Wednesday, June 11, 2014

SUP - Xterra Boards


MSRP: $1,100 (if you are patient, they will run it on sale for less than $600. Use the extra $ to get a decent paddle)

DESCRIPTION:

"Before XTERRA BOARDS, there was no "Best" inflatable stand up paddle board. We use the highest quality material. Our boards are easy to transport & store. Simple to inflate (4 min). Not all inflatable boards are made alike, and few are backed by a 30-day money-back guarantee where you get to test it out on the water first. Our boards are light (29 pounds) & stiff, providing you with great balance on the board. It's perfect for storage on boats or RVs, for airplane travel, or hidden in your trunk ready for a quick trip on the water."

PACKAGING 

The box was delivered with everything included as advertised. No instructions are included as the company has them readily available on the website and it is an unnecessary use of paper to include. Right off, I was impressed with the quality of the backpack.


SET UP

This was simple to set up, it took a matter of minutes. Rolling out the board, attaching the pressure gauge and hose was no hassle.  Attaching and twisting the hose on to the board took some effort and I was concerned with breaking the plastic nozzle, but it clicked in after some steady pressure against the washer seal. Pumping up to 15 lbs took me 223 pumps and approximately 5 minutes. The paddle went together easily, but I could instantly tell this was not as high a quality as all the other elements in the package.


FEATURES

The quality of the board, pump and backpack are top notch. Once pumped up, the rigidity of the board is amazing and hard to believe the transformation from rolled up to stiff board. The handle on the board is soft and comfortable when carrying, the deck is comfortable on the knees and feet and the 'D' rings & bungee cord storage elements are well thought out. The backpack is awesome; rolling up the board and putting in the bag I was able to ride my bike to another location and set up the board to explore anew area with ease.The paddle is disappointing; it is clunky, the joints are flimsy, the top handle has rough edges from the plastic mold and at full extension seems too short for anyone 6'2" and taller.

PERFORMANCE

Performance is dependent on the user...I am a total novice when it comes to SUP, so I started on my knees to get a feel for the balance and movement while paddling. Once I moved to standing, I felt stable and able to paddle with power. I was able to get my wife out on the board and she thoroughly enjoyed the experience and we both had our five-year-old son out for the fun. With my increase in confidence and multiple times out on the board, I have begun to realize and enjoy the performance of the board, but at the same time becoming increasingly annoyed with the twisting, flimsiness and height of the paddle.

OVERALL

This is a fun product, not to mention a great core workout when you get the proper motion dialed in and put some effort into it. The set up . The only drawbacks I have is the paddle. All other elements, materials and performance features are of the highest quality, but the paddle falls well short of expectations and the clear drawback in this great package. With all that said, we are thinking about getting another one and are looking at the 12'6" Touring Xterra SUP offering will have in the coming months.


UPDATE - 7.1.2014

Now that I have been using this SUP for a few months, inflated and deflated the board a number of times and have tried other boards I still think this is a great board.
The only issue with the board (I've had my issues with the paddle, detailed below) was when deflating I ruptured the valve's internal washer and had to send an email to Xterra to inquire on self-repair or if I needed to send the board back. Here is the fix:

Repair Xterra Board Rupture Valve Internal Washer:
SUP Package includes an orange toolkit, with a grey valve wrench. 
Use wrench slowly on the valve to remove the valve. 
Put the washer back in place and re-insert the valve into the board.
When screwing it back in, no extra force is needed, just rotate until it stops.

I have become increasingly annoyed and frustrated with the cheap paddle and have decided to invested in something that fits my height (I'm 6'3"), more sturdy and higher quality. This paddle extended to its limit is only 76", really only good for someone up to 5'8" in height; the twist locking mechanism does not keep the upper part of the handle from twisting and needs constant adjustment; the twist joint is loose and creates an uncomfortable flex point; and the scoop/pole joint is loose and has unnecessary wiggle.

UPDATE 8-15-2014
Well, the paddle finally bit the dust. While my wife was using it, the plastic twist adjuster broke (cracked) so the paddle no longer stays adjusted. I emailed customer service at the company to inquire on any type of warranty on the paddle and I have yet to hear anything in return.

