Balsa Twin Fin

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Balsa Twin Fin

Unread postby Uncle Grumpy » Mon Aug 20, 2012 8:16 pm

This project has taken much longer then it should have but after months of trials, tribulations, deaths and disasters, it finally lacks just a coat of paste wax for the hull and surf wax for the deck.
Balsa, Redwood Stringers, Plywood Fins, 6 oz.top and bottom, glassed with epoxy resin.
I'll post the process in a series.

Balsa left over from another project

IMGP3497.JPG


Much easier to glue up in sections than to try and do it all at once.
Notice the stringer glued up using just tape. Epoxy rocks.

IMGP3498.JPG


A little shorter than I prefer but I'm working with what I have.
The blank is less than 45"

IMGP3516.JPG
Last edited by Uncle Grumpy on Tue Aug 21, 2012 11:19 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Balsa Twin Fin

Unread postby Uncle Grumpy » Mon Aug 20, 2012 8:34 pm

Plan shape.
This board will be a little Greenough, a little Goddard and a bit 'o Simmons.

IMGP3646.JPG


When I'm working on surfboards I shove my work bench over, cover the skylight and lower my shoplights for the groovy shaping room effect.
You can see my Bosch planer hooked up to the shopvac on the bench at left.

IMGP3693.JPG


After a bit of shaping...
When I glued up the blank there were a couple small checks on the end of two of the boards that ended up being big voids that I had to deal with....

IMGP3724.JPG
Last edited by Uncle Grumpy on Mon Aug 20, 2012 10:18 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Balsa Twin Fin

Unread postby Uncle Grumpy » Mon Aug 20, 2012 8:52 pm

Thick in the back, thin in the front.
Concave Deck+Parallel Rails+Wide Tail = Fast & Fun

IMGP3727.JPG


The dark line on this side of the right stringer is part of the void I had to fill....

IMGP3729.JPG


I didn't get any pictures during the glassing, my camera went haywire and it's so messy anyway..
This shot's after the intial lamination.
IMGP4063.JPG
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Re: Balsa Twin Fin

Unread postby Uncle Grumpy » Mon Aug 20, 2012 8:58 pm

I never got to take pics of the fin shaping, due to the camera gone wonky but here's a shot of the initial fin glass job.

IMGP4065.JPG


My SWIMPAL has run off with my new camera so I'll finish this tomorrow with shots of the completed board.........
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Re: Balsa Twin Fin

Unread postby GeoffreyLevens » Tue Aug 21, 2012 10:16 am

Looking good! Very interested in getting your ride report since you usually ride alaia type boards yes? so you have a particular perspective and a feeling/response you are used to that is different from most. Maybe kind of funny to say "most" in terms of paipo riders since the entire world crew isn't really that big of a sample (omitting standard bodyboards as they are just that, standard and dime a dozen)
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Re: Balsa Twin Fin

Unread postby Uncle Grumpy » Tue Aug 21, 2012 10:43 am

Yeah the alaia' s are my go to boards because they work so well in our typical small waves.
I'll be using this board for the days when it gets too big or grindy for me to ride an alaia, so you might have to wait a while for a ride report.
Finished pics to follow.
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Re: Balsa Twin Fin

Unread postby GeoffreyLevens » Tue Aug 21, 2012 10:50 am

Just for fun sometime though you might get inspired (ya never know) to take it out on a smaller, "more typical" day, just to see.... ;)
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Re: Balsa Twin Fin

Unread postby Uncle Grumpy » Tue Aug 21, 2012 11:09 am

Finished.
Picture 036.jpg


Picture 039.jpg


43.25" X 18.25" X 1.25"

Picture 040.jpg
Last edited by Uncle Grumpy on Tue Aug 21, 2012 11:18 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Balsa Twin Fin

Unread postby Uncle Grumpy » Tue Aug 21, 2012 11:16 am

Details.
Brownie Points to all those who can identify the logo.

