Date of Defense


First Advisor

Dr. Judah Ari-Gur

Second Advisor

Dr. Jerry Hamelink


The most recent developmental push in the snowboarding industry has been to decrease the weight and therefore improve the maneuverability of snowboards. The primary goal of this project was to reduce the weight of a particular snowboard by ten percent, or 0.58 pounds. In most cases manufacturers had to develop physical prototypes in order to verify any new designs that were being considered for production. Without the access or funding to manufacture a physical prototype, it was necessary to first develop a computer simulation of the snowboard in order to make design changes and continuously analyze the behavior of each design. The board selected as the base model was a Joyride Dragonfyre® snowboard. The board was thoroughly dimensioned and drawn in Algor® to be used as a datum for the redesign. The properties and corresponding volume fractions of each material were used to determine the overall characteristics of the board. In order to verify the behavior displayed in the computer model, physical tests were run on the actual snowboard. There are currently no standardized tests used in the snowboarding industry, so tests were custom designed to provide the data required for verifying the model. After the model was finalized new designs were proposed and tested using finite element analysis. The results for the redesign were compared with the results obtained from the base model for structural verification of the new design. The final weight achieved for the redesign while maintaining the necessary structural properties was 4.64 lbs., which is 20.5% lighter than the existing board.

Access Setting

Honors Thesis-Campus Only