SHAPER'S HOTSEAT: Greg Loehr

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idan1500's picture
Joined: 12/21/2013

Hey Greg, im a young shaper from Israel and thanks to good man that answer the name "Lee Jordan" im using your epoxy. im only using kwik kick and im loving it, all the boards I make, most of them are PU, im using kwik kick on it, cant even hear about poly, im loving it!

its preety easy to get problems with epoxy but once I love the advantages that it gives me.

so the ultra is an additve like additve f? I mean, can I mix it up with a batch of kwick kick and add F ? do you know the costs alredy? and when its get out to the market?

I do have few little problems with epoxy.. SANDING and Polishing.

when im sanding my hot coat everything just great but when im sanding my gloss coats. Smart men told me that for good gloss finish I need to start sanding the coat with 400 and not lower than that because it very very hard to remove a lower grits scratches. which grit paper you start for sanding gloss?

the secend problem is when im sanding the gloss coat with the 400, the paper clogging very very fast, I mean 10 SEC on the board and the paper all white and cloged even with good paper from indasa. the carpet trick is nice but there is any other soulution for that?

thank you very much! hope you will continue ship to Israel the best resin...

edit:

I have few more questions.

what is the diffrence bettween the "normal"  RR epoxy to the PH formoula?

how much "forgiving" is RR Kwick kick for wrong ratios? (in the 20 ml area) im sure you have done some experiments with that.

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gregloehr's picture
Joined: 03/22/2004

Hi Jeffrey and Keith.  I've seen this a few times too.  XPS did it the worst and that was from heat.  EPS doesn't generally do this but if the foam isn't aged quite long enough before being pressed into blocks it can have some residual blowing agent which can cause a post expansion.  As for PU I've seen it shrink and expand through the years and it's usually dependent on factors that happen during the blank manufacturing.  With all these foams we're talking about very low density which is pushing the envelope of even being possible.  I've made urethane blanks and it's an art, very difficult.  I used to hear all the stories about people dissing Clark and overall I thought he did a good job.

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gregloehr's picture
Joined: 03/22/2004

.

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gregloehr's picture
Joined: 03/22/2004

Gee Reverb, you get up on the wrong side of the bed this morning?  We all have our preferences which is actually a good thing.  Makes it so we can exchange ideas and better what we do.  So I'm just gonna answer questions as best I can and if I occasionally stray into talking about what I do and what I believe sorry.

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everysurfer's picture
Joined: 09/20/2008

gregloehr wrote:

Gee Reverb, you get up on the wrong side of the bed this morning?  We all have our preferences which is actually a good thing.  Makes it so we can exchange ideas and better what we do.  So I'm just gonna answer questions as best I can and if I occasionally stray into talking about what I do and what I believe sorry.

Reverb does that sometimes ;- \

I hope im not speaking out of place, but Greg telling us about his epoxies is sort of the whole point of the thread.  Most of us, at least sometimes, use epoxy.  And I think all epoxy users are more than grateful to Greg for helping us use his epoxy a little better.

Thanks again!

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parthenonsurfer's picture
Joined: 02/19/2010

Hey Greg - It's an honor to have you on this forum sharing your knowledge. Alot of us "Backyard Hacks" greatly appreciate it..

My question has to do with using Innegra (EPS blank) & epoxy with pigments.I've recently tried using Innegra on a couple of my builds. Unfortunately, the first one, I also added red pigment to the epoxy ( before I learned that the innegra "wets out" somewhat opaque, not clear & ended up with a pinkish red layup. The only solution I could come up with was to do multiple hot coats with pigment in them as well, and that caused a whole slew of problems(fish eyes, and lots of clogged sandpaper). I mixed by weight so I'm sure my ratio was accurate & think that the pigment my have prevented the epoxy from fully curing. Do you have any ideas/techniques for getting "color into a board layed up with Innegra?

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reverb's picture
Joined: 03/20/2004

...ok; possibly is like Everysurfer is saying, my apologies in that case, but It s a bit stronger than me when some one start to make noise of his product in the general forum...

