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Step 8: Chambering and Glueing the Surfboard

Ok now we have to take the surfboard apart so we can chamber it. What chambering is cutting out large holes in the center of the board in a staggered fashion to remove weight but still maintaining structural integrity.

A consideration is to try and keep the walls as thin as possible without sacrificing structural integrity, specifically for heel dents on the deck which is where the board will take most of the punishment. Since I will be fiberglassing the board after it's shaped I'm not as worried about the board thickness being too thin. Since I am using SPF wood, it's pretty strong as is.

First thing is to put a long board underneath the middle stringer of the surfboard and supporting the rocker with shims, then clamp it down on a work surface. Tighten down the clamps and cut along the stringer glue line. Eventually the board will break apart, start taking the screws out to take the board apart. Chamber each piece of the surfboard one by one, this will minimize warping issues.

To chamber, I used a combination square set to 1/4" for the wall thickness, this gives lots of thickness and allow some variance when doing the final sanding. Marking the outside of the piece of the surfboard, I made the chambers about 12" each, with the ones near the nose and tail of the board being closer together. I had no hard and fast rules but I did make sure to stagger each piece of the board so when the board is glued back together it's one contiguous hollow chamber. Also I made sure to leave wood in the areas where the fin boxes were installed.

For the type of glue I used water resistant wood glue, since I will be glassing the board I'm not entirely concerned with it being 100% waterproof glue. What I like is I can glue multiple pieces together in the same day.

I glued each piece one by one and used a board between the clamp and surfboard, once the surfboard was too wide for my clamps I switched to using ratchet straps. Ratchet straps make awesome clamps for items that are either too large for clamps or are awkward shapes.

For the outer most edges of the board, I used a router to remove as much material as possible. Then used a rasp to grind away as much material in the corners of the pieces.