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Old 09-12-2011, 10:02 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Default New board advice, carving up the northeast

Hey guys,

I'm interested in a new board for this season.

I'm 6'3 200-205lbs
Size 13 Salomon F22 (much smaller than normal 13s. current board has a 259mm waist and is fine)
Ride RX bindings
Intermediate rider

I ride with a lot of skiers. We normally just race and carve down mountains. i'm not interested in park stuff. Being in the northeast, i see a lot of ice and crappy conditions.

I currently ride a Sierra Crew 160W which i think is a rebadged 2008 Burton Custom. I like the board and find it pretty easy to work with, but i have two problems with it. I have a LOT of trouble on hard or icy conditions. I really want to try out vario, magna traction, etc and see how much it can help. The second problem is that at high speed i gets floppy and shudders and starts to feel sketchy. I'm thinking my next board will be a little longer as well as i am pretty tall/heavy.

I've been searching and getting a bit overwhelmed. I'm pretty sure i want/need a directional twin, fairly stiff, but not insanely so. Does anyone have any recommendations? I'l start building a list and narrowing it down. Thanks!

Last edited by TXBDan; 09-13-2011 at 05:55 PM.
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Old 09-12-2011, 10:45 PM   #2 (permalink)
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The Smokin stuff does a different kind of MTX. The points are more blunted than Mervins. So I would look into them. I find Mervins MTX to grab too much, it doesn't let you decide when to be out of a turn... hooky turns. From NS try the Raptor or Premier. Arbor has what they call griptech. Unblend a tri-radial sidecut and you end up with two bumps right at the inserts, as grippy as you can get without feeling like the board turns you instead of you turning the board. Look at the the Roundhouse RX. For a couple that don't have "edge-tech" but are solid all mountain/freeride look into the K2 Lifelike, or for even damper the Protohype, and with some cam-rock look into the Ride Highlife UL. One of the smoothest boards on edge I have personally ridden. Another that isn't technically edge tech but grips really well is the Flow Solitude. I've ridden the 5 radial sidecut on some other decks and for me it gripped nearly as well as Arbors and as well and smoother than Vario. Probably the best "traditional" sidecut theory on the market for a rockered board. This was Loveland near opening, but into the freezing temps at night. So the snow was chunder, and mostly man made that had frozen overnight. Firm.

At 200lbs shoot for mid 160's.
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Old 09-13-2011, 06:07 PM   #3 (permalink)
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Awesome, thanks for your help.

I've been thinking and looking back on last year, the single biggest "issue" i had was with ice. It really ruined a lot of days. I know that MTX, etc doesn't make ice into powder, but i'm really hoping it can help. With that it mind, i don't think i'm too afraid of MTX being too much. That'd be a fun problem to have :P

I've been doing more research and the Lib Tech Travis Rice Pro comes up a lot. It seems like a really nice board. My only concern is if its too advanced for me. I'm "intermediate" meaning on big mountains I'm on blues with the occasional single black diamond and on small mountains i'm mostly on the blacks with some blues. That said, i avoid moguls as i'm terrible at them. Also if its icy, i avoid the blacks as i just can't get the grip i need to dynamic ride and maintain speed. I end up sliding down on my ass like an idiot. I'm wondering if the T Rice can be too unforgiving.. any thoughts on that? I still occasionally catch an edge and eat it, but not too often really. and i keep my edges pretty sharp trying to find grip. Another good thing about the T Rice is that its mid-wide and the waist width is spot on with the 161.5. The con is that its a bit on the pricey side...

The NS Raptor (X) looks too aggressive for me i think.

The NS Premier looks great except that the waist is pretty narrow and probably too narrow.

Would the NS Heritage X be too soft? its waist in the X version is almost too wide if thats possible. I don't want to slow down edge-to-edge transitions any more than i have to.

How's the K2 Slayblade fit in with these? Any other ideas?

Thanks a ton!
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Old 09-13-2011, 07:42 PM   #4 (permalink)
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At you're point nothing is going to be too much board. You'll like the Premier. And I choose NS over Mervin for durability sake.

The Slayblade is a decent board, but I think the Protohype is going to be more lively and just as damp.
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Old 09-16-2011, 08:33 AM   #5 (permalink)
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I'm still worried about the Premier's waist being too narrow. I emailed NS to see what they have to say about it.

How about the Smokin KT22? Has solid reviews and its slightly cheaper than the Travis Rice. Also made in the USA which i like a lot.
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Old 09-16-2011, 09:58 AM   #6 (permalink)
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Sounds like you're a groomer guy. For bombing groomers most of the time, I'm with nivek, try the HighLife. Super damp, never squirely. And I am a Yes Homer, but the Big City would be a ton of fun for you as well. The reason I picked those two boards from the list was due to the CamRock. Really fun to aggressively ride groomers with, and not catchy because of the rocker after the bindings.
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Old 09-29-2011, 06:44 AM   #7 (permalink)
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Thanks, all. I've moved the Highlife to my shortlist for a demo day.

Could anyone compare/contrast the Highlife to the Travis Rice? Is the Travis Rice too "big mountain" oriented? I like the fact they're made in the USA. I've also been visiting a couple ski/snowboard shops in the VT/NH area and the Slayblade keeps coming up in conversation. How does it hang?

Any other ideas suggestions?

Thanks!
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Old 09-29-2011, 08:22 AM   #8 (permalink)
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Smokin KT22 and a NS Premier F1 are both absolutely amazing boards for going fast on hard pack and boiler plate. Ive ridden both and owned a KT-22. Best board Ive ever touched for Mach speed on boiler plate.
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Old 09-29-2011, 09:05 AM   #9 (permalink)
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Both the HighLife and Travis Rice are stiff boards. The HighLife is stiffer though. Both are very damp rides. However, their shapes are completely different. The T.Rice is a Hybrid Rocker/Camber true twin. The rocker section is between the bindings and the camber is underfoot.

The 2011 Highlife is a two level rocker rise. The nose has a medium rise then it mellows to being nearly flat with a low rise rocker in the tail. The 2012 Highlife UL has their new All-mountain Hybrid. The medium rise rocker in the nose is still there, but now instead of being nearly flat, there is a very slight camber that goes through to the tail. I'm talking very slight camber so almost flat but not.

For icey conditions, T.Rice wins without a question. Ride Slimewalls work really well on dampening the ride on crud, but the grip isn't there like it is with MTX.

If you ride any powder, Highlife wins. The shape was built with powder in mind. I also think the Highlife is the faster board. I rode the 2011 version and that thing booked! It was a demo board as well so I doubt it had much base maintenance.

If you find MTX to be too grippy, you can easily solve that problem with an edge filer. Just go over the edges and the extreme bite will be reduced without sacrificing edge hold on ice because you'll still have all 7 contact points.

For all out carving and speed, I say HighLife. It's good enough on Ice given that you are a solid rider.

As for Never Summer... Consider the Heritage. Go hit up Snowolf's review on the Equipment Review section of this forum.

163w is a good size
Ride Highlife UL Wide2012

164 for this one
Lib Tech T. Rice Pro C2 BTX2012
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Old 09-29-2011, 11:33 AM   #10 (permalink)
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Leo, Highlife / Banana Magic / Travis Rice - which one for what this rider described?
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