Friday, September 22, 2006
The board is 6'6" x 18½ x 2 3/8". It's thin, narrow and lightweight for a guy my size (6', 200lbs.). The EPS foam is more buoyant and allows for less overall board volume. It floats, paddles and catches waves well.
Tim had the board ready two days before I was leaving on a short surf trip. I was concerned about it being to green to ride but it was the only small wave board I had. I broke my other two small wave boards:-( Anyway, it had been really warm and it helped speed up the curing process.
During my first paddle out, I could tell the difference in the buoyancy and rigidity of the board. However, once on a wave it felt very comfortable. To say the least, I'm very pleased.
The board is holding up well thus far. It has very minor pressure dings under my feet but thats it. I have been purposely punishing this board to test its strength with floaters, hard carves and a few poor attempts at aerials. In the past I would have had to jumped off out of fear of breaking the board. Now, I can go for it more often. The next thing to break will be my body. OUCH!
Click this link to reach Tim Stamps and order your own EPS/Epoxy core board. Trust me, you be glad you did. Stay away from those cookie cutter pop outs with the fancy logo.
Gone Surfing... Be Back Soon.
Friday, July 07, 2006
Here's the deal, the closing of Clark Foam on Monday, December 5th 2005 is relatively old news. The initial panic drove up board prices and caused surf shop owners to order large quantities of boards from overseas.
Since then, new foam sources have emerged and alternative materials have been revived. There is foam available but nothing like before. Some local manufacturers have started production and there are imports coming in from South Africa, Australia, etc. However, the days of custom blanks are over for now. Then, there are others have moved on to different materials.
Historically, the surf industry community resists changes in the materials used in making surfboards. There are better materials available but tend to be more expensive and/or labor intensive.
Most large surfboard manufacturers make the majority of their boards from polyurethane blanks (cores). In order to produce large quantities of boards, these manufacturers use in house or outside CNC machining to rough cut the blanks then have hired shapers fine finish the boards. Only the select ProSurfers get the hand shaped boards. Then there are the composite molded technology surfboards which are either foreign or domestically made. Composite molded boards tend to feel lifeless in comparisson with a custom shaped boards. Therefore, most expereinced surfers prefer custom, hand shaped surfboards.
Recently, Channel Islands Surfboards announced it signed an agreement for Burton Snowboards to acquire its assets. Channel Islands Surfboards is probably the largest single label surfboard manufacturer and produces in the range of 2000 boards a month. Burton Snowboards is the largest snowboard manufacturer with a great distribution network. However, with the increase in available capitol and manufacturing capabilities from Burton we could see new quality surfboards with new materials in the near future. Hopefully, we don't get massed produced boards for those who really can't tell the difference between a good board and one with a popular logo.
We, at boarding.com prefer to support the real artists of the surf industry. The guys who actually hand shape custom surfboards for the surfer.
I recently met with Tim Stamps of Stamps Surfboards to discuss what my options were for my first board since the closure of Clark Foam. I've known Tim for a long time and he knows how I surf. Tim has shaped several boards for me and I couldn't be more pleased. (see photo's of last years trip to the Mentawai's) With limited polyurethane blank options, Tim recommended trying an EPS (expanded polystyrene) core blank. He has invested a lot of time and effort to develop his EPS skills to take him into the future.Check out the photo essay of my first EPS board being shaped.
EPS surfboards are glassed using epoxy resin and are lighter, stronger, more buoyant, and have better heat resistant characteristics than traditional boards. I tend to destroy polyurethane surfboards but I really like the flex pattern and feel under my feet.
I have never ridden an EPS board and was hesitant at first because I have heard that they feel rigid, tend to float too high in the water and are hard on the bottom of your feet. We reduced the overall volume to compensate for the increased buoyancy and I may have to get a tail patch for my back foot. EPS surfboards materials are more expensive and there is a lot more work for both the shaping and glassing process. Tim actually makes his own blanks from a solid block of EPS foam. Thus, the final cost of the board is higher than a traditional board but if it works well and lasts longer... it will be worth the extra money.
