Crafting the Perfect Board: Advantages of Starting with a Custom Surfboard Blank
Surfing is more than just a sport; it's a way of life. And if you're an avid surfer, you understand the importance of having the perfect board to match the wave conditions for your area. While there are many surfboards available on the market, there's something truly special about shaping your surfboard from a custom blank. In this blog post, we'll delve into the advantages of starting with a custom blank, including customization options like rocker, thickness, stringer type, and foam density, and more…
Let’s start by mentioning you can customize both EPS and PU foam blanks through Greenlight. We manufacture Engineered EPS Foam Surfboard Blanks in house and offer complete customization of your blank’s rocker, foil, thickness, outline, and stringer types. All you have to do is shape the rails and bottom contours, if any (flat is fastest)
US Blanks Polyurethane Foam can also be customized. We can order custom blanks for you and include in our regular shipments from the US Blanks manufacturer in California, saving you a lot of shipping cost. US Blank’s rocker, foam density and foam color, and stringer types are all customizable. Email us for a quote.
Now let’s get on to why it’s smart to start with a custom blank:
- Rocker Customization:
Rocker, or the curve from nose to tail on a surfboard, plays a pivotal role in how it rides. Starting with a custom blank allows you to tailor the rocker precisely to your preferences - without the chance of screwing it up by altering the rocker while shaping.
Greenlight Custom EPS Blank: Just design it and we’ll provide the blank to you specifications. No need to touch the rocker at all.
Custom US Blanks: Since PU foam blanks are molded, the custom rocker is cut into the stringer and the foam is bent to fit upon glue up. Typically when shaping PU blanks you start with a blank that is slightly longer than your final surfboard and cut a few inches off the nose and /or tail to hit your desired rocker curve. Remember and understand this when ordering a custom US Blank with adjusted rocker. Your Nose and Tail rockers numbers (inches from the “zero” flat plane) will be higher than your final surfboard numbers.
Also note US Blanks are limited in how much a rocker can be dropped (minus inches) from the stock dimensions. Less rocker will cause extra stress in the blank upon glue up and sometimes will show a “hump” of foam on the deck
- Thickness Variations:
The thickness of your surfboard significantly impacts its buoyancy and stability in the water. A custom blank lets you fine-tune the thickness to match your weight, skill level, and the type of waves you intend to ride.
Greenlight Custom EPS Blank: A great benefit to ordering your EPS blank to thickness is eliminating all the extra shaping work and foam dust required to shape a blank down to thickness. We recommend ordering your Greenlight EPS blanks ⅛” - ¼” thicker than your final surfboard thickness to give you room for rolling the rails into the deck and adding concaves to the bottom.
Also, you can design your surfboard’s foil (foam distribution from nose to tail) so you don’t have to stress over shaping that in. Keeping it simple is always best!
Custom US Blanks: Again, since PU foam surfboard blanks are molded, there is no opportunity to change thickness or foil. But selecting the right stock US Blank to customize can help reduce your shaping work. We’re always happy to help guide you in your blank selection if you have a question.
- Stringer Type and Configuration:
Stringers, either wood or high density foam strips running through the center of a surfboard, provide strength and control flex. Customizing the type and configuration of your stringer allows you to achieve specific performance characteristics and aesthetic style. From single to multiple stringers, wood to carbon fiber, you can tailor your surfboard's response and looks to your liking.
Greenlight Custom EPS Blank: We can do ANYTHING with stingers. From wood types and thicknesses, to high density foam colors, Greenlight can glue your EPS blanks up to pretty much anything you can think of. Double and triple stringers, tapered, Vee, T-bands, Butterfly glue up patterns… endless possibilities.
Greenlight is also a big fan of colored glue line stringers with our EPS foam. They provide a bit more stiffness than stringerless blanks and the glue is easily shapeable. No need for wood working tools!
Custom US Blanks: Same thing here. You can get just about anything you want in stringers!
- Foam Density:
The type and density of foam used in your surfboard significantly affect its weight, durability, and performance. Custom blanks come in various foam densities, giving you control over the board's weight and responsiveness. Whether you prefer a lightweight, agile board for tricks or a heavier, stable one for big waves, choosing the right foam density ensures your surfboard aligns with your goals.
Greenlight Custom EPS Blank: Our Engineered EPS foam is 2# per cubic foot density, which is standard for EPS surfboards but we have some special sauce in our foam formal that makes it shape very well and is more durable than other EPS surfboard blank manufacturers offer.
We do offer custom blanks in 1# and 1.5 density upon request. They are mostly for SUPs, Sail Boards, Waveskis, and Foil boards…
Custom US Blanks: US Blanks offers 6 different foam densities from super lightweight to Tow-in extra heavy blanks. At Greenlight we stock Blue density which is the middle ground as we believe in making boards that last longer for a fractional increase in weight. You can order Red density (about 5% lighter but not as strong / typically used for shortboards) or Green Density for heavier noserider longboards. There is also a “Classic Weight” density for old school heavy logs…
Whether you choose to start your surfboard shape with a Greenlight EPS custom blank or a custom US Blank, the benefits are clear.
- Save time and effort
- Less dust
- More precise surfboard when finished
In conclusion, shaping a surfboard from a custom blank offers numerous advantages that go beyond the off-the-shelf options. With the ability to customize rocker, thickness, stringer type and configuration, and foam density, you can create a surfboard that's perfectly attuned to your needs and preferences. The time-saving benefits, reduced dust when using close-tolerance EPS blanks, and the precision of the end product make custom shaping a worthwhile endeavor for any dedicated surfer. So, take the plunge, start with a custom blank, and ride the waves like never before.