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Old 02-27-2014, 03:28 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Default Mervin Choice for aggressive freestyle/all-mountain

I'm narrowing down my new board list. I've actually demo'd a Lib Tech TRS so I'm feeling safe with any of these options. Anyone care to weigh in? I'm looking to buy soon-ish while I'm seeing decent sales but my sizes aren't sold out yet.

I'm pretty experienced (10 years of riding), been riding a K2 Darkstar 154 for the past 7-8 years. I ride like 40% park (jumps with an occasional box) and 60% all-mountain. Definitely want true twin. Weigh about 150 lbs. Fairly confident anywhere and like the feel of camber over rocker. Have some new Rome 390 Boss bindings to go with it. Currently live in the PNW/Seattle area. Here's the list with my pros/cons so far.

Lib Tech TRS 157
+ I've demo'd the 154, like this board and XC2BTX
- But it's an extruded base, and I don't know if I want full magnetraction (vs. .5 which may be nice but not overly "catchy")

GNU Danny Kass 155
+ XC2BTX like TRS, Sintered base, .5 magnetraction

Lib Tech Hot Knife 156
+ C3BTX profile sounds nice, but I've only ridden the XC2BTX and regular camber. Sintered Base. .5 Magnetraction
- Haven't ridden this camber profile (but not necessarily a con, just an uknown)


So any advice? I'm mostly wondering about Hot Knife vs the others. I think I'd get the Danny Kass over TRS because it seems like it is similar but better.

I've also been intrigued by the K2 Happy Hour (reviews are very positive), but I need to call around a find a demo before I consider it. And I've thought about a Rome Mod for the camber profile, but I think these hybrids will be a nice change of pace.
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Old 02-27-2014, 03:41 PM   #2 (permalink)
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The TRS' extruded base is pretty damn fast, the only issue I have with it is that it needs waxed constantly.
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Old 02-27-2014, 04:06 PM   #3 (permalink)
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What is your reason for going with Mervin?

I'm also interested in the Hot Knife and would like to hear what people say about it.

Since you said you like the feel of camber over rocker, seems like the Hot Knife is for you (having more of a camber profile).
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Old 02-27-2014, 04:07 PM   #4 (permalink)
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I've ridden both the Hot Knife and the TRS this year.
Depends which you prefer to emphasize - more surfy or more stable?
Both are quite stable rides, but the higher rocker in the middle of the TRS is noticeable versus the Hot Knife, making it more surfy.

I prefer more surfy so I bought the TRS (Horsepower).
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Old 02-27-2014, 04:23 PM   #5 (permalink)
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If you like the feel of camber over rocker and want mild magnetraction, you might want to check out Rossignol's offerings. It will get you all of those things and a sintered base at a much lower price point. Also, worth looking at Smokin. Price on their boards is between the two for the same features and plenty of camber/rocker profile options. No shops sell them in WA though.

Or if you're in Seattle and want a lightly used 154 TRS from last year (before it went from C2 to XC2, so, less rockery), PM me. Mine is collecting dust.

Last edited by jtg; 02-27-2014 at 04:27 PM.
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Old 02-27-2014, 04:51 PM   #6 (permalink)
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I have the Endeavor Live 2014.

I think it's really suited for how you described your riding. I like the same: 70% all mountain, 30% park (jumps and boxes)... I want to make a review on the Live but i've been lazy. My review would go something like this:

In a nutshell: it's an aggressive board. Rocker/camber/rocker, sintered 7500 base, stiff, LOTS of pop and energy return. Likes to go fast. Stands out in pow, anything from 5cm to waist deep. VERY stable off jumps and carving, plus awesome to bomb groomers. Really good on slush too and mild or soft bumps. I would call it... an aggressive pow freeride/freestyle board. Think Gigi Ruf, Travis rice, Nico muller; more than Scott stevens or Jake blauvelt.

Comparable boards: Rossi Jibsaw, Angus; Neversummer Cobra; Machete GT, Salomon Assassin, Yes pick yer line; Lib Travis Rice (pow nose)...

Weak points are: jibbing/pressing (this thing is stiff), icy conditions (it's still ok, but no magnetraction, plus jump landing on ice is not exactly damp) and moguls (torsionally stiff, fast and needs real commitment... a nightmare on hardpacked moguls). Not really for beginners as it is not too forgiving and takes commitment to maneuver it.

If you rode more ice... Rossi jibsaw (or anything with magnetraction) may be better. If you want more playful/flexy, the Salomon Villain maybe better.
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Old 02-27-2014, 05:02 PM   #7 (permalink)
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even though it's a directional twin i wanna throw the Darker Series into the mix here.
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Old 02-27-2014, 05:04 PM   #8 (permalink)
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Thanks for all the replies so far!

