19 June 2008

Applying a Traction Pad

If you want to learn how to apply a traction pad to a surfboard, you could watch this video by a guy who's obviously done waaay too many of them:

Or you could follow these easy steps:

1) Drink a glass of something alcoholic. I like a nice chilled glass of Viognier ("combines exotic, perfumed aromas with a scent of peaches and cream"). It gives a nice boost of confidence (or "what-the-hell" attitude) that is useful when permanently affixing something to an expensive object. Be sure to stop at one drink; you don't want to get sloppy.

2) Wipe the tail of the board with alcohol (the rubbing kind).

3) Remove the traction pad from the packaging. Then Google "how to apply a traction pad" and find out that you were supposed to leave it under the plastic overlay to keep the pieces together. But hey, what the hell, I have a wide-assed fish so I really wanted to spread them apart anyway!

4) Lay the pieces out on the tail of the board. Wonder what the extra two little flat pieces are for, then set them aside. Align the pad so it's straight and centered, ignoring any wavy decorative lines in the surfboard's paint scheme. Use masking tape to mark out the edges so you can put the pieces back in the right spots after removing the backing.

5) Take a deep breath, and take off the backing that covers the adhesive. Remember, you only get one shot at this; when it's down, it's down. Carefully set the pad in place using the tape guidelines, and press it down.

6) Wax and go surf!

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