My question is regarding the changes between you as a competition surfer and then as a shaper.

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da5id's picture
Joined: 08/22/2009

The question I have is what is the best place to get RR on the west coast?

I contacted Graphite Masters as instructed on Sways, but as a backyard guy, I was basically ignored...  So, I get my epoxy from Greenlight - which costs a lot more probably due to all the shipping, etc...

The only other issue that I have ever had with your epoxy is attempting to tint/pigment the resin.  Do you have any suggestions on tint/pigment?  Or do you just recommend the foam stain?

Thanks!

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nocean's picture
Joined: 11/18/2008

Hi Greg,

Does RR or your epoxy need keying or sanding before hotcoating, i presume all epoxy does. I use what i think is Kinetix here but not sure as its been rebranded. Its a really good resin which is easy to use and kick relatively fast but needs sanding with 80grit  before adding more layers be it another lamination or sand/hotcoat.

Do you know of any epoxy that does not require this?

Whats your opinion on topcoating epoxy with polyester, i have done a few successfully and some very unsuccessfully:)

Thanks

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stingray's picture
Joined: 12/24/2004

Thanks for posting Greg.

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speedneedle's picture
Joined: 09/18/2004

This board breaks all the rules Greg - Did you have to wax it at night!!??

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bgreen's picture
Joined: 10/21/2007

Greg,

A friend made me an epoxy board and it got dinged on it's first airline trip. What do recommend for quick and dirty repair jobs, especially if you're not near surf shops etc?  Also, I've heard mixed accounts on the safety of taking an epoxy repair kit on a plane. Any thoughts on the above are appreciated.

Thanks.

Bob

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ww3's picture
ww3
Joined: 01/11/2007

Not to steal Gregs thunder but...

I use TEAR-AID for traveling and minor dings-seals water tight for a long time but its a b!tch to get off once it is on...

bgreen wrote:

Greg,

A friend made me an epoxy board and it got dinged on it's first airline trip. What do recommend for quick and dirty repair jobs, especially if you're not near surf shops etc?  Also, I've heard mixed accounts on the safety of taking an epoxy repair kit on a plane. Any thoughts on the above are appreciated.

Thanks.

Bob

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Sparx45's picture
Joined: 06/16/2011

Hi Greg,

I know that this is a really basic query but I've found it difficult to get any clear information for the mix ratios of Additive F to any RR product. I generally use Kwick Kick but I'd be greatful if you could let me know what amount of Additive F I would need per 50 grams of mixed resin with respect to laminations and/or Hotcoating.

Is there a chart somewhere that states this information that isn't in imperial measurements?

Many thanks

Sparx

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newschoolblue's picture
Joined: 06/30/2004

Howzit Greg,

Thanks for doing the hot-seat.  I have a Florida-oriented shaping/design question. 

Suppose you have a daily-driver small wave shortboard design for average weekend-warrior surfer guy on Florida's east coast.  Now suppose the same guy comes to you and asks for that kind of board to take to the Gulf Coast, what tweaks (if any) would you make to it for the different conditions: admittedly smaller waves; but maybe more significantly, extremely short-period windswell with very tight bowly faces.

I'm very interested in your opinion on this.

Thank you,

Andrew

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gregloehr's picture
Joined: 03/22/2004

Hi Reverb, Good question.  I was sitting with one of the Nike people, really bright woman, who was involved with Nike's team of pro athletes, all of them not just surf at dinner one night during Surf Expo.  She's a former tennis pro, played with the Williams sisters.  She was asking me why so many surfers are so different from most other athletes.  I told her that in most sports, practice sucks and the game is fun.  Practice is boring and repeditive, the game is competitive and challenging. But in surfing the practice is awesome and the game sucks.  The competitive aspect and challenge is within and it's an involvement with nature.  

In any sport the game is what makes you.  Practice is a means to play the game better.  When most athletes fail its because they can't handle the monoteny of practice.  But in surfing its hard to get athletes to play the game, they just want to practice because that's where the challenge, the adrenelin and the fun lies.  The game is definately the lacking element.

