iRocker Blackfin V Review (2021)

This is a review of the Blackfin Model V inflatable paddle board.

blackfin v sup

If you’re looking for a touring board with space for fishing gear, a stable platform and the capacity to take kids along for your next paddle boarding session – then you might want to consider the Blackfin Model V.

I found the Blackfin inflatable paddle board a fantastic choice. It ticks all these paddle boarding boxes and more to satisfy intermediate to advanced paddlers, is well constructed, and comes with a two-year warranty.  

At 12’ 6” long, the Blackfin paddle board has large amounts of functional space and makes excellent speed. SUP anglers will be delighted with the vast range of mounting points available to them and anyone looking for an inflatable SUP board suitable for a paddling fitness workout will find that the Blackfin V fits the bill. It is the fastest board I’ve used in a long time.

As you read this Blackfin Model V review, you’ll see that I think this is one of the very best paddle boards for intermediate and advanced touring paddlers. This is iRocker’s signature touring board designed for long distance fun. Could it be the touring style SUP for you?

Read on to find out.

Blackfin Model V Pros and Cons

  • Incredibly well constructed and versatile touring board
  • Makes a fantastic and large fishing platform
  • Mounts and fixings galore. 20 D-rings in total, eight action mounts, and two fishing accessory mounts
  • Space to fit up to two kayak seat kits
  • Very high weight capacity
  • This board’s quality construction and size mean it is pretty heavy to move on land if you’re a smaller person. However, this is more than made up for by the SUP’s build and features
  • The touring board shape (and length) makes it better for intermediate to advanced paddlers than for beginners – although it is still very stable. 

Blackfin Model V Board Specs

  • Length: 12’ 6”
  • Width: 32”
  • Thickness: 6”
  • Weight: 30 lbs
  • Weight Limit: 485 lbs

Who Should Buy the Blackfin Model V Paddle Board?

The Model V is an excellent choice for intermediate to advanced level paddlers, and although the board is stable it does have more of a touring board shape – so is not an obvious choice for beginners. Beginner paddlers should check out the other excellent Blackfin models, the Model X, or Model XL)

Anyone looking for a paddle board that will last will appreciate the Blackfin V’s high-quality construction. The triple-layer composite PVC, high-density drop stitch inner core, and carbon fiber reinforced rails make the Blackfin Model V an incredibly tough inflatable board.

The Blackfin V is perfect for anyone who wants a solid and stable board in the water. If you’re going to load it up with gear, you’ll appreciate the high 485 lbs weight capacity.

If you need to travel long distances, the Blackfin V’s touring shape will fit the bill. The Model V makes great speed and tracks well in the water. If you want a SUP workout, then the Model V is the perfect board to burn calories.

SUP fisherman will enjoy the vast deck space and the vast amount of mounting points available for rod holders and the iRocker fishing rack. If you want to convert to a kayak, then the Model V can take up to two kayak conversion kits so you can take a friend along to paddle.

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Features of the Blackfin Model V SUP Board

We’re going to continue our in-depth review of the Blackfin Model V with an extensive look at the features.

1. Superior Build Quality

The first thing I’m interested in when assessing a new inflatable board is how well it’s built. All the added features aren’t worth much if the board is poorly put together.

This isn’t a concern with the Blackfin stand up Model V. Extra-high-density woven drop stitch maintains the inflatable board’s shape and strength. The core is coated in tough triple-laminated military-grade PVC, making the Blackfin V one of the strongest inflatables you’ll find. 

To protect the vulnerable sides, iRocker boards have added a carbon fiber rail. This adds further protection and also improves the board’s overall stiffness.

All told, this is a very well-built board from a quality manufacturer.

2. Incredible Weight Capacity

The Blackfin Model V has an astonishing 485 lbs maximum weight capacity. Often touring style boards suffer from poor weight ratings, so this feature is a real highlight.

Whether you’re a taller or heavier paddler, or if you want to be able to carry plenty of gear on your journeys, the weight capacity is an excellent advantage. It can also be helpful if you want to take multiple riders with confidence or load up with fishing tackle.

3. Stylish Color Choices

It is common for manufacturers in this niche only to offer one design choice. However, Blackfin boards have put together three distinctive color schemes to suit different tastes. You can choose from:

  • Mossy Green
  • Pacific Teal
  • Midnight Smoke

4. Non-Slip EVA Traction Pad

The Blackfin Model V features a great non-slip EVA deck pad. I found that it was really comfortable underfoot and definitely seemed to reduce feelings of fatigue. Water drains quickly, so the deck pad doesn’t become dangerous when you inevitably get it wet.

5. Bungee Cargo Areas

The Blackfin Model V has nose and tail bungee cord storage areas. These are really useful as a place to quickly store whatever you need to carry while keeping it readily accessible. Each bungee is secured by six strong rings that you can also use to clip accessories.

6. Easy to Carry and Maneuver 

Several handles are incorporated into the Blackfin Model V to help make it easier to carry and maneuver in the water. There is a standard center handle to carry the SUP. In addition, there are handles at the nose and tail. I found the nose handle particularly useful when towing the SUP into deeper water from the shore.

All the handles are covered in neoprene, so they’re comfortable in hand. 

As the Model V can carry extra passengers, there are also grab handles on the nose and tail cargo bungees. These are perfect for kids to hang on to or can help you get back onto the board if you manage to fall off.

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7. Multi Use Action Mounts 

The Model V has eight action mounts. These can be used to safely fix accessories, including cameras, smartphone holders, fishing rod holders, Bluetooth speakers, and cup holders.

