Surfing is a unique sport that creates a deep connection between its athletes, the ocean, and Mother Nature. However, there’s is a major challenge within the surfboarding community: the materials used for the production of surf boards are highly toxic to the environment and those that work with it.
(Summarized version, please DOWNLOAD PDF for further details)
Using recycled wood chips and coconut fiber to replace the man made foams used in the production of surfboards by making “surfboard shaped panels”.
The prototype would consist of designing a metal mold with all design specifications of a standard surfboard. The idea would consist of placing the “recycled sandwich” materials into the surfboard shaped mold using the coconut fiber on the exterior and a thick layer of low density chips in the interior.
The mold would then be hot-pressed at low a low pressure. Finally, the board would be covered with fiberglass and epoxy like the industry standard practice to provide the strength and permeability required to deliver the expected performance. Bio-Epoxy resin coating will be an option when ordering the product, for a premium environmentally conscious surfboard.
Later on in the process, more plates would be designed to accommodate a variety of surfboard shapes and sizes.
High environmental value
- This process requires low energy as it doesn’t require further breaking down of the woodchips or the coconut fibers.
- Low pressure pressing required, only the temperature elevation is required for the resins, chips and fibers to bind, therefore minimizing the embodied energy in the product.
- Coconut fiber exterior appearance gives it a one of a kind feel; No graphics or paint are needed minimizing the further use of chemicals in the process.Multiple organizations, such as sustainableSurf.com, are currently supporting the development and in use of sustainable alternatives in the production of surfboards.
This concept can be applied to stand up paddle boarding and boogie boarding, other very popular water sports with millions of users around the world.