Introduction: Custom Snowboard
My project was making a pair of skis from scratch.
2 Fiberglass layers
Plastic bottom skid
Top fabric layer
Step 1: The Press
The press I used was made from wood with threaded steel rods run through it and the wood could be tightened down to provide the pressure needed to mold the skis. On the top and bottom are wood I beams to make sure the press didn't break. Overall the press could double atmospheric pressure. The mold on the inside of the press was made from particle board CNC routed into the shape the ski needed to conform to. To press a board you first seal it with all of its layers in place in a vacuum bag (make sure your vacuum seal is far away enough from your board so the epoxy squeezed out when the board press doesn't go into your hose ruining it) then you put the board between two thin aluminum sheets between both parts of the mold and the aluminum sheets you put two heat blankets which when heated up will help the epoxy coating the board cure better while in the press. The press is then tightened down and left for several hours to let the epoxy cure and the board set into shape then the press gets loosened the board can be pulled out and you clear away the extra epoxy and its done.
Step 2: Snowboard
I made a snowboard using the mold that was already in place in the press to learn the process, see what the top fabric layers looked like and test Tyvek as a bottom skid material. I made the board using a wood core, fiberglass casing, with a fabric layer on top and testing Tyvek as a bottom skid material. the Tyvek didn't work because it bonded to the plastic of vacuum bag I sealed it in. The wood core was made from from cut strips of wood glued together and clamped into shape then planed down to the right thickness (the prototype I made was to thin which made it bed more than it should). Then I used a CNC router to cut out the right shape for the board. Finally I traced and cut the layers covered them in epoxy and fully pressed the board. After it came out of the press I cleaned up the epoxy that came out of the edges and it was done.