Are there SUP brands to avoid, you know, stand up paddle boards that would not give you value for money?
That’s what we are going to find out here!
These things are not cheap. You can read our article on solid vs inflatable SUP and see for yourself.
That’s why when ordering one, you want to be sure it will last a long time. Several years if possible.
If it is solidly built, and you store it well during winter, it is going to last a long time. But all of these things are futile, if you do not find a good brand name first.
SUP brands To Avoid: Buying Guide
Are there specific SUP brands you should avoid buying from? Not really. But when looking for the best stand up paddle board for a beginner, you might want to consider the following things:
1. Buy a SUP board that meets your purpose
Consider what you intend to do with your SUP board.
If you are a beginner, you are going to need a broader paddle board, so that it covers more surface area to give you stability.
All the same, this does not mean you will not fall off into the water. You will, but a wider board is better for a beginner.
The best beginner paddle boards can be inflatable or solid. The key thing is to choose one that is wide enough for your height.
If you are experienced and you are looking for a paddle board you can use in the river, choose an appropriate one.
Such a board would be narrower and longer. It might also have a tail and nose that tapers slightly upwards to glide on water, rather than cut through water.
2. Avoid SUP brands that are too cheap
A stand up paddle board takes quite a beating from all the work and fun in the water. Before you consider the cost of a paddle board, we recommend you look at the features first.
If you check on amazon.com, you will find some boards going for as little as $100. If you are on a very low budget, you might want to avoid such cheap boards. Most of them are inflatable, and not everyone wants an inflatable stand up paddle board.
Generally, you should expect to pay at least $150 for a high quality paddle board. Of course, the costlier is better because it comes with more accessories such as a high quality carry bag.
Ask yourself why the Blue Fin Inflatable SUP board that you can buy on Amazon.com can cost up to $600, and yet another one costs less than $150.
We are not saying that you should pay through the nose for a board. Rather, we are saying you should find a balance between the features and the price.
Also, look at the warranty when you are buying. Longer is better! Does the iSUP come with a pump? These are the important things to consider.
3. Avoid brands without reviews
User reviews and testimonials can help you buy the perfect item all the time. Unfortunately, new brands for SUP paddles and paddle boards do not have these reviews, so you can only take your chances.
If you are an experienced paddle board user, you can probably tell a good paddle board from a bad one.
Even without stand up paddle board reviews, you can get a good one. First time buyers cannot tell a good board from a bad one.
Also, do not buy a poorly done paddle board. In the water, your safety is paramount and a poorly designed paddle board can be hard to control.
There are no SUP brands known for poor handiwork. But consider the quality of the work and the material used in the construction of the board.
4. Design and construction of a paddle board
The construction of a racing paddle board could be different from that of a yoga board. First, consider the material used to make the frame. Usually, racing SUP boards have hollow frames, to keep them as light as possible.
The other stand up paddle boards come with EPS (expanded polystyrene) foam, which is also the most common material used to manufacture these boards.
However, some board manufacturers use polyurethane foam, which is heavier than the EPS foam.
This is why polyurethane foam is used for beginner boards because the extra weight makes them easy to control, and more stable in the water.
Consider also the type of material used to cover the frame – the skin. In this case, the board can come with a fiberglass, wooden, plastic or carbon fiber skin.
There is another aspect of design we can discuss here. Today, there are advanced SUP paddle board designs, such as the Easy Eddy Detachable Board, that come in three parts that fit together perfectly.
Because of the bulkiness of the solid paddle boards, transporting one without a roof rack can be hard.
This is why the detachable solid paddle board can be perfect for you. It would be so easy to transport the board in the trunk of your car.
5. Avoid paddle boards that don’t come with accessories
When you are buying stand up paddle boards, choose one that comes with the accessories. Here are some considerations:
Pump – an inflatable sup board should come with a pump. Otherwise, how are you going to inflate it? If you use other pumps, the nozzles might not fit. Also, it needs to be able to do the recommended PSI rating.
Storage bag – You will need to store your SUP in the right way to prevent damage. When the paddle-boarding season is over, clean your SUP and air-dry it thoroughly. After that, pack it in its bag and store it in a room with the right humidity.
Paddle – A detachable SUP paddle, with a handle made of aluminum can last a long time. Also, SUP handles are filled with foam material. This helps the SUP handle to float in water so that you don’t lose it.
The leash – The SUP leash is the only attachment between you and the SUP board. It needs to be in the package that you buy on Amazon.com. It does not make sense to have to buy the leash separately.
SUP fins – The detachable or fixed SUP fins help the board to track better in the water. If the board you are buying comes with detachable SUP fins, make sure they are in the package.
SUP brands to avoid FAQ
SUP boards are not cheap. Therefore, buying one can be confusing since you don’t know whether to go for a cheap one, or an expensive one.
If you need more clarification, here are the frequently asked questions that can shed more light on this.
Does SUP brand matter?
There is no harm in being loyal to a brand that you have used before. There is also no problem in trying out a new SUP brand that has just come to the market.
To some extent, the SUP brand does matter. For instance, Easy Eddy is known for their detachable 3-piece SUP board. It is very easy to transport such a paddle board in the trunk of your car.
Isle Surf and SUP has been a one-stop center for different types of paddle boards. They have models for beginners as well as for advanced users.
iRocker is a well known brand name when it comes to the solid paddle boards. Overall, there is a brand name for everyone out there.
The well known brands might sell their boards at higher prices, but then they offer extras such as longer warranties and perhaps better return policies.
Is there a problem buying a SUP board from a lesser known brand name? Not at all! In fact, they might be offering better prices to woo customers.
Are cheap paddle boards any good?
When you are just getting into the stand up paddle boarding hobby, it is better to start with a cheap iSUP.
That way, even when it gets a serious beating when using it, transporting it or storing it, you know it is only for a short time, and then you get another one.
If you are not aiming to upgrade to a more advanced iSUP later, it is best to avoid the cheap boards.
They are cheap for a reason.
The manufacturers of such boards use low quality materials. Therefore, their boards cannot stand the test of time.
If you are truly operating on a shoestring budget, you may consider getting a secondhand paddle board.
It can be a solid or an inflatable one. If it is in good shape, it can serve you longer and better than a new, dirt-cheap SUP board.
Whats the difference between a cheap and expensive SUP?
Material – Even if both are inflatable SUP boards made of PVC material, the quality of the material might be different. This affects how long these boards can last. Heavier PVC material might last longer than light one, and so on.
Build quality – This is about the small details such as seam quality. It is also about the different layers of the SUP material and how well they are joined together.
Remember, build quality is also what sets aside a bad life vest for paddle boarding from a bad one.
The quality of the SUP leash and paddle also matters a lot, since they are sold as part of the package.
Maintenance – It will most likely be the trash bin for the cheap paddle boards. Most of them are not repairable. So, if they break down, that’s it!
Costlier paddle boards are built with better material and they are repairable. If they are punctured, it is easy to repair the paddle board and give it a new leash of life.
Final thoughts on SUP brands to avoid
If a SUP brand makes low quality boards, avoid it. If the boards are too cheap, they have most likely compromised on the quality.
Instead of buying a low quality new SUP board, it would be better to buy a high quality secondhand paddle board.
There are many SUP brands to avoid in the UK, USA, Canada and in many other places. However, to identify them, first, you need to know what to look for in the best paddle boards.
If you are looking for the best SUP paddle and its accessories, click the button below to get one on Amazon.com:
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