If you’ve never heard of a beater board, then maybe now is the time to get educated on one. These boards are simply amazing, combining the attributes of the bodyboard, the surfboard and the skimboard to make a board that is amazing for every situation.
This board handles very well in the water, acting in much the same way as a bodyboard or a surfboard.
A beater board can certainly take a beating when it is out on the choppy ocean waves. You can be sure this one will be able to cut through even the choppiest waves.
This beater board has a wonderful shape that is designed to be a lot more hydro-dynamic, allowing you to shoot through the waves much faster. This is a nimble board that makes turning much easier, you can also experience a lot more power. It will certainly be better adapted for executing those nifty surfing tricks.
So where can you find a beater board? What features do they need to have to give you solid steering through the choppy water? What is the difference between a beater board and its cousins the surfboard and the bodyboard?
How much will you have to pay for a beater board? Is this board the best one for your level of surfing experience?
Well, if you are gagging for answers to these questions and a whole lot more, then we would suggest that you keep reading.
We have compiled a list of all the need-to-know facts about this board, along with a brief history and some frequently asked questions. After reading this article, you’ll definitely know whether or not beater boarding is the sport for you.
The Beater Board: A History
The beater board that you can find in the stores today was invented in the 1970s, based on the boogie board, which had a much shorter and more squat design.
This has fused the design of the bodyboard with the surfboard to create something that has all the driving power of the latter with the mobile design of the former.
This has led to the development of a whole industry, with beater board enthusiasts growing by the day. This is currently competing to be one of the most popular watersports and is catching up with surfing in terms of popularity and boards sold.
Why The Name Beater Board?
You might be tempted to think that the beater board is called so because it can beat its way through most types of waves, but this simply isn’t the case. It is called so because it actually can beat certain restrictions around beach surfing.
If you see a yellow flag with a black circle in the center at the beach, then this means that it is a blackball area.
This is when there is no watercraft allowed at the beach. However, due to the shape and the size of the beater board, it is able to overcome or ‘beat’ this restriction.
A lot of people prefer to use this board as it is much smaller than the larger surfboard. This makes it much easier to carry and transport from one beach to another.
Other surfers prefer to use this board as it is much easier to negotiate through the waves, making it the ultimate board for stunts and tricks.
How Does A Beater Board Ride?
Having the pros of both the bodyboard and the regular surfboard, then you can be sure that this beater board will be able to cut through the choppy waves with a lot more drive without the cumbersome weight of some of the other boards.
If you are going to want to surf on calmer waters, then a beater board is another great one to have.
Owing to its wider design, it will float on the water easier. A lot of people have a beater board as their first board, often using it to master some of the basic techniques, such as just simply standing on the board and practicing balance.
This board does have a tendency to flip sometimes in higher winds. However, due to the ergonomic design, it will be able to remain steady in the water for much longer periods of time.
You can be sure that your beater board will also last you quite a long time, as it is much thicker and will not succumb to much rock or surf damage.
We would definitely recommend that you use this board for a practice model. You can ding it up plenty, it is highly resistant to snapping and won’t get too damaged if you accidentally impale it on the rocks.
What Breeds Of Beater Board Are There?
There are plenty of cool and vibrant designs that you can get with your average beater board.
For example, the Catch Surf beater board has a super awesome blue design with a logo that has become instantly recognizable in the surf community. They have also partnered up with some of the more famous surf brands to create an amazing range of beater boards.
If you are looking for a beater board, then you can be sure that they’ll have a certain range of must-have features. All beater boards, no matter what brand they are, will have to possess the following features:
- The core must be dual composite, traditionally made from maple. It is very durable and has double stringers in the body.
- An 8-ounce PE deck with a HDPE slick.
- Leash plug – this is so you can tether yourself more securely to your beater board.
- Tapered D-rails – this is very important if you want to attach personal possessions to your boat.
- Twin-Channel Crescent Tail.
If you are looking for a beater board, then you have to be sure that they possess all of these features. If they do not have these features, then we would probably say that what you have bought isn’t a beater board, either a small surfboard or a type of bodyboard.
You can also get beater boards with or without fins. If you want to go without fins, then you can choose the finless option, which might not be suitable for beginners, but it will certainly save you a bit of cash.
The maple stringers on your beater board will certainly make the whole thing a lot more pliable, giving you the ability to be able to flex the board to a certain degree without them breaking. This will give you a board that has the premium solid strength that you can expect from a lot of vinyl surfboards.
These features will keep the board smoothly gliding in the water for a lot longer, the leash plug giving you that added security. This is what makes them great first boards to have, mainly for the ability to balance and the durability of the material.
