Melbourne, Florida – September 27, 2015 – The semi-annual surf lifestyle trade show seems to be in a rut when it comes to the exhibiting categories of boutique, resort, and coastal gifts. For the past three shows, any new products just seem to be the same old, same old beach store stuff. But in the SUP category nothing can be further from the truth. The number of fishing SUPs and kayaks have appeared to be growing. And the number of new SUP designs seems to be on an increase. Here are a few noteworthy brands from the 2015 September Surf Expo.
RED PADDLE – When walking the Surf Expo show floor, it will not take you long to figure out that the SUP board market is on fire. There were new foam and inflatable boards every which way you turned. One of the inflatable boards that stood out because of its design and construction was entire family of Red Paddle SUP boards. Over the years, through many design changes, Red Paddle was looking to make their board more rigid with less weight. It looks like they have succeeded. It all starts with the inner layers of the board construction. Their new layering configuration is called “Double Layering”. Once the initial top and bottom layers are attached using a double drop stitch thread (which makes the board stronger) and the board starts to resemble a SUP, the additional top and bottom layers are applied. When this step in the process is complete the rails are applied. Red Paddle uses a 4-layering tape technique to apply the board rails which make the rails stronger than rails on a competitor’s board. To learn more about the construction click HERE to read about this technique on their webpage. You can also read about the Red SUP on a webpage called SUP North. Click HERE for the UK webpage. If you are looking for your first SUP or to add to your tool kit, you might want to give Red Paddle a look over.
HOBIE – After a run at ICAST and Outdoor Retailer, Hobie brought their new Mirage i11S to Surf Expo. It looks like an inflatable SUP but has a kayak rigid aluminum seat and the famous Hobie Mirage drive propulsion system. There was a lot of buyer activity in the Hobie booth as the Hobie sales and marketing team showed off their new toy. Check it out at a dealer near you this November.
AIR HEAD SUP – Airhead SUP is a Colorado corporation that manufactures inflatable SUP and SUP accessories. Air Head is part of the Kwik Tek family of water sport brands. AIRHEAD products include inflatable towable tubes, wakeboards, water ski and tow ropes, snow tubes, inflation accessories and more.
STARBOARD SUP – This SUP brand offers the water sports adventurer nine (9) different categories of inflatable and rigid SUPs to chose from. At Surf Expo they had a new fishing SUP on display. This SUP had rod holders mounted to the deck and bungee cord to hold gear in place. See the slide show for a photo of this SUP. Click HERE for a Starboard inflatable SUP video.
RIVIERA SUP – This brand had on display their new 12’6″ Fish On! – SUP Fishing Board. This is a rigid SUP equipped with 5 neoprene carrying handles, front and back bungee tie-downs, and 9 anchor points with ¼-20 threads that are compatible with Ram Mounts for Rod Holders, Fish Finders, & GPS Systems. See the slide show for a photo of this SUP.
SEVYLOR – This is a company that has been manufacturing inflatable water craft for as long as one can remember. Sevylor started making inflatable rafts just after WWII. Founded in France in 1948, it is one of the largest manufacturers of consumer rubber rafts in the world. In 2008, the Coleman Company added the Sevylor Brand to their family of outdoor companies. At this Surf Expo, Sevylor showed off their inflatable fishing SUP. This fishing SUP had Berkley rod holders mounted to the deck along with bungee cords to attach gear. See the slide show for a photo of this SUP.
AQUA GLIDE SUP – This brand which is known for their inflatable kayaks and resort inflatable slides and other water sports platforms markets their stand-up paddling boards (SUPs) under their Amundson SUP brand. At Surf Expo they had their new fishing SUP displayed in the middle of their booth making it this season’s focal point. This fishing SUP like many others on display at Surf Expo had rod holders mounted to the deck and bungee cords to attach fishing gear and coolers to the SUP. See the slide show for a photo of this SUP. Click HERE for a Aqua Glide inflatable SUP video.
BIC SUP – BIC is one of those brands that started out as a manufacturer of a single water sports product and then diversified into the manufacture of surf boards, kayaks, SUPs. At this year’s Surf Expo, BIC had on display their new 11’-0” Ace-Tec Cross Adventurer SUP. On display with this SUP was a battery powered propeller propulsion system. This is an interesting concept to ponder. See the slide show for a photo of this SUP. Click HERE for a BIC SUP video.
BOARDWORKS SUP – Boardworks is a company with the brands and products:
– Boardworks – 54 Products
– Badfish – 10 Products
– Infinity Surfboards – 6 Products
– MM – 2 Products
– Strive – 10 Products
– Hynson and Company – 1 Product
– Boardworks Rescue Division – 4 Products
Click HERE to visit the Boardworks web page to find links to each of these brands. At surf Expo many of these brads were on display. Not on display this year is the Badfish – BadFisher inflatable SUP. If you are looking for a fishing SUP, do not overlook this inflatable standup paddleboard.
Here is a final thought, when you are picking your next SUP, keep in mind that with a little imagination, you too could be running the rapids on one of the many rivers in the world. Click HERE for a video. Next month search Examiner Outdoor Recreation for an article on SUP River Running.
On January 14-16, 2016, 2015, the doors of the 2016 Surf Expo will open and the fun will begin all over again. It will be held at the Orange County Convention Center – NORTH & SOUTH CONCOURSE – 9899 International Drive – Orlando, Florida 32819. Will you be there?
Until next time, be safe in the sun and have a great day in the great outdoors.