UPDATE 10-1-2014
I have never heard from Xterra customer service regarding the broken paddle after repeated attempts via email, phone and social media.
While I am happy with the board, the paddle sucks and Xterra customer service is worse and I will have second thoughts if I ever happen to be in a position to purchase or do business with them in the future.
 
UPDATE 3-21-2016
New day! One of the owners of Xterra sent me an email a few weeks ago, this is almost a year and a half after my issues. The email was to apologize for the issues, lack of customer service and wanting get things right. Today I got a new paddle, backpack and leash delivered. The new paddle is much better than the first iteration and breaks down to fit in the big board bag when transporting.
I was told there have been some significant changes within Xterra and the customer service department has been totally overhauled. 

Designed with convenience, durability, and functionality in mind; each item in your SUP package is a step above the competition and comes with a 30-day money-back guarantee.  Here are the essentials:
1 - 10' long, 5.5" thick, 30" wide - These dimensions are ideal for an all-around SUP board that is stable, won't sag, and will let you cruise on the water.  With 5.5" thickness, you will ride balanced and high on the water.  It weighs 29 pounds.  (You can weigh up to 250 pounds).
2 - Rigid Dropstitch & Double-Sided reinforcement - We use an extremely rigid dropstitch material so your board won't warp.  The top, bottom and sides of your board are reinforced with military/industrial-grade material.
3 - High-pressure pump & gauge (comes in a mesh case) - your board can be pumped up to 15 psi (an optimal amount) using the industry-best BRAVO pump.  Inflation takes 4 minutes.
4 - Deck pad - Think comfort.  Yes, SUPing is a workout, and having a little better pad is ideal.  We've used surfing-quality EVA foam, which provides more comfort and grip.
5 - Backpack - Some companies won't give you one.  Others will give you a cheap one.  Instead, we include a heavy-duty mesh backpack which is great for carrying all your gear and one that will drain out any sand and water.
6 - Repair kit - Our kit is standard, including glue, patches and a valve wrench.
7 - Paddle -  Our paddle is 3-piece sturdy aluminum.  It's designed for ease of transport, is light, and is a tear-drop shape for immediate power in the catch.
8 - Six D-rings- We provide six industrial strength plastic D-rings that won't break or rust.  You'll find one on the bow/front and one on the rear/stern for towing or tying off to docks.  Then, there are four with a bungee cord to hold gear or your life jacket.
9 - Three Fins -  You get a removable center fin, specially designed so it doesn't snap off, plus it can be removed when the board is inflated.  Also, you have two smaller rubber side fins which assist with tracking and shallow water SUPing.
EVERYTHING you need to get out and paddle anywhere on the Earth.  Remember, you've got a 30-day money-back guarantee.  Unpack, inflate, enjoy.

4 comments:

Justin said...

Hi ... I purchased two boards and have only used them once. But I too am satisfied with the product, but dissatisfied with the customer service.

I actually invested in two high quality carbon fiber paddles, as I knew the stock one was not going to cut it.

I have found Xterra to be responsive on the phone, and they did not answer one of my emails, but did get back to me on another.

I live in San Diego so I was able to go to their warehouse to pick up my order. But it does seem to be a bit of a disorganized office.

Asifur Rahman said...

nice

Jane Smith said...

I love those SUPs! They're very versatile, imagine it's like having a surfboard and a kayak! Cool! I can even use these to traverse rivers and even oceans. For me, inflatable SUPs are the best since they are cost effective, durable and more compact. They are also lighter which works best if you're a newbie to this. I've been looking for a new SUP since mine is beginning to look its age. Recently, I stumbled on a site that has fab reviews of the latest inflatable SUP. Here's the link to this incredible site: http://myoutdoorslife.com/gear/fitness/best-inflatable-sup.html

Alexandria Taylor said...

Xterra Sup board is really lovely for its many features. The packaging, set up and its performance are satisfactory. It is versatile, cost effective, durable and relatively compact. Its convenient and functional design charmed me most. I have also found some relative fab reviews of recent inflatable SUP here: https://www.pumpedupsup.com/