There are perks to both inflatable paddleboards and epoxy or “hard boards”. There are some performance benefits to hard boards; which is why we design our inflatables to ride and react as if it were one. We love the freedom and durability that inflatable boards offer so we look for ways to improve the downside without sacrificing what we love.
We’ve added a new technology to our inflatable construction, that we call the “Exoskeleton” We noticed that, despite their air filled interior, a lot of the inflatables out there were heavier than we liked. This is often due to excessive layering in the PVC to ensure stiffness, rigidity, and durability. But what we realized is this extra PVC doesn’t need to cover the entire board profile, we just need it where it counts. Our exoskeleton includes a double layer stringer top and bottom, combined with rail bands to add stiffness where you need it without adding weight where you don’t.
Another cool feature of the Exoskeleton is the Parabolic Reinforced Rail, also known as PBR (loved like but not to be confused with the beer).The PBR Rail system adds a third, wider, rail band around the radius of the board through the standing area, greatly enhancing stiffness without adding the extra weight. You can find this technology on each of our inflatables.
For our all-around touring and ocean surfing inflatables we shedded some of the extra weight. The Monarch, Surf Traveler, and Badfisher have two heat infused layers making up the main body of the board, which means less glue making them lighter than our whitewater boards that are subject to more abuse. Our whitewater stand up paddleboards, the Rivershred, IRS, and iSK8 have a full second layer of PVC to help with durability and facilitate the more radical rocker profiles. Now, throw in those deck stringers and tell us it doesn’t feel like a hard board.
It’s hard to beat being able to roll your board up, put it in a bag, and throw it on your back or check it at the airport. Our company was built on adventure and making boards that know no limits. We’re proud of how far we’ve come and excited for the continuing revolution of the Badfish boards.