Get the all the surfboard shaping tools, materials, and equipment you need
This page will cover most of the basic tools, materials, and equipment you’ll need.
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Cordless Compact Router for Fin Boxes
The Makita compact, cordless router is a solid choice for working on your surfboard.
A compact router will be used for:
- Making accurate holes for your fin boxes.
- Adding a hole for a leash cup.
- Making chambers or routing patterns if you’re making a wooden surfboard.
The Makita XTR01Z Battery-powered compact router is a good choice for any surfboard-job.
Light, small, and easy to use. If you’ve got other Makita cordless tools, you’ll already have the battery too.
Fiberglass Cutting Tools & Tape
Quality cutting tools and good tape is key to a proper glassing job.
The sharper your cutting tools, the less you’ll need to deal with stray fiberglass strands and the cleaner your laps will be.
Good quality tape will also help with cut laps and any inlays or color work your plan to do.
To work with fiberglass (or hemp cloth) for surfboards, you’ll need:
10″ Industrial Fiberglass Scissors
Use these when cutting your dry fiberglass cloth for an easy, clean and accurate cut line.
Single Edge Industrial Razor Blades
These will be useful for following your tape line for cut laps and cleaning up glass after it has partially cured.
3M Green Masking Tape 3/4″ for Glassing
High quality masking tape is key to any cut lap or surfboard art and color work.
Materials & Equipment for Mixing Epoxy & Glassing
If you’ve never worked with epoxy or polyester resin before, it can be messy and a bit intimidating. Make your life easier and get all the proper equipment for measuring, mixing, and working with epoxy.
To measure, mix, and work with your epoxy, you’ll need:
Epoxy Mixing & Measuring Cups
The measuring cups can be used to mix and measure your epoxy resin and hardener together in the correct ratios.
These can be reused by allowing the leftover resin to cure and popping it out of the cup.
These flexible squeegees are useful during the lamination stage to help the resin fully saturate the cloth and to laminate the rails around the board.
These can be reused as well.
4″ Chip Brush for Hot Coats
A chip brush is the most effective way to lay down your hot coat.
Pull out any loose bristles before you get started.
Cut off a little bit from the tip of the brush for a stiffer feel.
Digital Scale for Measuring Epoxy Ratios
Using a digital scale is the most accurate way to measure your epoxy and hardener ratios.
Refer to your epoxy manufacturer’s weight ratio recommendations, measure out your resin and hardener and mix away.
Sandpaper & Sanding Pads
A variety of sandpaper grits will be used throughout the entire shaping process. It’s always a good idea to stock up.
Hand sanding is recommended for working on the rails, any tight spots, or any areas of your board that require some finesse.
For your shaping and sanding phases of the build, you’ll need:
Coarse to Medium Grip Sandpaper
80 grit to about 320 grit will come in handy for shaping your blank and taking a first pass on your hot coat.
Fine to Finishing Grit Wet/Dry Sandpaper
320 grit and up will be used for getting your shaped blank ready for glassing and to finish up your glass job.
Soft Sanding Blocks & Sponges
Sanding blocks come in handing when shaping your board as well.
These are available in various grits.
Hand tools for Shaping a Surfboard
As you’re shaping your surfboard, you’ll need a few different hand tools as well.
These will come in handy when cutting your outline, taking the stringer down, or working on any bottom channels.
Hand tools you’ll use when shaping a surfboard include:
PPE & Safety Equipment for Surfboard Shapers
Shaping surfboards is nasty, dirty business.
There’s going to be a whole lot of dust, particles, and fumes that you really don’t want to get in your lungs or eyes.
If you want to be able to enjoy the board you’re working on, it’s best to protect yourself.
When shaping a surfboard, some good PPE to have include:
- A respirator mask and air filters.
- Safety goggles.
- Ear and noise protection.
- Gloves for working with resin.
Do you have experiences with any of the shaping tools and equipments described above? Maybe you’re a fan of something we’ve missed? Let us know in the comments below!