SipaBoards are smart, self-inflating, jet-propelled standup paddleboards. They are designed to give watersports enthusiasts of all levels of experience the confidence to take on the wind, the current, or even their own fatigue, and the ability to explore further or simply paddle longer.
Team Lead: Sebastjan Sitar
Design: Jaro Jelovac, Žiga Božič, Sebastjan Sitar
SipaBoards were designed to solve the real problem and experience of not having the means to conquer a current and make it back to shore safely. The product was designed to function like any other premium standup paddleboards if the motor were to be switched off. This meant that everything had to be fully and seamlessly integrated; having an off-board motor was not an option.
Principles of both physics and aesthetics dictated the drive’s placement in the board’s center of gravity. This keeps the board in a straight course while in the water, provides the most stability, and makes it easy for a paddler to carry the board while transporting from shore to surf.
After placing the propeller’s drive shaft and the motor itself into the drive housing, the motor hardly took up all the space available. To take advantage of the extra room, the designers decided to create something that paddlers would ‘want’, than just ‘need’ (like have motor-assisted paddling to get out of a tough situation is a ‘need’.). After fitting the battery pack that powers both the motor and the compressor, enough room was left to squeeze in the compressor’s inflation hose.
The shape of the drive housing was the next challenge. Guided by the above-mentioned insistence that SipaBoards should be – above all – a paddleboard, all ideas involving any extra screws, clips, or even rough edges were ruled out. A paddleboard in water is performing under enormous pressure and prone to convex. By designing a housing with concave sides to counter this, the board secures the drive naturally, avoiding the need for any extra parts.
SipaBoards are designed to be visible, striking and instantly recognisable, and at the same time, simple enough to be well accepted by a larger audience. The colours for SipaBoards were chosen for a combination of reasons: the base had to take on a light colour to handle the summer heat and sun; the colour had to evoke delight and a symbiosis with nature; and lastly, it was meant to be an all-around board. As a result, teal was chosen as a colour that would be well accepted by all ages and gender.