At the nose of the board, two mounts are incorporated into the bungee D-ring fittings. There is a further pair fitted on both sides, a little behind the center point. Finally, there are two just in front of the tail bungee area.

8. Plentiful D-Rings

You’ll count a total of twenty D-Rings on the Model V. Each bungee cord cargo point has six. There are three on each side of the board to be used with a carry strap or the kayak seat kit.

There is also one under the nose of the SUP. This is perfect for towing or tying an anchor if you’re taking a break. Lastly, there is a D-ring at the tail for attaching your safety leash.

All these D-rings make it easy and secure to carry a wide variety of cargo. I especially like to use them to attach my cooler deck bag to, so I’ve always got a cold drink to hand.

9. Readily Expanded To Become an Unbeatable SUP Fishing Board

If you are a dedicated SUP angler, the Model V is a great inflatable board to build your ideal fishing platform. The SUP is highly stable, and there is lots of room to carry gear and cast from.

Just in front of the tail bungee area, you’ll find two “Scotty” style fishing rack attachment points. These will take fishing accessories, including iRockers great fishing tackle rack. The numerous action mounts are great for attaching multiple fishing rod holders around the SUP.

The Model V is designed to work with iRockers Sand Spear accessory. You can anchor the board with the sand spear as you fish on sandbar areas. It can also be used as a push pole to maneuver in shallow areas.

10. Easily Converted to Kayak Use

If you want to try seated paddling, you can use the Blackfin kayak conversion kit. These are easily and securely clipped to the side D-rings and, when not needed, can be stowed in the bungee storage. 

You can attach one or two of the Blackfin Kayak seats so you can paddle with a buddy and share the fun. The kayak kit includes a kayak blade attachment that works with the iRocker paddle.

11. Complete Paddle Board Package

iRocker has included everything you need to get paddling with Model V. Some manufacturers include low-end items, but that isn’t the case here. All the included accessories are of a high quality.

a. Blackfin Travel Bag

The Model V comes with an excellent wheeled bag for storage and travel. The wheels are an extremely welcome feature given the relatively high weight of the board and its accessories.

The bag seems to be well built, and I think it will last well for many years of adventures. The backpack straps are adjustable and have comfortable padding. The bag has plenty of pockets so you can organize the accessories rather than having to throw them into one central compartment.

b. Carbon Shaft Paddle

The Model V comes with an ultra-light, 3-piece carbon matte shaft nylon blade paddle. Overall the paddle weighs just 29oz. 

The shaft can be adjusted between 72 and 86” long so that you can match it to your height. The nylon blade is solid and resisted all my clumsy attempts to damage it on shallow rocks.

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c. Dual-Chamber Pump

To inflate your Model V, you’ll find a 24” triple-action hand pump included in the kit. So far as hand pumps go, this is one of the best I’ve used from any manufacturer. iRocker says you will fill the SUP twice as fast and with half the effort compared to a single-stage pump. You’ll be watching the integrated pressure gauge go up in no time.

I recommend that prospective purchasers of a large touring-style board such as the Model V include the cost of an electric pump in their budget. For me, it’s preferable to save my energy for out on the water by letting an electric pump do the work. However, it is excellent to know that the included triple-action hand pump is as good as they get if your electric ISUP pump isn’t available.

d. 3-Piece Nylon Fin Set

To help your Model V track straight with minimal drag, there are three removable nylon fins. The center fin box uses the iRocker flip-lock system. You can easily swap it for several different available sizes for different water depths.

The side fins are also removable, which helps to make the Model V easier to roll up compared to boards where they are fixed.

e. 10’ Coil Ankle Leash

A high-quality ankle leash is included in the kit to stop your SUP from floating away if you fall in. 

The adjustable ankle strap is padded with neoprene for comfort. The leash stretches out to five times its coiled length. It doesn’t restrict your movement and will spring back, so it doesn’t trail in the water or get tangled as you move. There is even a built-in key stash spot in the strap.

f. Repair Kit

The last accessory is a repair kit which includes paddle board repair patches and a valve wrench tool to tighten the SUP air valve. 

Before you set out, you’ll need to buy glue for the patches, as due to shipping rules, it is not included.

12. Performance on the Water

The Blackfin V is a fantastic board performance-wise on the water. The SUP is solid underfoot and feels as stable as a hard board.

It is also one of the fastest inflatable paddle boards that I’ve ever used. It’s possible to get up quite a speed, and it’s a great board to get a workout on. 

As a touring board, it feels capable even when heavily loaded. I can see this being a popular SUP for camping trips.

Tracking is excellent, so you won’t have any problems keeping the Model V in a straight line. Despite its 11’ 6” length, the Model V is maneuverable and experienced boarders will be impressed at just how tight they can get it to turn.

13. Warranty and Satisfaction Guarantee

I started my feature list by talking about the high quality of the Model V’s construction. To back this up, iRocker includes a two-year warranty to protect you against manufacturing defects. 

They also provide a “no questions asked” 60-day satisfaction guarantee. This allows you to return the SUP for a refund less shipping costs if you’re not happy for any reason.

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Conclusion

The Model V tracks beautifully, is extremely stable and is an excellent SUP for long distance paddling. You’ll struggle to find a faster board in this premium board class.

Experienced boarders can choose it confidently; it’s a  highly versatile platform that’s  equally suitable for  calorie-burning high-intensity workouts or taking the kids for a fun excursion. 

I recommend checking out the new model Blackfin Model V if you’re in the market for an inflatable touring board. In keeping with the other Blackfin SUPs, iRocker has done a great job with this board.

Take a look right now for yourself.

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