Check back soon for my full review of my first EPS surfboard. It's at the glass shop. "Is my board done yet?"
Get your own custom board from Tim Stamps, you'll be Happy you did.
To read more about EPS foam click here:
Friday, June 30, 2006
|I went to my long time friend and shaper Tim Stamps to get my first new board since the closing of Clark Foam. It's had a big impact on the surfboard making industry which will be felt for some time to come. There is foam available to shapers but nothing like before. Some local manufacturers have started production and there are a lot of imports coming in from South Africa, Australia, etc. However, the days of custom blanks are over for now. Unless, your like Tim Stamps who has moved on to making his own blanks from EPS foam. It's more work and more expensive, but the finished product is much more durable. Check out the pictures of the shaping of my first EPS board . More to follow so check back soon.|| |
Friday, June 09, 2006
1) Shoes: You are expected to remove your shoes before stepping up from the entry area into a Japanese home. This custom is also observed in many traditional Japanese restaurants, all store dressing rooms and some other businesses. No footwear, not even slippers, should be worn on tatami (rice mat) floors.
2) Smoking: While many Japanese smoke, smoking is not permitted on local trains. Long distance trains have designated smoking cars available.
3) Bathing: When using a Japanese bath, you do not soap your body in the tub, or enter the tub with any soap on your body. You should wash and rinse your body outside of the tub and then submerge your entire body, up to your neck, in the hot water to soak and relax.
4) Public Courtesy: While American's are said to have a "bubble" of space around us, which we consider to be our personal space, the crowded conditions in Japan do not allow the Japanese this luxury. Japanese have an internal "bubble" into which they escape when commuting or in other crowded situation. For this reason, when in public, they refrain from raucous conversation, use earphones to listen to personal sound systems and otherwise are very conscious and courteous of others, to keep from bursting their internal privacy bubbles.
5) Currency: Japan is a highly developed country where only Japanese currency, the yen, is used for commercial transactions. There are few places that accept credit cards. Dollars must be exchanged, with yen exchange rates fluctuating daily, prior to making any purchases.
6) Shopping: Japan is not a bargaining economy, as are many nations of the world. Prices shown in stores are the prices you are expected to pay. There is a 5% national sales tax added to most items.
7) Tipping: For the most part tipping is not expected in Japan. Service received from taxies, restaurants and traditional Japanese inns and hotels do not require a tip. However, tipping is still a fact of life at some westernized Japanese hotels you may visit.
8) Getting Assistance: While Japanese High School graduates have studied English for six years, with College graduates having studied English for an additional four years, it is still not spoken by a vast majority of the population. When you are lost or need assistance, approach the Japanese, speak distinctly, and request assistance. If the person you have approached is unable to understand or help you they will most often attempt to find someone else who can help. If they cross their arms it is a symbol for no. Most likely they are telling you they don’t understand not cursing you like you’re a demon.
9) Language: Japanese honestly appreciate any attempts foreigners make in speaking in Japanese. They fully recognize how difficult it is and respect any effort in trying to communicate better.
10) Foods: There are a wide variety of internationally inspired food and restaurants available in Japan, from American fast food to eery form of international cuisine. Traditional Japanese dishes are not all rice and raw fish, and are really quite delicious. Their food is not at all spicy but is often flavored with various soy based sauces. They use a lot of vegetables, beef, pork, chicken and seafood.
Bonus) Driving: While the Japanese drive on the left hand side of the road, with their car's steering wheels on the right side of the vehicle, this is a difference much more easily overcome than most of us expect. Hundreds of thousands of Americans have quickly adapted.
Friday, June 02, 2006
Pro Surfing Surf Contest: Event #5, The Rip Curl Search - Mexico, June 20-July 1. Check it out at Here.
