Making a skateboard

I’m trying to make my first skateboard. For that I need a forming mold, so what does a man with a CNC do? :wink:

Here are some progress pics:

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Looks great, looking forward to seeing it in use :slight_smile:

When making a form like this should you allow for the thickness of the board material between the two halves?

I actually did that, I modeled the board, boolean subtracted it from the stock and that left me with 2 sides of the mold.

That said, the shape is not that extreme so you could argue the necessity of this approach.

I guess this is closed cell foam insulation. What F&S did you use for this material? Did you model in F360?

Messy stuff that pink foam! :smiley:

Yeah I’m still getting used to F360 though, I’m still having an issue with my programs not adhering to the clearance height when doing the first rapid to the start of the toolpath…

stepdown was full flute length, so 20mm. feedrate about 3500 mm/min, give or take some amount of manual feedrate override ;-).

There’s an in-depth look at the design itself in another article:

Ad yeah, it’s nasty stuff. I really should look into decent chip clearance for this kind of work. :wink:


some progress:




Nice project, I finally took the time to read your blog posts and I was surprised to see that you used the foam “raw”, I thought you would have put a few layers of fiberglass/epoxy to make it sturdier. Have the molds been damaged from the pressure? Did they retain their shape for future use?

I guess for your next project you need to try your hand at making aluminum long boards similar to those created by Winston Moy using his Shapeoko. Maybe not as useful to ride but a step up in design and machining.


As long as you don’t apply targeted pressure, the foam seems to hold up perfectly. It’s really tough material when you approach it as a whole surface. I could clearly tell when I reached my max. clamping pressure as if I was clamping a hard material.
As a matter of fact, I just went and bought a new sheet of foam to make the next iteration.

I want the next deck to be wider (this one’s really too narrow for my taste), with more outspoken concave (which should make it stiffer) and a smaller radius between the flat middle section and the tail/nose. I’ve measured the tail drop and it was 21.6° vs the mold’s 22° so it hasn’t moved as much as I thought it did. 0.4° of drop is really not bad at all.

I’m not really interested in making an aluminium board I won’t use. I’ll find another project to challenge myself to that regard :wink:


I understand that you want to ride it, I’m too old for this, I let my adult boys ride but I don’t think they are interested in making. One note, while reading on your glue up, I would recommend using Titebond 3 wood glue instead as it is waterproof, stronger and dries quicker compared to regular wood glue, unless you live somewhere you will not encounter rain, it may be a better choice.

I did not see mention of the type of veneer used and if you alternated the direction of wood grain.

I don’t live in the US so we don’t have Titebond, but I’ve read that exact same thing somewhere else as well. I do plan on using our waterproof glue in the future, but in all honesty I’m not riding it in the rain anyways so I guess it doesn’t really matter all that much to me. Would be a different thing if I sold my boards.

The veneer is to exact specification (canadian maple off course) and is layered L-L-C-L-C-L-L as recommended by my supplier. I plan on experimenting with carbon fibre as well and probably also with atypical hardwood veneers as a finishing layer.


Looks great… good job

17 year old me wants to build one now…

32 year old me is afraid to skin his knees :sob:

37 year old me says go for it. Skin heals :stuck_out_tongue_winking_eye:

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Super rad! I’m an old skateboarder and thougt about doing the same thing. I’m new to the cnc thing I’ve got an xcarve and ave done a bunc of fun stuff but have not figured out how to make gradien shapes on the z axis like you did ere with the mold. I can cut out shapes with 90 degrees edges but ow did you get your machine to do the concave shapes like that? I’m also trying to make hollow wooden surfboards with my machine and this would be most helpful.


all you need is the right software. I’m assuming you are using Easel now? Easel is fine for simple contours and pockets, but you’ll need to upgrade if you want to take full advantage of your machine’s capabilities.

Meshcam is supposed to be decent value-for-money and very intuitive for beginners.
Fusion360 is free for hobby use but has a steep learning curve. But very powerful if you know what you’re doing.

There are more options, just search for capable 3D software.

I was thinking about your boards the other week when I was at the beach… I saw these boards that had 12" scooter wheels on them and looked fun to ride.

How’s going?
From sizes and types to materials used to deck length, making the ideal skateboard gets a lot more complicated. That is why a little knowledge in selecting one won’t hurt as it can spell the difference in your riding experience :slight_smile: