards when the fins are set this close together. By increasing the toe of the front fins, I hope to gain better turning response and better hold into the wave face.

I was surprised by how stiff the previous TBG2 was, despite the absence of a stringer. A little flex is a good thing in my book, so this time I'll go with one layer 4oz E-Cloth on the bottom and one layer 4-oz E-cloth plus one layer 4oz S-cloth on the deck. Still no stringer, but no VectorNet, Carbon Fiber or other costly high-tech stiffeners either. Everything else has been left unchanged. I really like how well the TBG2 performs, especially how easy it duck-dives. Plus the flat nose provides the perfect place for hand placement. Most exciting thing is that I've been able to negotiate some favorable pricing with Marko Foam and my glasser which will allow me to market the TBG2 for under US$300. That's a real breakthrough.
Attachments
TBG2_07.JPG
43" x 22.25" x 2.00" Tailblock = 18"
TBG2_01.JPG
NR=2.35" TR=0.70"
TBG2_04.JPG
TBG2_05.JPG
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Re: T-Belly Generation 2

Unread post by krusher74 » Sun Jul 06, 2014 6:41 am

isthe hard edge on the concave to promote sheer, never seen a hard edge there before.

$300 is a super deal (I guess that's plus fins?) :D

One thing I have found from bodyboarding friends is that because a top end bodyboard is usually below $250, they wont entertain the idea of trying a paipo if its $400+ they seems a very scared subculture on the whole when it comes to trying something new . But their loss :?

Funny how surfers moan about board costs, surfing is a cheap sport, try mountain biking, good front forks can be easily over $500 alone :shock:

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Re: T-Belly Generation 2

Unread post by nomastomas » Sun Jul 06, 2014 10:22 am

Yes, the hard edge is to promote sheer. I want the water to release off the tail as cleanly as possible.

I'd include a set of composite plastic fins for the Paipo Forum guys. Price of the T-Belly has always concerned me. In fact, I always discuss the merits of a good pro-level bodyboard with prospective customers, especially those who are new to prone riding. Most paipo riders and belly board riders have ridden bodyboards, and are looking for a different riding experience. My goal has been to bring the cost of a good belly board down close to the price of a good bodyboard. However, to do so, I have to keep it "no frills" and less than 46" in length.

Your comment about bodyboarder's reluctance to try prone craft other than their own rings true with me. One of the younger members of the shop crew here is a former sponsored bodyboarder from Hawaii. I thought he would be eager to ride the shop T-Belly, if only out of curiosity, but he is generally dismissive of the whole concept of foam-and-glass pronecraft. As you say, his loss...
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Re: T-Belly Generation 2

Unread post by Daryl D » Sun Jul 06, 2014 10:39 am

The attitude of my way is the way is silly. It took legs that wouldn't function to get me to prone riding, starting with a wood paipo. I now have two. Have ridden a couple of conventional body boards, have a surf mat, and a T-Belly Gen 2. All worthy rides. All different, but great fun in their own way. I've only been on the T-Belly once due to lousy surf when I had opportunity. Should get out this evening as a good swell is supposed to be there and lack of wind. The T-Belly is cool because with fin changes, there's a number of things can be done. It actually turns, is fast, and easy to paddle. When I was on stand ups, I always had 3-4 boards and it looks like with the prone ride, the same thing is happening. Thanks Thomas for a great tool.

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Re: T-Belly Generation 2

Unread post by krusher74 » Fri Jul 11, 2014 2:39 pm

nomastomas wrote:
Your comment about bodyboarder's reluctance to try prone craft other than their own rings true with me. One of the younger members of the shop crew here is a former sponsored bodyboarder from Hawaii. I thought he would be eager to ride the shop T-Belly, if only out of curiosity, but he is generally dismissive of the whole concept of foam-and-glass pronecraft. As you say, his loss...
I can understand not wanting to try one at a $300/500 expense, but seems almost crazy to turn down a free go on any surfcraft, are they afraid of the new, scared to have their minds blown that there maybe somthing better that what they already think is the best? :?

