When purchasing summer activity equipment, it can begin to become expensive very quickly. One great option to keep in mind is purchasing second-hand equipment. This can save you a lot of money, and as long as you know what to look for and what to check, you will get a great quality piece of equipment for a cheaper price.
When choosing the correct stand-up paddleboard, begin by predetermining what type of paddling will be done on the board. There are different variations of stand-up paddleboards that are available—choosing the correct board type is critical to ensure the board will fit the needs of the owner.
How do you know what board type is best for the type of paddling you want to do with your board? Continue reading to learn more about the different variations stand-up paddleboards come in.
The shape and design of the board will change how the board performs in the water. When talking about the board shape, this is referred to as the “hull”. Most stand-up paddleboards have either a displacement hull or a planing hull. It is important to note that there are a few boards with a hybrid hull that are a mix between the two types.
It is good to know what you will be using your board for so that you can properly choose a hull to best fit your needs. For beginners, do not get too stressed about choosing your hull; the different hulls will not affect beginners too much.
Displacement hulls have a pointed nose, which makes this specific hull great for racing and fitness. Due to the pointed nose, displacement hulls have a similar shape to that of a canoe or kayak, but as a paddleboard. The pointed nose allows the paddleboard to slice through the water, forcing it to divide and go around the board, making the paddleboard ride smoother and faster.
Choosing this type of hull will require less effort when paddling, as the nose already divides the water and allows the paddleboard to more easily glide and take full advantage of each paddle. They are great for going straight and fast but are harder to turn and maneuver than their counterpart.
Planing hulls are wide and flat, with a rounded front area. The wider board makes it a great option for those who plan on surfing, leisurely paddling, doing yoga on the board, or whitewater paddleboarding. The actual shape of the planing hull is similar to a surfboard but thicker. These are designed to be more easily turned and maneuvered through the water.
Volume and Weight Capacity
A board must work for your size—if it is too small or significantly too large, you will not be able to properly ride and use the paddleboard. Paddleboards which are too small for the user will not be able to properly hold the user, causing the board to drag and begin to partially sink. On the contrary, boards that are too large for the user (for example a child using an adult’s board) will likely not have enough strength to successfully move the board where they want to go without using all of their energy.
The volume of a stand-up paddleboard is measured and expressed in liters. This shows the user the board’s ability to float with added weight. Higher volume means more weight can be added and the board can still float.
The weight capacity listed for the board indicates how much weight can be added on the board and the board still be able to float. This is an especially important feature to pay attention to if you are planning on using the paddleboard with more than just yourself at a time. You will want to make sure the paddleboard can hold to the weight of two people while you do your water activities.
Often, if the weight is too much for the paddleboard, it will not go fully underwater but will drag and make it harder to control and go through the water. Especially for people who intend on racing with their stand-up paddleboards, ensuring the weight limit well exceeds your own is a critical factor when purchasing a new board.
Solid vs. Inflatable
Solid Stand Up Paddleboards
Solid paddleboards are a great option for those who are more invested in their paddleboarding. Solid stand-up paddleboards are of better quality and performance. These boards move faster, with less effort, and have a smoother ride. Especially for those who are interested in racing with their paddleboards, a solid paddleboard is a must.
Solid paddleboards also come in a larger variety of sizes. If you are someone who does not fit the “one size fits all” category, a solid paddleboard is a great option for a board that is perfectly equipped for your size and needs.
“Solid” in this case is used to describe the make of the board, but can also be used to describe the stability of the board while on the water. It is a sturdier board, which allows the user to remain sturdy and stable while riding the board. This is an especially helpful characteristic for those doing yoga on their stand-up paddleboards, or for those who plan on taking their boards through the white water.
One downside to solid stand-up paddleboards is their size. If you currently do not have room in your house/ apartment to store your solid paddleboard, this is probably not a good option for you. You also have to consider transporting your board to the water. If you do not have a car rack or any straps to tie it down, you will have to purchase those before you can bring your board to the water.
