Surfing School - Repairing - Repair Problems
Boards continuously get bumped, hit rocks, break fins, get dropped, and many other things that can cause the blank to take on water, cut the user or simply make the board not work correctly. Many times simply putting a piece of duck tape over the crack will temporarily solve the problem. However, to fix a real problem without ruining the looks of the board is often a real challenge.
Before even fixing a board, the blank must be completely dry. If the board is just left to dry, and natural humidity is high, it can take a full week (depending on foam saturation) for a good drying. To determine if the foam is saturated, push down on the glass around the ding. If water seeps out, the foam is saturated, and longer drying time is necessary. To speed up the process, use a 100 watt light bulb placed 8 inches above the ding. This also insures air near the ding will be low in humidity. Never fix a ding while the foam underneath is still wet as it will lead to a bad delamination.
Most rail shatters or fractures that cause a break in the cloth are fixed by sanding and placing a coating of resin over the break. Sand the cloth edge and a small surface area around the shatter. Place a ring of masking tape around the sanded area extending to the board's edge and flared out at the bottom. This will allow the excess resin to drip off. Mix a hot coat of sanding resin and paint the area of the break. When the resin starts to set, pull the tape. Sand smooth with wet sanding paper and buff shinny if desired.
If the fracture is a stress fracture that is starting to cause a delamination or foam discoloration, use a razor blade to open the crack slightly. Let the board sit a few days to dry, then follow the process outlined above. If the hole is large, you may need to add a little filler. Understand that fixes will not last on this type of fracture, and will need to be re-done every so often when they break open again.