Over the years we have tried and continue to test a variety of new, old and innovative environmentally friendly materials in an attempt to create strong, light surfboards that performs as well if not better than the toxic counterparts.
When selecting these materials we think about the lifecycle of that material, How and where it's produced, how it will be processed and implemented in the product, How we can dispose of the excess material and what will happen to that material at the products end of life.
Theres so many criteria these materials have to meet to make it into our boards, The environmental implications of the materials are really important to us but we also want to create products that perform exceptionally well and last a long time so theres a lot of factors that we consider.
We currently use locally blown, recyclable EPS foam, Plywood rails and we either skin them in NZ grown Paulownia or Organic Hemp fibre or Cork. Both constructions use a non toxic, Low Voc glue to bond the wood to the foam and a plant based epoxy to keep the boards watertight.
Wood and Hemp and Cork, Whats the difference?
Our wooden boards are made from ultralight foam with a 3mm Paulownia skin that we reinforce with 4oz hemp underneath. Conventional boards are made from medium density foam and fibreglass, the similarities in weight is comparable (if not lighter) to a standard PU board, but the buoyancy and flex is slightly different. All boards that have an EPS core, sit a little higher on the water, which is good for planning and speed through flat sections and works really well for certain shapes.
Traditional PU/PE surfboards are known for their ‘PU flex’, which is what we have been trying to replicate in some of our shorter performance models. Our hemp construction has been getting excellent feedback from good surfers with notable mention about how much flex they have. The Hemp we use comes from a certified organic plantation in Europe and we wet it out with the same bio resin that we use to seal our timber boards.
For boards like retro Fishes, Mid lengths and Logs, we recommend wooden construction. And for shortboards and performance style fishes we recommend either Hemp construction. And for Kids and beginners we recommend our cork construction as it is soft and safe. It's also naturally grippy so doesn't need wax.