S&S Checkered Diamond RPM Bonzer Paipo

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rodndtube
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S&S Checkered Diamond RPM Bonzer Paipo

Unread post by rodndtube » Sat Aug 23, 2014 5:59 pm

Ordered my new board Malcolm Campbell in late-January, received it in May 2014, just in time for two weeks of sea trials in NW Costa Rica. Malcolm did a good job getting it to me since he worked around two overseas surfing/shaping trips plus had his usual backlog. The board differs in a few aspects from my S&S Checkered RPM (built by Austin Saunders). All three boards are 50 inches long. Other differences are mostly on the margins:
BoardGrid_sm.jpg
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Obvious differences: Bonzer bottom and a 5-fin arrangement instead of the 3-fin setup in the Austin boards. All the boards have 8 and 6 oz. glass on both bottom and top, plus the Bonzer has an additional fin patch. The Orange Matter by far has the fullest volume -- it feels like my "big board" after handling my S&S Checkered RPM. The Bonzer is a 1/2 inch wider than the S&S Checkered but only an 1/8 less than Orange Matter (the baseline Austin paipo). Orange is much thicker than than the two S&S boards -- the S&S Checkered has a domed top and thins to the rails and the tail. S&S Diamond Bonzer is thinner altogether and less than the 1-7/8 in the channels. The S&S Diamond Bonzer is also wider in the mid-point, tail and pod. The S&S Checkered Austin weighs the most because the checkered pattern and rail colors are all raised resin pigments and not air brushed.

The Baseline Austin, the first paipo ever built by Austin, is my all-around board but has characteristics that makes it better is weaker surf than the other two. The S&S Checkered Austin is my board for more powerful waves -- lots of fun, looser and skims across the surface. The Bonzer S&S was designed along the same lines but the fin setup and Bonzer bottom encouraged me to go with extra width (and thinness). I also thought the Bonzer board would be especialy well-suited to the Costa Rica waves where I have been spending more time in recent years.
Attachments
Bottom_stdg_h1000[1].jpg
Bottom_AnglTailView_w600[1].jpg
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Deck_stdg_h1000[1].jpg
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Re: S&S Checkered Diamond RPM Bonzer Paipo

Unread post by rodndtube » Sat Aug 23, 2014 7:02 pm

The first five days of riding the Bonzer board really consisted of a series of sea trials revolving around the fin arrangement. The baseline fin configuration consisted of the 5-fin set shown in the above photographs. The center fin is a True Ames Bonzer 6-inch fin. A Bonzer fanatic friend living in Okinawa was certain I would need a 7-inch Bonzer fin and sent it along with my surfing friend, Terry "Moses" Newcomb. I had my doubts! Over the first five days of sea trials surfing I steadily reduced the total surface area of the fins.

The 6-inch fin was simply too stiff to easily turn. Plenty of straight ahead speed and hold but the turning capability was nil, at least for my style of riding (the center fin was situated in the correct "bonzer profile) unlike in the above pics. Moving towards a 5.25-inch bonzer fin (formerly a 6" True Ames chewed up reefs and fixed up) improved the situation but still not there. The next day I moved to one of my standby fins, a 4.5 inch FCS-5 blue honeycomb. Getting closer, but still didn't have the ability to turn-on-demand and pivot quickly. Need that to dodge the concessional lava rock, ya know?

Time to commit Bonzer heresy. I replaced the larger rear Bonzer runners with the smaller forward Bonzer runners and put some small 2x2 sidebites upfront. This setup worked wonderfully. Just had fun surfing for rest of the trip :) I plan to look into having some reduced base and height forward Bonzer runners made up to get in-line with the correct Bonzer cant.

If you are really bored with details you can read "A Fins Configuration Diary of the Sea Trials" at
http://mypaipoboards.org/pics/Rod_Bonze ... nPlace.pdf

Additional information and blame sharing ;) here: http://mypaipoboards.org/Paipo-14HarlequinRPM_XII.shtml
Attachments
Sidebites-smbzrrunnrs-4.5in-B[1].jpg
Sidebites-smbzrrunnrs-4.5in-C[1].jpg
BonzerCtrFinTrials_[1].jpg
BonzerCtrFinTrials_[1].jpg (215.12 KiB) Viewed 3019 times
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Re: S&S Checkered Diamond RPM Bonzer Paipo

Unread post by krusher74 » Sun Aug 24, 2014 9:23 am

Interesting stuff and a great looking/finished board! 8-)

Plenty of options with all those fin boxes, have you ever tried it with no center fin?

As you have 6"s more board length than I ride it would be interesting to compare where we are on our boards, I wonder if you ride with the extra length as nose or tail length compared to me. Do you ride with your front hand near or on the nose?

