Stand UP Surfing Paddle Project #1 for Daryle and Lucas

  • Advertise with us
Project by HIsurferMoe posted 01-17-2009 10:02 AM 8643 views 2 times favorited 11 comments Add to Favorites Watch

aloha everyone, my name is marlon and im from the beautiful island of oahu in Hawaii. im a surfer, longboarder, shortboarder, stand up surfer…ive tried em all. one day while stand up surfing, my buddies daryl and lucas had a great idea to build a wooden stand up surf paddle, and of course they turn to me knowing that im a carpenter. i looked at them like man ya guys are crazy, whats wrong with the paddle we are using now? they said nothing but its cheaper to have an extra one then to buy one. Trudat i agreed. so to make the long story short this is how it went down. We all decided that since this one is an “experimental” project that we were just gonna get inexpensive wood. We really wanted to make “koa” paddles, but didnt wanna see our money go in the trash..haha… visited home depot, purchased three 8 ft, 1-1/2”x 1-1/2” douglas fir, 3/4”x 3”x9’ poplar , 5/16” oak stringer, 7/8 red oak. Daryl and Lucas wanted to try something different so they requested to have theirs with no angles just straight shaft. I on the other hand was sticking to the original degree/angle bent paddles. I personally like the fiberglass paddles because they are so lightweight but kyle bernhardt the shaper of all our boards once told me that in the long run the fiberglass paddles will give your elbows problems. He personally prefers the wooden ones even if they were slightly heavier in weight. They give more flex and are better in response. That is the other reason why i went through with this project.

Me with the blue shirt, daryle with the blue quiksilver hat, lucas with the white shirt throwin’ up the shaka.

Just another day in paradise

Warming (s) UP

How to make a straight shaft wooden stand up paddle.

Step 1: Buy materials (mentioned above) power planer, block plane, clamps, table saw, orbital sander, jigsaw, spokeshave, drawknife, router with rounded corner bit, gorilla glue and case of beer and pupus (appetizers)

Step 2: Invite friends, in this case Daryle and Lucas to help with whatever


Step 3: Ripped and cut all wood according to size of blade and shaft on paddle. Arranged it according to your preference. Once youve arranged it glue and clamped, with the 1-1/2”x 1-1/2” wood dead center of the blade. Also the extra equal cut offs. Glue that to the end of the shaft for your handle. Don’t forget to take a break in between steps to have a sip of beer and eat some appetizers, or surf stories.


Rule of thumb the overall length of your paddle should be 7” more than your height. For example 5’11” height + 7”= 6’6” or 78” (from bottom of blade to handle).

Step 4: When glue has dried for sometime, lets say 2-3 hrs. Trace outline of blade pattern and cut with a jig saw.

Step 5: Route shaft with rounded corner bit. Be extra careful not to get to close to the blade. It is okay to have some wood that wasnt routered near the blade. you can you use your drawknife or spokeshave to fine tune it. If you arent please with the thickness of your shaft. Keep working on it till your content.


Step 6: Use the shaping/carving tools to work on the blade. Start of with the power planer if your a pro, if not go the long and tedious route using the block plane to get to the right thickness of the blade. Remember there is a front and a back side of the paddle. The front of the paddle is the angle thats pointing away from you. The back is the opposite of what i just explained. The front side is flat with a little curvature going away from the middle. The back side sort of has a spine or spline, whatever you wanna call it, also with a slight concave. Once again keep working on it till your content. Don’t give up…this is the hardest part of the whole project. no joke…daryle and lucas almost gave up…hahha


Step 7: Fine tune everything, making sure that its equal all the way around. Front to back, back to front, side to side and vice versa. Work under Fluorescent lighting so you can see every flaw. I got that technique from Kyle Bernhardt (surfboard shaper) If you are interested in ordering custom surfboards feel free to email Kyle at He ships worldwide. He makes awesome performance, Cruiser Surfboards.



Step 8: Ask yourself if you want a T-handle or a palm type of a handle. When you decide, let your imagination run and i swear that the handle will take shape.


Step 9: Finish sanding everything before prepping it for a finished stain. Be sure to use a waterproof type kind of finish. Remember Salt water eats everything overtime. Glassing it is optional, but i recommend it, for extra strength. But don’t if you prefer lightweight instead of strength. Its one of those things where you have to ask yourself, Durability or Weight.