Inflatable Stand Up Paddleboards
Inflatable stand-up paddleboards are a great option for those who do not have a lot of space to store their boards in their homes. These are easily deflated and take up a fraction of the space that solid paddleboards do when in storage.
If you are an adventurous person who likes to travel to new and different locations to use your paddleboard, owning an inflatable paddleboard is a great option for you. There are easier to bring with you as they do not require a lot of space to be stored in a car, and you do not have to purchase a car rack or any straps to secure it in place.
Along with those who like to travel and be adventurous, these paddleboards are especially convenient for those who like to hike up to more secluded or harder to get to lakes and bodies of water. Hiking with an inflatable paddleboard is much easier than attempting to bring up a solid paddleboard.
While this may be contradicting, inflatable paddleboards are also a good choice for those doing yoga on their board. They are less hard, which makes them more comfortable to do yoga poses on. If you are someone planning on doing yoga on your paddle board, you will have to decide between added comfort (inflatable board) or added balance (solid board).
Purchasing Your Stand Up Paddleboard Second-Hand
Now that you are aware of the type of stand-up paddleboard you want and you have a deeper knowledge of the components that go into the board, you are ready to purchase a paddleboard. Purchasing a used board is significantly cheaper than buying them new. Especially for beginners or those looking to save money, it is a great idea to take advantage of those who are selling their gently used boards. While it can be risky, as long as you are smart about the decision and understand the components of paddleboards, you will be fine.
Choosing Used or New
If you are reading this article and have gotten this far through it, you are likely someone who has either already decided to purchase a used board, or you are highly considering it. There are many benefits to purchasing your paddleboard used, as well as new.
Purchasing a used stand-up paddleboard is a great option for a beginner or someone who does not regularly get out on the water. This can save you a lot of money in the end. If you are just beginning to explore this hobby, starting with a cheaper, used board is great because if you find you do love this new hobby, you can begin to save up for a nice, expensive board.
Buying a new board is always great because (most of the time) they come without any problems and are in perfect condition. Especially for someone who already knows they love the hobby and will participate in it enough to make up for the cost, buying a new board with all the accessories you want is a great investment.
Where to Purchase Your Board
If you are wanting to purchase a used stand-up paddleboard, there are a few options for you to choose from when thinking about the vendor selling you the board. Below is a list of websites you can browse through to see if you can find what you are looking for.
If you want to purchase a secondhand board but you do not want to do so online, a great option for you would be to visit your local paddleboard rental shop to see if they are selling any of their used boards. This is a great way to know you are getting a high-quality board and you can inspect the board in person.
What should you be looking for during your inspection?
How to Properly Inspect Your Board
Many people do not want to purchase stand-up paddleboards secondhand because they are worried about damage caused by the previous owner. As long as you know what to look for and you do a thorough inspection, you should have nothing to worry about. If possible, when purchasing a used board online, either see if there is an option for returns if there is damage or have the current owner facetime you while recording the board from all angles so that you can thoroughly inspect it before making this purchase.
Many people sell their boards online because they are upgrading to a better board, not because the board no longer works. You will want to ask the current owner if they have experienced any issues with the board while it was in their possession. You want to make sure you can make an informed decision.
Ensure that there are not any large cuts or dents on the board (small ones should not affect the smoothness of the ride too much). You also want to make sure that all the fins are still intact and unbroken. Broken fins will affect how the board moves through the water.
If you are also purchasing a paddle with the board, make sure the paddle is not broken and has no loose parts. Depending on how the paddle was made, there may be a loose, disconnected part between the paddle and the handle. If this is the type of paddle you are purchasing, ensure it has not become loose and still functions properly.
When inspecting your board, it is a good idea to check for a warranty. There will likely be a sticker found on the side or the bottom of the board with the warranty dates indicated. Check to see when the warranty expired or when it will expire. If the warranty is still in use, this is a great sign, because not only does this show proof of how young the board is, but also if you experience any issues with the board (some restrictions may apply) you will be able to take it into the company to have them fix or replace your board.