For me it was never about the competition. I had friends who lived for the competition and I hated it.  When I had an oppritunity to use my notoriety to market myself as a craftsman I jumped at it.  It was far more me because I always loved building things.  The challenge to create is something I loved, still do.  The challenges of design and production methods just grabbed and still hasn't let go.  

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mattwho's picture
Joined: 05/12/2014

gregloehr wrote:

But in surfing its hard to get athletes to play the game, they just want to practice because that's where the challenge, the adrenelin and the fun lies.  The game is definately the lacking element.

For me it was never about the competition. I had friends who lived for the competition and I hated it.  When I had an oppritunity to use my notoriety to market myself as a craftsman I jumped at it.  It was far more me because I always loved building things.  The challenge to create is something I loved, still do.  The challenges of design and production methods just grabbed and still hasn't let go.  

Gospel..

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I would rather be someone's shot of whiskey, than everyone's cup of tea.

www.mattysurfboards.com

gregloehr's picture
Joined: 03/22/2004

Hi Sparx, Additive F is used at 1 - 2 % of mixed total.  It's not nessesary to be accurate with that stuff.  I usually do a rather poor job of estimating the amount myself.  It's just a surfacing agent so get it in there are 1+% and it'll be fine.

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Sparx45's picture
Joined: 06/16/2011

Excellent,

Thank you very much sir. 

Spx

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gregloehr's picture
Joined: 03/22/2004

Nice old photo Josh.  I think the deck was clear on that one.  That thing was really fast but a bit sticky.  Later on I figured out how to make twins that really worked well but at this time we were still guessing. 

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gregloehr's picture
Joined: 03/22/2004

Hi Andrew, You know towards the end of my shaping career I had pretty much had enough boards that I knew what worked for me.  Got to where I didn't make any doggies at all.  Some real important things were discovered along the way so I'll try to make this short.  

Basically the three fin is an incredibly versitile design.  Changing the fins allows that nearly every board can be good, even great.  Essentailly I had a personal fin placement that always worked for me which was 11 inches up for the back of the front fins and 5 inches to the back of the rear.  This is a bit clustered but my surfing was developed on singles which pivot differently and clustering the fins gave a similar tempo.  I also found out that the larger the trailing fin is the more it pulls the tail down lifting the nose a bit.  When the waves get hollow you use a bigger back fin and it keeps the edges up front free.

So I had four rear fins I used, a 2 inch, a 3 inch a 4 inch and a full size which was 4.5 or so.  The 2 inch was for Cocoa Beach style waves, mush.  The board glides better and planes easier.  The 3 inch was for Melbourne Beach, Satellite Beach type waves.  Little more hold and a bit freer edges.  The 4 was for Sebastian Inlet.  Again more lift for the front edges and more hold.  The full size for was for Hatteras.  The waves are powerful and hollow so the 4.5 worked great.  Same board, four trailing fins.

There is also the subject of edges.  As much as fins can change the balance of the board, edges can also do the same.  Getting a new board for me always included dressing the edges of the board AFTER I had ridden it.  Softening the edges in the tail lifts the front of the board when your riding. Hardening the edges creates lift in the tail making the tail ride higher and the nose ride lower. Softening the edges in the nose lowers the front and makes the board more apt to catch. Hardening the edges front lifts the nose. This of course goes directly against nearly everyone's beliefs.  Simply put, they are wrong.

So for the Gulf I'd be riding the Cocoa Beach set up.

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rippinryan247's picture
Joined: 02/05/2013

Hi Greg, backyard shaper here from indialantic. My question is what is your preferred way to get a gloss finish with resin research? Do you use a different method depending on the blank material(PU,EPS,Etc.)? Also don't ever close your shop in Indian Harbour Beach! Love having easy access to the resin without paying for shipping costs. Also, I learn something new from Sam everytime I go:)

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gregloehr's picture
Joined: 03/22/2004

Hi Idan, The Ultra is an optically bightened resin.  Its brand new here in the US and you'll probably see it sometime this summer in Israel.  Unfortunately the carpet trick is about the best it gets for clearing sandpaper.  Additive F makes it easier to sand a gloss.  Somehow the last shipment the Add F disappeared during shipping.  I'm trying to get replacement over.   Mix ratio should be reasonably accurate.  I use metered buckets which I've always had good luck with.  A nice digital scale works great too.

