Vilano Navigator Review

The Inflatable SUP sphere has blown up in the past few years, offering more paddlers a travel savvy and affordable alternative to hard stand up paddle boards.

More...

It has since been proven that they are not only substitutes, but are in fact viable competitors with the traditional hard boards.

In the spotlight is the Vilano Navigator 10' (6" Thick) Inflatable SUP Stand Up Paddle Board Package which continues to make waves as a perfect iSUP purchase, so let’s dig deeper as to why.

Review

Navigator SUP

Specs

  • Board design: Made from high-grade PVC material with Korean drop-stitch construction. On the surface; a diamond grooved anti-slip deck pad, eleven sturdy stainless D-rings, and an onboard bungee. Available in 3 color combinations: blue/grey, grey/orange, light-grey/yellow.
  • Length: 10 ft. long
  • Width: 31” wide
  • Thickness: 6” thick
  • Max capacity: 250 lbs.
  • Deflated size: 1 ft. diameter x 36” long
  • Warranty: 1 Year Manufacturers Warranty
  • Additional: Removable 8” center fin, backpack carry/storage bag, pump, 3-piece aluminum paddle, patch kit, shoulder strap.

We will begin at the heart of the Vilano Navigator: the strength of the high-grade PVC and Korean Drop-stitch construction, which makes for superior buoyancy, elevated performance, and long life.

The 6” thickness and material provide excellent rigidity and immense durability, even from dings and jagged surfaces like rocks, giving it a diehard quality. Once inflated to max pressure you immediately identify the smoothness of the surface and the genuine stiffness. The board actually feels like a hard board, which is comforting considering its light weight body.

The grooved traction pad adds to a comfortable experience when paddling, whether you are seated or standing, by ensuring balance and fine grip. The sheer width of the inflated Stand Up paddle board is responsible for its superb stance and stability and though the length is shorter than higher-end inflatable SUPs it manages to retain steadiness and a good gravitational centre.

Overall the appearance is quite simple and nothing particularly epic. Sturdy design, practicality, and attention to detail are essentially the main attractions which also open the window for versatility across multiple aquatic environments.


Pro's & Con's

  • Legitimate hard board feel after fully inflated
  • Easily mobile and storable
  • ​Excellent customer service
  • ​Incredible value for money package
  • Quick inflation and deflation
  • 250-pound weight limit
  • Heavy sub-standard paddle
  • Can’t stay inflated too long out of water

Built for adventure, the Vilano Navigator paddle board is perfect inland or out in the ocean. The one large detachable fin helps steer, track, and balance in different aquatic conditions; including lakes, low surf, calm rivers and small waves. The ‘Navigator’, as its name states, ensures sturdy and seamless movement on water bodies, which is essential for riders of all skill levels.

None the less, its touring style is designed for max speed over flat water, which means it falls mildly short speed-wise when it comes to waves and tricky aquatic terrain. This is not favourable for the more athletic and competitive surfers but adheres more to light water paddlers and devotees of yoga and fitness. Though it tries its best to cover every aspect a stand up paddle board can, it works stronger for recreational paddling and flat water cruising on calm river runs and small surf. The advantage is this is great for long distances paddling.

When it comes to withstanding the elements, we are yet unsure what level of cold it can withstand, but if left out in the sun and heat too long it can be damaged, and generally when it is left inflated too long outside of water. So, it is advised that you deflate it during long periods on dry land.

Shop Now for the Navigator SUP!

Click the link below to see the Vilano Navigator at Amazon.com!

girl paddling


The durability and explorative uses are complemented by the mobility and ease with which the inflatable board can be transported. When deflated the board is 1 ft. in diameter and 36” long, which allows it to fit quaintly in convenient spaces including your car trunk, wardrobe/closet, or comfortably on your back in the carry bag that comes with the package. The backpack is, in fact, bearable to carry when the deflated board is comfortably stuffed inside along with the full arsenal of supporting accessories that complete the package.

