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cutting down and reshaping old windsurf board- worth it?

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cutting down and reshaping old windsurf board- worth it?

Postby geopeck » Tue Nov 25, 2008 5:49 am

hey all- I didn't see anything quite like this when I searched so I'll toss it out for something to chew on. I got an old Doug Haut Mirage windsurfing board (9'6", 23" wide I think) which had been sitting in a friends yard for a few years. Highly delammed on nose, rails and tail, so I took off about 8 inches from the tail and moved the fin box up, snubbed the nose and reglassed the rails. It rode like shit for all the obvious reasons- heavy, long, too buoyant. Lots of volume but not enough for SUP. Not that a guy couldn't have fun with it but kinda sloggy.

What might be the best way to cut this into something fun while retaining existing strengths and with minimum materials? I would basically like to use some epoxy and batting that I have around, without getting into bagging or anything exotic/expensive or removing the entire top or bottom sheets in order to reduce the volume.

Without moving the fin box again, I was thinking I could recut the sides in an inch or 2, joining them closer (7 footish) but it leaves me with little rocker unless I remove some foam and stringer under the new nose, re-epoxy, then reglass the rails onto the existing deck.

Or I could move the fin box up, cut off 30 inches of tail and use the existing rocker and nose. I wouldn't have to open up the rails but I would be riding a high volume section of the board, about 4 inches thick. Am I right that if I take the top sheet off I'll be taking a lot of foam with it and will have problems getting it back on without just doing a whole new layer of glass? The rocker starts at about 3 ft. up and is progressive, so if it was converted into a 6 ft board I would still have a substantial amount of ride with low to medium rocker.

Or just cut the nose down on both sides, leaving it pretty rockerless but with a good planing surface.

My goal for the board conditions-wise is for lightwind cruising and riding mushy waves in any wind speed. If you don't think those are realistically compatible let me know what you would try - I'm open to ideas....If your advice is to begin by giving up, I might do that too but I have a little time and materials to put into it so I thought I would toss it out for ideas

thanks, George

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Re: cutting down and reshaping old windsurf board- worth it?

Postby Johnt » Wed Nov 26, 2008 6:58 am

I am right up there with trying to adapt things, but without sounding too pessimistic, I reckon what you will need to do to get a half decent board will not be worth the effort.


• The rails near the fin need to be hard – you will need to strip parts of both the top and bottom layers of glass to shape them properly
• The board is too buoyant – you might be able to strip one layer and make the board thinner, but you will have to strip part of the other side to finish the rails.
• My surfboard is 21 ¼ inches wide, so you might get away with the 23" width in the middle, but the tail (and nose) will need to be a bit narrower, or need to be reshaped if you maintain the width and change to a trifin..
• The rocker doesn’t look too bad, but I reckon it needs a bit of vee near the fin/(s), which will require stripping the bottom layer.
• With the width of tail, a tri-fin looks like the way to go. If you want to stay with a single fin, the fin and the tail of the board both need a bit of reshaping, which means stripping the glass off the tail.
• The blanks on sail boards are often not great quality, so even if you strip the layers and completely reshape the board, the blank might be dodgy. The board is likely to have had a leak at some time and the blank could be brown and rotten at small places.
• I know you don’t want to go this way, but to get something half decent would require stripping the glass and checking out what is left of the blank and starting from there.
• If you strip a layer, it will take some of the foam with it, plus you won’t be able to stick it back again - you would have to start the glassing process from scratch.

I reckon your cheapest bet and the thing that would work the best would be to pick up an old second hand surf board for a few dollars and patch that up. Sometimes more expensive works out cheaper in the longer run.

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Re: cutting down and reshaping old windsurf board- worth it?

Postby sflinux » Wed Nov 26, 2008 5:01 pm

I think your time would be better served by getting a piece of plywood and shaping that into a directional kiteboard.
But if you were to pursue this project, I'd keep the stock tail and cut the front off of the board. With a a rail that thick I'd think 5 - 6 ft in overall length would be sufficient. Then I'd bondo the rails to make them nice and sharp (90 degree) on the rear of the board. In my experience that big rail in the mid section is not going to hold kite power very well and you'll be riding off the fin. You may want to glass on some more fins, maybe make it into a quad for extra grip. You'll probably want to ride this board underpowered and steer upwind when you get some speed. A plywood directional will give you a much better ride, as you can ride off the rail or the fins, and will use less time and material. Instead of a windsurfer, look for an old surfboard is my two cents.

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Re: cutting down and reshaping old windsurf board- worth it?

Postby Nico » Thu Nov 27, 2008 4:43 am

One good side to reusing the windsurf board is that you will be recycling the old to make new (thats a great feeling).
I have already recycled big windsurfers to make smaller windsurfers, but this because i did not have any materials available at all.
It sure is more work , but isn't our planet polluted enough already.
I say bite the bullet and go for it.

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