2012. Here is the start of my new simms style board. The bigger simms is really fun, but it has so much rocker that it needs bigger/jucier waves to really work. This smaller one will be flatter so that it will work better in smaller, crappy summer surf.
Ingredients: (1) sheet of 1/4" sandeply, ripped in half, (1) 2x4x8 clear redwood ripped into strips and two nice keel fins.
Nose blocking going on. I added a nice strip of hardwood to contrast with the soft wood ply.
Bottom skin with the first rail strips in and the rough-cut ribs ready to shape.
The ribs are in and the rocker table is set up so next the rail strips go on.
Blocking for the fins. At this point, I lay a batten across the top of the ribs and check for fairness of the deck line, especially near the nose. I'll make minor adjustments to the rib now before the rails go on.
Finally got a bit of time to work on the board. Here's the progress:
Ready for the top skin. The top of the rail wood is all planed down to accept the deck.
I built a center truss beam in-place after the ribs are installed, while the assembly is still in the rocker table. This little stick beam replaces the conventional solid keel. It is very stiff and very light. I've also started adding left over bits of 1/4x1/4" stock to the ribs for additional gluing area for the top skin.
This is the rear with the blocking for the fins.
I'll glue on a solid tail block once the top skin is on.
You can never have too many clamps when the top skin goes on. When I test fitted and clamped the skin on, the right half of the ply skin broke away from the hardwood decorative stringer I had glued into the skin. So I glued on the left half, and the other half will go on in a few days.
Gluey, gluey, clampy, clampy.
Finally, all sealed and ready for the glasser. Hey, it only took like 3 years to get to this point!
As always, this will get a single layer of 4 ounce cloth and epoxy resin. Fin set up is twin with a tiny trailer near the tail. The fins will be epoxied into the grooves after the lamination coat. This is a nice clean method, and in case the fin breaks, the skin or glass job is not damaged. I would just rout out the groove again and install a new fin.
Here are the fins. I had made a small set (bottom) for the board, but a shaper friend convinced me to use the full sized fins on the top. I tend to underfin a lot of my boards so I agreed to try it.
They are single foiled and only about 3/8" thick. I thought this was way too thin, but my friend John Cherry guaranteed they would perform, and yes they do! The trailer is in the middle. It is only about an inch high and 3" long, but it makes a huge difference in performance, giving significant hold and drive on a bottom turn and taking out any tail wiggle that is typical in a twin fin set up.
Deck and side
Ok, more pictures to follow after she's all glassed up and shiny!