Photo by Tim Davis
Board Care + Feeding

Board Care + Feeding

Epoxy/extruded polystyrene boards need the same care and attention you would give any other board. The sun and heat damage all surfboards. To protect your board, keep it in a reflective board bag (don’t use a board sock, it makes the board hotter than using nothing). If it’s too hot in your car for a dog, it’s too hot for your board. Bottom line: Keep your board protected from exposure to sun and heat.

Extruded polystyrene will absorb 73% less water than normal surfboard foam. This makes minor dings less of an immediate problem, but they should still be repaired as soon as possible to maintain structural integrity. A board with a major ding should be removed from the water and fixed immediately, just as you would any type of surfboard.

Any board will pressure ding, particularly shortboards with super-light glassing. We try to anticipate high-impact areas and beef them up with extra glass, but sometimes gravity wins.
Exposure to heat and sunlight degrades all surfboards over time and must be avoided. We use a resin that has a UV inhibitor and UV stabilizers, however it still yellows if left in the sun.

Fixing Dings

A local glass shop can do repairs, just remind them to use epoxy resin. Do not attempt to repair the board with polyester resin; the styrene in the resin will dissolve the extruded polystyrene foam. Epoxy ding-repair kits are available from shops that carry our boards. Cleanup can be done with alcohol. It does not require acetone.

Before you attempt a major ding repair, make sure the foam is absolutely dry. Do your repair in temperatures above 70 degrees Fahrenheit. When you mix your resin and hardener, don’t try to eyeball the amounts. You must be exact; use an accurate measuring device. A stir stick with depth notches on it works well. Adding more hardener will not make the resin go off sooner; in fact, it may not harden at all.

A second coat of resin should be applied before the first coat is completely hardened for maximum bond. If more than 24 hours pass before you apply a second coat, sand the area, then clean it with alcohol before applying the next layer of resin.

Quick repairs are best done with stickers, waterproof tape or epoxy glue (including 5-minute epoxy, epoxy sticks and epoxy Solarez®). These glues will turn yellow or brown, so you should eventually do a proper repair with epoxy resin.

Solarez is a registered trademark of Wahoo International.