California Board Company Review – We Tried The Ten Six SUP

Paddle boarding can be a costly hobby.

To buy a high-quality SUP, you may end up spending at least $1,000.

Depending on your needs, you can easily end up spending twice or triple that amount. This is something that advanced and professional paddle boarders have come to accept.

Since they most likely go out on the water on a regular basis and know that they’ll get many years of use out of their investment, the price is worth the added quality and longevity of the board.

But what if you’re a beginner?

Most people trying something out for the first time don’t want to end up spending a fortune on something they’re not sure they’ll stick with.

This is especially true if you are looking for something for your child. They may move on from paddle boarding and then something you spent thousands of dollars on ends up sitting in the garage.

As with most products you can buy, there are discounts available out there.

You can typically find these at sporting goods stores or websites like Amazon. A less expensive paddle board can still be a bit of an investment, though.

Instead of paying thousands of dollars, you may only end up paying $400-$700 but that is by no means a small amount of money.

You don’t want to purchase an inexpensive one only to find that your $550 was wasted because it breaks the first time you try to take it out or it just won’t support your weight despite the weight capacity saying that it should be able to.

Is it worth the money if the board doesn’t end up lasting very long, due to being of lower quality? Can you find a good quality board at a discounted price?

One company that sells inexpensive paddle boards is the California Board Company. Let’s see how their boards measure up.

About California Board Co.

girl on stand up paddle-boardCalifornia Board Company is owned by Keeper Sports, a company that was started in 2008 by four friends who all had an interest in retail and/or body-boards, surfboards, paddle-boards, etc.

The four founders ran every part of the business themselves, with the help of their families, from marketing to the actual designing of the boards they sell.

CBC has relatively humble roots, being started by four friends and their families, which is always a plus when looking at potential companies to buy from.

The main goal of Keeper Sports, is to offer consumers affordable, accessible equipment. They strive to offer quality products that are high in value and quality but low in price.

Interestingly enough, you cannot purchase any SUP or other equipment from the California Board Company website. It is mostly for retailers looking to get product information from Keeper Sports.

Do they meet that goal of theirs, to provide high-quality boards at lower prices?

Why should I buy an inexpensive paddle board?

If you are an experienced paddle boarder, you’ve most likely gone through your fair share of cheap paddle-boards and have moved on to one that is more of an investment.

Inexpensive and discount paddle-boards are great for children, beginners, and people who only use them occasionally.

Children grow quickly.

As they become taller and their center of balance shifts, the first paddle board you bought isn’t necessarily going to keep working for them.

They may end up needing a different size or a different style and if you spent $2000 on their first one, you aren’t going to be too keen to get them a new one after only a year or so. Children also grow out of hobbies.

Think about how many interests and hobbies you had as a child that you no longer do. Obviously, you want to encourage your child’s interests but you don’t want to spend thousands of dollars on something if they only end up using it for a few weeks or months.

Inexpensive boards also tend to be easier for children to use as the ones made for beginners tend to be cheaper.

Beginners should buy inexpensive surfboards for some of the same reasons.

Sometimes a friend will suggest paddle boarding or you’ll read something about it online and think it looks cool, only to later find out that it is not something you actually enjoy.

That is totally okay but again, you don’t want to end up spending thousands of dollars on something you aren’t going to get a lot of use out of after you realize paddle boarding is not for you.

If paddle boarding is for you, a discount paddle board is still a good choice for a first board. Paddle boards made for beginners tend to be the cheaper ones and they have a lot of good qualities that make it easier for first-time users to practice paddle boarding.

They tend to be lighter, to float more easily, and to allow the paddle boarder to balance better.

This all enables a person who has never used one before to find their balance and wipe out less while they are getting the hang of things.

If you go out once or twice a year when you go to the beach with friends or take a family trip to the lake, you may not want to spend a whole lot of money.

If the board is sitting in your garage most of the year, it’s not going to wear out as quickly as if you were using it every day.

We have written a guide on inflatable boards, click here to read 🙂

CBC model: 10’6” Classic Paddleboard

by Keeper Sports

QualityQuality
PricePrice
Our RatingOur Rating

One of the boards offered by California Board Company is their CBC 10’6” Classic Foam Paddle Board.

Depending on where you buy this, it may be sold as a package, containing other items you’ll need alongside the Ten Six.

You can purchase this particular paddle-board from a variety of online retailers and sporting goods stores, one of them being Amazon.

One thing to keep in mind, especially if you are a first-time buyer, is that paddle boards are shipped in one piece and therefor can sometimes be too large for shipping companies like FedEx.

This means that a freight service will most likely be the one bringing you your paddle board.

Be aware that you may need to arrange delivery time with the freight service and be sure to check beforehand so you’re not left wondering where your delivery is a week after it has shipped.

Amazon is one of the retailers you can purchase the full package from. This package includes:

  • The CBC 10’6” Classic Foam Paddle Board
  • A stabilizer fin
  • An adjustable paddle
  • A padded leash
  • Straps and other materials for securing onto the roof of your vehicle
  • A bungee system
PROS
  • Inexpensive
  • Stable enough for beginners
  • Package comes with almost everything you need to start paddle boarding
  • The adjustable paddle
  • Lightweight and easy to carry
CONS
  • Bungee system isn’t the best, if the board you order from Amazon even has one
  • Not a three-fin system as advertised
  • The car “rack” is not a rack at all just some straps
  • May not actually be able to accommodate people up to 300 lbs
  • Foam dents and punctures easily

The Paddle Board

cbc paddle boardThis paddleboard is made from EPS high-density foam with multiple layers of laminated wood stringers with waterproof resin on top.

This is a material that is both lightweight and waterproof, making it easy to carry and easy to maintain, as you don’t have to worry about it getting damaged by the water.

