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Buy a board – what you have to consider!

It was end of April, a beautiful Monday morning at 6:00am and I was paddling into the line-up at Playa Hermosa. A glassy, head high sunrise session. I had a couple of nice waves and was just paddling out again when I saw this riiiiiiy freak set behind me. The glistening water, constant off-shore wind and... the next thing I know something hits my rib and it cracks!

Back on the beach I realized that the crack came from my board. A break that is not worth repairing. So the next day I went to "Denga", one of the surf shops in Santa Teresa. The owner Dennis is also a shaper and one of the "Ding-Doc's" for the Zopilote Surf Camp. Time for shopping! Here are some tips and rules for your next board purchase.

be honest when buying a board!

Buy a board? Be honest with yourself and the person selling the board. Don't just go in there and buy a super nice performance short sword after you just had your first sessions on Green Waves. You can imagine why I say this: I like to pose well on short boards, but surfing is all about fun (and safety!). You have to be able to control your board and not the other way around.

So here is what I did. Because I crashed my shortboard, I took it with me and Dennis could see what kind of board I was surfing. I told him what I liked and didn't like about the board. And I also told him honestly about my limits and abilities.

If you are lucky enough to have a shaper nearby and stay long enough for him to actually shape a board for you, then this is the "creme de la creme". It takes some experience to know what you are looking for in a board, but even a description like "It should be a wavecatcher, but still easy to turn like a shortboard" is enough for a shaper to know what you are looking for and what you need. In the end I bought two boards. One which I had ordered individually and one of the regular shortboards.

Buy used board?

A short word about used boards. Buying a surfboard can be expensive, especially if you need fins, a leash and a board bag. So yes, it is a good option to buy a used board. Make sure that you get a really, really good look at the board. Tap everything once. Look for small damages. If a board is heavy, it could be a sign that there are many major repairs or that it didn't dry out completely before the repair and has now drawn water. Even if a board is painted everywhere, it could be an attempt to cover up some bad things. The best way to go shopping for a used board is to take someone with you who has experience or ask the friendly staff at Surf Camp for their trusted shop! When you have finally decided on a toy wax it and rock the waves ;)

Pura vida!

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