(one day we will all get together and finally just get to ride each others boards :shock: )

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Re: S&S Checkered Diamond RPM Bonzer Paipo

Unread post by rodndtube » Sun Aug 24, 2014 5:48 pm

See post for riding position question.
http://mypaipoboards.org/forum3/viewtopic.php?f=3&t=483
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Re: S&S Checkered Diamond RPM Bonzer Paipo

Unread post by krusher74 » Mon Aug 25, 2014 3:49 am

How did you find the board went with 4 bonzer fronts compare to 2 bonzer and 2 regular side-bites.

Pretty complex toe and cant interactions going on there. :shock:

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Re: S&S Checkered Diamond RPM Bonzer Paipo

Unread post by rodndtube » Mon Aug 25, 2014 11:35 am

krusher74 wrote:How did you find the board went with 4 bonzer fronts compare to 2 bonzer and 2 regular side-bites.

Pretty complex toe and cant interactions going on there. :shock:
The final configuration of hybrid runners/sidebites went well. Turning on demand and pivot turning were good, back to my expectation level (which in addition to pure surfing expectations also meant being able to dodge lava rocks that suddenly loomed). The 4-bonzer runner configuration was a bit to stiff for my liking -- maybe because my board is shorter than most of the other Bonzer paipos, maybe because I ride further forward or maybe because I don't use the handle. After the 5 days of sea trials and experimentation (see the PDF file of my daily spreadsheet diary of the sea trials), it was good to be "paipo surfing" for the remainder of my stay in Costa Rica instead of being self-limited in the surf & break conditions (simple Engligh = I was not going to put my body and board in harm's way during the experimental fin configurations).

Sometime in the near future I would like to acquire a shorter base version of the small Bonzer runners, say a 3-1/2 base instead of 4-3/4 inches.
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Re: S&S Checkered Diamond RPM Bonzer Paipo

Unread post by Atlantasurfer » Sat Aug 30, 2014 11:38 am

This board really is a thing of beauty! Another great example of builders/designers taking pride in their work. unfortunately, outside of this forum, I see people taking less and less pride in the things they make.

So now that you have tested it awhile, has the bonzer climbed the charts to be your go-to machine in decent surf?

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Re: S&S Checkered Diamond RPM Bonzer Paipo

Unread post by rodndtube » Sat Aug 30, 2014 12:43 pm

The simple answer to your question is that the sea trials are still an on-going project. Nonetheless, the Bonzer paipo will be the board going to Hawaii for further exploration. I know it will work. During the recent tropical storm surf on the East Coast, Bertha and Cristobal, I rode my S&S Checkered RPM (by Austin, another fine craftsman).
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Re: S&S Checkered Diamond RPM Bonzer Paipo

Unread post by rodndtube » Mon Mar 09, 2015 4:17 pm

Decided to try a new pair of sidebite/runners, Von Sol Surfboards knubsters, in the forward quad slots, using the forward FCS plug and the large version of these single-plug, polycarbonate fins. The fins are made with standard foils. The Von Sol knubsters come in two sizes, shown below.

Code: Select all

       Base x Depth
Large: 3-7/8 x 2     (3.875 x 2.0)
Small: 3-3/4 x 1-3/4 (3.75  x 1.75)
Surf Conditions: 4-6 ft. waves with larger peaks on the take-off, at a reef/point break. SSW 14-15 sec swell. Strong Papagayo winds.
Evaluation: A progressive step up from the small sidebites I had been using since last June's sea trials. A noticeable improvement in projection on turns but sufficient ability to quickly turn and pivot. Speed off of turns. Also could do controlled side slips. Promising. More sea trials planned :)

The small bonzer runners are in rear slots and a 4.5" center fin at appropriate spot, but I will measure that later and take photos of the configuration.
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fcs_knubster_sm.gif
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Re: S&S Checkered Diamond RPM Bonzer Paipo

Unread post by Pes78 » Mon Mar 09, 2015 5:49 pm

Looking at doing something similar with my next board with some similar bottom contours.

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Re: S&S Checkered Diamond RPM Bonzer Paipo

Unread post by bgreen » Tue Mar 10, 2015 8:06 am

I have a set of small fins like this. I'll have to give them a go.

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Re: S&S Checkered Diamond RPM Bonzer Paipo

Unread post by rodndtube » Tue Mar 10, 2015 4:09 pm

Here are a couple rough and cut pics of the Large Knubster Von Sol FCS single stub in forward FCS slot, small True Ames Bonzer runners in rear position, and a 4.5 inch center fin.
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LgKnubsters-smbzrrunnrs-4.5in-Tail_w600.jpg
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LgKnubsters-smbzrrunnrs-4.5in-Side_w600.jpg
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Re: S&S Checkered Diamond RPM Bonzer Paipo

Unread post by jbw4600 » Wed Mar 11, 2015 7:15 pm

Rod, How are you liking your Bonzer? How does it compare with your Austin's? Is it still loose even with the extra finage?