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gregloehr's picture
Joined: 03/22/2004

Hi Ryan, Sam is so great he can run it as long as he wants.  He's been working there since he was 16 .... 30 years.  Rips in the water, shaping room and at running the biz.  As for gloss, that was something I tried desperately to get rid of.  I've done thousands and realized at a point that every one I did cost me money and added weight making the board ride worse.  I started charging what it cost, over $100, and somehow everyone lost interest. So I may not be the best person to ask.  But If I had to do them I'd probably use that rattle can 2 pak stuff (can't remeber the name).

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gregloehr's picture
Joined: 03/22/2004

Hi Notion,  The reason epoxies need sanding before recoating is because of blush.  Blush is a reaction between the chemicals in the amine hardeners and moisture in the air.  This reaction creates a carbomate on the surface which will stop the next coat from adhering. All amine based hardeners create blush, even the so called "blush free" systems.  So the solution most companies suggest is sanding and/or washing the surface.  Sanding is fine but washing isn't because washing or wiping with a chemical introduces foreign particles which will cause fisheyes.  

The best solution to eliminate blush is using Additive F in laminates.  Additive F eliminates blush, 100%.  When you hot coat a surface that has Additive F you will get a far better bond because surfacing agent won't stop epoxy from adhering, only blush will.  When you use Add F in the hot coat resin you can actually sand the surface far easier, in fact just like polyester hot coats.  Frankly it's amazing to me that Add F gets critisized by some competitors.  It's like they've never built boards.  

Your question about polyester hot coats?  It doesn't consistantly work so why do it.  We have Kwik Kick which is just as fast as poly and using it in hot coats makes a far stronger board that won't chip down the line.  So why do a poly hot coat?  Again, this is a method being claimed by someone who doesn't build boards.

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gregloehr's picture
Joined: 03/22/2004

There are a few comment on coloring resin here.  All thermosets have issues with color and in epoxy's case it generally makes the resin more flexible.  When I do colored laminates I would always steer to pastel colors.  I usually stayed light with opaques leaving the translucent rather than attempting a true opaque. Also if I'm doing color I'll stich with glass.  It's pretty hard to get a clean look using exotics in clear much less in colors.  Which brings me to something.  As professional builders we would always be aware of steering away from things that would make us look bad.  That's something very different from DIY builders.  Part of that is experience but part of it is stopping for a minute before you start and think over all the things that can create difficulties.  It's amazing how many surprises are lurking in that complex build plan.  You know, is that four color acid splash with the lightning bolt laps really something you should try on your first board attempt.

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L.I.T.'s picture
Joined: 10/08/2014

For those who are interested, in days of yore Greg addressed "balance" here on Swaylocks in his "Theory of Balance" thread (see here: http://www.swaylocks.com/groups/theory-balance ).

A bit of forewarning; some of my questions may be a bit on the curly side for G.L. to answer, so if I'm crossing the line in asking them Greg Tate, just let me know and I'll delete the ones that may have strayed into the "better not to ask that" category.

I'll start with a nice one first; I was going to begin by asking "what's your reason for going to work in the morning?" -> 'reason being that  greggriffin recently commented in a different thread that (at least one of) the reasons he goes to work is "to make people happy" with the boards he builds for them.->  not a bad reason!

Having built several successful businesses over the course of your life I'm guessing your motives may no longer be financial now (although size and appearances don't always reflect what's at the bottom line of a business' balance sheet - e.g. Clark Foam in '05); but I guess you've already largely answered this question when you talked about how and why you jumped at the chance to start making a 'crust as a shaper.... and then materials supplier; the love of building stuff and the challenges it presents.

Are there any other reasons?