The navigator is easy to inflate as it is easy to carry. It does not take too long to use the pressure pump but it is not effortless and may become daunting towards the end, especially in hot weather. It takes only 30 seconds to deflate and roll up, so you won’t waste any precious time either pumping or deflating. It’s wholly functional and accurate pressure gauge will make sure you don’t exceed the 16 PSI limit. The air valve is safely located at the nose.

The aluminum paddle isn’t particularly cumbersome to use or assemble but they could definitely improve on it. The adjusting screw often readjusts and struggles to stay adjusted. Its’ heavy make is also not built to float well which is not good considering that the handle does not have a proper finger grip. On the bright side, its detachability makes it portable. At the pinnacle of the onboard features are eleven firm stainless steel D-Rings equipped to easily attach the shoulder strap, safety leash, and the bungee strap to secure additional cargo. The ones on the sides may at times get in the way of paddlers, but this is not a glaring problem.


FeaturesAccessories

  • Deck pad: Diamond groove anti-slip EVA foam traction pad covering two-thirds of the board surface to provide comfort, balance, and grip. Carry handle at the center to better the carrying experience.
  • Stainless D-Rings: An impressive set of eleven heavy-duty stainless D-rings for attaching a bungee cord, a shoulder strap, a safety leash and tethering a kayak seat or backrest at the back for seated paddling.
  • On-board Bungee strap: Situated on the front deck to secure extra gear, such as coolers and dry bags, for travel and extended time out in the water.
  • Removable Fin: Single fin that locks effortlessly to the bottom of the board
  • Pump: Durable hand pump with built in pressure gauge can pump the board up to 16 PSI.
  • 3-Piece Aluminum paddle: 65.5” - 86” long fully adjustable modular paddle for steering the board.
  • 3-Piece Aluminum paddle: 65.5” - 86” long fully adjustable modular paddle for steering the board.
  • Backpack Carry Bag: Bag big enough to conveniently store the deflated and rolled up inflatable SUP and all its accessories, yet compact and manageable in weight for car and airline luggage. Strap on to hike or walk in inaccessible terrain on your way to those secret hideaways and remote locations.
  • Patch Kit: PVC patches, Glue, patch/ valve wrench
  • Shoulder strap: To carry the board with ease once inflated. Attached to the D-Rings on the side.

If you would like to paddle seated, a kayak seat or backrest can be tethered on as well. The ultra lightness of the board means it can actually drift away, so getting a leash is recommended. Included is a repair kit, in the case of an emergency, for convenience and utility so you can safely take the board anywhere with confidence. Though the iSUP is suitable for a wide range of people, the 250 lbs. weight limit is a downer for larger people who may have to opt for bigger inflatable SUPs.

One other inconvenience may be the length of the one-year warranty that takes care of any leaks or breaks, which once compared to other warranties in the same market appears grossly reduced. At the least, it covers both the manufacturer’s workmanship and material. If the SUP is well cared for, however, you should be able to drift free of any issues. Vilano provides great interactive customer support for the Navigator, which is available online, answering questions and giving help and assistance where you may need.

Clearly, they have invested a healthy amount of energy into perfecting their brand of inflatable SUP’s. The ultimate convenience of acquiring one of these belongs with those who lack storage space, or beginners and intermediates looking for a solid board with all the necessary accessories.


check price on Vilano SUP




Verdict

The Vilano Navigator is a solid value for money inflatable SUP and gains a well-earned spot as one of the best in the 10-foot iSUP market for 2017. A champion among the low price range SUPs, it upholds the statutes of affordability and portability that are at the center of cutting-edge inflatable stand up boards.

The exceptional quality certifies great performance and durability, and coupled with the exceptional full package value it makes any pitfalls easy to overcome. It is super for everyone below 250 pounds and remains strongly recommended for the budget constrained individual, and of course, rookies that are not looking to spend too much.

Despite its versatility, it is better suited to recreational use and promises terrific days paddling, exercising or adventure seeking.