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Re: S&S Checkered Diamond RPM Bonzer Paipo

Unread post by rodndtube » Wed Mar 11, 2015 10:36 pm

The Bonzer paipo is different than my two Austin board designs in many ways. Most people are familiar with the baseline Austin which is the standard Austin Paipo, based on the first paipo he built for me. The other paipo design that Austin has built for me is what I call the Checkered RPM series (most of which are S&S Checkered RPMs). In summary, I have been enjoying my Bonzer paipo a lot in the Costa Rican reef/point surf that I like to ride and it worked out well in some of the Hawaiian surf. The S&S is my board of choice in much of the Puerto Rican surf spots that I ride. The baseline Austin is mostly used in Florida and other East Coast surf unless it is more hollow or overhead, in which case the S&S is the board of choice.

The current fin configuration is working out well... a modest improvement of the prior setup. I am trading a Bonzer 6" center fin for a set of small Bonzer runners so will see how that works out in a couple of months.

For more clarity on the board differences I recommend checking some descriptions at:
http://mypaipoboards.org/index.shtml#MY_PAIPO_BOARDS
For data weenies, the Bonzer update for the fin configuration sea trials won't be posted for another week or two.

Bottom line, I am enjoying the Bonzer's characteristics plus some of the other changes from the Austin boards but the Austin boards are my choices in other situations.
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Re: S&S Checkered Diamond RPM Bonzer Paipo

Unread post by rodndtube » Tue Jun 23, 2015 12:37 pm

Sea Trials complete with test/eval using four small Bonzer runners. I traded off the 6" True Ames Bonzer center fin that came with the board for a pair of small Bonzer runners. These small Bonzer runners replace the Knubsters and small fiberglass pivot fins. The Knubsters will provide an inexpensive travel substitute in the event of a calamity (e.g., lava rock decides to impede my progress).

Two weeks of Sea Trials finally locked it down. The first week was inconclusive with a weird cross swell affecting the reliability of the left (SW x WNW), but the second week conditions improved dramatically with consistent S or SW swell plus a steady diet of offshore winds. At times the 6th gear seemed to rocket into place.
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4SmRunnersTail_Crop.jpg
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4SmRunnersNose_Crop.jpg
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Re: S&S Checkered Diamond RPM Bonzer Paipo

Unread post by dr robert » Thu Jul 16, 2015 9:41 pm

Ah -Ha!
Yes my friend, the sacred 6th gear!
Go Rod go…!

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Re: S&S Checkered Diamond RPM Bonzer Paipo

Unread post by bgreen » Sun Jul 19, 2015 5:06 am

Hello Robert,

On the other thread about Rod and I not having our lives changed by the bonzer I had two thoughts:

1. baseline is important. If I'm happy performance wise with the style of board I'm riding the shift wouldn't be as life changing, as if I was going from a bicycle to a motorbike.

2. I feel the bonzer is wanting me to draw lines different to what I typically want to. I recall a similar experience when getting a new stand-up board - the big difference being I only had one board and that is what I had to surf. These days I have lots of boards so there isn't the same need to focus on just one board. Also, Also, having ridden finless for so long or with minimal fins, all those fins require a real adjustment. Getting the centre fin position just right is another adjustment.

Some idle thoughts.

Bob

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Re: S&S Checkered Diamond RPM Bonzer Paipo

Unread post by rodndtube » Sun Jul 19, 2015 5:50 pm

bgreen wrote:Hello Robert,

On the other thread about Rod and I not having our lives changed by the bonzer I had two thoughts:

1. baseline is important. If I'm happy performance wise with the style of board I'm riding the shift wouldn't be as life changing, as if I was going from a bicycle to a motorbike.

2. I feel the bonzer is wanting me to draw lines different to what I typically want to. I recall a similar experience when getting a new stand-up board - the big difference being I only had one board and that is what I had to surf. These days I have lots of boards so there isn't the same need to focus on just one board. Also, Also, having ridden finless for so long or with minimal fins, all those fins require a real adjustment. Getting the centre fin position just right is another adjustment.

Some idle thoughts.

Bob
What fin sizes are you using for runners and the center fin?
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Re: S&S Checkered Diamond RPM Bonzer Paipo

Unread post by bgreen » Tue Jul 21, 2015 2:08 am

Rod,

The runners are the one's that shipped with the board. I bought an additional centre fin like you recommended but have only used it a couple of times.


Bob

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Re: S&S Checkered Diamond RPM Bonzer Paipo

Unread post by rodndtube » Tue Jul 21, 2015 11:10 am

All I can say is what works for me but based on your descriptions it might work better for you. Put the small runners in the rear slots, put some smaller fins in the forward slots -- try any small ones for now just to evaluate the effect on the riding and turning -- by small I mean something in the 2x2 to 2.25x2.25 range, some knubsters, or another pair of small Bonzer runners.
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