2022 red paddle co racing paddle boards - 2022 range of inflatable race SUP paddle board

Red Paddle Co Titan 2 Pump Vs Starboard Tiki Pump

titan 2 pump vs tiki pump

In this head-to-head test, we put the Red Paddle Co Titan 2 Pump up against the Starboard Tiki Pump. As two of the top players in the inflatable paddle board world, Starboard and Red Paddle Co have not only developed and built their boards to the highest quality, they have also developed and designed excellent pumps as part of their iSUP packages. The differences between the boards are well covered, but the pumps less so. We hope this article helps answer the common questions we get about which brand to choose, as with inflatable paddle boards, there is so much more than just the board that goes into the package.

We compared the two pumps on various factors:

  • Size and weight – how easily portable is the pump?
  • Ease of setup – how long does it take to set up and start pumping?
  • Ease of use – is it comfortable to use and is the gauge easy to read?
  • Efficiency – does pumping require a lot of effort?

With these in mind, let’s take a quick look at Green Water Sports Manager Julian, inflate a Red Paddle Co 10’6″ x 32″ x 4.75″ Ride with 245 liters of volume.

But first, a little introduction of each pump, how they work, how they are similar, and how they differ.

Red Paddle Co Titan 2 Pump

Brand description: The Titan 2 Pump by Red Paddle Co is the world’s first purpose-built, double chamber SUP pump. It’s designed to cut the amount of time and effort it takes to inflate your board by half. Constant innovation has led to Red Paddle Co testing the absolute boundaries of inflation technology and as such, they’re confident that there’s nothing quite like the Titan II pump on the market.

The Dual Cylinder system inflating on the down stroke only, combined with the Hi Flo handle means you are in complete control of the energy used to inflate your board. It puts the air into your board faster and reduces the effort required to reach a higher pressure.

Starboard Tiki Pump

Out of stock

Brand description: The Starboard Tiki Pump has a fixed hose and gauge position when inflating. It is 10% more efficient than previous models thanks to the redesigned piston and outside tube for the air outlet. The precise angled palm grip makes it comfortable and easier to pump. The Tiki Pump is a single chamber, but double and single action pump, with the flip of a lever. This means it can inflate on up and down strokes, or just the down stroke.The Tiki Pump features a wide removable foot base which increases stability when pumping. It uses upcycled fishing nets in the base and handle.

For each pump, we inflated the board to 18 PSI and added a timer to the video. It’s in real time, as there are some doubters out there. For the Red Paddle Co Titan, it took 4 minutes and 23 seconds. For the Starboard Tiki Pump, it took 3 mins and 37 seconds. Interestingly, I switch both pumps from their “double” mode at about 1 minute and 35 seconds.

Size and Weight

Visually, this one is pretty quick and easy to find a winner. Despite being taller, the single chamber Tiki pump is lighter and more compact overall, the only thing making it a bit bulky or inconvenient is the wide handle. I did notice though with the taller Tiki Pump, that I wasn’t topping out the stroke as much as the Titan 2. I’m 6′ tall, with long arms so perhaps the top inch of two of the inflation chamber is not needed.

Dimensions and weight of the Red Paddle Co Titan 2 Pump

  • 22.5″ tall
  • 8″ deep
  • 5.5″ wide
  • 6 lbs

Dimensions and weight of the Starboard Tiki Pump

  • 26″ tall
  • 6″ wide chamber and 12″ wide handle
  • 4″ deep
  • 3.5 lbs

In general, the pumps aren’t that much different in size, but what stands out though, is the weight difference between the 2 pumps. The Tiki Pump comes in at about half the weight of the Titan. It’s only a couple of pounds, but carrying the whole package, it would mean a Starboard package would be almost 10% lighter.

Ease of setup

Setting up each pump is pretty straight forward. For the Red Paddle Co Titan 2 you first insert the handle, connect both ends of the hose (make sure valve is in the right position), fold down the feet, make sure you’re in double chamber mode and away you go.

For the Tiki Pump you first install the base, connect both ends of the hose (make sure valve is in the right position again), make sure you’re in double action mode and away you go.

With one less step in the procedure, the Tiki Pump takes the cake here. Of note, the Tiki Pump also offers a deflate option, which the Titan 2 does not. Personally, I don’t ever pump the air out of the board, I roll it out as it’s much faster than pumping it out, but it is a difference to note between the pumps.

Ease of use

As mentioned earlier, I found the Tiki Pump a bit taller than it needed to be, the Titan was a better height and I could maximise every stroke. Both pumps offer a wide foot base which allows you to engage your knees at higher effort/pressure and stand comfortably over the pump. They both also offer a wide handle for varying positions for comfort and effort. The Tiki Pump handle was more contoured and shaped to fit your hand, whereas the Titan 2 handle is round so that it can be easily removed and stowed alongside the chamber. Ultimately it’s a tie between the fixed contoured handle and the removable round handle.

More common on higher lever pumps now is the static position of the gauge making it much easier to read while pumping. In the past, gauges were mounted on the handle and moved up and down. This made reading the board’s pressure much trickier. Likewise, the hose connection is now also static. The means it doesn’t flop around and inadvertently undo itself while you’re trying to pump up the board.

Pulling up during the Tiki Pump double action mode is not very comfortable. Your body is not very strong pulling up this way with your arms and back. Gravity and your weight works with the Titan 2 Pump all the time, making it a bit more comfortable to pump with given most people’s muscle make-up.

Efficiency

Even though the Tiki was taller than it needed to be, meaning you could save the weight of an inch or two of cylinder cut off, the effort required to slide the plunger was much less on the Tiki. It slid more smoothly and was lighter to lift. The Hi Flo handle arrangement with the Titan 2’s double plunger system added weight and the handle required more effort to lift, which is fair since there is drag on two plungers. Aside from this, both pumps were smooth and required switching from double to single mode at about the same time into the inflation, and interestingly, about the same pressure, 6 PSI.

I do prefer the push down effort only of the Titan 2 Pump. The Tiki Pump pull up stroke gets quite tiring as not many muscles are available for this motion.

Conclusion

To round out this test, the amount of effort required to inflate a board manually to 18 PSI is about the same. Yes the Titan 2 takes a little longer, but it’s only about 45 seconds or 19% slower. Overall we like the lighter weight and slightly smoother Tiki Pump. The extra weight of the Titan 2 did make it much more sturdy and stable to pump with, but I’d rather not have to carry it.

Ultimately though, you may want to go the easy route and use an electric pump!

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About the author: Julian Kidd
I have been an avid stand up paddle boarder since 2009. I retired from a decade of professional kiteboarding to focus on SUP. Green Water Sports grew from this love of all things SUP. As well as being a keen paddle boarder, I'm a football fan, closet petrol head, web tinkerer, husband and father.