I have the 2017 model. I have owned it for about a year and am using it 5-8 times a month in both waves/chop and flat water. I weigh about 83kg and am about 6ft. I bought it to learn to surf and also a way to get on the water in flat days. It has been perfect and I am really nailing getting out, catching waves and am learning to bottom turn now. I would recommend it for its ease of use and stability -> making it much easier to focus on catching the wave, learning foot position, body position and eye focus etc. And on small days its quite easy to paddle out through sma to medium waves. Also has been surprisingly stable in windy chop and great on flat water. I tried it for fishing once too - strapped a box to the back, a backpack and carried the rod in a tube in the box - no fish and pretty close to the limits but it will work for smaller riders. I will get a smaller board soon too - not sure what yet, as i love the feeling of wavesup'ing and by thenwill have the basics nailed and enjoy the challenge to ride a smaller board. For anyone wanting to learn sup and waves its a great board. Exactly what it shows in the startboard video. I doubt i wi ever sell it as it will always be great for flat days, family and small surf.
Me again. I submitted the prior review, thought about it for a week, and figured there's more of benefit to say. Note, I expect quid pro quo ...... so I am looking for others to step forward & put effort into SUP reviews because, well, SUPs are damned expensive. Not all of us can trial a model from a board shop before putting down hard cash. Mostly we just read on the Internet, use prior experience, and then go for it.
Ok, the topic here is the Starboard 8'10" Widepoint. Perhaps I was a little harsh in my prior review giving it only 3 stars out of 5. 4 stars could equally apply.
It's a "good" board. After thinking more, reflecting on my continuing wave riding experience with it (I weight 185 pounds by the way), I am now in the frame of mind that 32 inches might be a tad wide. Near as good stability is likely to be gained from a 30 in wide board if it has a fuller forward half to it. Don't get me wrong, 32" also "works", the question is, ... what is the sweet spot for most. As of now, I am thinking 30 inches, with the caveat the board has a fuller nose outline. Again, this is for a board where one wishes reasonably good wave riding characteristics as well as stability in paddling/standing.
Stability can be a serious factor if the surf spot you frequent is "bumpy". That could be due to wind, backwash from the beach, or ... whatever, even including your sense of balance, or lack of it. If you require stability in your wave riding machine, then think approximately 30+ inches wide with a fuller, wider forward half to the board.
My experience with the 8'10" Widepoint is that it's a good all around board, the only drawback is that it doesn't cut back particularly well.
I've pondered why. Is it the length, width, volume, rocker, bottom contour? OK, at 8'10", 32 in wide, and 140 liters volume, yeah, sure, it's a bigger board so of course it's going to be a chore to swing it around in a cutback. As in my previous post, I am of the opinion that a goodly amount of Vee in the bottom would benefit this board. Instead, Starboard is all fixated on concaves. But hey, it is what it is.
I am not on the Starboard design team.
Should that dissuade you from buying one? Only you can determine that, although I will say that I can name only a few alternatives.
Perhaps the Australian made JP Wide Body in the 8'8" size is a viable alternative, or a Fanatic Stubby model (it comes in both an 8'6" 120 Liters and a 8'8" 130 liters), or an Infinity RNB 8'8" 133 liter model. Also in California is Santa Babara based SUPsports and their Hammer series (although I personally think they position their fin boxes about 1.5 to 2 inches, too far back on the tail). There's only so many alternatives available in comparable length, width, volume, and similar outline. And then there's the availability issue.
Starboard is a prominent manufacturer with a relatively good distribution network. What good is a slightly superior model SUP to you if getting possession of one is a royal pain in the butt?
Note the Starboard WidePoint models are NOT in the same genre as the wide, parallel railed "surf slates" many manufactures now offer (even Starboard with their Hyper Nut models). The Starboard WidePoint model is a sensible compromise model between a pure perfect wave/perfect conditions orientated board and the Surf Slate models meant for trashy waves.
Mostly Good. I recommend this board .... with caveats.
Pros: stable, NOT prone to digging the nose on steep drops. Works well in knee high ---to a little overhead surf. 140L of volume and I weight about 185lbs. I paddle 1000 yards to the surf zone in flat water to reach my favorite break. It carries my weight well enough to make that feasible. The break I frequent often has a backwash component that makes the lineup a bit bumpy. The widepoint can deal with that.
I have the AST construction, it's fine, although I have put many,many scrapes on the rail with my carbon fiber paddle blade (need to get an edge guard on my paddle blade ASAP).
Cons: It don't cut back well, I attribute that to the friggin obsession Starboard has with concave bottoms. Note, it's not just Starboard, the whole of SUP surf manufacturers seem to parrot concave use on the bottom. I challenge that! I don't see use of concave in the bottom as being as asset, in fact, I submit it makes the board HARDER to turn. Using vee in the bottom would be much more advantageous.
I'll note that I also own a Starboard 9'5" whopper Jr and it does have noticeable Vee in the bottom. I can feel in on a wave, it makes climbing,dropping and cut backs easier. Of course, the whopper Jr at 9'5", 33" wide and 166L volume really isn't the right tool for when waves get over shoulder high.
I wish Starboard (and others) would dispense with use of concaves and switch to use of Vee in the bottom, or even just simple flat bottoms.
What proof do they ever supply as to how concaves supposedly improve performance? Their marketing departments make all sorts of wild claims, I ask: have they done empirical testing of the same model prototypes (length,width,outline,rocker,thickness, with the only difference being bottom contour?
Excuse the rant. But I read so much parroting of manufactures literature online. And for your information, I've owned and have surfed a whopper, a whopper junior, an 8'10" widepoint, and a Rivera 8'2" el tigre wide (way too unstable compared to my 8'10" widepoint, I attribute that to it's narrower and thinner nose. The el tigre might be alright when the ocean surface is glassy without any backwash or such, my verdict isn't completely in on that board (and I admit, I regret not buying the Rivera 8'8" el tigre wide). Note to all, the boards with narrower and thinner noses will be less stable. If you're surfing hollow waves, then you'll need that, but for mostly mushy surf, waves with flat spots, waves where the ocean surface often has a bump to it ... go for the stability of a wider (& thicker) forward half to the board.
I've fleshed out this review because I'm tired of the neat useless stuff I read on line. This review is based on about MY putting 10,000 into SUP (both flatwater and surfing) and learning from empirical experience. As before SUP's, about 40 years of regular,traditional surfing. Including a spell of shaping my own boards ... so I could try out different designs without relying on manufacturers (which seem to lead more by their sales/marketing depts that and empirical testing).