Saturday, October 27, 2007

Shaping Machines, Baja Fishermen, and a Board Test Day

Coming Up:
If you've ever wanted to know where these magic rides come from stay tuned, I've got a inside look at how it gets done. Check out this Channel Islands SUB being cut by the boys at ProCam in Huntington Beach. If you've ever had questions about the process, now's the time to send 'em to me.

Here's another photo of the mystery paddlers from Punta San Carlos. Check out that white sea bass. Now close your eyes and imagine fat fillets wrapped in bacon with some frijoles con arroz and couple of ice cold Pacificos. You've got serious orangutan arm from paddle surfing the Chili Bowl all day long- your neck's cramping up because you can't stop smiling- sounds too good to be true, but that's Baja. Sign me up!

In the water: Had a ridiculous poach-fest with Stu Kenson this morning down in IB. Paddled from the pier to the sloughs snagging the ones nobody else wanted. This series of swells must be a gift to make up for a lackluster summer. Wave of the day goes to SK for the little shoulder tube at "the spot". Couple of realizations: it is absolutely more fun to hit and run on these boards- there are plenty of waves away from the pack (Stu and I stopped at "the spot" because nobody was there- as I looked south there were wide open peaks all the way to the Rivermouth) and secondly, six days in a row of four hour sessions will wear you down but... that doesn't mean we don't want more! Wetsand's calling for another south swell around the end of the month- bring it on!

Last: Rumors in the wind of a stand up board test drive day down here in the Southbay. I'll keep you posted but it sounds like it'll be a day of board sampling for anybody interested in getting into the sport or for those old hands who are curious to try something new.


srfnff said...

Hey John, I've got questions about the process like "how does it work a-z?" Is that a p/u or eps board being cut and what about the technologies used to finish the board?

Also, you could eat for a week on just one of those fish! Dios Mio!

John Ashley said...

Great! I'm going to take notes and ask any and all questions once I get up to HB. I do know that the board being cut is an EPS blank that ProCam makes- also, I think that is Big Al's personal SUB being cut. I'm going to frame the piece as an A - Z process too- now I've just got to find some time (but I'm resolved to do this). To clarify: are you more interested in A- Z how the shapes get uploaded to the computer for the cutting machine or are you interested in foam to paint to lamination to wax?

srfnff said...

I guess my primary interest is the latter part of your question, i.e. a-z after the blank or plug of eps is shaped on the machine. I assume that the shaper gives a shaped board to a computer guy who turns it into a digital program that can be run by the machine. That's interesting for sure but not my primary interest. But that being said I find all aspects of creating a finished board pretty interesting and fascinating.

That knowledge for me, makes SUPing, surfing, enjoying the ocean and it's gifts that much more fun and pleasurable while enhancing and informing an "attitude of gratitude" for it all. Thanks John for your contributions, they are much appreciated!

BTW I sent the pic of the guys holding those two fish to my good friend Joe who is a world class free diver and spear fisherman. Here's what he wrote back:

"Nice fish. Makes me yearn for the simple life of a Baja road trip! I've seen guys fishing off their boards but never diving like I do off of my board.

I went for a paddle from the point out past the buoy outside of sarges and well off shore. It was one of those days we had where the surf was small, the wind was still and the water like glass all day. I saw whales out where I was just a little further out and I just enjoyed the peace and solitude of paddling off shore.

When I came back into the kelp beds, I ran into David on a SUP board who you may know and then saw about 4 guys SUPing nearby. They outnumbered the lay down guys. I was tempted to catch a few myself but time was already running short and I was just glad I was able to squeeze in some time to paddle in the glorious weather we had that day. I returned to the beach and to my responsibilities wishing all the while that I could be back on my board, enjoying the day."

John Ashley said...

Wow- your friend really nailed it. It's funny- if you try to explain how much more there is to this SUP thing then actually riding the waves to surfers they don't quite get it.

Your friend spoke of the peacefulness of being offshore, how good it felt to pull through the still water- that's kind of the magic of the stand up board as far as I'm concerned. It can take you a million miles away from all the craziness both in the line up, on land- whatever.

I've found myself trying to explain this to others, but unless you get them on the board and doing it- the explanation is a little hollow.

"Attitude of gratitude", I love it! I'll try to get some good info about the board building process.

Have a great day-


Anonymous said...

Hey John, Good stuff as usual. I'm interested in the max length they can cut. Most machines around here are good up to twelve.

John Ashley said...

Howdy Chris-

Your question has been noted and will be asked!