SUP and SURF reviews got our hands on a complete quiver of ZRE paddles and have been putting them through their paces for the past month.
We’ll be reviewing 3 ZRE models over the next month:
Power Surge ZX4 SUP Paddle
Power Surge Outrigger Light Paddle
Razor R-1 Dragon Paddle XL
Recently on a trip to San Diego I left my paddles at a friends house figuring I’d pick them up before heading back to AZ. So that never happened and when I realized that I was sans paddle for the Tuesday night paddle with Riverbound Sports in Tempe AZ that I like to go on I called Corey who owns Riverbound Sports along with his wife Teri and asked if he could let me use one of his paddles for the night or a week or till well whenever I got mine back. Being a good dude he said yes and brought me his ZRE Power surge to use. Not knowing much about ZRE except they were supposed to be good I asked the usual question “you like this thing”? Corey responded simply “yes I seem to always reach for it for my racing”. “I really like it”.
The Tuesday paddle is basically a sunset chit chat paddle with some “efforts” if one gets board. We paddle around Tempe Town Lake witch is roughly a 5 mile lap on really really really flat water that has a particular scent with slight nodes of not so clean water. But the sunset is 10/10. ( Thanks Teri for the Photo,,)
I grabbed the paddle and off we went. After only a few strokes I was in love with the ergonomics. ThePower Surge blade design is curved at the bottom blade, and is slightly concave on the power face for a quick catch. The rib design assures positive tracking through the water, eliminating flutter. The one piece carbon fiber shaft is tapered oval, providing strength, comfort, and positive tracking. The carbon palm grip with finger recess completes this 100% carbon thunderbolt. I Need to get my own,,,,,,,
The next day I contacted Bob Zaveral whom is the owner of ZRE or “Zaveral Racing Equiptment” and had a conversation about the paddles in general and the technology behind them. Bob to sent us a range of product to test and demo out that we agreed to purchase from him. Yes – SUPandSurfreviews.com will let you know if the product we are reviewing is purchased or “on loan”. We know that many readers feel that when we are given product to review that we have to only show the positives of the product and may be biased. So whenever possible we’ll purchase the product and then sell it off as “demo” or “reviewed” product on one of our partner sites or here on our blog so you know that we are giving an honest unbiased review. If we ever are biased towards a product we have no problem telling you up front and will do so.
For the Power Surge ZX4 I chose a 78.5″ overall length with a 7.25: blade with the standard 12 degree blade angle, and Palm grip. You can select ANY blade angle from 0-15 for a nominal up charge.
ZRE makes it super easy to customize your stick so you can select the exact size for your particular style and needs. Over 127 lengths, 14 blade sizes, and 15 blade angles!
I am 5’11” tall and 175 lbs. with “monkey arms” so I could have gone a bit longer, and had I chose a larger blade I may have chosen more lenght but I wanted this stick to be a quick cadence motor so I went a bit shorter. Typically I use between 78-80″ in length and have used up to an 8.25″ blade. Unlike most,( or all ), other brands – All ZRE SUP paddles are available in basically an unlimited range of sizing including adjustable or fixed length, and anywhere from 62.25″- 94″ in length ( by 1/4″ ) with blade sizes from 6.5″ (80sq) to 9.75″ (13sq) ( by 1/4″ ). That’s a crap ton of sizing to select from. And should you need to cut off that 1/16″ to really be, well anal, you can simply heat up the shaft near the grip and remove it to shorten the shaft.
Favorite part of the paddle:
The tapered oval full carbon shaft! I’ve got good sized hands and the round shafts always tend to give my hand cramping issues. The oval design of this shaft is ergonomically perfect and results in way less hand fatigue.
The ZRE Power Surge ZX4 is GREAT! The shaft is super stiff, I mean F1 Car engineered stiff. Their is zero flex in the shaft that I can feel. Their is minimal blade flex mostly below the joint of the shaft where it meets the blade but I doubt anyone can really feel it out of the water. The rib design of the blade creates a consistent smooth pull throughout the entire stroke, and I had zero flutter that you tend to get in lots of other blades.
The Retail on this setup is $439.95 and the paddles are 100% made in the USA putting the ZRE right in line with the other high end brands, and while that price point may turn some heads a great paddle is 100% worth the investment. A great paddle will make your Paddleboarding experience much, much better. You’ll go faster and further with less effort.
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