Inflatables Vs Fibreglass SUP – what to choose?

Not sure what type of SUP package to choose out of a Hard Board or an inflatable? We hope this article will help you choose…

Inflatables VS Fiberglass

Do you have storage issues?
If you do then an inflatable is an best solution. Most inflatables on the market today come with a bag so they can be easily folded up and stored in a small space in your apartment, or more importantly, in the trunk of your small car so you can transport it and go paddle. Plus you can avoid the oversize charge and headache when flying.The Drift Air inflatables comes as the full kit which includes paddle board, leash, adjustable paddle, bag, pump and fin.

Jane from Drift took her inflatable paddle board to NZ, which she got to adventure some magnificent places. This is the added bonus of the inflatable SUP with the Drift AIR inflatable bag being also a backpack which is great for traveling

Do you have young children that will be on the board also?
Want a safe option then the inflatable paddle boards are safe option compared to fibreglass in regards to if you or your child was to fall.

Do you want an all round paddle board for flat water, Ocean and Surf? 
When surfing or paddling distance, a fibreglass/hard board is the way to go.The Drift Fibreglass Range is designed to be used in all conditions. Inflatable Boards are perfect for Recreational flat water and exposed waterways but not so much surf.

Have storage and roof racks?
While inflatables make for convenient storage, they do take time to set up. Fibreglass boards you just tie it to the racks, drive to your paddling destination and paddle (unless you leave an inflatable inflated all the time). Inflatables generally take about 10 minutes (or more) to pump up.

Want a good all round board?
If you are wanting a board which does it all (flat water, ocean paddling and surf) then a hard board would be your best option to take advantage of all types of paddling.

Some other points to take in
– iSUPs are more durable, especially in whitewater (fibreglass hitting rocks would ding and damage your board)
– Fibreglass boards are faster
– Our Inflatables are very durable and are not like an inflatable toy. The Drift AIR has drop stitch construction meaning you wont get any bend and are extra buoyant

About Drift Inflatable paddle boards:

There are a lot of inflatable paddle boards in the market but you need to know that you are getting quality and a good solid rigid board. Drift Inflatables are designed to be super rigid in which when inflated you won’t feel like you are on one. They have drop stitch construction which are fibres throughout the construction of the board to create stiffness. They are all machine laminated not handmade,

Check out our Inflatable Range which includes everything to get you on the water:

 

Check our Latest products!

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    Drift AIR-DOCK

    $1,099.00$2,698.00
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    Drift AIR Frangipani Pink

    $1,099.00 $869.00
  • NEW!
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    Drift AIR Frangipani Aqua

    $1,099.00 $879.00
  • NEW!
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    Drift AIR Tropicano

    $1,299.00 $879.00

About Drift Fibreglass Packages Deals

Drift Paddle Boards are all about package deals. With a Stand Up Paddle Board Package it will take the ease out of figuring what you need to get on the water along with saving you $$

 

Fibreglass Packages:

Our Fibreglass Boards are designed for Flat Water, Ocean and also Surf which makes them the perfect all round SUP. Whats included with all our Fibreglass SUP’s is an Adjustable Paddle, Leg Rope for safety (the reason you need one is incase you fall off in bad water conditions making the SUP your buoyancy aid), Paddle board bag for storage and protection & 3 fins (2 side fins for surf and the centre fin which you need permanently when out paddling on your SUP)

If you are after a good all round SUP then our Fibreglass Board Packages is the perfect choice

 

 

SHOP FIBREGLASS PACKAGES

Where to place your SUP centre fin

WHERE DO I POSITION THE MIDDLE FIN ON MY FIBREGLASS/SOFT-TOP/EPOXY STAND UP PADDLE BOARD?

The most common fin system on SUP boards has a track that is longer than the fin itself. This design allows you to customize the performance of your board via the fin placement either further toward the nose, or tail of the board.