You can get these boards in a wide variety of lengths, there isn’t a specific length that you need to have. There are some finless models that are between 40 and 52-inches long with a 20-inch width. You can also buy finned versions that have removable fins, so once you become more confident, you can take them off.
You can also get versions of beater boards that have single or twin-finned options. This is very important if you are unsure on your board when you first try standing on it. Fins give you that added level of stability that will be exactly what you need if you’ve never hit the waves before.
How Good Is A Single Fin?
These boards give you a moderate level of stability, giving you a loose kind of surfing experience. If you like riding the barrel of the wave with that added smoothness, then we would certainly recommend that you get a beater board.
If you want even more stability, then we would recommend that you have the dual fin model. The great thing about beater boards is that they are very versatile, so you won’t have to worry about committing to one type of model.
You can either start out with a twin-finned setup and then drop to one fin before taking off the fins altogether. This is one of the great things about the beater board is the versatility.
What’s Better: Pro Or Standard Beater Boards?
These boards are really only reserved for the serious beater-boarders. They cost a little more than the standard beater board, although we can assure you that you will have a premium riding experience. This is also great for anyone who wants to experiment with various riding styles.
One of the great reasons to have a pro beater board is that you can swap out the fins.
This means as you grow with confidence and skill, then you can remove the fins and have a smoother ride through the barrel of a wave. However, if you prefer to just stand on your board, then this is also another great option.
You can also buy a fin conversion kit. If your fin isn’t really working out the way that you planned, then you can always adapt it for a better surfing style.
All you need is a screwdriver to secure this fin firmly in place underneath your surfboard. It comes with a thermo-conversion plate that will really help you with maintaining the speed and heat of your board.
We would recommend that you get a board that has very little maintenance. You’ll also want something that you can easily augment and upgrade without having to take it to a specialist.
You can buy a fin conversion kit for only $10-$15. This is great, as it will end up saving you a lot more money in the long run.
You can usually only get these boards in two lengths: 48-inches and 54-inches.
Having both of these is very important if you are wanting to get that added control over your board on the harder waves. The longer boards will give you that little bit more power when you are driving it through the waves.
However, if it is control that you are looking for, then we would certainly recommend that you get a shorter board. The only sacrifice you might have to make with a smaller board is that they aren’t as durable as some of the thicker and longer ones.
The 48-incher is around 4 inches longer than a regular surfboard, and it might actually be better for younger adults.
Having a smaller board will give children and young adults the ability to get to grips with the board, especially if they have no experience on the water.
However, if it is a longer board that you are looking for, then we would certainly recommend that you get the 54-inch board.
This is great for intermediate or professional boarders who have over a year’s worth of experience on the water. You can even give larger teens this board, although we would recommend that they practice in shallow waters first.
What Are The Best Beater Board Accessories?
Now that we’ve looked at the boards themselves and all the different varieties that they come in, let’s take a look at the accessories that come with the board.
You can get a Beater bag, which is a waterproof bag that will cost you around $65. However, despite the higher price tag, you can be sure that you’ll be able to store your leash along with your personal accessories. It comes with a double zipper and is completely waterproof.
This waterproof bag you can also use to keep your beater board itself safe and dry. This will also offer your board protection from the sun. Sun damage is one of the worst things for your board and will ultimately compromise the integrity of the board itself.
You can also get fin conversion kits, each one coming with a set of tools that will allow you to adapt your boat for your specific needs. The one perk to this board is that you won’t have to drill in any additional holes.
You can also buy additional board fins for your beater. Why not sup it up and have three fins for that extra stability and that smooth gliding motion through the water.
You can also get fins that will pop-thru the bottom of your standard beater board. This means you won’t have to drill any holes, rather these fins will hold themselves securely.
Another great accessory for your beater board will be fins with safety edges. These are 3.5-inch fins that have rubber around the outer edges, giving you everything that you’ll need for a solid foundation and are a great set of fins for you to use with children and young adults that you want to keep safe.
You can also get a wide range of leashes in various lengths, going from 5 feet long to 8 feet long.
They come with stainless steel elements that are highly water resistant, the body of the cord itself is made from a stretchy polyurethane cord. This is great for keeping your board attached to you without interfering with your surfing skills.
These high-performance leashes have a quick-release cuff that you can use to quickly detach your board as soon as you are finished surfing. Having this durability is very important when you are out on the waves and you might want to get rid of your cumbersome board very quickly.
Frequently Asked Questions
What Is The Best Beater Board for Your Needs?
If you are a younger surfer, then we would definitely recommend that you get the 48-inch beater board with as many fins as possible (a minimum of at least two). Then you can be sure that you’ll have maximum stability when surfing through the water.
If you want to have a premium level of grip over your board, then we would definitely recommend having a two-fin setup. If you have been surfing for a number of years, then we would say that you should opt for a completely finless model.