(1) The ancient Maya of Mesoamerica calculated the solar year at 365.2422 days and the moon's period at 29.5209 days. Both figures are so accurate that it was only in the 20th century that scientists came up with measurements infinitesimally more exact.
(2) Mexico is one of the few remaining countries in Latin America where bullfighting is still practised. The Plaza Mexico in Mexico City is the biggest bullring in the world, seating 50,000 spectators.
(3) The world-famous resort of Cancun in the Yucatan Peninsula was a government-planned creation. Before 1970 the huge holiday centre was not even marked on maps.
(4) Mexico City's two most famous volcanoes, Popocatupetl (5,452 metres) and Iztaccahuatl (5,286 metres) are affectionately known as Popo and Izta. According to legend, Popo (Nahuatl for "Smoking Mountain") was a warrior in love with Izta ("white lady").
(5) Under Mexican law, at least 51 percent of any tequila must come from the tequila weber agave plant, which grows only in the region around the town of Tequila, to the northwest of Guadalajara in the state of Jalisco.
(6) Papantla is a village near the Port of Veracruz in Mexico. Vanilla is produced in the area. One main tradition in Papantla is the Rito de Los Voladores (Rite of the Flyers).
(7) Mexico City is the largest city in the world. It was built on the site of the ancient city of Tenochtitlán. Tenochtitlán was built in 1325 by the Aztecs. It was destroyed by the Spanish when they conquered Mexico. Hernando Cortez first entered the Valley of Mexico in 1519. With fewer than 200 soldiers and a few horses, he conquered the Aztecs. In 1521 the Spanish destroyed the city of Tenochtitlán.
(8) Corn is the main food crop grown in Mexico. It is grown on half of the cultivated land. The Indians living in what is now central or southern Mexico ate corn from wild plants about 10,000 years ago. About 5000 B. C. the Indians learned how to grow corn themselves. Corn is used to make flat pancakes called tortillas. They are sometimes folded and stuffed with different foods to make tacos.
(9) Mexican children are given both their father's last name and their mother's maiden name. This tradition helps preserve the heritage of both parents. Fathers would often weave a God's eye when their children were born. At each birthday for five years the father would weave another God's eye.
(10) According to the 1995-1999 figures, the "quality of life" in Mexico was as follows:
Population that lives in poverty (1999): 44 to 60%, Houses with electricity (1995): 93.52%, Houses with running water (1995): 87.0%, Houses with sewage (1995): 76.7%, Houses with an earthen floor: 15.40%.
Credit: #1-5 Insightguides.com
Credit: #6-9 Indianchild.com
Credit #10 PvMirror.com
Wednesday, April 19, 2006
10 Things You Didn't Know About Australia.
2) Australia's total area is 2,966,200 square miles with population of 16,849,496, which is the lowest population density in the world, despite being the sixth largest country!
3) Australia boasts over 7,000 beaches - more than any other nation.
4) The kangaroo is unique to Australia and one of our most easily recognized mammals. There are more kangaroos in Australia now than when Australia was first settled. Estimates suggest around 40 million.
5) Until Europeans came to australia there were no hoofed animals (horses, cattle, goats, camals etc..)!!
6) The world's longest continuous fence known as the dingo fence', runs through central Queensland for 5,531 kilometres. It is 1.8 metres high and is designed to keep sheep safe from Australia's native dog.
7)The world's fastest growing tree is the Australian Eucalyptus. It can grow up to 10 metres in one year.
8) Australia has been inhabited far longer than Ireland has. The first settlers were called Aborigines. Until 1788 , the only inhabitants of Australia were the Aborigines. They had lived there for over 40,000 years and it is thought that there was as many as 300,000 of them there at the time. Today there are only 150,000 Aborigines representing 1% of the population of Australia. Nearly half of them live in the far north, in some of the hottest and remote regions.
