We all know that surf kiteboards need to be stronger than regular surfboards. They need to absorb much harder impacts and higher loads more frequently than in surfing. But for the ultimate surf kiting experience, as riders we’re looking for the lightness and feel of a high-performance surfboard.
So how do you craft a board that is strong enough to kitesurf, but not so stiff and overbuilt it doesn’t feel like a surfboard?
North Surfboard Shaper Jaimie Scott takes us through the process.
"A carbon innegra wireframe forms a structural skeleton to support the laminates, maximising strength without losing flex, and allowing the board to load and release power on demand for more drive and responsiveness," says Jaimie.
"The unidirectional carbon fibre and innegra reinforcement is inserted into channels along the load bearing lines through the deck and bottom of the board, running under and attaching to the FCSII fin plugs and around the footstrap inserts on the deck and locking all fittings into the laminates and high-density foam inserts.
"The carbon innegra Futurelite system stops below the nose of the board to allow for flex and has a dampening effect for a smooth comfortable feel incorporated into a responsive carbon epoxy board."
As a veteran NZ surfer and shaper, Jaimie Scott draws on more than 30 years of board-building experience across a range of disciplines - surfboards, windsurfers, kiteboards, stand-up boards, foilboards and skimboards.
“I learned to shape the old school way with a planer, but was an early innovator with profiling machines, chasing the accuracy required to refine designs in a more controlled way. CNC-shaping from computer files is now the norm and is a game-changer for progression of high-performance board design," says Jaimie.
"Having experience with a wide range of craft has given me a complete understanding of form and flex, so we incorporate specific construction methods into each design to give required weight, flex, strength, response and feel, to match the fine-tuned shapes.”
Jaimie Scott, North Surfboard Shaper.
"The Futurelite carbon innegra wireframe ensures the board is strong enough to kitesurf, without losing the flex and feel. The resonance created by the wireframe within the board’s super-light shell gives a crisp feeling, with fantastic response.”
This sentiment is echoed in reviews of the 2021 North Surfboard range: "North’s done an amazing job with their construction. In a world of surfboards and advanced constructions and kiteboards that have been made forever, North came up with a line of construction that just trumped everyone. " - MATT NUZZO, Real Watersports.
The carbon fibre gives the board a lot more spring – it's more durable, stronger and has a longer memory than a wooden stringer. This means your board will spring back to shape a lot faster and maintain its integrity for longer.