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Re: T-Belly Generation 2

Unread post by nomastomas » Fri Jul 11, 2014 8:37 pm

Most young people fear the judgement (and possible rejection) of their peers, who help to define their identity. It takes a pretty strong sense of self-identity to step away from the crowd, try a new experience, take risks. Paipo/bellyboard riders have that in spades...that's one of the reasons I like to shape for them. -tp
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Re: T-Belly Generation 2

Unread post by GeoffreyLevens » Fri Jul 11, 2014 9:02 pm

nomastomas wrote:Most young people fear the judgement (and possible rejection) of their peers, who help to define their identity. It takes a pretty strong sense of self-identity to step away from the crowd, try a new experience, take risks. Paipo/bellyboard riders have that in spades...that's one of the reasons I like to shape for them. -tp
I that nails it and perish the thought a bodyboarder finds he likes some other ride (even if still prone) better! The horror!!!!

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Re: T-Belly Generation 2

Unread post by karuhi » Sat Jul 12, 2014 1:44 am

:D getting a few "stand up and be counted" and a few "paraplegic" or "mega cripple" taunts myself - all in good nature though - i'm bigger than them :twisted: ........ if you're powered by the wave - you're surfing. although we did have a couple of learner suk (sup) pilots in our small lineup the other day .......... no one was overly impressed with their lack of taking their turn

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Re: T-Belly Generation 2

Unread post by nomastomas » Wed Aug 06, 2014 1:31 pm

With the TBG3 already in the works, here's the last 43" EPS/epoxy TBG2. As mentioned above, this shape is thinner, both at the center (2") and at the rail (2-1/4"), than previous G2s (Vol=21.5L). I also went much lighter with the glassing schedule, using 4oz E-cloth for the bottom and 4oz E-cloth + 4oz S-cloth for the deck. As such, the glassing schedule is pretty much standard shortboard. I wanted to give the board a little more flex, and hope durability will be maintained. This board is ultra light at 5.2lbs with fins. Color work is red opaque resin tint. It has a sanded gloss-coat finish, which has a semi-gloss finish after burnishing with scrub pad. This same board finished clear (without color) and no fins retails for US$299. The fins currently in the board are longboard side-bite fins by True Ames Fins. Fronts are 3.7"Dx3.5"B and the rears are 3.25"Dx3.25"B.
Attachments
IMG_1123.JPG
IMG_1124.JPG
IMG_1120.JPG
IMG_1121.JPG
IMG_1116.JPG
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Re: T-Belly Generation 2

Unread post by krusher74 » Thu Aug 07, 2014 3:42 am

Looks great! 8-)

You probably already have this in mind but I can report no problems with one centrally mounted leash plug about 200mm back from the nose. would save time/money on the $299 model.

I actually find with it centrally mounted when riding the leash sits in the deck. On old boards with a plug near the side I have found the leash can flop over the rail while riding causing drag and spraying you with water. :(

Also the best leash I have found is the toobz bodyboards pro bicep leash, its the only bodyboard leash I know off with a velcro fixing end like a normal shortboard leash, so you can easily remove or fit, unlike all other bodyboard leashes where you have to untiethe knot in the cord :o

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Re: T-Belly Generation 2

Unread post by nomastomas » Thu Aug 07, 2014 10:55 am

I prefer a centrally located leash plug myself. The dual leash plugs were added to demonstrate the ability to install a handle anchors and/or ambidextrous leash plug location for those preferring right or left-hand location. In the end, the customer can decide where to locate the plugs. I can see where using a handle would come in handy on boards who's rider's weight required a board volume that can only be obtained by adding extra length. I have some ideas for handle construction, but just haven't had time mess around with them.

