Good in waist to shoulder waves
Very stable during take-off and ride
More difficult to catch waves compared to longboard
Difficulty riding small waves
Not suited for brand new surfers
Go to any surf rental shop and you'll likely find NSP surfboards for rent, and with good reason. NSP has stacked their line-up with a number of beginner-friendly surfboards. The Funboard by NSP is no exception. The spirit of the design was to blend controlled performance with high stability. Ideally, the board could be used for new surfers who want some performance in their board. While this may sound appealing to new surfers, the "performance" design doesn't make this board suited for a brand new surfer (surfed only a few times). However, slightly more experienced surfers (a few months of consistent surfing) will find this a great surfboard to start their quiver.
Dimensions & MaterialWe tested the 7'6"H x 21 5/8"W x 2 7/8"T EPS model. The proprietary E2 Epoxy is extremely sturdy and buoyant, huge pluses for beginner surfers. The board can easily withstand bumps and bangs without skipping a beat. Although the outer skin will chip from hits, the board will still be watertight. This will limit repairs to only serious collisions.
BottomThe bottom is a shallow entry single concave that fades to a flat tail. This is a standard bottom shape for beginner boards in order to maintain high stability.
TailThe board comes only a pintail configuration which pushes the board into the direction of performance. The tail allows the Funboard to manage larger waves with added maneuverability, but makes catching and riding smaller waves more difficult.
NoseThe nose on our model is close to a hemisphere, similar to a nose-rider longboard. However NSP makes the Funboard in a 6'8" and 7'2" with a pointier nose similar to a fish.
RailsThe Funboard has very soft downturned rails to give the board plenty of stability and forgiveness.
FinsThe Funboard only comes in a 3 fin configuration; we tested ours with the standard polycarbonate fins.
PaddlingThis board paddled well compared with other surfboards in its class. The buoyancy of the material helped the most with keeping the board gliding across the water. However this board does paddle slower than your standard longboard, making it slightly more challenging to catch waves for new surfers.
CatchingCatching waves with the Funboard was more difficult than a standard longboard or other boards in its class. The board did not lock into the wave as easily as a longboard. Thus you'll end up working a little harder to catch waves. Catching rolling waves and knee high breaks were doable. Ideal waves for this board are slow beach breaks that are waist to shoulder high. But the pintail design allowed us to go as high as slightly overhead. On the upside, the board is very stable when popping up (standing up on the board). The stability was comparable to a standard longboard.
Unlike a longboard, the Funboard is not as forgiving about your body position on the board when catching a wave. For seasoned surfers this isn't an issue. But for new surfers this may add unneeded challenge to an already challenging sport.
Waves: All around
In good waves the Funboard rode well, balancing performance with stability. The board was steady enough for beginners to ride, while giving enough performance to carve through the wave for more experienced surfers. The traction pad is a nice feature to help with bigger turns. Overall the board rode best cruising down the line, with some carves on the face of the wave. For beginners, this board has enough performance to last you for a few years or longer depending on your surfing style/progression.
The biggest downside to the Funboard is that it struggles in small waves. You will have to pump and maneuver the board through anything smaller than waist waves. So if you're a beginner you'll end up having a very short ride as the wave rolls past you.
The Funboard by NSP is a FUN board to ride for surfers of most skill levels. The low price and features makes it an attractive board to new surfers wanting to enter the sport. Unfortunately, the added performance doesn't make it an ideal board for small waves that beginners should surf on. If you've only surfed once or twice, you're better off picking up a longboard, check out NSP's longboard model
. However surfers who have surfed for a few months, either by renting or riding a friend's longboard, you should consider picking up the Funboard by NSP. You should already be comfortable riding a longboard and this board will give you a surprising boost of performance.