ENTROPY RESINS: Adaptive surfboard shaper designing boards to inspire and empower
For over 3 decades, JP Surfboards has been a trusted name in the surfboard-shaping industry. A family-run business owned by John, they bring a wealth of expertise in the industry. The industry has evolved over the years, with significant changes from the way boards are designed, to sourcing bio-based materials such as resin.
JP Surfboards is situated on the beautiful coast of Wales, having created an abundance of boards over the years, they have been pioneers in building adaptive boards for individuals with disabilities.
Making adaptive boards
The first adaptive board build came from Surfability, the first adaptive and inclusive surf school in Wales. With the build requirements differing from your standard board, it began with templating by hand rather than using the CNC machine in particular because of the sheer size of the board required for this build.
Taking into account weight adjustments, and the thickness of the board, these characteristics were going to prove a crucial part of the build for the board to perform optimally in the water.
With the board looking to be around 12ft long, 34 inches wide and 6 inches thick with slight adjustments, the board needed to incorporate two surfers, so having a longer board was really important. For additional strength, a stringer was added, along with a much thicker board than your standard for the board to keep afloat and take any wave.
Working on the best methods, JP Surfboards sourced bio-based materials including Entropy Resins for wet laying the board, an important part of the shaping process. A high-density foam was used for durability and this foam is proven to be of lightweight material which was beneficial given the weight the board would need to take especially with the addition of a seat.
With the build complete, it was ready to take to the water. What a great way to honour the inspiring surfers taking to the water with their new board than to do so on camera! Children In Need featured the board heading to the water with its new owners for the first time.
JP Surfboards has been building adaptive boards for surfers in Scotland through to Bournemouth, and the Channel Islands. These boards are now in use by many including paraplegics, and individuals with partial use of legs, the boards created are tailored to each individual and their needs to get on the water.
Not all of John’s customers require a seat to be an addition to a board, however, when a seat is added, weight distribution is essential for making sure the surfer has a smooth but thrilling ride on the waves without any instability.
With the amazing work, John and JP Surfboard do to bring surfing to those disadvantaged, some surfers have now taken their passion for surfboarding to competitive levels competing internationally in events such as the ISA Adaptive Surfboard World Games.
Surfboard Shaping Symposium
John and his son Tom attended the 2022 surfboard symposium getting stuck in with a carbon fibre board build and mastering the art of vacuum bagging using Entropy Resins.
The symposium proved very valuable to the surfboard shapers who attended sharing their expertise and common scenarios, “We are experiencing the same similar problems” says John, “it’s in our business what we do, we tend to share our problems, if we didn’t share info we wouldn’t learn as much.” Attending the symposium, One technique that now means John can expand his business further to make or repair automotive parts, and marine parts “now jobs come in, now we can do that no problem” John mentions.