How to Build Your Own Long Board




In this instructable I will be showing you how to build your own long board. To do so you will first need to visit this website below, because it has the templates of various boards.

Once you are at the website choose a board that you like, and identify its code. For example, look at the first picture below and read the comment which is attached to one of the boards. The board that is tagged with the comment is the one I used (st12). Once you know the code, look for its match below the picture (it will be in blue writing),and click on it. Download it in adobe reader and print it out. Follow the instructions on the second and third photo and you will be able to print the template out. It took me a few attempts to get it perfect, you just have to play around with it.

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Step 1: Materials Required

-Small finishing nails
-Small clamps
-Large clamps
- 14, nuts
- 14, bolts
- 28, large washers that will fit to the size of your bolts
-Drill or drill press (both would be helpful)
-Drill bits (the same size as you bolts)
-Carpenters glue
-A razor blade or a thin piece of metal (to spread out the glue)
-Fiberglass sheets (up to you, if you think you need it, do it)
-Resin for the fiber glass (up to you, if you think you need it, do it)
-Sand paper
-A large plank of wood
-Three, 2x4
-Two, 1x4
-Two, 1/4 thick sheets of birch wood
-Modeling knife
-Coping saw or a Jig-saw (useful for cutting curves in wood )
-Measuring tape
-A square (to draw straight lines)
-A level
-Extra light would be helpful
-A good safe and clean working area

Step 2: Creating the Press (the Base)

When creating your long board the most important thing is the press. The press is composed of three different sections:

-The base
-The top
-The covering

This step will show you how to create the base of the press. Please keep in mind that measurements will vary and they can be different from mine. You can follow this instructable or you can just use it for ideas and pointers for when you create you own press.

The first thing you want to do when creating the base, is you want to draw the size of the 1/4 thick sheet of birch wood onto the plank of wood. Then find the middle of the traced piece of wood and then take the cardboard cut out of the board and trace it in the middle of the previous tracing. This is just to allow you to see how things will line up in the press.

In this step you will only be drawing on the plank of wood, and attaching a few things.
********* make sure you read all the instructions on the photos.****************

Step 3: Creating the Press Continued ( the Top)

The top section of the press is the most important since it is what exerts all the force on the board to shape it. Cut out five 2x4's that will lay perpendicular on top of a sixth longer 2x4 that starts from the front of the press and ends five or six inches away from the 2x4 that will be curving the tail of you board. (If you did not put the 2x4 at the end, to curve the tail, then the 2x4 for the top section can span the whole length of the long board). Depending on the length of your press, you may require more than five perpendicular 2x4's.

Step 4: Creating the Press Continued (revisiting the Base)

When drilling the holes for the bolts you need to ensure that "the top" is perfectly centered and positioned properly. Then take a small crayon or pencil and stick it through the hole of the smaller 2x4 you made previously. Make sure you drill the hole as straight as possible. You can do so by using a drill press but if you do not have one you can have someone assist you in drilling.

Step 5: Creating the Press Continued (the Cover)

Before creating the cover, test the press quickly, and if you think that there are areas that could be compressed further then you may want to consider creating this section of the press.

For my press i thought there was not enough pressure near the front so I added another small 2x4.

Use longer pieces of 1x3's to go across perpendicularly to the smaller 2x4's on "the top section" helping the press to compress the sheets of wood evenly.To figure out where the holes go position "the cover" on top of the rest of the press, which has been assembles with the bolts in there holes. Then let the cover sit on top where you want it to go. Then smack it, not too hard, just enough to leave a mark of where the top of the bolts were. Now just drill a hole where the indents were made by the bolts.

Step 6: Putting It All Together

Like I said before, make sure you label all the parts of the press so you know the order and positioning. That way when you are rushing to put it together you will not make any mistakes.Before you glue the two sheets of plywood together, do a dry run with the wood so you can visualize how it will all work out.When gluing the two sheet of birch you want to put a thin coat of glue on each sheet, and you can use a razor blade or a thin metal object to spread the glue.

Then quickly put it in the press and assemble it. Make sure all the bolts are tightened evenly and make sure you don't tighten the very back ones too much other wise the board may crack. Let the glue set for at least a day.

Step 7: Sit Back and Relax

In this step you need to let your board dry. I left my board in for a week just to be safe and its up to you how long you should leave your board in, but at least wait two full days before taking it out of the press. During this time you can think about putting on grip tape, painting or even adding some fiber glass just to reinforce it.

Step 8: Shaping Your Board

When cutting out your board, get rid of the excess material first to make it easier to work with. Make sure that you cut to the outside of the line, that way you can sand off the little wood that is left.