1. FIN POSITIONED ALL THE WAY FORWARD TOWARDS THE NOSE

Surfing
Putting the fin all the way forward in the fin slot will make your board feel more maneuverable and make it quicker to turn. The negative is that the board will not track in a straight line as well, and may feel like you’re moving slightly slower. This fin placement is one you’d want to consider this position if you are paddling in smaller or crowded waters, or when surfing.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

2. ALL THE WAY BACK TOWARDS THE TAIL

Long distance paddle boarding, or when you want increased straight line tracking

This will increase the stability of your board, and will also increase the boards tracking and speed. Negative is that it will be slower to turn. This is a good placement if you’re paddling longer distances and want to maximize the tracking of your board.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

3. IN THE MIDDLE OF THE FIN SLOT

Any condition where you want a mix of tracking, and maneuverable
This fin placement will give you a mix of all the performance characteristics of the other fin placements, and is the one most favoured by paddle boarders. Positioning your fin In the middle of the fin slot will give you a mix of control, stability, tracking, and speed on your board.

Out Chasing Star Review on Drift Paddle boards Inflatables

 

Why an iSUP?

On-board Starry Horizons
Ready for a paddle.
On my way to the Tangalooma Wrecks
The backpack with paddleboard in it is surprisingly light.
Inflating the Drift AIR 10’6 Paddleboard.
Paddleboarding in the Tangalooma Wrecks.
I’m very happy.

We’ve made a lot of friends who have inflatable standup paddleboards, and in the last year I’ve borrowed a few and taken them out for a spin. The iSUP solves all these problems:

Getting onto the iSUP from the water is incredibly easy.

The iSUP will fit on top of our dinghy davits when inflated. Several friends keep theirs inflated all season long and just properly secure on deck while on the move.

Any paddleboard is just one solid piece of material or one tube. This is much easier to clean, as there’s no crevices and folds for sand to get stuck in.

I did my research, talked to friends, and found two companies I was interested in buying paddleboards from. I bought from Drift Paddleboards, and so far am very pleased.

Meet, the Gemini Twins:

Unboxing our New Drift Paddleboards:

We’d been carrying the new paddleboards around on Starry Horizons for a while. Unfortunately, the water here on the east coast of Australia (south of Moreton Bay) hasn’t been all that pretty, plus we were traveling away from the boat a lot. Finally, when our friend Madeline was visiting we’d just spent a few rainy days cooped inside playing games. The wrecks of Tangalooma ended up being a fun place to get the paddleboards out for the first time.

It had been a while since I’d bought them, so I’d pretty much forgotten what was in the box.

Our Drift Paddleboards came with:

  • an actual backpack (the ikayak we had had a weird bag with a shoulder strap, which was very uncomfortable)
  • repair kit
  • iSUP body
  • cargo net
  • leash
  • paddles (we upgraded to the carbon fiber adjustable paddles)
  • manual pump

There were no instructions that I could find, so I was a bit on my own, but I was able to figure everything out. The backpack is too big for the board, which is a bit akward. We did find that the holes on the paddle to make it adjustable were not aligned properly and David pulled out his tools to do some quick drilling for me.

The backpack with paddleboard in it is surprisingly light.

Feeling the fabric of the paddleboard. I’m no expert, but it feels good!

Testing out my new Drift Paddleboard at the Tangalooma Wrecks. I’m very happy.

My Thoughts on our new Paddleboards:

So far, so good. I am very happy with the ease of inflating the paddleboard and assembling it. It is smaller than our old ikayak and lighter as well. The stability is good, which Madeline can attest to.

Madeline had never paddleboarded before, but she very quickly caught on and was able to stabilize herself and paddle around. I was impressed with how much speed I could pick up. There is a pretty strong current near the wrecks, but both Madeline and I had no trouble paddling back to the boat up current. The iSUP fits well on the davits, and hoses down easily. I am so glad I got to take a test run at such a unique place, and I look forward to a lot more amazing paddles soon!

Disclaimer: The products mentioned in this post were received at a discounted rate. We were psyched to have their support, but this post reflects our honest opinion on the product. We posted all the good and the bad!

Check out Inflatable Packages

  • FUN!!
    Sale!

    Drift AIR-DOCK

    $1,099.00$2,698.00
  • HOT!
    Sale!

    Drift AIR Frangipani Pink

    $1,099.00 $869.00
  • NEW!
    Sale!

    Drift AIR Frangipani Aqua

    $1,099.00 $879.00
  • NEW!
    Sale!

    Drift AIR Tropicano

    $1,299.00 $879.00

The benefits of a Soft SUP

Beginners will find soft top paddle boards convenient and easy to use. But, what exactly are soft top paddle boards and what is the difference between these boards and regular ones?

