9'8" Inflatable Paddle Board by Coreban
The Coreban inflatable stand up paddle board is an extension of their highly
regarded line of EPS wood sandwich construction SUPs. Coreban is known as a
quality construction leader in the traditional SUP construction, and they arent
veering from that path with their inflatable paddle boards. Their predominantly
white design with black accents is a simple, yet classic design.
Inflatable SUPs are not what most people think they are at first consideration.
Most people see an inflatable paddle board for sale and assume its comparable
to other inflatable water toys like those you pull behind your ski boat or float
on around the pool. The idea of surfing on something of this nature just doesnt
compute. Even just paddling around, one naturally expects there would be significant
sag in the middle where you are standing. The reality is that inflatable SUPs
will surprise you. The good ones, Coreban included, are made from extremely
rugged materials like those youd find on the highly regarded Zodiac boats
and extreme river rafting boats.
Inflatable Stand Up Paddle Board Construction
In addition to using durable materials, the insides of inflatable paddle boards
will probably surprise you. Corebans boards have thousands of fibers
connecting the top deck with the bottom of the board. When inflated, these fibers work against
the air pressure to create a flat, rigid, consistent SUP board shape from tail to nose.
Inflatable Paddle Board Package
The package includes the inflatable SUP, a three piece aluminum SUP paddle,
a pump, and a bag to carry everything. The beauty of an inflatable paddle board
package that all fits into a bag is that it means you can finally take the board
with you on your travels on a plane, on your boat while island hopping,
on the back of your four-wheeler up to that hidden lake, on your Enduro bike
on a cross country adventure, or pretty much anywhere your adventurous lifestyle takes you.
Pros vs Cons of Stand Up Paddleboard Inflatables
The beauty of inflatable SUPs is that they fold up into a very small footprint
when deflated, which makes them easier to store and easier to transport. Considering
stand up paddle boards can be up to 12 in length, this is a major positive
for inflatables for anyone that lives in an apartment or place without a garage.
For taking them on the road, this is also a huge benefit for boaters and anyone
who wants to take the boards with them on their travels. Face it, a 12
traditional SUP is really only feasible for use in your local area.
Another major advantage of inflatable standups is for navitating rocky coastlines
and river shallows. Traditional standups, made in the same fashion as surfboards,
have a hard shell. It's hard and durable in water conditions, but not nearly
as hard as sharp, jagged rocks. This is why you typically see metal boats or
inflatable raft type boats used in rivers and for boats that are intended to
run ashore on coastlines. Inflatable SUPs can be punctured with enough force
and a sharp enough object, but it isn't exactly easy as their maleable surface
is designed to absorb rocky intrusions. Just like a whitewater raft, they can
go right over rocks and be drug up on a rocky shore without batting an eye.
Try this with a surfboard, and you'll quickly penetrate the outer fiberglass
shell and expose the board to water damage.
The major downside for inflatable paddleboards is that they arent 100%
rigid so speed in flat water paddling will be affected and surfing performance
will also be affected. That being said, they are still surprisingly rigid and
many people (including pro surfers) have remarked that they work just fine.
Its not high performance stand up paddle surfing, but its not
that bad either. And if youre off to a remote island in Fiji (or a remote
lake, or out in the islands on your yacht), youre either not stand up
paddle boarding or youre using an inflatable.
If you live near the water where youll be using your SUP a lot, its
still probably best to get a traditional
standup paddle board at least as your first board. Once youre
hooked, youre going to want to take something on the road and having
an inflatable in those cases will be great. Its actually a perfect solution
for a guest board that only gets used infrequently. And if you
live in a space constrained place, or just want one to keep on the boat or at
the vacation house, it not only works just fine, it will likely surprise you!
The Coreban company has been making high-quality, high-performance stand up
paddle surfing boards since 2005, longer than most every brand of SUP on the
market. Their primary focus is on stand up paddle surfing performance. Their
secondary focus is on high-quality, durable boards. Theyre not the cheapest
boards on the market. In reality, they may very well be some of the most expensive
stand up paddle boards on the market but they make a product that is widely
hailed by those who do EPS board repairs as some of the best made
boards out there. And when you spend $1000+ on a piece of sports equipment,
its not really supposed to be a disposable product. Its a product
that you will take to the repair shop if you get a major ding or puncture. Coreban
gets this, and they design their boards for long term durability in addition
To bring this concept of quality and durability home to you, here is a personal
experience I had while attending a board retailers seminar at a recent
ASR (Action Sports Retailers) tradeshow. During the lunch break I had the fortune
of sitting at a lunch table with a couple of well known surf shop owners from
Southern California. These are guys that have been in the surf industry for
decades and each own several major surf shops. Funny, for as much perceived
tension as there is between surfers and stand up paddle surfers, it seems all
of the shop owners are huge SUP fanatics. Thats what they do in their
off time. I actually learned to SUP from a local San Diego shop owner. Anyways,
at lunch they were discussing SUPs and I asked them what they thought of Coreban
boards. The consensus was that they were some of the best boards out there.
They commented that while many of the high-end board brands are all made in
the same factory overseas, the Coreban ones seem to do something differently
and the result is a board that can take abuse and show virtually no signs. While
almost every other board out there (no matter how big the brand, or how expensive)
seems to get the rails dinged up over time, the Corebans just dont.
From that conversation, my mind was made up about which high-end board to carry
in addition to our own Tower stand up paddle boards. Corebans may not
be the best priced board out there, but if youre the type of person who
is much more concerned with getting the absolute best there is
versus getting the best price, you cant go wrong with a