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DR Alaia 
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sage
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Joined: Mon Oct 08, 2007 4:27 pm
Posts: 34
Location: Eindhoven, Nederland
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Unread post DR Alaia
I thought I might try my hand at shaping an alaia.
Somewhat eco-friendly as I decided to do it with recycled wood (namely some 18 mm multiplex rescued from a dumpster - hence Dumpster Rescue Alaia)

The material is not brilliant - surface layer grain in the wrong direction and plenty of knots and voids. So what - it's all good shaping experience.

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Sun Jun 28, 2009 3:11 am
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sage
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Joined: Mon Oct 08, 2007 4:27 pm
Posts: 34
Location: Eindhoven, Nederland
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Unread post Roughing out the shape
I borrowed some of the plan shape from Boardside (boardside.com, No. 4 template for the nose) and faired the rest to the to the tail and mid-length width. Researched the rest here and from various other internet resources (Tom Wegeners site particularly).
Also should mention was inspired by the process documented by a Spanish (?) builder at http://valenciaplato.blogspot.com/2009/02/alaia-66-terminada.html

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Getting #2 and #3 sons involved in the build (they'll be riding it too)...

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Sun Jun 28, 2009 3:22 am
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sage
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Joined: Mon Oct 08, 2007 4:27 pm
Posts: 34
Location: Eindhoven, Nederland
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Unread post The rails
Stuffing around with the block planes and surform to do the rails. Hard work. Multiplex is great though as you have the layers to help guide you.
Really need to find out how to set up hand planes properly - the surform worked better with the ply...

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The great thing is you can just keep on at it - fix mistakes, reshape etc. Great learning platform.


Sun Jun 28, 2009 3:28 am
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sage
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Joined: Mon Oct 08, 2007 4:27 pm
Posts: 34
Location: Eindhoven, Nederland
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Unread post Back into it...Darth Shaper
Having decorated the garage for a couple of weeks had some time to get back into this weekend.
Finished the rails and smoothed it out with 120 & 180. The rest will get sorted out by the 6 or so coats of yacht varnish. Decided against oil (as its multiplex) and resin (as I want to reshape if needed).

Meet Darth Shaper

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Foldaway shaping/sanding stand...knew that ladder would come in handy

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Modest concave - these things really are a bugger to do...

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Now back in the garage varnishing the hell out of it with marine varnish & sanding in between...more later.


Sun Jun 28, 2009 3:35 am
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sage

Joined: Thu May 21, 2009 5:48 pm
Posts: 1193
Location: Morpeth, Northumberland, UK
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Unread post Re: DR Alaia
Im loving the fact that you can source wood from almost anywhere to keep moving forward and trying new things. Looking good mate - how long til your sons want to do a full HMS build and steal all your workspace :lol:

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Sun Jun 28, 2009 8:21 am
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sage
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Joined: Fri Jul 04, 2008 11:53 am
Posts: 155
Location: Marbella, Spain, mediterranean coast
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Unread post Re: DR Alaia
Hi Darth Shaper!
Is fun, Radesga's post in his Valenciaplato blog about his hws fish encouraged me also to give it a try.I have been reading this forum for a year and found it unreachable but when I saw Radesega's explanations in spanish I decided to give it a try.
Now I'm hooked with this, allways thinking what and how to build :lol:
I have to tell him that he has inspired another builder.
Boas ondas!


Sun Jun 28, 2009 8:42 am
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sage

Joined: Mon Jan 26, 2009 7:11 pm
Posts: 84
Location: Gerringong NSW
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Unread post Re: DR Alaia
Hey andy, I'm liking the recycled aproach. I'm planning on making an alaia during glue up of the next hws. Looking forward to seeing how yours goes.


Sun Jun 28, 2009 8:57 am
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sage
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Joined: Mon Oct 08, 2007 4:27 pm
Posts: 34
Location: Eindhoven, Nederland
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Unread post Re: DR Alaia
Just updating with some info on finishing the DR Alaia and first trip reports (will get a photo loaded later)

Finishing. I ended up getting a bit frustrated with trying to shape the concave.
Belt-sander: bad choice as it kept trying to leave grooves on the side of the concave...may try again later but first attempts were not encouraging
Sander attachment on drill: no good - drill's top speed too slow and it skitters.

My conclusion - an angle grinder with a sanding attachment (25 grit!) is the best tool to do it - but I don;t own one (yet).

So I got the concave to "ok-ish" then whacked on 4 coats of marine varnish with some fine sanding in between.
Result: slippery when wet = OK!

Trip: I got the alaia ready just in time to take with us on summer vacation to Brittany in France.
First outing at the beach in Penthievre. Knee-high in light onshore winds.
Brilliant! Catches waves with ease.
Later tests at Port Blanc, Port Bara with surf 4 - 6' confirmed that this thing really rockets.
Duck diving also ridiculously easy.
Turning and rail to rail is a bit trickier when prone due to 4'9" length.
May decide to reshape the rails to a more curved outline (planform) as felt like this was what caused it to be good in a straight line but not so turny...
Also if you really want to power out thru beach break then you either have to push it right out in front of you in order to be able to maximize your kick with the fins (trad paddling position limited leg movt too much imho) whereas a longer alaia with some more volume might paddle more like a normal (!) surfboard
The lift is not there for me (1.82m/95 kg) to get up on knees or further but then - I am not skilled enough either...

Later test back home in NL at Domburg proved that this thing really is great as a prone ride -


Mon Aug 31, 2009 9:03 am
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sage

Joined: Thu May 21, 2009 5:48 pm
Posts: 1193
Location: Morpeth, Northumberland, UK
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Unread post Re: DR Alaia
Good to hear it catches the waves great mate - spot on report too 8) Looking forward to the pics

Just about every report i read i keep thinking "i wanna make one of those" :lol:

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Mon Aug 31, 2009 9:18 am
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