How accurate are the manufacturer's weight recommendations? - Snowboarding Forum - Snowboard Enthusiast Forums
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post #1 of 8 (permalink) Old 04-20-2017, 03:04 PM Thread Starter
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How accurate are the manufacturer's weight recommendations?

I've been looking to replace my park board(2011 Rome Artifact Rocker 150). I wanted a board with a R/F/R profile in 151-153cm range. I weight ~160LBS.

I've demoed Ride Machete and K2 WWW in 152. If you check the manufacturer weight recommendations for each board I'm out of range for the Machete(100-150LBS) and right in the middle for the WWW(120-200LBS).

Yet the Machete felt noticeably more stable and was much harder to press and butter than the WWW. Machete felt more stable on jumps and just trying to go fast.

So how accurate are some of the manufacturer's weight recommendations?

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post #2 of 8 (permalink) Old 04-20-2017, 03:21 PM
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They're really only a guide. Nothing is a rule. Can't speak to those two boards because I haven't been on either.

As you can tell, demo days are the best way to really tell what you like and don't like in a board.
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post #3 of 8 (permalink) Old 04-20-2017, 04:01 PM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by poutanen View Post
They're really only a guide. Nothing is a rule. Can't speak to those two boards because I haven't been on either.

As you can tell, demo days are the best way to really tell what you like and don't like in a board.

Yeh, I knew it was just an estimated guide but I was surprised how "wrong" it was. Based on the spec, I was expecting the opposite result before demoing the boards. Like you said, the only way to truly know is to demo the board.
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post #4 of 8 (permalink) Old 04-20-2017, 04:53 PM
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Without knowing all the details about each board, one may have a stiffer flex rating than the other.
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post #5 of 8 (permalink) Old 04-21-2017, 09:34 AM
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All snowboards are not to be ridden the same. Nothing wrong with those values. Different boards meant for different purposes.

Also, it's all relative. A stiffer hard charging freeride binding for me might be a park binding for a lot bigger dude. I know lighter dudes that go for a flexier Park/all mountain board for their freeride setup and look to be in the lower end if not under the recommended weight range, not that they mean much, and same can be vice versa.
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post #6 of 8 (permalink) Old 04-21-2017, 01:32 PM
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Originally Posted by snowman55 View Post
I've been looking to replace my park board(2011 Rome Artifact Rocker 150). I wanted a board with a R/F/R profile in 151-153cm range. I weight ~160LBS.

I've demoed Ride Machete and K2 WWW in 152. If you check the manufacturer weight recommendations for each board I'm out of range for the Machete(100-150LBS) and right in the middle for the WWW(120-200LBS).

Yet the Machete felt noticeably more stable and was much harder to press and butter than the WWW. Machete felt more stable on jumps and just trying to go fast.

So how accurate are some of the manufacturer's weight recommendations?
Well these are two very different boards so right off the bat you're comparing apples to cinderblocks -- these boards *should* feel different to you, no matter what size you're riding.

On to the topic of weight ranges, though... These "weight ranges" are basically designed to appeal to the broadest possible customer base

IMO, at best the weight range is basically a starting point suggestion, and in most cases it is such a broad range and with so much overlap between sizes that it is nearly meaningless. To use one example, the weight range on Arbor's snowboards typically span 70-80 pounds per size, and each size increments only by only a few pounds over the previous size. Here's a specific, go look at the spec sheet on the Coda Camber:

Length | Weight Range | Average Weight
154 | 114-194 | 154
156 | 120-200 | 160
159 | 126-206 | 166
161 | 130-210 | 170
164 | 132-212+ | 172

So, as long as you weigh over 130#, Arbor says you can ride *any* of these sizes, but it should be pretty clear which size(s) are most likely suitable for someone of that weight. And likewise, as long as you weigh under 194#, Arbor says you can ride *any* of these sizes, but it should be pretty clear which size(s) are most suitable for someone that size, too. When you look at it in this full context, it's kinda ridiculous innit?

Just understand that the heavier you are, the more flex you'll tend to get out of the board, stiffer boards will not be as stiff, but softer boards will be even softer, and factor that in to your decision as best you can.


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post #7 of 8 (permalink) Old 04-21-2017, 02:42 PM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by david_z View Post
Well these are two very different boards so right off the bat you're comparing apples to cinderblocks -- these boards *should* feel different to you, no matter what size you're riding.

On to the topic of weight ranges, though... These "weight ranges" are basically designed to appeal to the broadest possible customer base

IMO, at best the weight range is basically a starting point suggestion, and in most cases it is such a broad range and with so much overlap between sizes that it is nearly meaningless. To use one example, the weight range on Arbor's snowboards typically span 70-80 pounds per size, and each size increments only by only a few pounds over the previous size. Here's a specific, go look at the spec sheet on the Coda Camber:

Length | Weight Range | Average Weight
154 | 114-194 | 154
156 | 120-200 | 160
159 | 126-206 | 166
161 | 130-210 | 170
164 | 132-212+ | 172

So, as long as you weigh over 130#, Arbor says you can ride *any* of these sizes, but it should be pretty clear which size(s) are most likely suitable for someone of that weight. And likewise, as long as you weigh under 194#, Arbor says you can ride *any* of these sizes, but it should be pretty clear which size(s) are most suitable for someone that size, too. When you look at it in this full context, it's kinda ridiculous innit?

Just understand that the heavier you are, the more flex you'll tend to get out of the board, stiffer boards will not be as stiff, but softer boards will be even softer, and factor that in to your decision as best you can.
Thanks for the info.

I think some of these specs by the manufacturer (not just the weight range) are really off. I think Ride needs to redo their specs on the Machete. They label it as a medium soft (4 out 10). There is no way that's a medium soft board. I would label it as medium to medium stiff.
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post #8 of 8 (permalink) Old 04-21-2017, 03:22 PM
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Originally Posted by snowman55 View Post
Thanks for the info.

I think some of these specs by the manufacturer (not just the weight range) are really off. I think Ride needs to redo their specs on the Machete. They label it as a medium soft (4 out 10). There is no way that's a medium soft board. I would label it as medium to medium stiff.
So, fun fact: When the Machete came out in 2009/2010 it was rated 6/10 and kept that rating for a few years at least. IMO that is still "medium" flex. After a few days it breaks in a bit more and will ride softer than it does when initially out of the plastic. I haven't ridden one since I think 2013, so I can't speak for the current versions. Another thing maybe overlooked is that Ride lists the Machete as "all mountain freestyle" which usually means it's a playful all-mountain deck, and should be expected to ride stiffer and damper than a dedicated jib board like the WWW.

Either way, the WWW on the other hand is renowned as one of the softest boards out there I don't know what K2 rated it but it's probably a 2/10.

I just checked Ride's website, and they don't list a flex rating, they list a feel rating. Burton does the same thing and I don't think these are synonyms or terms that should be assumed interchangeable. I don't like "feel" ratings, because "flex" was already ambiguous enough: there is no universally accepted rating scale for such things, some brands use 10-pt scale, others used 5-pt scale, Lobster (I think) used to use a reverse 5-pt where "5" was "most flexible", etc. My best guess is that "feel" is some sort of aggregate of Flex, Dampenening and Playfulness. The first two are mostly material characteristics but playfulness also depends on board shape, camber profile, etc.

And if that's not bad enough there's not just ONE flex characteristic for each board . A snowboard will flex lengthwise but also torsionally, and especially lengthwise you can consider *where* the board flexes the most. Some boards have super flexy tips, others flex more through the middle of the board, etc.


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