Why the move to Arizona? Not much in the way of surf there (i.e. I'd be getting surf-withdrawal fairly soon in such a place), so am wondering if Tucson is a "hot-spot" (no pun intended :-) ) for the U.S. composites industry, and it was a move you had to make for the business (Resin Research) to survive/prosper?

What prompted the move into supplying industries outside surfing and marine sports? Was it because you'd gone as far as you could with supplying the surfing & windsurfing industries, and branching out to supply other industries was the only way of expanding the business? Or was it perhaps due to the drop-off in demand from the windsurfing industry in the early 90's when it plateau'ed/dropped off in popularity with the general public? Perhaps a bit of both?

How hard was it to break into those new industries? With surfing and windsurfing, you knew exactly what your customers needed in a resin product as you'd been literally in the same boat as them for much of your professional life, but outside of that, e.g. the transportation, architectural etc industries; how much did you know/how familiar were you with what they were building and needed in a resin?

From your bio description, RR started really kicking along when Clark Foam took a header, and then went into overdrive when SUP's popped up; so it sounds like RR would have been one of the few places going gangbusters and (potentially) generating jobs during the GFC. In Australia right now, the economy is (finally) starting to hit the skids. What's more over the last year or so, all the auto-manufacturers are officially shutting-down and pulling out (mind you, I'm a bit suss about this - I wouldn't be surprised if they start hiring again before their factory doors close for good, as the Aussie dollar has been falling fairly rapidly over the last year and looks set to continue doing so the more the Chinese economy falters).

As a result, the local politicians are banging on about how they're going to create an "advanced manufacturing" centre (based around the use of carbon-fibre) to fill the jobs vacuum left in the areas where the auto factories are shutting-down. I'm not sure I buy this; the one spin-off business that's been created in this area (from government sponsored carbon-fibre research) has been around for about a decade now, and won't be generating any jobs for a year or two, and even then it won't be remotely close to creating the number of jobs that are currently being lost. Secondly, I don't see how they can expect to compete long-term with foreign competition (primarily China). From what I hear, China is already capable of building pretty much anything a Western nation can do (i.e. they're already a competitor in the "advanced manufacturing" sector, with lower labour costs to boot), and what's more they're throwing huge amounts of money into research and business development of the green/renewables sector (an area where composites play a large role and has been the source of much of the growth in the composites industry) - how can the technical advantage the local guys here are currently enjoying hope to last/stand up to that? If the impression I've got on the situation is wrong, please set me straight on what it truly is.

Where I'm going with all this is this; is there a real future in the composites industry in a Western nation, and can a Swaylocks user reasonably expect to be able to parlay the composite skills they've acquired while building surfboards into a long-term career in the composites industry? If so, are we likely to be forced to move to a composites "hot-spot" within our home nation, or perhaps even internationally?

You've spent a large portion of your life getting wet on a regular basis; any tips on how to combine getting out for an almost daily surf along with having a happy missus and family? It seems to be a common problem for most committed surfers I know, so I suspect any help in this regard would be welcomed by many a Swaylocks user. Mind you I've no idea what your personal/family life is like or has been, so if you'd rather duck this question, that's more than fine.

Lastly, Greg Griffin recently began a thread asking Swaylocks users to explain why his 5-fins work so well (http://www.swaylocks.com/forums/what-makes-these-work-so-well); what's your take on his 5-fins G.L.? He's been making them for a good 30 years now, so I daresay you would have come across them and considered their design while you were operating Loehr Design. Mind you it might be tactful to G.G. if you just pointed out a piece of the puzzle that noone else has picked up on yet rather than putting the whole thing together as it's something that's been keeping customers coming back to G.G. for a long time now. Bert Burger's already had a bit of a crack at it and has promised to come back and explain a bit more of his idea's about it in a new thread (on how to solve the glitches with Quad's) soon.

Okay I'll stop there; I've probably already gone way over my allotted reasonable number of questions to ask :-)

Cheers all!