I'd really like the Toobz leash, but my supplier doesn't carry them, i.e. I'm a cheap b*stard.
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Re: T-Belly Generation 2

Unread post by krusher74 » Fri Aug 08, 2014 12:50 pm

nomastomas wrote:I'd really like the Toobz leash, but my supplier doesn't carry them, i.e. I'm a cheap b*stard.
There only up in morro bay, if you call and talk to Patrick i'm sure they will supply you at trade. :D

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Re: T-Belly Generation 2

Unread post by nomastomas » Sun Aug 10, 2014 9:08 pm

After spending a few sessions in chest-high, clean beach break conditions on the last of the G2 series, I wanted to report my findings. One goal of this project was to test the limits of volume for the G2 design. I reduced volume from 21L to 20L on the red G2. A liter of eps foam is significant in a board that's only 43" long. My weight is 190lb, and water level is up to my arm pits when sitting on the board. I also found that I had to shift my weight back while paddling in order to keep the nose out of the water. Not the most efficient planing position. Surprisingly, I found that arm paddling, with the board completely submerge but in best planing position was a pretty good way to get from point A to point B. I know that sounds contradictory "submerged" and "best planing", but that's what I found. Take-offs were later, and a bit more dramatic, as you would expect due to the reduced volume. I built the red G2 with much more rail "slope" in the deck, providing a very thin rail, which would easily bite into the wave face and hold a line after the air-drop. Once in the wave, the board had good speed and was very responsive with the quad fin set-up. The glass schedule seems to be holding up pretty well. A rail bump with a shortboarder who back-paddled me had no apparent impact on the board. Although it did lead to a rather lively discussion. :?

So, overall I would say the board performed very well, despite being a bit under-sized for me. G2 features that will be carried over to the G3 will include the bottom contours and the sloped-deck, thin-rail design. I will also continue to use my sizing formula for both length and volume, manipulating width and thickness to arrive at the correct dimensions. I plan to eliminate the deck concave, keeping the deck flat from rail to rail as a means maximizing volume. These elements, combined with the new wide-point back outline, will become the G3.

Lastly, I'm beginning to think that belly boards, like surfboards, need to increase in length, hence planing area, as the size of the wave intended to be ridden grows. I would estimate that the G3 will be good in waves up to head-high. After that, more length will be needed to match paddling speed with wave speed when catching the wave.
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Re: T-Belly Generation 2

Unread post by GeoffreyLevens » Sun Aug 10, 2014 9:12 pm

Great ride report! Curious if you tried the "hang off the back w/ arms extended and kick like crazy" approach to take-offs? (Also same works quite well w/ slower kicking to travel A-->B)

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Re: T-Belly Generation 2

Unread post by nomastomas » Sun Aug 10, 2014 9:25 pm

I've heard paipo riders speak of that style of take-off. Seems a bit awkward to me...besides I like that weightless feel of the air-drop. Cheap thrills...
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Re: T-Belly Generation 2

Unread post by GeoffreyLevens » Sun Aug 10, 2014 9:30 pm

:) Cheap thrills indeed! That hang off the back deal can get you in a lot earlier though should desire or need arise.

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Re: T-Belly Generation 2

Unread post by nomastomas » Sun Aug 10, 2014 10:37 pm

Guess I'll have to give it a try...
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Re: T-Belly Generation 2

Unread post by krusher74 » Mon Aug 11, 2014 3:18 am

nomastomas wrote:After spending a few sessions in chest-high, clean beach break conditions on the last of the G2 series, I wanted to report my findings. One goal of this project was to test the limits of volume for the G2 design. I reduced volume from 21L to 20L on the red G2. A liter of eps foam is significant in a board that's only 43" long. My weight is 190lb, and water level is up to my arm pits when sitting on the board. I also found that I had to shift my weight back while paddling in order to keep the nose out of the water. Not the most efficient planing position. Surprisingly, I found that arm paddling, with the board completely submerge but in best planing position was a pretty good way to get from point A to point B. I know that sounds contradictory "submerged" and "best planing", but that's what I found. Take-offs were later, and a bit more dramatic, as you would expect due to the reduced volume. I built the red G2 with much more rail "slope" in the deck, providing a very thin rail, which would easily bite into the wave face and hold a line after the air-drop. Once in the wave, the board had good speed and was very responsive with the quad fin set-up. The glass schedule seems to be holding up pretty well. A rail bump with a shortboarder who back-paddled me had no apparent impact on the board. Although it did lead to a rather lively discussion. :?

