I’m pretty excited about this new iteration of the Nova Speedster. This particular board has the same rocker as Chris’ blue Speedster, but with a slightly fuller outline and extra thickness to accommodate my weight and age.
Dimensions are 9’6″ 17-1/2″ x 23″ x 14″ 3-1/4″. I had the opportunity to surf it recently in chest-high waves, which is really at the lower end of the wave-range for the Speedster. Normally, this board wouldn’t come out until wave size hit shoulder-high or better, but you all now how it goes with new boards.
I had a hard time shooting photos of this board because of the stellar polish job provided my master sander-polisher James at the shop. Anyway, this board is fast, as in blazing fast. I managed to blow by the SUPer who dropped in on me on my first wave. But, after “sharing” a couple of more waves, I decided to call it a sesh. (I hate it when a wave drought ends with a swell on the weekend. Waaay too much desperation in the water.) This session left me very excited about the promise of this board’s performance in better waves,
When ordering the blank for this board, I chose a T-Band of two 1/8″ basswood stringers. Glued side-to-side with opposing grain, this t-band adds a little more structural strength to the shape. I selected red glue color for aesthetic reasons, knowing that I would be using a red pinline on the deck. My glasser thought a dual pinline would look really nice, so we added the blue. Lamination was done with light-yellow opaque
resin on bottom and rails, with double 6oz cloth on deck and single 6oz cloth on bottom. Finished off with the superior gloss and polish already mentioned, the board looks as good as it performs. For fins I chose a 7″ Smith/Parrish full-base center fin, with a set of 4″ LB side-bites, all from True Ames.
Wanting more hold, I opted for the larger SBs, and then dropped the depth of the center fin down from my usual 7.5″ to 7″ in an effort to maintain the same total fin area. Price for this board, including fins, is $872 + tax.
WARNING: Geeky Shaper Talk The key to this board’s performance is choice of blank selected to build it. When building a board, the shaper selects a blank that already has a bottom rocker curve that is close to the intended rocker of the finished board. This not only saves time, but helps to increase consistency of rocker between similar shapes. Digging through an old Clark Foam Blank Catalogue I found a blank (9-8S) with rocker very close to the rocker I wanted for the Nova. Then I asked the guys at US Blanks, who have all of the old Clark Foam rockers, to apply this rocker curve to a newer blank, the USB 9-9B. After skinning the blank and shaping thickness and foil, I found that I only had to make minor rocker adjustments at nose and tail to get what I was looking for.