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gdaddy's picture
Joined: 10/31/2008

I'd like to ask about veneers, balsa/wood compsands and cork.  As a garage guy I've done a number of veneer boards and found those to deliver the best strength to weight combinations.  Stringerless EPS core + HD PU rails has been my personal favorite, but I've also done veneer deck pads over PU to great effect.  

Since you showed us all how to do veneers several years ago, can you share with us what else have you learned (or already knew) about the process?    Any preferences for core, wood or for glassing schedules?  How do you think veneers compare to the balsa compsands and cork builds?  

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gregloehr's picture
Joined: 03/22/2004

LIT, nice organized set of questions, I'll do my best.  

Getting up in the morning?  I like being challenged in everything I do.  Love being told I can't and then doing it.  Surfing, sailing, skating, windsurfing, board building, snowboarding, boat building, etc.  I could go on for pages on this alone everything from East Coast surfers can't really surf, to East Coast surfers can't ride real waves, to epoxy can't be used on surfboards and plenty of other subjects in between.  One self realization I've always been sure of is its not about money.  If anything money is a means not an end.

The move to AZ was a decision to market to the west coast. We had an opportunity in Tucson and we went.  Turned out to be a good move for many reasons.  I live a different life here and it's a very good one.  I was gettingstale in FL and needed new challenges.  Here I have business, snowboarding, boats, canyons, rivers, photography, travel and golf to keepme busy.  I certainlyloved surfing as much as anything in my life, board building too.  But part of surfing to me was the challenge of doing it well. At my peak and in my range I felt I was as good as anyone. A big part of the enjoyment was doing it as well as I did. It a very free feeling to be that good at something and the creativity you can express on that canvas is something very special.  Almost hard to explain the zen aspects of that focused conscious state your in starting at that moment you paddle for the wave.  Now, at my age, I'm never going to be able to feel that intense focus surfing. But I can feel that when snowboarding and it's the same feel of surfing.  Windsurfing was also the same for me.  

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PlusOneShaper's picture
Joined: 03/19/2004

Hi Greg!

Been a while, use your stuff daily.  I want to ask about Finishes.  I see the range from Poly gloss and polish (using a tie coat) to raw/wetsand, and yes, still floor wax and a rubout.  What are some of your favorites, and the best overall to seal and protect?

Best regards,

George

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gregloehr's picture
Joined: 03/22/2004

Tucson, Arizona in fact, in definately not a composites hot spot.  Should be, the climate is beyond ideal.  As I said before, I came here to market to the west coast.  Thought about CA but then a chem plant in CA?  No thanks.  The oppritunity was to move into another chem businesses building here.  It was so easy and it put me in easy striking distance of the market I was interested in.  Turned out to be a great move.

As for other industries, surfers get around and word of mouth is a very good advertising method.  Especially when other industries have as such poor products at their disposal. I know people out there think that aerospace must have incredible materials and I used to have surfboard customers that worked at the Cape in FL who used to sneak stuff off so I could build their personal boards with it.  "Hey man, this is cutting edge stuff from the Shuttle guys."  We'd use it and it was crap.  

Fact is the surfboard industry gets some of the very best epoxy formulations of any industry.  In fact I worked with a guy from the marine industry on a river dory project who was buddies with one of the major marine suppliers.  He asked his buddy if they'd ever heard of us and the response was that we had really great products and that they could never touch our pricing.  I was very flattered.  Not a bad for some old surf dog.

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gregloehr's picture
Joined: 03/22/2004

Good question about composites industry.  Manufacturing has very much moved to Asia and composites is one of those.  Back in the 80's the Japanese were on a roll and the suddenly they crashed.  All Asian currency crashed with them.  International business could suddenly move into Asia for pennies on the dollar.  At the same time the president of China, Dung Cho Ping, created the Chinese industrial zones where capitalism was allowed for the first time.  Now you had numerous multinationals with a stake in China.  Also a treaty between China and England for Hong Kong was signed and along with that came Chinese business reform that was written by Hong Kong businessmen. It included not just support but unheard of sweetheart deals between business and the government owned Bank of China. The business reforms were VERY pro growth.  It was explained to me that you can grow a business five times faster in China than you can in North America.  For a long period Australia was cashing in supplying China with raw materials.  Fortunes have been made.  But now with China slowing everything is changing.  Predicting the future is tough but this slowdown could be anything from a temporary pause to another yen type crash, hard to say.  But the whole world is connected economically so what affects one country will now affect the world.  And your question about domestic composite business?  You never know but I'm not sure that's a hand I would go deep on. 