The underside is made from polyethylene. This itself makes the board a great starter board, as the polyethylene bottom makes the glide through water more easily and that makes it easier to paddle for a beginner.

The lightweight foam also makes it easier to maneuver (and to carry!). These are good qualities for a board being used by a child or beginner to have.

Another good thing about a foam board, compared to a fiberglass paddleboard, is that damage such as punctures won’t cause the board to sink.

When a fiberglass board gets punctured, it can sink and you’ll end up paying a lot of money to get it fixed. You don’t have to worry about that with this CBC paddle board. Foam is also much easier on your body.

Your feet and knees aren’t going to end up aching from resting against a foam board like they would if you were using a fiberglass board. On the downside, foam dents easily.

You have to be careful not to drag your board across rough surfaces and you need to watch how tightly you secure it to your car when driving to the beach.

The weight capacity of this board is listed as 300 lbs.

Unfortunately, it may not actually be able to accommodate people weighing more than 210 or so lbs or people who are particularly tall.

Somebody who is 300 lbs and is able to hold themselves up and balance well may be able to use this board just fine.

If you are a beginner who is unsteady on your feet or unsure about your balance, though, the board may not be able to keep you afloat and you might want to consider larger boards or ones made from more sturdy materials.

Other features the Ten Six has include a camera mount and a center carrying handle.

The camera mount is a fairly simple one, by no means the same kind of quality you would expect buying a more professional one.

The Stabilizer Fin

This paddleboard has one center fin for stabilization.

To clear something up: the Amazon listing says that this board has a “tri-fin system.

It does not have three fins. It only has one.

That being said, the fin that it does have does the trick when it comes to stabilizing the board. This is a great thing for beginners as they tend to be unsteady on their feet and have trouble balancing the board the same way a more experienced paddle boarder does.

The fin is detachable, making it easy to carry and even easier to strap the paddleboard to your car, as you don’t have to worry about the fin getting in the way.

The Adjustable Paddle

The CBC paddle board comes with an adjustable aluminum paddle.

The blade is made of nylon that is reinforced with fiberglass.

There is no need to worry about it accidentally scraping your board or you while using it, as it has a blade shield that prevents this from happening.

The paddle is great regardless of your height since it adjusts between 63” and 87”. Children and adults of all heights can comfortably use this paddle. Do keep in mind that the paddle does not float. If you drop it in the water, it is going to sink.

Padded Leash

leashThe ankle leash that comes in this package is actually a really good quality one.

It is padded so that it does not chafe your ankle or cause any discomfort while you are using it.

The leash is sturdy enough that you can trust it will hold up while you are paddle boarding. You can also use it to safely secure your board while it is beached by putting the leash under rocks or other heavy objects.

Straps

The product description on Amazon claims that this package comes with a roof rack but that is not really true.

What the kit does come with is a foam pad to put on top of your car, between the roof and your board, as well as straps to secure the board. It is not actually a roof rack at all. The straps themselves are good at securing everything down, but if you tighten them too much, you are going to dent your board.

Consider putting something like a towel or blanket over top of your board so that the straps are not directly in contact with the foam.

For what they are the straps and foam pad work very well if you need to transport your board on top of your car, though they may not fit on all vehicles depending on size.

Bungee System

Not all versions of the CBC ten six classic come with a bungee system but the one currently being sold on Amazon does.

It is a simple system, large enough to hold a water bottle or other smaller miscellaneous items.

I wouldn’t put anything particularly valuable in it as it isn’t as secure as the bungee systems on more expensive set-ups but it is still usable.

Comparable Boards:

Is California Board Company a Good Place to Buy a Paddle Board?

California Board Company by Keepers Sports

The short answer is yes.

The long answer is that it depends on your level and your body type!

CBC 10 six is a great board for beginners and for children.

It is lightweight, making it easy to carry for people who may not be used to lugging around a paddle board. It is also comfortable to sit, kneel, and stand on.

This is another plus for beginners, as they won’t be used to standing on the paddleboard for long periods of time and the foam absorbs impact better and is easier on the body than a material like fiberglass.

This board is also easy to maneuver and to paddle.

Anyone who is just starting out will find that it is easy to learn how to paddle board when using this sup, especially if you compare it to boards used by more advanced paddle boarders that would be nearly impossible for a beginner to utilize.

Experienced paddle boarders may not find this CBC board to be a good option for them, however.

If you’re looking to paddle board in more difficult types of water, this one is probably not the best sup to use because it is not very sturdy. That lack of sturdiness is also what makes it a board people 210/215+ lbs won’t find very useful or easy to use.

Despite the listed weight limit, it simply can’t handle a beginner who weighs more than that.

For what it is, this is a good set-up.

The fact that it comes with a whole package of other useful gear is a plus as well!

Beginners often don’t know where to start when it comes to buying accessories and other necessary items and this package supplies most of the things you need to start paddle boarding.

The accessories that come with the kit are all pretty good quality, too. The “roof rack” may not actually be a rack but the straps work great for transporting your paddle board on top of your car.

The adjustable paddle will work for a variety of people of different heights, including children and people who are very tall. The padded leash is comfortable and durable.

The stabilizer fin does its job and makes everything more stable, a godsend if you are unsteady on your feet because you haven’t quite figured out how to balance yet.

If you are a beginner and don’t want to spend a lot of money on your first paddle board, try the Ten Six Classic Foam Paddle Board. It will help you stay afloat and practice until your skill (and wallet) allows you to buy a more expensive one.

About the Author Chet Thornberry

My name is Chet and I'm a surfer living in Cocoa Beach. I created this blog to put my experience with surfing, skimboarding, bodyboarding, and paddleboarding to good use (pretty much all things water sports).

follow me on:

Leave a Comment: