Its been a few months since the last chance I had to spend time on the boards and lots has been happening. Have been fitting out a van to be a mobile home for our now regular trip to Far North Queensland 3000 km from home.
Arrived in Cairns about 3 weeks ago and the trade winds have been kind. Have had a good number of sessions and a good number of rest days. I've only been riding the 137x44cm Fat Boy board ('the board that should have never been'). I can not sing the praises of this board enough. I've had at least twice the amount of time on the water as any other kiter and when the wind picks up to 20+ knots there is no problem holding it down and have even landed more and better Raley to blinds than before. I shifted the foot pads down towards the heal side edge which moved it maybe 1cm or so and the ability to load and pop has been greatly improved. I've going to experiment with this design some more when I get back. I'm going to leave the outline the same but just play with stiffening it in the middle by changing the reinforcement material.
Anyhow, have been chatting with Juko about avoiding voids on the surface of the board. He suggested using the 1 oz CSM tissue ('scrim') that I tried working with in the Mini-Me's pre-cured top and bottom sheet. The issue I had with that stuff is that the binder in the tissue is so light on that as soon as I touched it stuck to the tools and was pulled apart. However, Juko's tip was to put the tissue down and put a layer of reinforcement over the top before wetting it out. According to Juko the voids are due to the resin in the cloth being wicked away along the fibres which leaves voids where they intersect. The tissue is CSM so the random orientation doesn't suffer from voids like woven cloth and so you end up with a better finish.