Picture 042.jpg


Glassed on leash loop.

Picture 043.jpg


Ready to ride.

Picture 044.jpg
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Re: Balsa Twin Fin

Unread postby Uncle Grumpy » Thu Aug 23, 2012 5:10 pm

A couple more pictures.
Shot under the lights of SHF

DSCF1047.jpg


DSCF1051.jpg
Last edited by Uncle Grumpy on Fri Aug 24, 2012 11:42 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Balsa Twin Fin

Unread postby scrapster » Thu Aug 23, 2012 9:28 pm

Sweet. The contours on the deck are beautifully done. As for the logo--it's killing me. I've definitely seen it before. Not the Seabees, but I'm thinking Navy? I remember a cigar in its mouth.
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Re: Balsa Twin Fin

Unread postby Uncle Grumpy » Thu Aug 23, 2012 10:45 pm

Here's a big hint.
The symbol is near and dear to a couple wrinkled old guys, one named Abe and another named Monty........... :mrgreen:
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Re: Balsa Twin Fin

Unread postby dr robert » Fri Aug 24, 2012 9:12 pm

wondering why the dished out deck..?
performance characteristics..aesthetics..?
what's the template inspiration?
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Re: Balsa Twin Fin

Unread postby Uncle Grumpy » Fri Aug 24, 2012 10:33 pm

dr robert wrote:wondering why the dished out deck..?
performance characteristics..aesthetics..?

Lowered center of gravity, comfort, less bouyancy for easier duck diving.....

dr robert wrote:what's the template inspiration?

Did you miss the second post in the thread?

a little Greenough, a little Goddard and a bit 'o Simmons
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Re: Balsa Twin Fin

Unread postby ClanB » Sat Aug 25, 2012 12:43 am

Nice Nice. :o Im impressed.
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Re: Balsa Twin Fin

Unread postby Uncle Grumpy » Sat Aug 25, 2012 6:55 pm

Thanks.
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Re: Balsa Twin Fin

Unread postby dr robert » Sat Aug 25, 2012 10:21 pm

hey U.Grumpy,
nice work!
I did see your description on the template..but thought there might be a bit more to it than just generally referencing inspiration from 3 different shaper/designers.
Surf on.
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Re: Balsa Twin Fin

Unread postby Uncle Grumpy » Sun Aug 26, 2012 8:07 pm

Again, thanks,
FWIW, this is the first surfboard I've ever made with fins and glass.
I was looking to get the most out of the materials I had on hand.
If you've seen the Goddard Design Sheets http://mypaipoboards.org/interviews/Lar ... humb.shtml
It seems there is just about every iteration of modern style prone boards imaginable.
I took what I thought would work for me and went with it.
Surfboards are much like boats, if it looks good it will probably work; but they are all a compromise. :ugeek:
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Re: Balsa Twin Fin

Unread postby dr robert » Sun Aug 26, 2012 9:01 pm

U. Grumpy,
excellent!
how great is it to have the Goddard stuff..many thanks to Bob and Rod for getting this all information together.
everybody benefits.
I'm sure your board is a screamer!
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Re: Balsa Twin Fin

Unread postby Uncle Grumpy » Sun Aug 26, 2012 10:06 pm

I finished the board at the end of the last swell and have been patiently waiting for some proper waves for the debut.
1-2' onshore junk is not appropriate. I want the first session to be memorable
My good friends at Magic Seaweed are telling me this next week ought to be productive. :mrgreen:
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Re: Balsa Twin Fin

Unread postby bgreen » Sat Sep 01, 2012 9:49 am

Uncle G,

Speedwise how does this board compare to the finless alaias?

