Single Layer vs MSL Fusion Paddleboards

Stand-Up Paddleboarding (SUP) has gained immense popularity in recent years, attracting water sports enthusiasts and outdoor adventurers alike. When it comes to choosing a SUP board, one of the most important things to consider is whether you should opt for a single-layer or MSL fusion construction. In this article, we will help you make an informed decision for your next paddleboarding adventure by exploring the key differences between these two types of SUP boards.

The Difference between Single Layer and MSL Fusion SUP Board

Single Layer SUP Board

A single layer SUP board is a traditional construction method where a single layer of PVC material is used to form the outer shell of the board. The material is not very rigid by nature, so boards made this way are almost always 6" thick, even if this is not the optimal thickness for the performance of the board. Boards made with single layer construction have a bouncier feel. They are also more prone to punctures and leaks.

Some companies use single layer construction but give their materials made up names to imply that they are a fusion style material. Because of the lack of common naming conventions, some companies are exploiting the situation.

It is also very common for companies that use single layer materials to compensate with an over-the-top rail layer construction (implying or claiming 3 or 4 "layers") that offers no practical benefit. If the core is weak, you cannot add much strength to it after the fact.

Pros of Single Layer SUP Board

  • Affordability: Single layer SUP boards are generally more affordable compared to MSL fusion boards, making them a popular choice for beginners or budget-conscious individuals.
  • Lightweight: Due to the absence of additional layers, single layer SUP boards tend to be lighter in weight, making them easier to carry and maneuver in the water.

Cons of Single Layer SUP Board

  • Durability: While single-layer SUP boards offer decent durability, they can be more prone to dents and punctures, especially when used in rocky or rough water conditions.
  • Less Rigidity: Single layer construction can result in slightly less stiffness than MSL Fusion boards, which can affect the overall performance and stability of the board. You will most likely get a banana shaped board when fully pumped.

Most Boards available on Amazon under $300 will be single layer boards. If you are looking

MSL Fusion SUP Board

MSL fusion SUP boards, also known as "drop-stitch fusion" or "2-layer fusion," are constructed using a more advanced manufacturing technique. In this method, the second layer of PVC is applied to the board while it is still in the raw material form. This process ensures a consistent bond between the layers and eliminates the need for excess glue and additional weight. This construction can be used to produce a board that feels extremely well balanced and grounded underfoot.

We use 2-layer fusion on our maddle boards.

Pros of the MSL Fusion SUP Board

1. Cutting-Edge Manufacturing Technology

The MSL Fusion SUP Board stands out from the crowd due to its advanced manufacturing technology. Built using the MSL Fusion construction, this board offers exceptional durability, stiffness and overall performance. The fusion of heat-activated adhesive and premium drop-stitch material creates an airtight and robust structure that allows the board to withstand a variety of water conditions.

2. Excellent Stability and Maneuverability

One of the outstanding features of the MSL Fusion SUP Board is its superior stability and maneuverability. Thanks to its wide and rigid design, this board offers exceptional balance, making it suitable for riders of all skill levels. Whether you're gliding through calm lakes or tackling small waves, the MSL Fusion SUP Board provides a stable platform that enhances your overall paddleboarding experience.

3. Versatility for Various Water Activities

Versatility is at your fingertips with the MSL Fusion SUP Board. Whether you prefer to cruise leisurely, explore hidden coves, or even practice yoga on the water, this board is designed for a wide range of water activities. Its generous deck space and optimized weight capacity make it an excellent choice for adventurers seeking new experiences on the water.

4. Lightweight and Portable Design

Transporting your paddleboard should be hassle-free, and the MSL Fusion SUP Board delivers on this front. This board boasts a lightweight and portable design, allowing you to conveniently carry it to your preferred water destination. Whether you're embarking on a spontaneous paddleboarding session or planning a vacation, the MSL Fusion SUP Board's portability ensures that you're always ready for your next aquatic adventure.

Cons of the MSL Fusion SUP Board

1. Price Point

As with any premium product, the MSL Fusion SUP Board comes with a higher price point compared to entry-level paddleboards. While the quality and performance justify the cost, it may be a limiting factor for those on a tighter budget. However, considering the long-term durability and exceptional features of the board, it's a worthwhile investment for avid paddleboard enthusiasts.

But here at Maddle, we are proud to offer our customers a 2-layer fusion board at an affordable price. It Even includes all the accessories you need to get started. Discover our paddleboard collection here.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

Q1: Is a single layer SUP board suitable for beginners?

A1: Yes, a single layer SUP board is a good option for beginners due to its affordability and ease of use. But the durability and longevity of the product may give cause to worry.

Q2: Are MSL fusion SUP boards more durable than single layer boards?

A2: Yes, MSL fusion SUP boards offer enhanced durability compared to single layer boards. The additional layer and advanced construction technique make them more resistant to damage.

Q3: Can a single layer SUP board be used in rough water conditions?

A3: While single layer SUP boards can be used in rough water conditions, they may be more susceptible to dents and punctures. It's important to exercise caution and choose appropriate water conditions for optimal performance.

Q4: Are MSL fusion SUP boards heavier than single layer boards?

A4: No, MSL fusion SUP boards are designed to be lightweight despite the additional layer. They strike a balance between durability and portability, making them suitable for various paddling scenarios.

Q5: Can I repair a damaged MSL fusion SUP board myself?

A5: While minor repairs can be done by yourself, significant damage to an MSL fusion SUP board may require professional assistance or specialized equipment. It's advisable to consult with an expert for proper repairs. If you ever need assistance with your Maddle, feel free to contact our customer service.

Q6: Which type of SUP board is better for advanced paddlers?

A6: Advanced paddlers often prefer MSL fusion SUP boards due to their increased rigidity, durability, and superior performance on the water. However, personal preference and specific paddling requirements may vary. We recommended our Maddle boards for Beginners and Intermediate Paddlers.


When choosing between a single layer or MSL fusion SUP board, it's important to consider factors such as budget, skill level, durability and performance. Single ply SUP boards offer affordability and lightweight features, making them suitable for beginners or casual paddlers at the expense of durability. On the other hand, MSL Fusion SUP boards offer increased durability, stiffness, and overall performance, making them an excellent choice for more experienced paddlers looking for top-notch performance and durability. Understanding the key differences between these two types of boards will help you make an informed decision that best suits your needs and preferences.


Camille Brodeur

Driven by the intersection of lifestyle and fitness, Camille's mission is to inspire others to integrate elements of beauty and aesthetic into their outdoor activities. Her depth of experience in the paddle boarding world allows her to inform and motivate others to get out on the water in the safest and most fun ways possible. Whether it be through her work at Maddle or elsewhere, Camille continuously strives to expand the public consciousness surrounding SUPs.


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