They moved to Australia from South East Asia. They crossed the sea in rafts moving along the islands now known as Indonesia and New Guinea. They were nomads who wandered from place to place in search of food.
9) The Boomerang is the most famous weapon of the Aborigines. When skilfully thrown it will zoom back again to the hunter if it does not strike its target on the way.
10)Ayers Rock - Uluru or what was once known as Ayers rock is the world's largest monolith.It is a dedicated Aboriginal sacred site. It is located in the Northern Territory near the city of Alice Springs. Walking tours to the top of Ayers Rock are organised by local Aborigines.
Surf Trip Surf Travel Australia Destinations from SurfTrip .com
Friday, April 07, 2006
1) The name Fiji is a Tongan corruption of the indigenous name "Viti."
2)Fiji is made up of more than 800 islands and islets, 110 of which are inhabited. The largest islands are Viti Levu and Vanua Levu, which together comprise more than 85 percent of the total land area.
3)Fiji has gone through two coup d'etats , with the latest one occurring May 19, 2000. Both coups were caused by racial tension between the native Fijians and the East Indians.
4) The population of Fiji is mainly split between indigenous Fijians and Indians. The Indians live mostly on Viti Levu, the main island, and are descendants of those brought from India by the British to work on the sugar plantations. Other Pacific Islanders, Chinese, and Europeans make up the remaining population.
5) In Fiji, there are many codes and rituals that are sill practised on a day to day basis. In visiting Fiji, it is helpful to be aware of some of these traditions in order to be respectful to the locals particularly when visiting a village or being introduced to a chief.
6) Indigenous Fijians live co-operatively in a lifestyle based on sharing within large extended families.
7) Bures, the traditional name for their dwelling - are single room structures with bamboo woven walls and thatch roofs. Families perform all the activities of daily living under one roof in these intricately designed structures.
8) Always ask permission when taking photos (which will almost always be granted), and as obvious as it sounds, never casually wander into someone's bure and start shooting.
9)In Fiji and other parts of Polynesia the drinking of yaqona(pronounced Yangona) or kava, is a common ceremonial and social custom. The yaqona ceremony has great significance in Fijian life but is now considered a social drink as well as a ceremony.
10) Chances are you will not find warmer, more hospitable human beings on the planet.
More Fiji Surf Trip Surf Travel Destination from SurfTrip .com
Friday, March 31, 2006
1) Costa Rica (Spanish for "Rich Coast") is located in Central America between Nicaragua and Panama in Central America.
2) Its 50,000 square kilometers makes it a little bigger than Switzerland. Its length is about 500 km. and width about 150 km. The highest mountain, Cerro Chirripó stands at 3,820 m. or about 12,000 ft. high. The coastline has a length of almost 1,300 km which include three peninsulas (Osa, Nicoya, and Papagayo).
3) About one sixth of the Costa Rica's territory has been set apart for national parks or wildlife refuges (that's more than half of the inhabitable territory of Switzerland).
4) The country also includes famous Cocos Island, found 500 km off the Pacific coast.
5) There are several active volcanos here: Irazú, Poás, Rincón de la Vieja and Arenal, the most active of all with eruptions every 15 minutes.
6) Ten percent of the country's 4 million inhabitants live in San José, and more than half of the population live in the Central Valley.
7) Eighty percent of the population is of Spanish origin. Most of the black and mulatto populations (7%) live in or around the harbor town of Limón on the Caribbean.
8) About 40,000 Indigenous live mostly in isolated forests.
9) At the moment, some 250,000 foreigners live in Costa Rica.
10) Costa Rica is a founding member of the United Nations since 1945.
More Cost Rica Surf Trip Surf Travel From SurfTrip .com.
Friday, March 24, 2006
1) Indonesia is home to 35cm miniature deer.
2) Indonesia is home to fish that climb trees to catch insects.
3) Indonesia is home to spiders that catch and devour small birds in giant webs.
