SUP conversion oar board - great idea or gimmick?

No, ergs don't yet float, but some of us do, and here's where you get to discuss that other form of rowing.
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Kxthor911
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SUP conversion oar board - great idea or gimmick?

Post by Kxthor911 » July 22nd, 2016, 12:32 am

First off please excuse my ignorance. I have been rowing on my concept2 for a couple of seasons now but in the recent 3 months I have rowed 200k. I'm really trying to put more effort in being healthy and getting moving. I know that is nothing for many of you but it is quite a change for me. I would love to get on the water and row for real but I have no space for a skulling boat. I understand that when in a sculling boat your weight makes the boat sink somewhat and that causes drag in the water. I'm not sure if the SUP would work the same or not and I'm not sure if it would be enough resistance for even a decent workout. I would really appreciate some help from anyone willing.

Also, I live in the southern United States we have no rowing clubs or anything like that here. If you have any other suggestions please let me know. Thanks again. Nick.
Last edited by Kxthor911 on July 22nd, 2016, 1:04 am, edited 1 time in total.
Nick Nunez 5-10 178 lbs
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jamesg
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Re: SUP conversion - great idea or gimmick?

Post by jamesg » July 22nd, 2016, 12:40 am

SUP looks awful to me. Try a kayak, at least you can sit down and they're a lot cheaper than a 1x.
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gregsmith01748
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Re: SUP conversion oar board - great idea or gimmick?

Post by gregsmith01748 » July 22nd, 2016, 7:46 am

Hi,

The reviews of it by "real rowers" are not really that positive, but that is a very skeptical audience. I have no doubt that there would be enough resistance that you would get a good workout, but I'm not sure if it would be fun to row. Looking at the videos, it looks like it has very little run. That is, it slows down a lot between strokes. That means that it has a lot of drag (like a high drag factor setting). The arrangement requires 2 straps that loop around the bottom of the board to secure the rig to the top. This is one of the places that the drag comes from. When I am trying to do high drag training on the water, I loop a bungee around the hull. It's a useful part of a training plan, but I wouldn't want to row that way all the time. I would also be concerned that it would not have a lot of directional stability, since the bottom is flat and it has just a little fin at the back.

I was surprised by the cost. A thousand bucks without the board. You can pick up a good, used, open water board for about that and end up with something that is much more fun to row.
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jackarabit
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Re: SUP conversion oar board - great idea or gimmick?

Post by jackarabit » July 22nd, 2016, 2:46 pm

A lot of sliding seat rowing is done with a "drop-in" integrated seat/rigger in less extreme hulls of the double ender, lake fisherman sort--the Maine Rangely, the Adirondack guideboat, and a number of other regional types of quasi-historical origin. The common adaptation to "stitch and glue" plywd. composite construction is relatively inexpensive, relatively robust in use, and overall length is typically around 16-18'. In fiberglass, the ubiquitous and sturdy Alden-Martin Ocean Shell 16, with its heavy (but removable) integrated seat/rigger is a staple of the market in used knockabout sculling singles and usually available under 1500USD on Craigslist. All these boats will deliver a workout! Don't need a 27' splinter for that. There are also tweener tubs with forgiving final stabilty, quality build, and a reasonable run on a short waterline length of ~20'. The Mass Aero comes to mind. Have no idea whether rowing a SUP is satisfying recreation but am confident of the accuracy of Greg's critique.
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Kxthor911
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Re: SUP conversion oar board - great idea or gimmick?

Post by Kxthor911 » July 22nd, 2016, 7:53 pm

Thank you both very much for your help. I have read your responses a few times now trying to think of a good way to respond.

Greg – I see what you are saying. I forget the brand but there is another one like the oarboard that requires the use of suctions cups to stick to the top of the board. I guess that is their way of limiting the drag. But it does not matter you are correct either way, I want something that is fun to row. I think that is the way that I will use it the most. I’m hoping you don’t mind if I pick your brain some more if I have any further questions.

Jack – thanks for your descriptive answer. I have looked up the boats you are talking about and determined that I wish that I could find a used alden 16 in my area. This is going to be the tough part. I live in a small city in Louisiana and this is more of a hunter/fisher area where they use kayaks and what not more. I guess I can start searching craigslist and what not for a used boat but I would most likely have to have one shipped. How do you know what you are getting when looking at a used boat like this? I’d like to not buy something that I would have to have work done to. What would be a reputable source that I could buy a used boat from?

Thanks again gents, good day.
Nick Nunez 5-10 178 lbs
PB - will be determined after BPP

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gregsmith01748
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Re: SUP conversion oar board - great idea or gimmick?

Post by gregsmith01748 » July 22nd, 2016, 9:06 pm

Your best bet is to look on the row2k classifieds.

http://www.row2k.com/classifieds/classifieds.pl

I'd recommend looking at any of the following boats
Alden 16
Alden star
Echo there's one in Austin tx for 1500
Echo islander
Maas aero there's one for sale in GA. For 1500
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Kxthor911
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Re: SUP conversion oar board - great idea or gimmick?