So, overall I would say the board performed very well, despite being a bit under-sized for me. G2 features that will be carried over to the G3 will include the bottom contours and the sloped-deck, thin-rail design. I will also continue to use my sizing formula for both length and volume, manipulating width and thickness to arrive at the correct dimensions. I plan to eliminate the deck concave, keeping the deck flat from rail to rail as a means maximizing volume. These elements, combined with the new wide-point back outline, will become the G3.

Lastly, I'm beginning to think that belly boards, like surfboards, need to increase in length, hence planing area, as the size of the wave intended to be ridden grows. I would estimate that the G3 will be good in waves up to head-high. After that, more length will be needed to match paddling speed with wave speed when catching the wave.
lots of self feed back for you to work on there.

Mine is 23L an i'm 165, rides fine in up to double overhead, i would go more volume before more length. :?

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Re: T-Belly Generation 2

Unread post by nomastomas » Mon Aug 11, 2014 11:45 pm

I'm not concerned about the "ride" of the G3 in large waves per se. I'm more concerned about having enough paddling speed to catch a larger, faster wave without the late entry, free-fall drop. I believe that improving paddling speed is done first through increasing planing surface. Planing surface is limited by the design factors of length, width, and outline or plan shape. I believe that only after length and width have been increased in such a way as to remain consistent with the designed plan shape, should volume be increased by adding thickness. Consider a block of wood 12" wide, 12" high and 12" long, and then consider a block of wood 12" wide, 6" high and 24" long. Both blocks have the same "volume"; 1,728 cu in. The 12x12x12 block has only 144 sq in of planing surface, while the 12x6x24 block has 288sq in. of planing surface. So, which whould you say planes quicker?

With the G3 plan shape and average waves up to head-high, length is determined by rider height, width is then determined by length, and thickness is then adjusted to produce a volume consistent with the riders weight. If more planing surface is required due to increased rider weight and/or increased intended wave size, I first adjust length but no more than 2in-3in over my length formula. Width is increased about 1/8" for every inch increase in length. These actions keep the plan shape proportionate, and increase both planing area and volume. The G3 design incorporates a sloped-rail and a flat deck. This design element maximizes volume within the plan shape while maintaining a thin rail. If more volume is still needed I increase thickness at the centerline. Increasing thickness at the centerline impacts the thickness of the rail. I prefer a thin rail design, closely approximating a standard shortboard. This is not a problem when centerline thickness is close to that of a shortboard. However, when centerline thickness exceeds 2-5/8", I have to be mindful of how this thickness will impact my rail. Sometimes the needs of the rider preclude a particular plan shape, and a different plan shape must be chosen. There's no benefit in trying to fit a square peg into round hole.

So, yes, my winter G3 will be 44" instead of 42". At 2-1/8" thick volume will be about 23L. That will come in handy when I'm wearing my 4/3 wetsuit.
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Re: T-Belly Generation 2

Unread post by karuhi » Tue Aug 12, 2014 2:07 am

i agree with you Thomas, people seem to be hung up on liters of volume. i recently had a guy (another bat fastard like myself) come to me wanting some design help on a timber skinned board (stand up) - wanted 100 to 110 L volume - fine. but he wanted it 23" wide and 4 1/2" thick, and a pretty narrow tail. i said no way! 24-25" wide and 3" thick and a wider tail and drop a few liters in volume, as he'd have more planing area, a thinner rail and a wider tail for more stability - haven't heard back!

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