We have been working with a few shapers of late to develop some wild and innovative concepts in wake surfers. One of the things we love so much about design and riding is innovation. It’s fine if folks choose to be aligned with the 60′s that was a great time, tie die shirts, head bands, gidget and her longboards. We’re actually doing a retro, it’s great reflecting on the nostaglia, thankfully we aren’t stuck there, perpetually. There is so much more to be done and worked with.
As we mentioned we have Mike Walker of the Walker Project is helping us with a Thumb. We hate to call it a complete retro, because the Bonzer 5 is more modern’ish. It is a wonderfully off-the-wall sort of wake surfers concept. You may remember that we shared the original outline screen capture from Mike, we had a few discussions and revised that into what you see below.
Doesn’t that look like a ton of fun? If you look closely at the image you’ll see the light grey line, which was the original drawing and then the darker line is the revised drawing.
The drawing below is a three dimensional rendering of what shaped wakersurfers would look like. This is all done inside the AKU Shape program. It gives a great view of what all the two dimensional components will look like when combined. The pintail is closest to you in this image.
We’ve also contracted with Jeff Wahlers at Soulcraft Boarding to make us a wild kneeboard. His daughter also wants one! Innovation comes in all shapes and sizes, and that is what this sport is about. Trying new things, reworking old concepts and above all, having fun.
Now we won’t try and kid you, this isn’t main stream stuff. It won’t appeal to everyone, but if that’s your ilk, you’re probably wakeboarding anyway. Right? Wakesurfing is so counter mainstream to begin with, it shares little with that culture.
That got us thinking about construction techniques, AGAIN. We know, some of you let out a groan and others are ready to charge ahead with us.
We started thinking about resin infusion the other day, it’s used by the good folks at Inland Surfer, but within the confines of a mold. In fact resin infusion is used almost exclusively with molds because it allows the parts to have one perfect side, the area that is up against the molds surface and the other where the infusion mesh and input ports are placed. Well, on wake surfers both sides on the exterior need a class A finish. Maybe the area under the traction can hide some crappy texture, but the rest of the exposed areas need to look all nice and polished, or at least not like they’ve been imprinted with a wire mesh!
Also, infusion doesn’t really allow for sandwich construction in the ordinary sense. There are high density foams that are scored to allow resin flow but all of those little channels will eventually fill with resin and create a heavier structure. Maybe it’s minimal? We’re not really sure, but we are thinking we’d like to give it a shot. What we are wondering, and wondering is 90% of innovation , is if there is a material that can readily conform to the curves of wakesurfers and that also doesn’t absorb ridiculously large amounts of resin. Possibly with some form of Z axis reinforcement.
What we invision is a skin that is ridculously stiff, strong and impact resistant, and then inside while not air, close to it. The deck and bottom aren’t connected. Old school stringered construction connected both surfaces and we’d like to avoid that, taking advantage of the modern materials and techniques and how that can create a structure that is alive when riding.
Probably a giant pipe dream, but where do you want to be? In the here and now or possibly future utilizing the materials and technology we have available, or stuck wearing bell bottom pants? We want to applaud two new entries into modern construction techniques, the new AirBaze Next balsa composite sandwich and also the Bamboo and Carbon Fiber construction being sold by Soulcraft Boarding. Great work guys!
Thanks for following along and we hope you’ll learn with us, should we start working with an infusion process.