Vilano Navigator Inflatable SUP Review
- MANUFACTURER: VILANO
- INFLATED DIMENSIONS: 10′ X 31″ X 6″ THICK
- DEFLATED DIMENSIONS: 1’ X 36”
- ITEM WEIGHT: 24.46 POUNDS
- SHIPPING WEIGHT: 35.1 POUNDS
- COLORS: ORANGE/GRAY
- PUMP: INCLUDED WITH PRESSURE GAUGE
- MATERIAL: PVC
- MAX WEIGHT: 250 POUNDS
- FINS: ONE. REMOVABLE
- PADDLE: INCLUDED. 3 PIECE ALUMINUM
- WARRANTY: ONE YEAR LIMITED
- EXTRAS: CARRY BAG AND PATCH KIT
- OUR RATING: FOUR STARS OUT OF FIVE
- PRICE GUIDE: $400+
So, what have we got here, my water-faring friends? Well, by the looks of it, Beach Baby has got its hands on a nice little mover.
At the medium to low end of the price range – there are definitely cheaper ones available, but this is far from the priciest. The Vilano is a middle league inflatable board, and at first glance, it seems like many inflatable stand up surf paddle boards that have preceded it. Nice looking, but looks-wise, it is fairly subdued, and wouldn’t be considered flashy!
A PADDLE BOARD THAT INFLATES, WHAT FRESH MADNESS IS THIS?
If you’re new to the world of SUPs, yes, here is a paddleboard that you can blow up. To give you a run down real quick, this particular model by Vilano is made of toughened PVC, with some super sexy Korean drop stitching (none of your ordinary common garden drop stitching!). We have Vilano’s assurances, that this is as good as any traditional ‘hard’ board.
Other advantages ….. as well as the obvious, but we will repeat this anyway – it can be rolled down to the size of, well, a fairly smallish thing, at only 12 inches x 36 inches. This means it will fit into a small hatchback, or even a coupe, or motorbike for that matter. Geez, you might even want to carry it. The free carry case included with your purchase, will make that even easier.
Also (this shouldn’t be overstated either), if the thing should collapse on top of you while you’re carrying it, it won’t hurt you, because it is nice and soft.
And yet, it is still very hard when needed. If you can excuse us, any more of these descriptions of PVC, and Beach Baby will feel like she’s writing the script for an ‘adult’ movie.
SO WHAT ELSE CAN IT DO?
Well, apart from basically imbuing you with the power to actually walk on water, this comes with several heavy duty D rings, for tethering to a leash, or similar. Also, you can strap down your dry bag etc. with it, or even use it as a kayak backrest, if that’s what you fancy. There is also a bungee strap for slotting things inside.
Of course, it comes with its own paddle and pump, and useful storage/carry bag.
The deck is grooved, so that you won’t slip easily, and has a maximum carrying load of 250 pounds. This capacity should be plenty for most. More than one person can fit on it (weight restrictions permitting) and there seems to be no problems bringing your four footed friend along for the ride.
IS IT SUITABLE FOR BEGINNERS?
Yes, this is more than suitable for complete paddle board novices, as well as the more experienced user.
It is also usable on all waters, although some users reportedly think that it is best for calmer rivers and lakes.
HOW EASY IS THIS TO USE?
Beach Baby thinks this is actually pretty easy to go from box to water, without too much ado.
Most users report that they were pleasantly surprised by the relatively short amount of time it took to get this inflated. There don’t seem to be any significant issues with the pump (with its own gauge), that is included in the purchase. It should be noted that getting this up to the required pressure will take some doing with the manual pump. It is achievable though, and not as hard as you might think. It also deflates pretty easily, too.
It would still be a whole lot easier with an electric pump, should you wish to upgrade to one. Since you are (presumably) choosing stand up paddle boarding to get a great body workout, you might as well start with the pumping!
Yes, people have said that they can use this for yoga, if you’re used to the width and height (ten foot by thirty one inches).
Finally, most customers are happy with this board, one man even going so far as to report that he spends “more time on top of this than my wife!” …and…we’re back at the soft porn script…!
SO ARE THERE ANY ISSUES WITH THIS BOARD?
With an overall score from us at 4.0, this is a good product, but perhaps, not an amazing one. Beach Baby, feels duty- bound to report, one or two small things about this board you might want to know.
Firstly, in order not to invalidate the warranty, you should not leave it inflated in the full sun. This might make it more likely to ‘pop’. If it’s in the sunshine on the water, no problem! However, if it remains inflated for long periods of time out of the water, there might (and this is only a ‘might’) be a possible problem.
Only a small number of people have had this issue, and to be forewarned is to be forearmed, as it is entirely preventable.
The only other issue concerns the paddle! Some reviewers feel that it works ok in the water, but the ‘quality’ could be better. Many reviewers suggested buying your own!
WHAT IS THE OVERALL CONSENSUS ON THIS BOARD?
The general consensus is that this modestly priced inflatable board is good value for your money. There are one or two small issues with it, but nothing drastic, that can’t be overcome by reading the manufacturer’s instructions /recommendations carefully.
We also like the fact that the folks at Vilano have replied to some of the customer concerns on the Amazon feedback page.
All in all, we feel this is a good buy for your buck.