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idan1500's picture
Joined: 12/21/2013

hand shapes VS cnc cuts? what you belive in? and what the resons for that.

do you belive all surfboard should be handshape? and should not "make in china" ?

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gregloehr's picture
Joined: 03/22/2004

Getting in the water every day, when I lived at the beach, a lot of times was just a half hour after work.  I'd ride a fish and I wouldn't even check it.  Just grab my board and go ride a few.  To stay in it doesn't mean two hour sessions five days a week.  It takes constant attention but not intense attention.  Where I lived in FL has crap surf but the short period wind swells offer lots of rides in a short time.  We used to have heats in contests that were 12 minutes long and we could fill the judges 10 slot score card up.  20-30 minutes after work I could easily ride 10-20 waves especially on a fish.  So just this little bit of time kept me in good shape for the good days and allowed me to surf good well into my 50's while also allowing me to have a nice normal personal life.  Leaving the beach changed that but fortunately snowboarding came along.

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gregloehr's picture
Joined: 03/22/2004

Five fins have the same advantages as three fins do and may even be more effective at controlling the balances that make surfboards work.  You alluded to the Theory of Balance and I've always referred back to that as a basis to understand the positives and negatives of any design.  To me having external fins and then a center stabilizing fin is the basis of every great design because it allows control of the two main balances, i.e lift and resistance.  Seems to work well throughout the fish/whale/dophin world so just how surprised should we be that it also works for us? To me twins and fours work well but struggle at times without a center fin.  To me a twin or a four with just a little nub back there cleans up little imperfections I feel in the ride. 

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gregloehr's picture
Joined: 03/22/2004

LIT, thanks, that was a nice group of questions. 

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jeffrey's picture
Joined: 03/18/2004

Thanks Greg, I've really enjoyed reading this thread. Outgassing was suspect in the blank expansion issue - though I think in my case color perhaps has a greater role. Keith, great input, as usual. A couple of blanks that waiting a good while prior to shaping still had this issue, but they were, if I recall, a deep purple opaque and a deep orange opaque (rails and bottoms only and I did not have the same phenomenon on the deck)

"Softening the edges in the tail lifts the front of the board when your riding. Hardening the edges creates lift in the tail making the tail ride higher and the nose ride lower. Softening the edges in the nose lowers the front and makes the board more apt to catch. Hardening the edges front lifts the nose. This of course goes directly against nearly everyone's beliefs.  Simply put, they are wrong."

Couldn't agree more.

This thread has me wishing I could still glass! But, another ten stitches on my neck this week and a bunch on my ear is a good reminder for me; lots of other things to enjoy in life.

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Jamie's picture
Joined: 04/27/2006

My question got lost in the shuffle, and others have also asked, so I'll ask again:

Any plans to make some sort of finishing "secret sauce" product. IE an epoxy-friendly, thinner type of sealing coating? Like others, I currently use Behr tile/masonry sealer but would love to see something a little more viscous to fill minor imperfections. Would be great to sand aggressively an epoxy hot coat with 100 grit then brush/wipe on some sort of sealer for a final finish.

Thanks!

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gregloehr's picture
Joined: 03/22/2004

Hi Plus One, Good to hear from you George.  For many years we finished with a spray finish from Fiberglass Florida and I guess that would be my favorite. Very easy to apply, covers nicely.  At one time I was a glosser and enjoyed the work but never used a gloss on my own board.  I'd always find a way to go around that step on my personals. As board builders I've always thought that finishing was the bane of our existence. 

