The bigger the blank, the thicker the stringer.
Typically blanks up to 7'3'' use a 3mm stringer, blanks to 8'3'' use a 4.5mm stringer and blanks to 10'4'' use a 6mm stringer.
Surfblanks Australia offers a wide range of stringers. The reason for this is to allow each manufacturer to make their finished product look different to their competitors. Taking this a step further, a manufacturer may choose to offer a wide range of stringer types to satisfy their individual customer needs (ie, singles, doubles and triples). A handshaped surfboard made with an impressive stringer or two under a good glass job will outshine a moulded 'popout' in any cosmetic contest.
Stringer choices by price list 'foam blanks'. Approximately ten stringer choices appear on the price list for shortboards and approximately twenty appear for longboards. These choices are based on most ordered stringers and are included with the blank cost.
Stringer choices by price list 'stringer options'. Many more stringers appear on the price list as options that can be added to a plain blank. 'Single stringer glued beside another', 'Single stringer glued in a plain blank', or 'Two stringers glued any distance from centre'. To determine the cost first take the 'plain blank' price from 'foam blanks', then add the stringer option. As the chosen blank size gets larger, so should the stringer thickness, if it is the centre and only stringer.
M08 is offered as the most popular in any sized blank. However rocker increase or decrease is readily available.
Surfblanks rocker chart lists large numbers of rockers for every blank. The printed chart is available on request or check the website.
Available Stringer Woods /Foam Stringers - drag mouse cursor over images for more detail.
The Rocker Holder (1mm x 8' max)
The stringer you have when you don't want a stringer. Shaping machines require that a blank be held rigid enough to alow accurate cutting over the entire length of the blank. This 1mm stringer is so fine and flexible that it gives the impression of not stiffening up the blank beyond allowing it to be cut accurately. This stringer also creates the stringerless feel while being surfed. Though extremely flexible, the wood is not brittle.
Red and whitewood ply combinations offered as ply T Bands or reverse ply T Bands. These laminated relatively cheap T Bands are considerably stronger than any other stringer wood on offer. Because of the varying grain directions (which make the laminate strong) extra care is required in the finish shaping of this stringer type.
Stronger Plywood Stringers
The surfer's stringer (shaper get out the sharp blades). Thin (1mm) structural pine glued in multiples of 2 makes up the Compflex (2 x 1mm) above, Team (4 x 1mm) below and Island (6 x 1mm). These stringers offer amazing strength due to wood type first, then laminate structure second. The Island stringer is ideal for the 'travelling surfer gun'. Strength and flex - just choose the combination to do the job the names suggest!
Bass wood (below) up to 8 feet long and laminated in three pieces (for extra strength) has been added to the range. Preferred by northern hemishpere shapers for softer waves, this white stringer (quite flexible) is a production shaper's dream!
Sawn Timber Stringers
White wood (Obeche or Ayous ) - pictured to the left - sawn to any thickness. A very pale wood with beautiful texture and some grain reversal. Lighter than the plywoods, at the same thickness this wood adds more flex to a longboard. 9 mm is ideal in a 9'2'' - 9'8'' longboard blank.
Red wood (Red Cedar) - pictured to the right - sawn to any thickness. A stunning reddish/orange wood with fine texture and some grain reversal. Needs sealing (lam resin) before glassing. The ultimate triple stringer wood, also looks great as a wide single in traditional longboard and gun shapes.
Laminated Sawn Timber Stringers
Red and whitewood T Bands made from laminated Red Cedar and Obeche in the Surfblanks factory are the ultimate in visual appeal. A great variety of wood widths and color combinations are offered.
Balsa wood from South America sawn to any thickness. A pale yellow to white wood with greatly varying grain patterns, cuts very easily. Needs sealing (lam resin) before glassing.
Foam Stringers & Inserts
Foam stringers (high density, white and coloured) sawn to any thickness. Stock colours available are Red, Blue, Green, Yellow, Violet and Orange.
Stringer thicknesses and types available, are listed in the Surfblanks Price List. They appear in combination with a foam blank size (already glued in), or else as an option in 'Single stringer glued beside another', 'Single stringer glued in a plain blank', or 'Two stringers glued any distance from centre'. All Obeche, Cedar and Balsa stringers are milled from sawn boards at Surfblanks and can be made to any thickness.
