retain | repair | revamp | restore
For very collectable vintage surfboards, the authenticity of the board is paramount. In these cases it may be better not to do any restoration work at all. Simply removing any wax and grime from the board and giving it a polish can be all that is required. The value of the board will be in its original condition.
A basic restoration may simply involve repairs to damaged areas, followed by an overall buff and polish. In all cases, repairs are best done that reflect the original construction methods of the board such as pigments, tints or sprays.
When a board is significantly damaged and requires major work, the process for repair and restoration becomes more involved. Each board must be considered on its merits, but in general terms, any repair work must reflect the original board as closely as possible. Once repairs are done, a full sand and a new gloss coat to the whole board is often the best way to blend all the repairs and give the board an overall smooth and shiny finish.
A full restoration is carried out when a board has very major structural damage such as delamination or is just in very poor overall condition. In some cases, the only way to bring the board back to life is to completely strip all the glass, remove the fin and logos then repair/reshape the blank to reflect the original shape. The board is then re-glassed in authentic techniques from the era. Original inscriptions, logos, pinlines, fins etc are reinstated on the board. Some of the original damage often comes through to the finished board, but this adds a level of authenticity. Although these boards lose significant value from not being original anymore, if done properly, it is often difficult to tell the difference from an original board and they make great display pieces or riders.