Step 9: Touch Ups

If you messed up cutting, then you can use some wood filler for minor fixes. The wood filler can be used for any scratches, dings or dents. Once you are satisfied with your results you can sand the edges of you board to round them.

Step 10: Fiberglass

Here are some videos to help assist you fiberglass your board. Sorry I was unable to take pictures while I was doing mine, my hands were too full at the time.

Step 11: Sealing Your Board and Finishing Up

In this step you need to seal you board so the wood is protected from the everyday elements that it will be exposed to.You will need a resin called polyurethane. Coat your board with this product and then wet sand it with a fine sand paper. You will want to apply at least two coats or whatever you product specifies is best.

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19 Discussions


Tip 1 year ago

My press is similar to this, but I have the horizontal boards rather than the one vertical board press to the wood. This allows for a tighter press and for more surface area to be in contact with the board.


4 years ago on Introduction

my computer does not have the "current view" option. What do i do?


4 years ago

like it,its great thanx


5 years ago on Introduction

This looks great! I should have all the materials around to do this. One question I have is that it looks like the nose is curved down/opposite of the tail. Is this how it cam out or am I seeing thing?


6 years ago on Step 3

It should be disk sander, not drum sander. Sorry about that.


6 years ago on Step 3

I just finished pressing a replica of a David Andretch model, using a press similar to the one here. I used 4 1/8" baltic birch plywood sheets. You can get them in skateboard friendly dimensions at Woodcraft, Rockler, Woodworkers source, and others.

Silverfish longboarding doesn't have a template for a David Andretch. However, if you can't find a template pre built, it is easy to make one. Just google the model you want in images. There will probably be an image of one that you can use as a template. Just blow up the image to size using your favorite drawing program.

The Andretch is a little trickier than most as it has built-in handrails. I just cut them out of one of the plys before laminating them.

A few other notes: Get lots of bar clamps and spring clamps. If you don't have them already you can buy a bunch of cheap ones from harborfreight. I use the bar clamps for the press and the spring clamps to ensure the plywood doesn't delaminate dduring pressing. Also, a drum sander. Lots of places sell these for under $100 and you would not believe how much easier it is to sand the board to shape with one.  Make sure you cut the plywood at least an inch larger then the desired demensions as the plywood will move around during lamination.

Once I finish sanding it, I'll spray paint the inside of the handrails green and the rest of the board black. After that, I'll put several coats of Minwax polyurethane clearcoat on it. Polyurethane is very tough and should hold up to thrashing. Skateboarders may already be familiar with it. :)


6 years ago on Introduction

Everyone, you're welcome. Just scroll through the pages until you find the template of the board with your "code."


6 years ago on Introduction

I've been building boards for about a year and a half, and I just want to point out a couple of things. Your local Lowes/Home Depot/Menards/whatever won't stock the wood. You want to make sure that it is Baltic birch. Your local lumberyard should be able to get some for you. Also, for pressing concave/camber/kicks, 1/8" Baltic birch works much better and will hold the curves better. Also, just this past summer, I got a Roarockit TAP vacuum bag. It makes the mold process so much easier. I can make a foam mold in about half an hour and get everything glued up and in the bag the same day. And, since it gives even pressure over the whole surface of the board, you get much better lamination quality and can use 1/16" material. Also, the Board Building section of Silverfish Longboarding has a wealth of great information.

1 reply

Reply 6 years ago on Introduction

thanks for the comment! I wanted to do something like what you mentioned but i didnt know where i would have been able to get those vacuum bags. It would work much better too, in either press.

looks great man!!
And no problem, if you got any other questions just ask. I'm just surprised someone followed my instructable ahahahahaha. Make sure you fiberglass your board at least once. I'm actually in the process of making another instructable right now (roller skis) and if you have any ideas on how i could make them strong enough to support someones weight, that would be great! I already fiber glassed them once but they are still pretty flimsy, so i think ill just keep fiber glassing them or should i do something else?


Those are really really cool! From the reading I have done I think that two layers of glass should do the trick. What kind of fiberglass are you using? Better quality fiber glass will improve the strength, from what i read. And good luck because those look like they would be fun. :)

Thanks a lot for the instructable, it's been a big help.
-Would it be better to use more ply's of thinner wood?
-Are you sure carpenters glue would be the best choice for adhesive? Just curious.

1 reply

yeah using more ply's of thinner wood would be even better cause they would flex more in the press and carpenters glue is perfect for this project, and sorry about the late reply, i hope it still helps :P

This is very confusing. Maybe there is an easier way to explain yourself. Go here and look for this... Maybe more direct links and you could even take your code and put it into the instructable. Just make sure you give credit towhohadtheoriginal idea. The finished product looks amazing!