Post by Kxthor911 » July 22nd, 2016, 9:17 pm

There is an Alden Star in Austin for 2000 with oars. I wonder how much it would cost to ship to my house in Lake Charles roughly six hours away.
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jackarabit
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Re: SUP conversion oar board - great idea or gimmick?

Post by jackarabit » July 22nd, 2016, 11:18 pm

Yes, row2k by all means! Got to be a river and a rowing club in Louisiana. Collegiate rowing program? Be patient. Something will come up within driving distance or hitching a ride to somewheres else on a trailer. Row2k is the clearing house for all that. Ebay is worth a look also. "Rowing shell" is the most productive search term.
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afriedma
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Re: SUP conversion oar board - great idea or gimmick?

Post by afriedma » December 2nd, 2016, 3:55 pm

I've been looking at SUP conversions with some interest. There are 3 sliding rig setups that seem easily available in the U.S.

Alden Surf Scull ($700): http://rowalden.com/product/sup-surf-scull-rig/

Whitehall Oar Board ($1,000): https://www.oarboard.com/product/oar-board-rower/

Virus RowBoard ($1200): http://www.rowvirusboats.com/rowboard/index.html

The Alden and the Oar Board both are set up to be strap-mounted, but the Alden comes with plates that glue or screw onto the board to replace the straps. Whitehall sells Oar Board packages that come with inflatable SUPs with D-rings so the straps don't go under the board. The RowBoard uses heavy-duty suction cups, and also includes disks that can be glued on to provide a good suction surface.

While I don't know much about SUPs, it looks like you can get some long ones with 'displacement hull' bows that might have some glide to them.

I've done a lot of kayaking, and I'm also looking at kayak conversions, such as those offed by a local company (Seattle), Easy Rider, Tatoosh model. Those kayaks are easy to buy locally used, including one with an Oarmaster I and wooden oars, for $2100.

Part of my problem is that I am 6'+ and 270lb, so I don't fit in too many sculling shells. I'd have to get a double rec shell and set it up as a single.

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afriedma
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Re: SUP conversion oar board - great idea or gimmick?

Post by afriedma » December 2nd, 2016, 3:57 pm

Here is a kayak conversion: http://www.easyriderkayaks.com/tatoosh_rowing.htm

I found a used one, with an Oarmaster I and wood oars for $2100: http://seattle.craigslist.org/kit/boa/5901009599.html

That might be a good roughwater solution.

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Re: SUP conversion oar board - great idea or gimmick?

Post by hal@colebatch.com » August 5th, 2018, 11:56 pm

This discussion is now history, but perhaps it might help some future reader to add some comments from someone who has been a recreational rower for nearly thirty years, but who misses his rowing when he comes to Canada in the summer to visit his children. I have come very close to buying a boat to keep in Canada but the problem is what to do with it in the other 11 months of the year (neither of my children could store it). So for me, the Whitehall SUP rower is very promising.

If you want to row for its own sake - because it's a nice way to get around and keeps you fit - then Greg's comments are pretty irrelevant. Most members of rowing clubs see rowing as a form of athletic competition: the object of the exercise is to show that you're faster than someone else. If that's what turns you on, fine: my other son (the non-Canadian resident) is one such 'real rower': he helped me build a Wayland Merry Wherry (with its drop-in RowWing) but has never rowed it; he is amused that I use it to visit friends, go to the Fish Market to do the shopping, or just get out for pure enjoyment, but that's not his thing.

But for me, the Whitehall SUP rower is very promising. I have not yet tried it, but it looks like I could put it together to row on these Canadian kayak-friendly lakes, but then put it away in its bag for my daughter to store when I go home - or she could keep it in its bag in the back of the car and use it as a paddle board when opportunity arose; and if she moved on from here, I could pick up the bag and take it back to Australia.

It's about horses for courses. If you want to race, join a rowing club and let them choose the boat. If you want just to enjoy the rowing, think about what best suits your situation. If you have room to store a boat and a car to carry it and have no interest in paddle boarding, yes, get a Merry Wherry kit from Wayland Marine in WA and have the satisfaction of building a boat. Or go to www.adirondackrowing.com or rowableclassics.com to see what's available near you. But if you just want to get out on the water and don't have a lot of storage space and may be moving in the foreseeable future, the inflatable SUP rower may tick all your boxes.

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Re: SUP conversion oar board - great idea or gimmick?

Post by frankieboy » October 17th, 2018, 2:34 pm

Sorry but can't bring myself to agree.
The SUP conversions are horrible. I'm an ex kayaker and recreational rower, I have an Edon TS515 and an Echo Islander.
I've tried 3 different SUP rowers in the last few years and they are all horrible, like dragging a bucket behind you. You sit up too high, the board sticks to the water and you get a lot of drag from the board profile. They are stable but they are the worst introduction to sliding seat rowing imaginable.
You don't have to race or have a fast shell to enjoy rowing, an Echo, Mass or Edon will do fine but a SUP oh no

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Re: SUP conversion oar board - great idea or gimmick?

Post by jackarabit » October 18th, 2018, 7:54 pm

Edon “tupperware” trainer out of VA is a decent knockabout for beach launch as is the ROW1 Aussie rotomold boat in Canadian distribution.
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