Quote:
Originally Posted by Redline View Post
The TRS' extruded base is pretty damn fast, the only issue I have with it is that it needs waxed constantly.
Good to hear. I guess I haven't heard anything bad about the base, but I just remember from shopping years back that sintered is (generally) better than extruded (but you need to wax it more often).

Quote:
Originally Posted by buddhafist24 View Post
What is your reason for going with Mervin?

I'm also interested in the Hot Knife and would like to hear what people say about it.

Since you said you like the feel of camber over rocker, seems like the Hot Knife is for you (having more of a camber profile).
I've just gotten a lot of recommendations at work for Mervin (a lot of people are very pro-"snowboarder run" companies in the US/Canada). And I demoed the TRS and feel pretty familiar with their boards without demoing all of them.

Quote:
Originally Posted by GreyDragon View Post
I've ridden both the Hot Knife and the TRS this year.
Depends which you prefer to emphasize - more surfy or more stable?
Both are quite stable rides, but the higher rocker in the middle of the TRS is noticeable versus the Hot Knife, making it more surfy.

I prefer more surfy so I bought the TRS (Horsepower).
That helps a bit. I do like something more stable, but I didn't find the TRS overly surfy (in the few runs I had while demoing it) so maybe it would be a nice change from my camber board. Would you recommend the Horsepower version of TRS (if so why)?

Quote:
Originally Posted by jtg View Post
If you like the feel of camber over rocker and want mild magnetraction, you might want to check out Rossignol's offerings. It will get you all of those things and a sintered base at a much lower price point. Also, worth looking at Smokin. Price on their boards is between the two for the same features and plenty of camber/rocker profile options. No shops sell them in WA though.

Or if you're in Seattle and want a lightly used 154 TRS from last year (before it went from C2 to XC2, so, less rockery), PM me. Mine is collecting dust.
Which Rossignol boards should I look at? It sounds like their "Freestyle" rocker/camber profile is closest to what I want, but I only saw the Jibsaw Magtek that seems to have all of those features (mild magnetraction and that camber profile).

Also, is the C2 actually less rocker? I see that XC2 is shorter rocker/longer camber, but it says the rocker is "aggressive". I guess I thought the XC2 had more of a "camber emphasis" than the C2 shape.
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Old 02-27-2014, 05:28 PM   #9 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by F1EA View Post
I have the Endeavor Live 2014.

I think it's really suited for how you described your riding. I like the same: 70% all mountain, 30% park (jumps and boxes)... I want to make a review on the Live but i've been lazy. My review would go something like this:

In a nutshell: it's an aggressive board. Rocker/camber/rocker, sintered 7500 base, stiff, LOTS of pop and energy return. Likes to go fast. Stands out in pow, anything from 5cm to waist deep. VERY stable off jumps and carving, plus awesome to bomb groomers. Really good on slush too and mild or soft bumps. I would call it... an aggressive pow freeride/freestyle board. Think Gigi Ruf, Travis rice, Nico muller; more than Scott stevens or Jake blauvelt.

Comparable boards: Rossi Jibsaw, Angus; Neversummer Cobra; Machete GT, Salomon Assassin, Yes pick yer line; Lib Travis Rice (pow nose)...

Weak points are: jibbing/pressing (this thing is stiff), icy conditions (it's still ok, but no magnetraction, plus jump landing on ice is not exactly damp) and moguls (torsionally stiff, fast and needs real commitment... a nightmare on hardpacked moguls). Not really for beginners as it is not too forgiving and takes commitment to maneuver it.

If you rode more ice... Rossi jibsaw (or anything with magnetraction) may be better. If you want more playful/flexy, the Salomon Villain maybe better.
I hadn't heard of Endeavor, I'll look into it. I'm kind of tempted to just stop looking at new boards at this point because I could do that forever. But I see they have another board (Clout) that has that flat profile which rises sort of like a camber board. I'm really curious about that (like the Happy Hour) if I ever got a chance to try it out.

Quote:
Originally Posted by SkullAndXbones View Post
even though it's a directional twin i wanna throw the Darker Series into the mix here.
Any reason why I should look at the Darker Series over Hot Knife? I see it has a "power transfer spine" and "basalt/fiberglass" and a few other differences but I don't understand if that's better/worth going for a directional twin.
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Old 02-27-2014, 05:36 PM   #10 (permalink)
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for mervin boards i would think you'd want a board with C3 BTX. all the others that i see on lib tech's website have an overall rocker shape. the C3 BTX has a slight overall camber shape. basically, camber is great for speed, stability, and edge hold. although you shouldn't have too much of a problem with edge hold with any mervin board because of the magnetraction. rocker is more playful, generally a little easier to initiate turns, and float better in powder. for what you wanna do, to me it sounds like you'd want an all mountain board rather than a freestyle board
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