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DIY: How to Repaint a Surfboard with Ashley Johnston

Posted by Rhea Cortado on

Ashley repaints a longboard she found at a board swap. 

Fellow garage sale, flea market and thrift store addicts — our homes are filled with vintage castaway furniture, quirky knick knacks and retro threads, with stories behind where and how we discovered each piece.

One of our Seeababes, Ashley Johnston is no exception. Her latest find was an old longboard that she picked up at a board swap. She actually had her eye on a different board, but was swooped in by an old uncle! The owner didn't want to disappoint her and pulled out a second board and sold it to her for even less. The sun-tinted, dented and dinged up longboard had seen better days but with a little bit of love, it still had a few more rides left in it. Ashley showed us how she repainted it to make it her own.

Watch the short video below, and keep going for the full DIY instructions!

Gather what you'll need. 
Gather up all your materials: 
  • Mineral spirits to help clean the board off
  • Sand paper: you want to use a light or fine grade paper to detail everything. You don't want to be too harsh. 
  • Wax comb to scrape off the old wax
  • Pencil to mark where you want to paint the stripes
  • Painters tape to mark off the striped zones
  • Old fabric to protect your work space from unwanted paint and the parts of the board you aren't painting on
  • Newspaper also to protect your work space from unwanted paint and the parts of the board you aren't painting on
  • Spray paint colors. We used the matte as a personal preference. Don't forget the clear coat after the color to make sure the paint stays on better. 
Step 1: Get into some work clothes and clean off the board with the sandpaper. Here's the time to repair any dings with Sun Cure too. 

Ashley cleans off the board. 
Clean off the old wax. 

Step 2: First color! For stripes or color blocking, tape off the portion of the board that you want to paint first. We started with the blue, the biggest portion of the board. Get spraying. 

Ashley tapes off a section to paint. 
Spray painting the first coat. 
 Keep going! 
Step 3: Let it dry. Hang out. 

Watching paint dry. 
Step 4: Hooray! Paint is dry. Tape and cover up the part you just finished (in our case, the blue) so you can paint the rest of the board without getting any stray paint on it. Spray paint the second color. We did the green nose next.

Finishing up the nose in green. 
Step 5: DIY is more fun with friends. To create the stripes on the tail, tape off the parts that you want to remain the base color (the blue). The part that is exposed will be spray painted with another color. We did yellow. 

Taping off some stripes with the help of a friend.

Tape off the top of the board too to protect from spray paint particles. 

Step 6: Spray paint the stripes. Let them dry. If there are some bumps or rough spots, you can sandpaper them smoother. Apply the clear coat over the whole board at the end. 

Spray painting the stripes 
Step 7: You're done! Add a fin, wax it up and take it out for a glide.

The finished stripes. 
Add a fin. 

Ashley on her newly painted board, wearing the Riviera in Sea Glass. Photo by Alex Swanson. 

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1 comment

  • My wife has an old Ron Jon funboard that I was thinking about repainting. I’m glad I found your DIY how-to! Her longboard turned out awesome!

    David Martin on

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