Saturday, 11 February 2012

DIY - Windsurf Boom Re-grip

I had to re-grip an old X9 boom recently as the glue on the old one had perished.  I took the opportunity to give it a makeover and bought a new 2011 grip.  Here is how I did it...

Step 1
Lay out the new grip on a flat surface overnight to remove any bend lines, this will make it much easier to position when sticking it to the boom.  Remove the boom head to allow the boom grip covers to slide back.  I took the opportunity to lay some glass over the back of the boom that wears during use.  Glass has a much higher resistance to wear that carbon.

Step 2
Remove the old grip,  in my case the old grip was literally falling off so the sections remaining were easy to peel and clean back to the glass outer layer.  To get off the remaining glue i used the side of a chisel as a scraper being sure not to scrape away the glass wrapped carbon wall.  The grip caps near the head of my x9 boom slid back and out of the way.A quick wipe with acetone removed the remaining traces - be sure not to soak it as it could afffect the resin even though it has cured.  Mask off the ends at the point where you want the new grip to finish.

Step 3
Brush on a coat of contact adhesive to the inside of one of the new boom grips.  I used Sellys Kwik Grip.  Make sure that any logos will finish the right way up and that the boom tail clips are in the correct orientation.  Be sure to coat all of the grip with a decent layer first time around as it doesn't like to be re coated once it starts to skin. I started 20cm from one end and held the grip down with one hand, I then brushed towards the end of the grip.  Once the 20cm section was done I moved in another 20cm and so on.  This method allows you to coat the boom evenly without disturbing the glue finish with your other hand.  The other benefit of this method is that the grip is held flat where you are brushing - as the glue starts to skin the grip curls up.  You need to keep the grip in this arch shape until it is touch dry and can be stuck to the boom.  When the boom grip is touch dry it will flatten out slightly (touch dry is when the glue does not stick to your finger but leaves an imprint ie. not completely dry).

 Freshly brushed glue makes the grip arch...

 Grip glue flattens when touch dry...

Sellys Kwik Grip contact adhesive.

Step 4
Brush a coat of glue on one of the boom arms (the one matching the coated grip;) and hang it until touch dry.

Trimming the top half of the grip.

 Top half trimmed.

Step 5
Fit the boom grip - Start at the front of the boom arm.  Place the front of the grip in-line or slightly over the masking tape.  Align the outer most edge of the boom with the centre of the boom grip and slowly rock the boom in a single motion until the grip has stuck to the entire length of the boom down the centre of the grip.  Now turn the boom over so the grip faces up and run your palm down the centre of the grip.  Start to roll over the top half of the grip only(do not do the bottom half just yet).  Keep gradually sticking the grip to the arm in small sections by runing your palm back and forth to alow them to come together gradually and evenly.  This is very important in the curved area of the boom as the grip will try to gather and rinkle.  Stop once the grip has covered the top half of the boom arm, run your finger down the inside of the arm to create a straight glued edge.  Now with a sharp snap-off type knite blade cut the grip to trim the excess.  You want to rest the knife on the edge of the glued line so that it is tangiental to the boom section.  Try to trim the whole grip in one step to keep a nice straight line.  The glue might get scraped slightly as the nife passes by,  don't worry as now you have to give the trimmed edge of the top half a coat of glue.  Be sure just to coat the angled cut face and the areas that were scraped by the knife.  Allow to touch dry.

  Bottom half glued.
Step 6
Wrap the bottom half of the grip around the boom in the same way as the top was applied.  Make sure the grip has stuck fully to the cut face that was touched up in the previous step.

Step 7
Trim the excess of the bottom half of the grip and sand the final ridge flush with the surounding grip using 80grit sand paper.  There will be a slight glue line, use this as a guide to getting the sanding even(assuming your cut was even when trimming the top of the grip)

Sand the overlap flush.

Sanding complete.

Re-fit to grip caps.
Step 8
Trim the ends of the gip up to the edge of the masking tape.  Remove the tape and replace the boom grip caps and glue if required.

 Re-fit the head components.
Step 9
Re-fit the head components and harness lines and allow the glue to fully cure overnight before using the boom.

Here are the animated steps(yellow is the brushed contact adhesive)

The re-gripped boom in action on the following day...


  1. Good instructions. I did this years ago with results nowhere as professional as yours.

  2. Thanks drysuit2, I made sure to show the better parts of the job I did!
    Practice makes perfect...

  3. Nice and clean! where did you order the grip? and found the Sellys Kwik Grip? thanks...

  4. I got the grip at my local Neil Pryde agent - Onboard.

  5. Hello,
    I want to order a boom grip but can't find it : please help ! have you got any contact , website ? please help :) I ask me if the new grip are compatible with orlder boom (black/grey/gold) ? thanks for help :)

  6. Hi Thierry,
    The NP grips should be available through you local NP agent. I am not sure which other grips will be wide enough. The new grip above was fitted to an old black/grey/gold boom.