SOFT TOP PADDLE BOARDS

These are the cheapest paddle boards, but that does not mean they compromise on quality. The material used in construction and the design are what define soft top paddle boards. These boards are made of soft epoxy fiberglass material and are designed with foam cores. These are meant to reduce the weight of the board; and therefore, make it easier to transport. The softer materials used to make soft top paddle boards are more durable than those used in harder boards. Soft top boards never crack, and this increases longevity. In fact, they normally last for an entire lifetime.

They also feature wide surfaces, and this is part of what makes them popular among beginners. In case you lose balance, your landing will be easier.

The biggest advantage of soft top paddle boards is their ease of use. Many beginners find soft top paddle boards more stable, comfortable and easier to balance on. That is also part of the reason why these boards have become popular among people who practice sup yoga. Yoga involves a lot of complicated moves, and losing balance is quite easy, especially on water surfaces. Water increases the intensity of the workouts, and this increases the need for balance. Soft top paddle boards provide this balance. Also, the cushioned surface of soft top boards reduces the pressure on knees and feet.

In case you get shaky, these boards will offer you a safer landing, therefore, preventing any serious injuries.

Because of the construction, soft top paddle boards are also a lot more durable. They can take a lifetime of abuse without requiring a lot of trips to the repair shop. That is actually the reason why rentals stock soft top paddle boards. They will last much longer than their harder alternatives. On top of this durability, these paddle boards are very cheaply priced.

WHO SHOULD USE SOFT TOP PADDLE BOARDS?

Soft top paddle boards are mainly meant for people who just want to have fun. They don’t call for a lot of effort and are a lot more stable. Unless you want to make paddle boarding a serious sport, you should stick to soft top paddle boards. If you like to experiment with different riding styles or want to try them all, softer top paddle boards will be the best for you. They are a lot more versatile than regular and hard paddle boards. Also, beginners should opt for these boards as they are easier to use. Harder boards are meant for people with experience in the sport.

DRIFT CRUISER SOFT TOP PADDLE BOARD

We have created a Soft SUP uniquely our own. A full layer of 6oz fibreglass epoxy is applied to the deck with an additional partial layer applied over the ‘standing area’ for support. Two durable polyethylene layers of varying density are applied to the bottom. Lastly the flexible IPXE (a foam like material) is laminated to the deck and over the rails.. You can expect softer landings when you lose balance in the water. If you intend to go on long paddling sessions, this would be a great product as it has a nice grip on the surface.

Our Cruiser Soft Tops are only $699 which includes paddle & leash.

Check our Featured

Top health benefits from Stand Up Paddle boarding (SUP)

Yep we truly believe paddle boarding is the best sport in the world by far, and here is why….

  • Improves balance: Getting that balance on your stand up paddle board does require core stability and leg strength to maintain balance. This not only helps you have a good balance while paddle boarding but increases your focus and balance in day-to-day activities too.
  • Full body workout: You are using a lot of muscles when paddle boarding, actually majority of them. Because of the balance required, leg muscles will be hard at work attempting to stabilize your center of gravity. Your abs are constantly getting a work out along with your arms and shoulders.
  • Low impact: Standup paddling is a very low impact exercise. Therefore, it is unlikely that you will do damage to the tendons and ligaments of your joints if your paddling technique is done correctly. For those who love the outdoors, adventure and want a low impact but good workout then paddle boarding is the one of you. Its a great break from high impact sport to give you a break and still get the exercise.
  • Less Stress: Whenever you are on the water you naturally feel distressed, you always feel great after a paddle too as you get some exercise…oh and don’t forget to take some great shots of the scenery along the way.
  • Overall increased strength: If you get addicted to paddle boarding (which is easy) you will find that your strength will increase, its a win/win
  • Cardio / Endurance : Push yourself that bit more by doing higher intensity training on your SUP, there are great gadgets out there which can track your heart rate, distance and even your paddling technique. One you subconsciously have your balance also try some more exposed water paddling which give you a great buzz
  • Nature: We can’t explain enough how many great places you will come across. Grab your SUP buddy and go explore
The warmer weather is also going to creep up on us with spring only a month away. Hope you got some great tips out of this article

Jane - Drift Paddleboards

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