Despite all the care and attention you pay to your paddleboard, it can still get damaged. Here is a step-by-step guide brought to you by PRO riders Amandine Chazot and Boris Jinvresse on how to repair your SUP board, surfboard or any other composite material.
Before beginning your repair work, ensure that your board is dry. At least 24 hours before attempting to fix it I suggest taking it to a dry and heated room, with the hole or crack in the board pointing upwards.
1. Prepare all your equipment
– Epoxy resin (not polyester) + catalyzer
– Sandpaper, a protective mask and a grinder with a grinding disc (in case of major repair work)
– Empty water bottle and kitchen weighing scale
– Small piece of foam or brush
– Flexible roll of scotch-tape
– Fabric (carbon, fiber …)
– Pair of scissors and a box cutter
– Thick plastic bag for medium-sized repairs
2. Remove your compression screw
This is a very important step. The slightest difference in temperature will alter the air pressure in the board. If you do not remove the compression screw, air will enter or leave through the hole or crack in the board and this will make repairs impossible.
3. Sand the surface around the hole
Tip: Sand with a rectangular sanding square in order to facilitate the cutting and laying of the new fabric to be applied.
4. Clean the sanded area with acetone
Warning: If the hole or crack is large in size and you see foam underneath, do not carry out this next step because the acetone will erode it.
5. Cut out the new fabric
Cut out the replacement fabric and apply it, leaving a few millimeters between the edges of the fabric and the edges of the sanding square.
6. Cut out the bottom of the water bottle and heat it. Heat the crack or hole in the board too to rid it of any moisture.
Info: the smallest drop of water will prevent your resin from hardening.
7. Prepare the resin
Use the weighing scale to make the most accurate measurements of the resin’s ingredients according to the instructions given.
8. Soak the fabric before applying the resin to the repair surface.
9. Lay on the fabric and add a drop of resin.
Tip: an additional drop of resin on the fabric will give it an icy effect and smooth out the rough edges once it has dried and smoothened.
10. Lay down some scotch tape or a plastic bag over the repair surface to spread out the resin
This step will help you secure that icy effect and will smooth out the rough patches in the fabric.
Be careful to get rid of all the air bubbles under the scotch tape. To do this, prick them with a pin.
This technique will also allow you to maintain the board’s shape entirely as is. Here’s an image of the rail!
11. Allow to dry for at least 24 hours
Tip: Hang on to the end of the water bottle and the resin. This will allow you to see if the resin has dried properly.
12. Remove scotch tape and inspect the repair work
As you can see, there are no bubbles, the board maintains its smooth appearance and its shape is intact. You can get back on the waves!
To finish, you can of course add some paint or some putty.