There is a slight difference between a good and a great inflatable paddle board yet it is that tight gap which separates the big guys from the mediocre ones.
In order to achieve greatness, Aqua Marina has been through a number of stages that didn’t always end up on a positive note. However, it was trial and error which got this company from a plant to the massive oak tree it is today.
Hence, the Aqua Marina Vapor is the synthesis of the brand’s ongoing efforts to make a series of inflatable paddle boards that can cater for as many paddlers as possible, taking into consideration their needs, requirements and predisposed standards.
So, let’s take a closer look at the Vapor.
Aqua Marina Vapor Review — Features & Specs
- Heat embossed, anti-slip EVA deck pad for maximum traction and durability.
- Double-wall drop stitch PVC construction
- Sculpted balance flow curves board design
- Tie-down system for cargo
- Extra D-rings to attach the high-back kayak seat
- Three removable fins (one large center, two small side)
- 1 center carry handle
- Package includes :
- Backpack with fully adjustable shoulder strap
- High pressure pump with gauge
- Removable center fin
- Adjustable aluminum two-piece paddle
|Dimensions||10'10" Long x 30" Wide x 4" Thick|
|Material||Durable 4" double-wall drop stitch core material|
|Number of D-rings||7 D-rings
|Recommended PSI||15 PSI|
|Fins||1 center + 2 side fins|
|Carry handles||1 center carry handle|
|Warranty||1 year warranty|
Obviously, the first area to inspect when buying an iSUP is the size because even if the quality of the board is outstanding, it would be irrelevant if it’s not the right fit.
Hence, it’s been tradition to start with length since it is the definitive dimension of the board and one which influences performance as well as user compatibility. Accordingly, the board at hand stands at an impressive 11 feet in length which is a double edged sword.
On the one hand, the board is made to be extremely efficient for touring, yoga, meditation and workout. However, it also excludes teenagers from potential users as it would be rather too large to handle. PS: with the exception of size.
Further, width has always been a marginal inspection for most reviews as most boards in the industry often stay within the 30 to 32 inches range which is the healthiest length to width ratio.
Also, at 30 inches, the Vapor is made to be extra agile and responsive while maintaining decent stability and facilitating balance for the paddler.
In fact, the board offers so much room so that you’d be able to adjust yourself continuously and naturally without having to constantly worry about sipping off.
Last but absolutely not least, thickness turned out to be one of the biggest influencers in the game as it impacts both quality and performance. Indeed, the quality of the board certainly depends on how thick it is and at 4 inches in thickness, the Vapor is standing a little closer to the limit than we’d like to see. Nonetheless, for a board of this caliber you can be certain that it’s as good as a 6 inches board and that will be further explained under the following segment.
As promised earlier, we will not let the critical thickness of this board slide without further inspecting its overall quality and for that we have to start from scratch.
Accordingly, the board at hand features one of the toughest base materials.Indeed, military grade PVC is a big game changer as it is often used to build Zodiac boats, rafts and some bulletproof vests.
Further, there would be no guarantee in body without proper stitching which is why Aqua Marina decided to go with an industrial double-wall drop stitch construction that makes it pretty much impossible for the hull to pull apart regardless of the situation or pressure.
Made virtually indestructible, the Vapor is thus still one of the toughest inflatable paddle boards in its category regardless of its thickness.
Not about to let an inflatable paddle board slide without thoroughly inspecting its features. Accordingly, this is what you should expect from the Vapor and this is what every feature is good for.
- Starting from the bottom, literally, the board features an impressive EVA pad both in size and efficiency. Indeed, one of the biggest things for Aqua Marina iSUPs is gripping pad because they matter so much. Especially for beginners, the pad will come in extremely handy for balance and stability but most importantly it’ll also grant you a firmer grip on the board and consequently improved command.
- We have learned through the many reviews we’ve done already of Aqua Marina paddle boards that there cannot be an iSUP that carries this name but doesn’t carry rings. D-rings specifically, the Vapor at hand has quite a few spread almost evenly on the platform. Near the nose, you’ll find a collection of 4 rings attached with an elastic bungee cord making a great cargo net. Also, the board features a couple more rings near the tail which can be used to install a kayak seat, not to forget an individual ring on the tail for safety leash attachment.
- For navigation, the Vapor adopts the triple fin system which has proven to be very compatible with paddlers of various interests. Hence, if you’re looking for smooth tracking or agile slashing then this set will definitely back you up.
Oriented more towards a touring mindset, you can tell that this isn’t a competitive board. However, that is exactly what makes it such a good option for beginners and amateurs who are looking for a board that can do everything.
From extreme white wash to steady lake cruises, the Vapor can definitely take it all but you must bear in mind that this is still an entry level board. Accordingly, you could have made your choice at the beginning of the article but you can also still make it now because the Vapor is a board that can make your ride worthwhile but it’s definitely not a competitor.
A great board requires a great package and this one includes:
- A collapsible aluminum paddle
- A high pressure hand pump
- Three detachable fins
- A sizeable backpack that can fit all of the above + board
- It’s designed for entry-level paddlers who are on a strict-budget
- It’s a great all-round inflatable paddle board.
- It comes in an all-inclusive package.
- The Aqua Marina Breeze is 4 inches thick only.