What are handplanes?

A handplane is a planing device that is strapped to the hand and provides lift and reduces drag whilst bodysurfing and allows the rider to turn and change direction with ease.

How do handplanes work?

When a unbroken wave approaches a bodysurfer and the surfer swims in the direction in which the wave is flowing, there is a sudden increase in swimming speed, with the handplane outstretched on an extended arm it begins to AQUAPLANE across the surface of the water, enabling the surfer to apply downward pressure, and thus create LIFT, allowing the bodysurfer to plane ON TOP of the waters surface rather than through it. Resulting in an massive DECREASE IN DRAG, and an INCREASE IN SPEED allowing you to catch wave after wave.

 

WHAT ARE THE DIFFERENCES BETWEEN EACH MODEL?

Fish Models:
Short and manoeuvrable, these styles are are great for the steeper drops, fast turns and barreling waves. Reccomended for your beginner through to expert bodysurfers

Moontail Models:

A little longer, making them much easier to get into the waves initially due to a larger planing surface, great for picking your line and settling in for a long ride. The board of choice if your new to bodysurfing or love the thrill of a long ride.

What difference does the concave make?

All of our handplanes come with a singe large concave, this dramatically increases the boards surface area creating large amounts of lift whilst simultaneously creating suction and grip to the waves face.  It allows you to hold your line when trimming across the wave. The deep concave leads into a sharp rail which not only enables you to make turns at speed it also can be used on the really steep waves to lock yourself in higher up the wave and maintain your position. 

One of our team riders demonstrating the holding power of the deep concave and sharp rail. Note the height of which the bodysurfer is positioned on the wave

Why wood?

Unlike a surfboard, a handplane is not a floating device. It is a planing surface. It still needs to float though. A handplane is best with a neutral buoyancy, meaning it needs to float, but you also need to be able to easily penetrate the water with it. When you are swimming, every stroke you take with your handplane strapped to your hand, needs to penetrate the the water easily. If it doesn't, then you will end up fighting buoyancy and tiring out while swimming. You also don't want something strapped to your hand that sits too high in the water. This can cause loss of control on the wave. Wood has a great neutral buoyancy, especially Paulownia.

What wood are they made from?

That's a good question.  The majority of our handplanes are made from sustainably harvested Australian grown paulownia timber. There are a lot of other types of woods that are cheaper and easier to obtain but here are our reason as to why we use the magic wood

  • Its incredibly light - making it a convenient addition to the day pack and super easy to swim with;
  • It has incredible strength to weight ratio.
  • Its naturally hydrophobic which means it doesn't take on water or warp.
  • And lastly, Paulownia is a great environmental choice. Its an incredibly fast growing tree and is grown on sustainable plantations here in Australia.

We also make a range of handplanes from reclaimed old growth Australian oregon.