Step 10: Go out and enjoy your brand spanking new paddle hand made by yours truly “Yourself”....

Stay tuned….my paddle is the next project….#2…

-- SurferMoefoe

11 comments so far

View FlWoodRat's profile


732 posts in 3958 days

#1 posted 01-17-2009 11:22 AM


Hang Loose Dude (Yeah, I surfed back in the 60’s, beach boy music and all.)
Nice looking paddle. Great looking waves. Fantastic photos. Keep up the good work and don’t feed the fish.

Tube Out!

-- I love the smell of sawdust in the morning....

View PetVet's profile


329 posts in 3537 days

#2 posted 01-17-2009 02:02 PM

It’s 5 degrees here in Richmond this morning, made me smile to see your pics. Good project, thanks for sharing!

-- Rich in Richmond -- Experience is something you don't get until just after you need it.

View Ampeater's profile


441 posts in 3797 days

#3 posted 01-17-2009 04:34 PM

WOW!! I am envious. I really enjoyed your pix. The only thing that I get to use that is similar to your paddle is a snow shovel.

-- "A goal without a plan is a wish."

View Moron's profile


5032 posts in 3943 days

#4 posted 01-17-2009 05:01 PM

thats very cool

I water ski and snow ski but the one time I got to try surfing…..............riding a wave was the most fun I’ve ever had!

-- "Good artists borrow, great artists steal”…..Picasso

View Terry's profile


205 posts in 3683 days

#5 posted 01-17-2009 05:11 PM

Looks like the only Daryl and Lucas ae doing is drinking up your brewskies. What is the purpose of the paddle, propulsion or steering? BTW, nice job and I envy you since the snow is blowing 30mph here today.

View savannah505's profile


1815 posts in 3635 days

#6 posted 01-17-2009 07:57 PM

A great posting and idea, like seeing the pics you’ve put in, really makes you feel like your there and part of the guys having fun. I wish you all the best with this and wherever it leads. Nice work!!!! Have fun. Oh yeah and welcome to LJ’s

-- Dan Wiggins

View SCOTSMAN's profile


5849 posts in 3634 days

#7 posted 01-17-2009 08:06 PM

I never tried surfing though always enjoyed water sports I have had three boats the last was good gollie she was 28 foot sailing yacht boy that was fun as I live right overlooking the sea good job on the paddle well done for looking like president elect OBAMA another great guy God Bless Alistair

-- excuse my typing as I have a form of parkinsons disease

View HIsurferMoe's profile


27 posts in 3466 days

#8 posted 01-17-2009 10:52 PM

aloha everyone, thanks for all the wonderful and encouraging comments youve posted…if you are interested in stand up paddling lemme know…stand up paddling is for everyone of all ages…its a great way to really work out your cores and at the same time have fun. even if im here in arizona i go to the lakes and do my thing…i was even crazy enough to take the board and paddle white water rafting…that was a scary yet fun experience.

-- SurferMoefoe

View rtb's profile


1101 posts in 3762 days

#9 posted 01-17-2009 10:57 PM

Welcome to the family. Big waves should be up on the north side about now aren’t?

-- RTB. stray animals are just looking for love

View ShannonRogers's profile


540 posts in 3837 days

#10 posted 01-18-2009 06:35 AM

Great post Marlon. I was born in Minilani Town and spent several years there between two USAF postings (yes we were one of a small few USAF families at PAC Fleet HQ). Your pics take me back to days on the beach on the North shore and shave ice afterwards. Great work on the paddle!

-- The Hand Tool School is Open for Business! Check out my blog and podcast "The Renaissance Woodworker" at

View HIsurferMoe's profile


27 posts in 3466 days

#11 posted 01-19-2009 03:55 AM

shave ice at matsumoto’s on the north shore are the bomb…shannonrogers…where are you currently living now?

-- SurferMoefoe

Have your say...

You must be signed in to post the comments.

DISCLAIMER: Any posts on LJ are posted by individuals acting in their own right and do not necessarily reflect the views of LJ. LJ will not be held liable for the actions of any user.

Latest Projects | Latest Blog Entries | Latest Forum Topics