A number of years ago I met a guy who was shaping and glassing surfboards out of his garage. This wouldn’t be too unusual, except for the fact that this man was just learning about surfing and really didn’t know too much about it. In fact, the reason that he started shaping surfboards in the first place was because he wanted to learn how to surf and the cost of a brand new longboard seemed a little too pricey.
After going to his house and seeing the quiver of boards he had made, I found myself pretty impressed with some of his creations. How could someone with little or no knowledge of surfing and shaping surfboards pump out such impressive boards? The answer: John Carper’s DVD “Shaping 101.”
A friend of mine had been introduced to a shaping DVD put together by JC Surfboards Hawaii shaper and owner John Carper. On this DVD, John Carper takes you step by step through the process of shaping surfboards. He starts with a nice introduction to new tools you might not be familiar with, then moves into some safety advice for first timers, and finally finishes with an easy to follow step by step of how to mow a boring blank into a beautiful board.
After learning about this instructional DVD I decided to give it a try. I went out and bought the DVD, a surfboard blank, and some additional tools that I was going to need. I popped in the DVD and started jotting down some things to remember. After I finished the 96-minute video (which is full of helpful graphics and surfing footage of JC team riders) I went out and started my first board.
Since then I have made a number of boards for myself and some close friends, and have started smoothing out my surfboard shaping imperfections. I would recommend this DVD, as well as his other DVD “Glassing 101,” to any and every surfer.
If you have no desire to shape your own board this is still a great DVD to watch. It will help every surfer understand the physics behind their stick and assist them on their way to becoming a better surfer. John Carper does a great job of explaining every thought and action that goes into each board and each design and the reason behind it, something that every surfer should know.
There are several surfboard shaping and surf DVD websites that have John Carper’s DVD’s available for purchase, and it’s not uncommon to see them for sale in surf shops around the globe. Grab a copy. It’s well worth the money spent. Also make sure to check out my other post on different surfboard foam options and their pros and cons before getting started on a board of your own.