C4 Waterman

About C4 Waterman
By Dave Parmenter, C4 Board Designer/Shaper and Team Rider
Welcome to the exciting and fast-growing new sport of Stand-Up Paddle Surfing.

A lot has happened in this emerging sport over the past year, and whether you are interested in high-performance surfing, racing across the Molokai Channel, or just cruising along the coast or your local lake, you'll probably want to learn as much as you can about all the different types of SUP paddle craft available on the market.

As the designer and shaper of the C4 Waterman Stand-Up Paddle surfboard line, I'd like to brief you on some of the features of the boards we offer.

One of the most common questions I am asked is, "What makes the C4 boards different from the all other SUP boards out there?"

Well, first and foremost, it would have to be the people behind the boards. Between Brian Keaulana, Todd Bradley, Mike Fox and myself, we bring over 160 years experience in surfing, canoe paddling, paddleboard racing, sailing, sea-kayaking and water safety disciplines to our SUP surfboard designs. Sure, there's been a lot of arguing about rocker and templates and fin arrays, but in the end it sure has helped the design evolution zip along.

Over the past decade I've been fortunate to have worked closely with one of the surfing world's preeminent watermen, Makaha's Brian Keaulana. Makaha, on Oahu's leeward coast, is the big board capital of the surfing universe, and the surfers there really demand a lot from their tandem boards and tankers. Brian was the originator of the modern high-performance SUP short board, and innovated most of the surfing techniques you see spreading around the globe right now.

Along with Brian, I've also spent a lot of time with Todd Bradley learning about canoe and racing hull design. A veteran outrigger canoe racer, Todd has crossed the Molokai Channel more times than I've had hot lunches. Five years ago, when we began designing our first SUP paddleboards, he envisioned a whole new class of racing-------a regatta-style division consisting of super-light, very fast paddle craft that would skate 'downhill' like flying fish. It wasn't long before we were hip-deep in EPS and hotwires and carbon fiber, experimenting with all sorts of hull designs. Sure, there were a few duds in the mix, but with Todd behind us (well, out in front of us, actually--------he smokes the rest of us in the races) it wasn't long before we came up with a 14-footer that really started shaving some minutes off our Hawaii Kai runs.

The chief feature I've tried to infuse into all the C4 Waterman boards is something pilots call 'control harmony'--------when a maneuver feels seamless and crisp in a perfectly coordinated response of ailerons, elevators and rudder. Like aircraft, surfboards move and turn on three axes, and both pilots and surfers love it when their craft answers the helm sweetly.

Without the proper and carefully balanced combination of rocker, outline, vee, and flats and edges, a Stand-Up surfboard is little more than an unwieldy tub. And the added leverage and torque provided by the paddle brings a whole new set of considerations.

The fleet of C4 Waterman SUP surf and paddle boards are designed, shaped, and ridden by a bunch of guys who paddle and surf them every day. Over the past 5 years we've paddled thousands of miles on our SUP surf craft---------in the surf, across the open ocean, on lakes and down rivers. We've tested and refined our boards in Hawaii, Australia, the Maldives, Europe, Japan, Tahiti, and all across the continental United States.

So let's check out what we've come up with and see which boards best suit your needs and local conditions.