Tuesday, March 9, 2010
Quest for the Ultimate Miami Wave Board
First, I did some research via the Internet, read a few articles and just talked out loud some ideas with fellow windsurfers. Thanks to Adventure Sport’s demo day, I was able to take JP Wave Duo board for a spin, and did like the feel. Next, I had to make THE decision: buy a production board (that’s sooo boring), order a custom (intriguing, but the closest shaper I would trust with this project is on Maui and it would be pricey) or just modify an existing board (Bingo! I got just the right board!!).
What I had was a couple of years old, an 84L Naish Hybrid Wave and although I loved it, I always thought it could use an extra fin or two or three. Analyzing all my options, I went for a Quad fin design, with smaller front fins, 4 fin boxes, If I didn’t like it, I could always use just back fins, but it would give me a lots of flexibility.
In windsurfing nothing is simple, and the next hurdle was the fin box selection. The lightest and strongest box for a wave board would be a mini tuttle box (MT), but availability of fins and fin boxes themselves was an issue. Also the surfboard shaper I recruited for this project, Mike (Birds Surfboards)never dealt with that type of a box and hesitated. After over a month of trying to get mini tuttle boxes and fins without doubling my project’s cost in the process, I reluctantly purchased US type boxes and fins.
Bright and early (so, I could make it to work on time) one crisp, sunny fall morning with my notes, sketches, fin boxes, quad fin set and my guinea pig of a board, I was knocking on the door of the Birds Surfboards shop. Mike, the head guy with a friendly smile and over 20 plus years of experience shaping boards, opened the door and invited me in.
Boardheads! Although we talked on the phone and
exchanged a bunch of emails, we talked the ‘what’ and ‘why’ of board shaping, etc. a lot longer than I planned. When I finally said goodbye, I knew I was running late.
I won’t bore you with details, but we did have few more snags along the road to glory, from minor differences between surfing and windsurfing fin boxes to re-installing back fin boxes due to a little type-o in my notes, but a couple of months later I had my old/new board back with 4 shinny new slots.
Now, if only weather would cooperate. Can I please have NE 20-25 with sunny skies, and make it on the weekend?!!