How to repair small scratches on carbon boards


Hi there, welcome back to another Appletree Surfboards tech talk video. My name is Wieger Buurma, co founder of Appletree Surfboards. We want to show you a quick tutorial on how to fix small scratches and scuffs on our carbon boards. This technique basically works on any matte carbon fiber products. So this will also work for foils or for other brands boards.

Scratches caused by sand

It’s these little scratches that you see here on this Jazz. Usually caused by like a grain of sand in the board bag. And if it rubs around for a long time it causes this annoying white spot on matte carbon fiber black boards.

Tutorial on how to fix small scratches on carbon boards

Carbon matte is a really, really nice look, but unfortunately on black, or matte black you can see everything. Luckily, it’s a super easy fix. You can do it at home. Anyone can do it. There’s zero risk. And it will make your board look like new. So here we go!

What you need to fix it

Grab the following before starting the repair. Most of the items you probably have lying around in your cupboard:

Sticker remover

You need something to clean the board with. In this case I’ve got some sticker remover. It’s like a white spirit. Be careful with this stuff because the core of the surfboard cannot handle this. Normally this is all fine, but don’t pour it all over your board. Just be careful with that stuff.

Sand paper

Then to sand the area a little bit. I’m gonna use some 400 grit. And then to finish it off, I’ve got some 800 grit wet sandpaper. It’s important that it’s the wet sandpaper, the black stuff. So I need some water for the wet sandpaper. And some paper towels, have those ready.

Finishing spray

And then to fill it, we’re going use this Matt Varnish. The stuff that we use is from a company called Montana and they actually produce spray cans for graffiti. So they’re pretty easy to get. There’s also another company called Beltone. They have a similar kind of stuff. It’s called the Varnish Matt Clear Coat. It’s a water based acrylic varnish that is actually quite resistant when you put it on, but we only need a tiny, tiny bit.

Fix small scratches on carbon boards

Prepare the area for spray paint

So if you’ve got all these products, let’s go. Make sure all the grains of sand are gone. I only sand this area with the 400 grit with my hands. I go in small circles to get the biggest scratches out. But you don’t want to sand too far because you don’t want to go through the top layer of the board. So this is literally enough. Just blow it away. You can see that if I blow away the scratches come back. It is just to prepare the area for the spray paint.

Clean the area

Feel if you feel some scratches. These scratches are really small. They look heavy, but they’re actually very on the top surface of the board. I’m going to clean the area with the sticker remover or white spirit. And again, be careful, so don’t pour it over your board. Just a little bit on your paper towel. And then just clean the area that you want to start spraying later. Remove the excess.

Wait for it to dry

Now you can see the scratches are gone because they’re basically wet and they’re filled with the sticker remover. I just really need to wait for this to completely dry up.

Okay, so it’s been a few minutes, we’re back. You can see all the sticker remover has completely evaporated off and the white spot is back again. You can actually see that the spot is a little bit bigger because of the sanding that I did with the 400 grit.

Spray it

Now it is time to spray the varnish. Make sure it sprays nicely. Make light movements and then try to hit the right spot with the spray paint. Try not to spray too much. So literally, super light movements. Better to do 20 light sprays than too much at once.

If you do too much, you risk making it super cloudy when it dries. This is usually because the area has not been cleaned well or so if you spray too much at once. This is acrylic paint, so it dries super fast. You can see it’s already drying while I’m talking.

Let it completely dry

When that’s completely dry, you can do a second layer or a third layer. But don’t go too heavy. Usually two layers is more than enough. Give it a couple minutes. You can see it’s completely dry again. Basically the scratches are gone. If you feel it now, it feels rather smooth.

To finish it off

This paint is actually more matte than the finish that we use. So to completely finish it off, in this case it’s not really necessary, but I’ll still do it, we’re going to use some of the 800 grit. We should be super careful with this and we need water. So, just water the area. Get plenty of water on there, and then just sand it super light, literally with no pressure. This is just to blend it in completely. Take your paper towel, dry off all the water.

Easy as that

And that’s basically it, so simple as that. Three small steps, maybe five minutes, you removed all your scratches. Now this works for small scratches like sand scratches or scratches you got on your board in the car. It will help you to keep your board in tip top condition.

Other ding repairs

It clearly doesn’t really work for like big deep scratches that are maybe even structural. So those will need an epoxy fill. Have a look at our other repair video on ding repairs.

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