4) Ape-man...Java is one of the earliest places in the world where ape-man lived. The skull of an ape-man who lived at a time when most of Europe was under ice was discovered here.
5) Population...Indonesia has the fifth largest population in the world(+-180million) which equals the combined population of all other South East Asian countries.
6) Indonesia An ethnological goldmine...the variety of ethnic groups is unparalleled anywhere else in the world (316 ethnic groups).
7)Volcanoes...Indonesia sprawls through a part of the western pacific known as the "Ring of Fire". With over 400 active volcanoes, there are over 3 earthquakes per day.
8) Size...Indonesia has a total of 5million km2. One million more than the USA, although only 2 million km2 are land.
9) Indonesia Islands...Three of the ten largest islands in the world are found here.
10) Climate...Wet season is Nov - March and hot season May to October.
More Indonesia Surf Trip Surf Travel Destinations from SurfTrip .com
Friday, March 17, 2006
From tip to tip, Hawaii is the widest state in the United States There are only 12 letters in the Hawaiian alphabet. Vowels: A, E, I, O, U Consonants: H, K, L, M, N, P, W
Hawaii is the only state that is not part of the the mainland of North America.Hawaii is the only state that grows coffee
One-third of the world's commercial supply of pineapples comes from HawaiiHawaii is the most isolated population center on earth. Hawaii is 2,390 miles from California; 4,900 miles from China; 3,850 miles from Japan; and 5,280 miles from the Philippines.
Hawaii has its own time zone (Hawaiian Standard Time.) There is no daylight savings time. The time runs 3 hours behind Pacific Standard Time and 6 hours behind Eastern Standard Time right now. Remember this when calling the islands or from the islands.Hawaii was once an independent monarchy. Polynesian monarchs rules the islands for 99 years, 1795-1894. The islands became republic. No other state has had this form of government.
In Hawaii, there are no racial or ethnic majorities, everyone is a minority. Caucasians (Haoles) constitute about 34%; Japanese-American about 32%; Filipino-American about 16% and Chinese-American about 5%. It is very difficult to determine racial identification as most of the population has some mixture of ethnicities, (Hapa).
More Hawaiian Islands Hawaii Surf Trip Surf Travel Destinations From SurfTrip .com
Friday, March 10, 2006
1. Less Than 5 percent of the population of New Zealand is human, the rest are animals, giving it one of the highest animal to people ratios in the world.
2. New Zealand's French Pass, which separates d'Urville Island from South Island Coast, is the only place in the world where two different levels of ocean can be seen at once. A Fact that not only inspires awe, but causes extremely dangerous currents.
3. New Zealand is home to the kea, the only bird in the known to actively seek out rubber to eat. It particularly likes the strips around car windows.
4. In 1977, a Japanese fishing ship trawling for mackerel off the coast of New Zealand, reportedly hauled up the rotting corpse of a 4,000 pound, 32 foot sea creature that none of the crew could identify. After photographing and taking tissue samples of the carcass, they dumped it overboard for fear of contaminating their catch. To this day, scientists debate whether the creature was a sea lion, basking shark, of plesiosaur, which are thought to have become extinct along with dinosaurs.
5. New Zealand was the first country to give women the right to vote, in 1893.
6. New Zealand has two official languages: English and Maori.
7. New Zealand is the only country that has every climate found in the world.
8. The Weta, a large cricket native to New Zealand, is able to go into suspended animation during the winter. Rather than seeking shelter, it allows itself to freeze completely solid, then thaws out in spring.
9. In addition to having a highly developed sense of smell, New Zealand's flightless kiwi birds form monogamous relationships know to last as long as 30 years.
10. The Largest measured giant squid, found stranded on a New Zealand Beach in 1880, stretched to almost 60 feet from the tip of it's head to the end of it's 40 foot long tentacles.
More New Zealand Surf Trip Surf Travel Destination from SurfTrip .com
Friday, February 24, 2006
Tuesday, January 10, 2006
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