Ok, so I guess what I didn't realize is that the core materials degrade over time? I mean I know that from sharpening, catching rocks on the wax, and aesthetic scratches on the top material are what degrade. I just thought that the core material was NEVER supposed to degrade, since there it is never exposed to the elements directly.
You guys are saying that the core degrades naturally (poorly built boards pre-200ish era), which was evident from the board in my shed. But also that the core degrades from flexing it so often? And when you say it becomes softer, do you mean more flexible or that it loses the ability to bounce back to its original state (like a spring that has been pulled too often and becomes limp)?
And also to touch on the lighter aspects of boards these days:
My board has always been on the heavier side compared to my friends' with newer ones. Is there a sacrifice of durability and increased degradation with a lighter board? I feel like my board wouldn't have lasted nearly this long had it not been so solid.
Thanks for all the responses, these have been extremely helpful and I like seeing the pros and cons to getting a new board. I would have to agree that in the long run a snowboard can be very cheap (I payed somewhere around $200-$300 in 2006 for a brand new 2005 board), since it has lasted me this long. But still as a lump sum this can be damaging to anyone's budget (assuming said person is planning on also spending money for lift tix).