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Old 03-09-2010, 02:00 AM   #1 (permalink)
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Default New Rider - Research Completed - Help me decide

Ok, so I just finished my 3rd and final lesson at Mtn High via their 3-peat package (killer deal) and am officially hooked after a 15 year hiatus from my first attempt at boarding when I gave up after a few hours (advanced skier). By the end of my 3rd lesson last week (helped a lot) I was completing edge to edge turns pretty smoothly and can get into and hold a basic carve....haven't tried any tricks yet. I rode a POS Head cambered 163 board for all 3 lessons, and am sold on getting my own gear.

Here's my dilemma...I 'm a big guy...6'4" 275 lbs (losing weight) and Size 13/14 my board choices are definitely limited to a W. From the sizing charts I've seen, I need anywhere between a 163 and 167, depending on rocker (size down?) or camber, so that's where I've narrowed my choices, but that also further complicates things. I've been learning on a cambered board and doing ok progressing so far, but have read all the hype about rockers helping beginners progress faster and not catching an edge, blah blah, I started to get sold on a rocker board and looked high and low for a Burton Joystick which I couldn't find anywhere in a 163W. But I have also read the anti-hype saying that beginners should learn on a cambered board to learn and master the fundamentals of boarding, and that cambered boards can actually be more stable when carving for beginners, which I definitely want.

The other question is, do I start with a solid camber beginner board/binding set to start out on or go with an intermediate/advanced rocker board and better bindings that I can progress with for a while. Not sure I will end up being much of a park rider, prob more an all mountain cruiser/bomber with a few jumps here and there. As for bindings, I want a good solid binding that will help me progress and last me a while.

So here are the board/binding choices I'm looking at:

Beginner Camber Boards
- Flow Merc (163W)
- K2 Podium (163W or 167W)

- Flow Flite 3
- Burton Custom
- Union Cadet

Intermediate/Advanced Rocker Boards
- Burton Joystick (163W - wait for 2011 model - '10 sold out)
- Never Summer Legacy-R (166) or Heritage-XR (165)
- K2 Parkstar (163W)
- Nitro Team Gullwing (162W)
- Gnu Riders Choice (166)
- Ride Machete (164W)

- Burton Cartel Reg or EST
- Flow NXT AT
- Union Force
- K2 Auto

All these options are kind of overload for a newb, so I appreciate the input.
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Old 03-11-2010, 02:21 AM   #2 (permalink)
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Default one huh?...awesome
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Old 03-11-2010, 03:06 AM   #3 (permalink)
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Go with the Never Summer Legacy or Premier, anything 166 or bigger. Alternatively you could look at the Lib Tech range. The Skunk Ape would suit a big guy like yourself. As for bindings, Union Forces. Happy riding fella
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Old 03-11-2010, 09:01 AM   #4 (permalink)
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IMO rockered boards are great for beginners. It will enable less edge catching which is always a plus, esp. for 275 lb ppl.

The camber advantage in carving is that it has more pop that can throw you into the next turn…when you are really good at it. Other than that, it may be more stable at high speeds. These features aren’t normally achieved by beginners really soon so it depends on your take on it. There is always dual camber…which for marketing purposes, they say its ROCKER-camber combo for high speed sticks…which are normally too stiff or narrow for a noob. Though at 275 lbs, you might be able to get away with a "stiff" board.

If you’re worried about carving in general, the Lib Tech / GNU line has serated edges that is raved about and that will help carving. Also, reverse camber is pre-curved into the carve shape so carve “initiation” is easier in some "power steering". They are suffixed, MTX (magnetraction) or BTX (banana with magnetraction) I think. M = serated, B = reverse camber.

Last edited by rasmasyean; 03-11-2010 at 09:25 AM.
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Old 03-11-2010, 09:18 AM   #5 (permalink)
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I wouldnt worry with a novice level board... of your choices listed id go with one of the intermediate. You are not a novice on the hill you just lack experience on a board. You will quickly translate your skiing knowledge and adapt it to boarding. The machete and the NS boards will definitely give you a fun time.
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Old 03-11-2010, 10:42 AM   #6 (permalink)
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K2 Slayblade 166W, I just rode it for 2 days. Board is awesome. I also have a NS Legacy 163, and I think actually like the Slayblade more.
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Old 03-11-2010, 11:45 AM   #7 (permalink)
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[QUOTE=J Alternatively you could look at the Lib Tech range. The Skunk Ape would suit a big guy like yourself. As for bindings, Union Forces. Happy riding fella[/QUOTE]

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Old 03-11-2010, 01:34 PM   #8 (permalink)
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For the riding that you said you'd like to do, I'd go with the Never Summer Legacy-R or Premier. The legacy is more all mountain, and the premier is more free ride/big mountain. These boards have both rocker and camber and I can tell you from personal experience, it can make your riding more lively, especially if you're a progressing rider. Definitely go for 166 and up as was already suggested. As far as bindings go, k2 autos are a very lightweight, high quality binding. I would recommend them as they have the flex that matches the riding style you are shooting for. I would also recommend the Flow NXT-FRX for the Premiere, and that ATs for the Legacy.

When you get your own gear, make sure you do enough research to set your bindings up properly. There's a lot more tweaking and forethought that goes into setting up your bindings than you might know. It can be a pain in the ass sometimes.

Lastly, well-fitting boots are the center of your setup. If you're not comfortable at all times, something is wrong. Boot comfortability will make or break your day. Get a custom fit if you can. You'll thank me later.
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Old 03-11-2010, 08:32 PM   #9 (permalink)
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I myself just bought a Burton Joystick with Burton Custom bindings...I am going to the hill Saturday to try it out. I will let you know how it does. I think it would be a great choice though. it's an intermediate board but the rocker makes it easier on beginners like yourself.
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Old 03-11-2010, 09:44 PM   #10 (permalink)
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K2 Slayblade, NeverSummer Legacy or Heritage should all be good choices
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