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Old 02-28-2012, 04:31 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Default How will a snowboard that is too long feel?

I'm evaluating if I could use a longer snowboard. I currently ride Ride Decade 156cm and thinking about the Ride Highlife UL 161. The next step down is 158 which might be too small of a difference compared to my current board. I don't have the luxury of trying it out before I buy.

Height: 5'10"
Weight: 166lb
Boot Size: 10.5
Style: All Mountain speed charger (marked trails only). No interest in trees or park.
Preferred Terrain: 50% groomers, 50% fresh pow
Terrain Experience: 35% groomed, 35% hard pack, 20% ice,10% fresh pow
Experience: 11 Days on rentals, 20 days on Ride Decade

I'd love to get the 161 but would hate to have shot myself in the foot because it's too long. How will it feel it it's too long? Will a 158 make a big enough difference to justify it instead?

Thanks for any input
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Old 02-28-2012, 04:34 PM   #2 (permalink)
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for one, i would think it's harder to carve is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-28-2012, 04:41 PM   #3 (permalink)
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If I were you I would go to a 161. I'm 6'1'' 170 and ride a 163 for the type of riding you described and it kills it at speed and stability. No reason to buy a board 2 cm larger IMO.
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Old 02-28-2012, 07:11 PM   #4 (permalink)
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I'm 180lbs and ride mostly 156-158 boards. Get the 158
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Old 02-28-2012, 07:52 PM   #5 (permalink)
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Originally Posted by View Post
for one, i would think it's harder to carve
The board will require more effort to manipulate... which is not exactly the same thing as harder to carve as once you do get the board on edge, it will be more stable and have better edgehold which are two things that make carving easier. The extra effort will be noticeable in bumps and trees (were you will want to be quick and nimble).

I'm 5'9" 150 lbs and I've riden board up to 178cm in length and if you know what you are doing - they can be fun to ride. However in this case I wold say go with the 158. Length is only one of many differences between boards and don't feel like you have to change you size to feel a difference.

I would not be afraid of longer lengths... but at the same time there is no reason to go long unless you specifically want the benefits that come with longer board (more effective edge, more stability at high speed).
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Old 02-28-2012, 08:42 PM   #6 (permalink)
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I agree with lonerider. In a way its actually easier to carve with longer stiffer board at higher speed. Its much easier to make your board hold edge. But if you dont already know how to carve it's going to be harder to turn and less maneuverable. you have to also remember that you are going from mid flex to stiff flex board. so that is already like adding little bit of length. 158 or 159 stiff board would be good all arounder especially for riding resorts. You can definately go with 161 if you are good at carving (especially if you plan on keeping the decade around). Or i would at least check out highlife UL 159 wide. I think with 10.5 you will be ok with wide. wider board will give you little more stiffness and it's 159. overally it's going to be as stable as 161 regular width but more maneuverable given your feet is big enough.
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Old 02-28-2012, 11:44 PM   #7 (permalink)
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I appreciate all the helpful responses but I am still a little torn.

I feel that I am already a very proficient high speed carver and that I could really benefit from the 161 length as lonerider stated. I am generally very quick with switching edges on my current board to point where moguls don't really bother me.

But if a stiffer board alone brings the same benefits of a longer board like srdeo stated then maybe the 158 would be plenty. Ride rates The Decade to Highlife stiffness rating as 6 vs 9.

Going wide is a good idea but not really an option. My Decade's waist width is exactly the size it needs to be (Just a tad bit of overhang). The Waist widths are 249,252,254,263 for the Decade 156, HL 158, HL 161, HL159W respectively. I'm no expert but I think 263 from 249 is too wide.

I intend on keeping my Decade board around for a little while as a backup but my intention is to replace it.

Will the "effort to manipulate" be that much greater with a 161 vs 158??

Last edited by bntran02; 02-28-2012 at 11:55 PM.
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Old 02-29-2012, 12:12 AM   #8 (permalink)
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Originally Posted by bntran02 View Post
Will the "effort to manipulate" be that much greater with a 161 vs 158??
No, it will not be that much of a difference, but it is noticeble. The only concern we all have is that you might be surprised by the combination or the increased stiffness AND length. Realize we are making educated guess based on basically a few lines of information.

It sounds like after reading what the potential pitfalls are, you still want to go for the 161... then go for it as 3 cm is not a huge difference in terms of length (just don't come back blaming us if it is not what you wanted).

Last edited by lonerider; 02-29-2012 at 12:18 AM.
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Old 02-29-2012, 12:46 AM   #9 (permalink)
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Ok, I ride all of my boards long.

I weigh around 180-200 usually but my diet slipped and I've dropped down to 165.

However, I'm a firm believer in riding boards slightly longer than what the new weight to length scales recommend.

My play board is a 59, my big boy board is a 63. Both wides as I have large feet, so I get even more surface area.

Here's the thing, you WILL adjust to having a slightly longer board and you WILL be able to make it do everything people on smaller boards are doing. It will take more effort, and a little more time to adjust, but in turn you will become a better rider imo.

On the flip side, your buddies may be downsizing as far as they can go, and they will pay for it on powder days.

If you're wanting to be as close to a one stick quiver guy as possible, get the slightly to long board and adjust to it.

With that being said, and your options being a 58 and a 61, I think you should go with the 58 unless you plan on gaining some weight.

The 58 is already pushing the longer side for your overall size and the 61 may be a bit goofy.

And about waist width, you DO NOT need a 263 waist width with size 10.5 stompers. My feet are much bigger than yours and I go with a 260 and up, unless you're some mega carver and touch your nose to the snow mid carve.

The 58 will be a perfect do everything size for you imo.
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Old 03-06-2012, 10:03 AM   #10 (permalink)
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After flip-flopping between the two sizes numerous times for several days I eventually clicked "submit order" on the 161cm and here is why:

1) I found a nearby store that had a 161 in stock and the difference between my current board vs the new one was not noticeable. My tests were just simple bend tests.

2) I got in contact with a representative at ridesnowboards to somehow compare the stiffness of the two boards and was told that a board's rating is only relative to other boards in the same year. i.e: A board rated at 6 one year would be "upgraded" to 9 or 10 if all boards stiffer than 6 were removed from their lineup.

3) The same person also said that the stiffness "feel" can be significantly reduced depending on the rocker/camber profile. A board's stiffness then becomes meaningless unless compared to other boards with the exact same profile.

4) Also that the challenge for me would not be adapting to the new stiffness but more akin to adapting to a new rocker/camber profile with a different level of pop and dampness. This adaptation would have to occur regardless of size. According to him, 161 was a good size for me because I have no intention of going in the park.

Wow...This whole "how is a long board gonna feel" thread pushed me to do a lot more research about what to expect and how to compare two boards with a 4 year generation gap. Thanks for any and all responses and I hope that I was able to share some information did you did not already know.
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