DIY Alaia – Wooden Surfboard Build

A few weeks ago, I had some time off for the first time in a few months. By 10am, I was already bored and itching for a new project. By 10:30, I was in the dumpster scrounging around for lumber. What follows is my attempt at a DIY alaia surfboard.

An Alaia is a thin, finless traditional Hawaiian surfboard. Because it’s not hollow, and it doesn’t have fins, I thought that this would be a good candidate for a DIY build. Below the video are the materials/tools I used and the overall steps I took.


  • Lumber found in the dumpster – $0
  • Wood glue – $10
  • Vegetable oil for waterproofing – $0


There you have it. I hope this tutorial was at either entertaining or useful (or both).

Also, please note that I am not a very experienced woodworker. If you’ve got tips for how to improve this DIY alaia, or if you’ve got projects that you’re working on, please let me know in the comments.

Finally, if you want to check out some of my other DIY projects: here’s a link to my DIY handplane and my DIY Campervan bed.

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  1. Jason January 7, 2018

    Tops fun. looks a little heavy (?) Have fun with it and if it does work out, wall mount it as a historical item. 🙂

    • Josh January 9, 2018 — Post Author

      It actually did work out! I’ve taken it out twice now and got a handful of waves. Yeah, it’s a bit heavy, but not too bad because it’s so thin. Probably weighs the same as my 9ft fibreglass board.

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