So as some of you know I build my own boards. 37 to be exact. I am currently working on a new one. One thing I am doing before I build it is making coupon samples to test different lay-ups. I am trying a few different lay-ups, carbon fiber, Kevlar, carbon fiber/glass, ect. My goal is to determine which lay-up produces the best strength to weight ratio. The coupons are 18"x4"x0.9", approximately the distance between binding centers, 1/4 the width of a wakeboard, and optimum thickness I have found. I am not varying the core material in this test. Later I might try some honeycomb core samples.
I am going to use a press hooked up to a computer that will record deflection vs. load. I did this once upon a time without the use of a computer, so the data isn't as precise as I would have liked. But one thing I do remember is the samples deflecting a lot before failure which from experience I know doesn't happen. Usually when one of my boards breaks it is quite an explosive snap, and I pretty confident they do not deflect nearly that much.
When thinking it through what I did the first time is I had two flat bars the coupon would rest on then apply a load right in the middle with a 1" bar across the width. I think the 1" bar was the flaw in the test system because the two flat bars would represent the load of the binding pretty accurately but the 1" bar across the coupon does not represent the load the water puts on the wakeboard. So for all of you who have actually read through this post w/o falling asleep any thoughts on a better way to represent the load the water applies the board as the rider comes down for a landing. . . .
Oh one other thing my last board was 4.5 lbs. I am hoping with this study I will be able to make a board under 4 lbs.
Skiing made me board,