The Bottom of the Surfboard2 comments
The underside of the surfboard; it sounds seedy! There are two aspects to note when looking at the reverse side of the board. These aspects are the bottom contour of the board and the fins. (You may also have to consider fin boxes for a board with removable fins, but don't panic. We'll cover this in a bit.) There are several different bottom contours to look at, each giving the board different characteristics.
Surfboard Bottom Contours
Here are the main bottom contours that you'll see on a surfboard. For now, we'll ignore the more experimental shapes. The images below represent a cross-section of the board.
As you might guess, this type of bottom shape is not concave but is instead flat. This type of bottom contour works well on all types of surfboard and is particularly useful for a "heavier" surfer.
The single concave runs the length of the board and cleanly channels water from the tip through the fins. This contour is designed for speed and works well in fast, large, clean surf. This shape does not perform well in messy, lumpy surf and as such is not a good choice for a surfboard you want to use in all-round conditions.
The double concave is seen on the majority of modern mainstream surfboards and is most likely the bottom contour your board has if you bought it straight off the rack at a surf shop. Generally the board will have a single concave from the nose which will gradually fade into a double concave towards the tail. The single concave provides a good planing surface, giving the board drive. The double concave splits the water into two channels through the fins and creates a much looser ride—great for those flowing maneuvers.
You can see from the image that the lowest point of the board in the water is by the stringer. This low point provides a pivot point and creates easy rail-to-rail surfing. This shape is normally used towards the tail of the board only; a board with a Vee contour will more than likely have one of the other concaves elsewhere. This is the popular choice for big wave boards.
Channels are more of an experimental bottom contour and, like the Vee shape, are employed towards the tail of the surfboard. Channels work best in clean surf and are designed to create extra speed.
The other main feature on the bottom of the board are the fins or fin boxes. Some surfboards have fins permanently glassed on and some will have fin boxes into which fins can be slotted and secured. Fins deserve a topic of their own, and we look at them separately here.
on May 31, 2011
|what about dome bottoms ?|
on Jan 30, 2012
|Pretty cool info for the begining or avareage surfer or beginer shaper.|