I started making alaia boards about a year ago around mid 2008 creating stand up and paipo boards. I have been using two kinds of wood, Ulu (breadfruit) and Paulonia (the asian empress tree). I have been friends with the Tom and John Wegener for more than 15 years, so it was only a matter of time till I got up to speed with their Paulonia alaia boards. The empress tree is very light, bouyant and has great flex characteristics.
The breadfruit of old Hawaii can be dense with its rich gold and bronze coloring, and there is a naturally occuring latex sap for water resistance, it also has a stiffer flex pattern and a history of use by the ancient Hawaiians. The Ulu that I am using is old growth that is sustainably harvested on the land where the boards are made. The boards are coated with a special linseed oil finish.