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HOME arrow GEAR INSIGHTS arrow Removing a Standup Paddleboard Deck Pad. . . A Royal Pain
Removing a Standup Paddleboard Deck Pad. . . A Royal Pain PDF Print E-mail
By: Stand Up Paddle Surfing Magazine   
Monday, 23 March 2009
Fin box replacement, delamination repair, broken board… it’s all a breeze when compared with removing a full length deck pad from a stand up paddle surfboard. We recently took on the challenge of removing a standard deckpad with 3M adhesive backing, and it was a royal pain. That adhesive is strong; there is nothing that’s going to dissolve it. You can’t pull up the pad because it’ll rip. You can’t “skin” off the pad because the adhesive is too strong. It’s basically about 10 hours of razor blades, sore fingers and a lesson in patience. We sure wish we knew the best technique, but unfortunately we’re stumped. We’d post photos of the operation but the memory is bitter, maybe next time. Anyway, we finally got the pad off, removed the stuck on glue and are ready to repair the board.



What threw us into this great adventure? Delamination. It was sort of a mysterious thing. The sup paddleboard is a hand glassed board that had a grey deck pad. It had been left in the sun for a little while on several occasions, but nothing extreme. Then one morning after pulling out the board to take it surfing, there was huge bubble almost the entire length of the pad, trouble. After consulting with those who’ve battled it out with deck pads before, we went against the advice given and decided to remove the pad. We were told to just get a router and rout the entire perimeter of the deck pad to pull off the whole thing and throw it away. We’ll, we decided to learn the hard way and now agree that the router would have been the way to go.

It’s still uncertain what caused the delamination. Through the process of stripping off the deck pad, there were areas where it appears that some pressure dings may have cracked the glass a little letting in air and water, although the foam was completely dry when we opened it up. That’s our best guess.

So, what’s the lesson? Once your deckpad goes on, it’s never coming off. One side note, there was a DaKine stomp pad and foot pads on the board, and those came up fairly easily leaving some glue on the board. That was a relief, however that 3M adhesive is a battle you’ll never want to fight.

If anyone has had any success removing a deck paddle from a standup paddleboard, please share your wisdom by posting a comment below. We will be forever indebted to you for your sup deckpad removal wisdom. Or, if you too have struggled through the nightmare, feel free to express your experience below and put those thoughts to rest. Until next time, happy paddling!

feed11 Comments
Brenda Yanoschik
March 07, 2013

I took a 6'2" deck pad off my husband's 14 ft kahalo wood board with two 12 oz cans of WD-40, pretty easy, not harsh on my skin or the wood board. Spray the WD-40 around the outer edges of the board, use a plastic dry wall spackler to pry under edges and spray more WD-40. Then just pry and spray, pry and spray . . . and the pad comes up a few inches at a time but in one piece. Once the pad is off, spray the board with WD-40 to dissolve the remaining adhesive and use the plastic spackler to scrape off the dissolved adhesive. The WD-40 dissolves the adhesive within about a minute so there's not even much wait time. And your hands will be buttery soft when you're done :)

Make it fun

Nate Burgoyne
June 21, 2010

When my board bubbled up under the pad. After I got the pad off, I cut out all the bubbled up (delaminated) fiberglass. Then, sand the edges where the whole is cut out for a smooth overlap after you re-glass it. Then, smooth out the exposed foam with some epoxy resin combined with Q-Cell. Let it dry. Sand it smooth, then fiberglass over the top. Be sure to over lap the sides and especially the front and back by 6-12 inches. For glass, I think I used 2 layers of 6 oz. and 1 layer of 4 oz.

Joseph Stanley
June 20, 2010

I have an OXBOW with a value screw plug. I left the board in the sun, the pad is black and the whole area where the pad is the deck bubbled up!

I have a heat gun.

I'm going to...

1. Remove pad with heat gun
2. Now what??

drill holes and inject resin and sand bag?
cut deck up and re fiberglass?



david bain
May 25, 2010

The hair dryer method works great!

Malcolm Makua
January 09, 2010

I agree with using a heat gun, but I didn't have one so I laid the board in the sun for an even heat distribution and dor about 20 minutes. I check the pad for separation at the edges and slowly start peeling the pad of the board. It worded for me.

aloha malcolm

September 14, 2009

I was given an 114" naish and the grip just kept coming off. In the end after sticking it Evostick i pulled the complete a pad off using my hands and white spirit to clean the board back. The guys at naish are supplying a replacement, but its the 3m glue which is the problem in salt water which fail. I hear after research the best thing is to clean it all off the new pad and board with white spirit then wet n dry the board to key in the pad using a bostic marine glue. Roller the pad with a decorators roller to get the air out. Also let the first layer of glue go off then re- apply before sticking down when the glue is tacky. I ahve not tried it yet but i reckon this is the way ! The only way !

August 16, 2009

check it out....used the wife hair dryer on
a high heat setting and in 10 minutes pad just peeled right das hot!!!!

May 26, 2009

Goo Gone or Wax Remover and a Razor blade, take it from the traction experts at On A Mission. Peel that pad off and get yourself an OAM SUP Deck Pad.....first pad ever, with arch, kick, and soft slip free grid!!!!

Michele Jacquin
April 07, 2009

Used the tons of acetone with the brush technique. Horrible pad that shredded my skin had to go. Heavy chemical resistant gloves. Lots of fresh air. Pour acetone into stainless steel bowl. Use 3 inch qide brush for oil base paint. Use fingers to start peel of pad from tail 1/2 inch or so. Then started with tons of acetone wiped back and forth as I peeled the pad. Use razor for a few spots where it tore. Came off in 1-1/2 hours of work. I am still dizzy.

April 01, 2009

acetone (nail polish remover)applied with a paint brush. Two people ome to apply acetone while the other peels the pad off. Did not damage board, fingers are another story. Go slow and be patient.

Stuart Crosby
March 24, 2009

Removing a deck pad can be a lot easier if you were to heat up the adhesive with a heat gun. Set the heat gun on low as these generate a lot of heat which could damage the board. Slowly heat up the edge where you want to remove the pad and then work back and forth slowly pulling up the deck pad. If you do not have access to a heat gun an ordinary hair dryer will perform a similar function, although you will need to set the dryer on high heat.

Good luck and happy SUPing!


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