Fat and Finless
This is my newest alaia. It’s made using the openface method, with a 1lb. EPS core, 1/2″ thick 2lb. EPS bottom sheet, and 1/16″ handmilled poplar deck. It’s glassed with 4 oz. cloth and epoxy. Dimensions are 7’0″x 18″x 2 1/4″. I’ve been having people ask if I could build an alaia that was more bouyant and would paddle easier, so this board has been running through my mind for a while now. I knew the straight outline and thin rails of alaias help with setting an edge and trimming, so I had to encorporate that into the shape. I ended up going with a peanut type outline similar to the ones Jon Wegener is making, as that template seems to be magic. I made it a little wider and added about an inch of rocker to compensate for the boards added stiffness. It had the same single concave and 1/4″ roll off the rail as the regular alaias and a hard edge almost the full length of the board. The ride at first was a little more slipery then a traditional alaia because it skimmed more on top of the water. I had to stay centered and on top of the board so it didn’t get away from me. Once I figured that out it felt pretty natural. It was really fast and smooth and still had a similar feel to a traditional alaia. My friend Graham, who hadn’t had a lot of experience on alaias, even caught a wave on it and went backside all the way to the sand. And that was on probably the fourth wave he tried it on. Also, this was on a day when the waves were small and pretty bad, but the board was just flying. Basically this board was super fun and I’m pretty excited about it’s possibilities.