Surfboard Traction Guide
Tail pad cost
Expect to pay between $20 and $50 for a typical tail traction pad.
- Best to buy it and apply it when you buy the board, before you apply any surf wax.
Applying a tail pad – position of the tail/stomp pad
- A common mistake is to apply your tail pad too far forward! This is the mark of a kook (sorry 🙂 For most boards, the tail traction pad goes just in front of the leash plug, a few inches from the tail. This is because the tail foot position is so critical in performance surfing. If you watch the pros, you’ll notice the back foot is usually centered just behind or over the side fins.
Tail pad application help
- CLEAN the area well! It’s important to remove all traces of wax. If you don’t have wax remover solution, you can use paint thinner, spirits, or even hot water.
- Position the pads BEFORE you expose the sticky side. MARK the placement.
- Lay the pads out slowly, from the center line to the outside rail. This will avoid getting bubbles under the pads.
- Press all the edges and corners well when you’re done.
Using TikiGrip as a tail pad
TikiGrip can be used as a cheaper alternative to a surfboard tail/stomp pad. The cost will be about half of what you’d pay for most stomp-pads. Our favorite layout design for the grip strips is as shown below, with the ‘arrows’ pointing towards the back. This layout best follows most tail shapes.
You may also want to double up (or triple) the strips on the center line. This acts as a comfortable arch bar, and helps your foot to find the sweet spot.
When used as a tail pad, you may want to trim the TikiGrip strip edges, cutting the corners off. This is especially useful where the strips are near the rails, where they’ll get the most abuse from your legs scraping past them.
For the front foot traction…
- It’s best to apply your TikiGrip from the center out, using the stringer as a guide. This may depend on your layout idea, of course!
- TikiGrip strips work best when they are spaced out at about 1/4 to 1/2 inch apart, depending on how cheap you are 🙂
- If you’ve got a special design idea, the strips can be cut, split, rounded and curved to fit your vision. Best to avoid sharp corners that are exposed to wear: No matter how good our adhesive is, those ends will peel up.
- Remember to send us a photo of your creation. The best ones will win free TikiGrip!
There. You’re ready to surf!