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gregloehr's picture
Joined: 03/22/2004

I agree Jamie.  I've tested everything I've ever heard of and there's no secret sauce. I've made and sold finishes in the past but really don't have anything in mind coming up.  I basically know the chemistry for finishing and I've designed maybe a dozen or so, never satisfied.  Retail customers expect gloss/rub out perfection.  It became an industry standard back in the 70's and nothing has replaced it.

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gregloehr's picture
Joined: 03/22/2004

Idan, I was always a hand shaper and still think that's the way to design.  You know, shaping to me was always two disiplines, design and production.  I always had a real respect for shapers who could do both since not everyone could.  The machines have now taken the roll of production and frankly they do that quite well so real shapers today have a diminished roll which is a pretty sad thing.  Would love to see it go back to handshapes and domestic production but the machines will only get better as will the Asian production houses. I never thought surfers would accept what today is commonplace.  Always thought that as shapers we offered much more than machines.

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gregloehr's picture
Joined: 03/22/2004

Gdaddy, I'm still a firm believer in veneers.  I still think that Timberflex is still the very best building method.  We did streamline a couple of things after the first round and the videos so I'll run those past you guys.  

We used to laminate the back of the veneer with glass/epoxy, let that kick and then cut out the outline we were using for our veneer inlay.  We found a short cut and started to spray glue the glass to the veneer.  It was easier to cut out and we could then wet the cloth during the bagging/gluing process.  Quicker and easier for sure. 

The other trick was using a hard roller, one of the 1 inch wide wood rollers they use in wall paper, to press the edge of the veneer into the foam after the board was in the vac bag.  The vacuum then holds that edge down and when you pull the blank out of the bag that edge is nice and flat. 

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brycelashbrook's picture
Joined: 08/20/2014

The other trick was using a hard roller, one of the 1 inch wide wood rollers they use in wall paper, to press the edge of the veneer into the foam after the board was in the vac bag.  The vacuum then holds that edge down and when you pull the blank out of the bag that edge is nice and flat. 

greg... once again thank you. i've been struggling with that little 1/16" lip on the edge of the veneer for hours. a hard roller makes so much sense. why don't i think of these things? 

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kayu's picture
Joined: 07/24/2009
gregloehr wrote:

Gdaddy, I'm still a firm believer in veneers.

....are you aware of the tensile differences between (crown cut or peeled) off-the-shelf veneer , and solid timber milled down to the same thickness Greg ?

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http://www.currumbinwoodworks.com.au/

gregloehr's picture
Joined: 03/22/2004

That trick was Sam Barkers.  Nice one huh?

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gdaddy's picture
Joined: 10/31/2008

Both great tricks that you had previously shared with us here; and which I've successfully used my own veneer builds.  

I'm now considering using non-woven veil underneath both deck and bottom to act as a moisture barrier as well as improve adhesion, and only use fiberglass to support the contact areas on the deck.  Not so much to lighten the board but to make a double-sided veneer board a little less stiff.  Do you have any opinions or tips on that?  

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brycelashbrook's picture
Joined: 08/20/2014

gdaddy- can you please explain what a non woven veil is... i.e. brand name or product type. that sounds like the way to go. i`ve been using 1.5lb eps with 4 oz under veneer, 4 oz over and it does seem rugged but a bit stiff. thanks!

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brycelashbrook's picture
Joined: 08/20/2014

Gdaddy- answered my own question with a search on here. love this stuff. new question.. do you think the non woven veil itself could be hand lammed and if so would it be strong enough to hold the rocker of a shaped eps blank for vacuuming on the skins. i have no room in my shop for a rocker table

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gregloehr's picture
Joined: 03/22/2004

I really don't.  I like the idea of the non woven in there.  You going to use the nylon?

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huie's picture
Joined: 03/02/2007

how are you greg

 gee daddy is on the money''
i agree with you about the veneer for std s/b  i learn t to discard most unders except for a sports net i got from over your way
you see it on all the sports shoes nike & such  this combination turns the veneer in to a dynamic skin for a shortboard

cheers huie

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cheers huie
now retired

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