RTB - Reverse of T- Band. (W-R-W)
Compflex - A two ply laminate (structural pine) for small waves
Team - A four ply laminate (structural pine) for team riders
Island - A six ply laminate (structural pine) for large waves
Double - Two stringers set equal distance apart
Triple - Three stringers set any distance apart
Wedge - Two straight stringers glued together at nose of blank spreading apart at tail. Reverse Wedge available
Split - Two pieces glued together and labelled as one (split 1/8" etc.)
Rockers - A rocker chart is available. Custom rockers are welcome. A one off $6 template making charge for custom rockers will appear on the customer's next sales invoice.
Customer generated rocker curves - Customers may supply an exact stringer template to fit the required blank size avoiding the $6 charge. Alternatively the customer's deck curve can be drawn onto paper clearly marking the nose starting point. Existing templates can be altered with nose and tail variations. Any alterations will attract the $6 template making charge as a new template must be made. Customers may request their curves to be kept confidential.
Computer generated stringer templates. APS, Boardcad, and Shape 3D profiles can be emailed to Surfblanks Australia. The files will be opened in their respective programs, printed onto heavy paper and then transferred to wood. Greater accuracy can be achieved using this method to make blank rocker curves for shaping machines.
Stringer Notes - Stringers are used to stiffen a surfboard blank for shaping purposes. Without a piece of wood glued into the centre of a blank the foam on its own would be too floppy, particularly in small, thin blanks.
Stringers are used for decoration. The contrasting darkness or light colour of wood adds to the visual appeal of a white foam blank under transparent fiberglass. Balsa wood laminated with Red Cedar in a longboard give a warm, natural look to a longboard blank. The traditional Cedar triple stringer combination has been considered very desirable since 1960.
Stringers are used for strength. Big wave boards have always used thicker or stronger stringer woods. Multiple laminates of stronger woods have proven to be the ultimate in resisting snaps.
Note - Some of the strongest surfboards ever made have been built without any stringer at all. With the addition of extra glass cloth (during glassing) on the rails of a foam shape, snapping can be delayed to a much higher degree.
It is known that a good glass job can save a board whereas a good stringer with a bad glass job has very little chance. A flexing stringerless blank will shrug off explosive energy (similar to an airplane wing) by absorbing and washing off energy along its length.
A stiff stringer no matter how strong will force the energy to focus at one point (usually the weakest) somewhere on the blank.
Having said the above it is also known that a stiff and strong stringer will resist allowing the blank to flex and distort. Resisting distortion keeps the top and bottom glass skins intact. Snaps occur when the blank distorts, the rail laps fail, the bottom skin compresses inwards in a buckle and the top skin separates in a tension snap line.
Strong shortboard stringers (re cap on laminated pine)
'Compflex Stringer' is made up of two 1 mm pieces of structural pine laminated with black glue. This stringer has amazing flex when combined with a Green or Yellow Foam blank.
'Team Stringer' is the title given to four 1 mm pieces of structural pine laminated with black glue. This stringer has much greater strength than most any we offer and suits shortboards that will receive extreme punishment in the water (i.e. floaters etc.). Relative cost is only marginally higher while shapeability is still good. Maximum length for this stringer is 8'3".
'Island Stringer' is similar to the above 'Team' but is in fact made up of six pieces. This stringer is considered mandatory for thick lipped waves rising out of deep water onto shallow reefs (or sand bars). Maximum length on this stringer is 8'3''. Small guns and longboards can be glued with this stringer.
Strong longboard stringers
Any stringer 3/8" or greater will help take the flex out of a longboard. Stringers at 1/2" thick, plywood style (six pieces) are considered suitable for heavier waves.
The glass job is critical on a longboard due to foam thickness versus length of the shape (very thin for length).
The more rail laminations of cloth layers the stronger the longboard (or any surfboard) is. Zipper cut laps (halfway around the rail) are a no/no as they provide less than the full strength which is available from the rail. Warped weave cloth (more long strands) is highly desirable for snap strength. S glass beats most every cloth for ease of use, strength and appearance. S glass has an advantage of 50% in tensile and 25% in compressive strength.
Ultra violet light cured polyester resin has proven a great strength enhancer for glass jobs. As opposed to MEKP cured polyester, the more sunlight UV cured polyester gets exposed to the stronger it becomes, up to a point.