Bob
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Re: Balsa Twin Fin

Unread postby Uncle Grumpy » Sat Sep 01, 2012 12:17 pm

Hi Bob,
I posted about my first session on another thread viewtopic.php?f=3&p=1644#p1644
but to answer the question,
I was pleasantly surprised to find this board is just a little bit slower then my finless boards.
I suspect the very low profile fins and the lack of any real rocker is the key to that.
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Re: Balsa Twin Fin

Unread postby GeoffreyLevens » Sat Sep 01, 2012 12:51 pm

Loved the ride report! So accounting for actual finished thickness, about 1" rocker in front and nada, totally flat out the back?
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Re: Balsa Twin Fin

Unread postby Uncle Grumpy » Sat Sep 01, 2012 2:13 pm

I put the barest hint of concave from the forward third back, but yes it's dead flat fore and aft in the back.
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Re: Balsa Twin Fin

Unread postby matt23 » Mon Sep 10, 2012 5:34 am

Lovely looking board.
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Re: Balsa Twin Fin

Unread postby Uncle Grumpy » Mon Sep 10, 2012 12:29 pm

Thank You & Welcome Aboard. 8-)
It appears you have a bit of a hike to the surf.
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Re: Balsa Twin Fin

Unread postby matt23 » Mon Sep 10, 2012 2:01 pm

Cheers, long time lurker. Landlocked now but thats going to change. Ive never used balsa but I might have found a good source, does it have the strength not to be glassed? Just oiled?
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Re: Balsa Twin Fin

Unread postby Uncle Grumpy » Mon Sep 10, 2012 6:25 pm

It depends on the balsa a smidge and mostly on the use of the board.
I'm a longtime volunteer at the Surfing Heritage Foundation and we have several old boards in the collection that are balsa without glass.
Usually topped with varnish of one sort or another, or paint and in at least one case a heavy coat of shellac.
Many of them have rails of another wood with balsa used as the center; typically with the stringer of the same wood as the rails; redwood, cedar, doug fir...
I think if I went that route I would give the balsa a good coat of epoxy warmed up with a heat gun for extra penetration and then a varnish topcoat to protect the epoxy. I don't think you could put enough straight oil finish on balsa to waterproof it.
As long as you are not banging rails with the competition, surfing leashless on a rocky shore, or are particularly rough on your gear it ought to work out fine, just needing preventative maintenance on occasion..
Some balsa is very light and that stuff is absorbant but you can find balsa that is fairly stout that water will bead up on for a few moments before it sinks in.
I've heard it depends on the sex of the tree. :oops:
My 2¢.
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Re: Balsa Twin Fin

Unread postby matt23 » Wed Sep 12, 2012 12:12 pm

Thanks for the explanation UG, Ive only used paulownia and wr cedar. Its gonna be a while until I can get my hands on the balsa. Ill post some stuff Im working on. Cheers
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Re: Balsa Twin Fin

Unread postby nomastomas » Mon Sep 17, 2012 12:45 am

Very nice, UG. I've been wanting to do a balsa build, maybe even chamber it. Just haven't made the time, but your build has re-kindled the flame. How much does the board weigh?
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Re: Balsa Twin Fin

Unread postby Uncle Grumpy » Mon Sep 17, 2012 9:53 am

I chambered the three inner balsa planks, this batch of balsa was particularly dense and hard, the board weighs 9 lbs..
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Re: Balsa Twin Fin

Unread postby nomastomas » Mon Sep 17, 2012 3:28 pm

Where did you get your balsa? Anyone know of a good source for balsa lumber in the Ventura area?
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Re: Balsa Twin Fin

Unread postby Uncle Grumpy » Mon Sep 17, 2012 4:33 pm

It came from Austin Hardwood and Hardware in Santa Ana but it's been in my lumber stash for a couple years;
I just discovered I have some more too. :)
I don't know where to tell you to go up there.
There's these guys http://woodsurfboardsupply.com/ but their prices are pretty steep........
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Re: Balsa Twin Fin

Unread postby cxk » Wed Oct 03, 2012 2:00 pm

holy smoke that's gorgeous work man.
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Re: Balsa Twin Fin

Unread postby krusher74 » Sat Nov 10, 2012 8:54 am

Beautiful looking creation!
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