Transworld Surf Magazine
ASK THE EXPERT: Todd Proctor
IF YOU’VE EVER SNAPPED A BOARD and had it fixed, you know that you’ll be lucky if it ever rides the same as before. And most of the time, as in Travis’ case, the “magic” tends to vanish. What to do? For sound expert advice, we consulted Todd Proctor of Proctor Surfboards in Ventura, California.
TODD PROCTOR: Board builder Todd Proctor is a leader in developing surfboard technology. He shapes each board that leaves his Ventura, California factory and surf shop. Check out HYPERLINK “http://www.proctorsurf.com” www.proctorsurf.com for more info.]
Q: I recently broke my favorite board of all time –snapped it in a thick closeout barrel. I’ve had it repaired and it works okay, but it’s just not the same. I’m wondering if there’s any way for someone to recreate it exactly as it was? I want my magic board back.
-Travis Carson, San Francisco, California
A: “Anytime you repair a snapped board, the natural flex of that board is gone-the repair is basically a glue job right in the middle, so rather than it being a seamless flex that feels alive under your feet, the board now has a big, stiff scar through its belly.
“Replicating a board really depends on whether the board came from a machine or if it was done by hand. The odds are nil that you’re going to be able to use a machine to duplicate a magic, hand-shaped board. Instead, to try and recreate it, the best thing to do is just go back to the shaper who shaped it. Don’t’ just go into your local shop and ask for a similar board model from some other shaper, because every shaper shapes differently. So your starting point is to go back to the same dude because if he made you a good board to begin with, chances are he can do it again.
“However, if the magic board was designed on a CAD (Computer Assisted Design) program, whether it was custom or a stock shape, that file was saved in a database. So you can go back to that shaper who’ll have that board on file and he can pop out another one for you.
“If you don’t want to-or can’t-go back and get another board from that shaper, you could bring the repaired board in to a guy like me, and what I’ll do is study the board and see what’s going on with it, check the basic rocker, check the bottom contours-essentially check the whole thing out and see what it is that the surfer liked about that board.
Then I’ll ask them questions about themselves-their ability level, where they surf, what they liked, and if there’s anything they disliked about the board-and we’ll go from there.”