You've obviously done your research and you've ridden a few boards. Kudos, you're way ahead of the curve.
Thanks. Hands on research is the only way I'd want to drop money on something like this.
If you can tell the difference between the boards you've ridden, but find that you can't do some things on one that you can do on another, I'd really suggest you invest some moeny in lessons. No offense, but no board will "prevent" you doing anything (except maybe catching an edge on rails/boxes)
Actually, I've been doing lessons. The big thing I noticed between one board to the other was that the Rossignol was really easy to drop from a "stop" position into a line by shifting weight, whereas the Cruzer was not at all easy to do that with, and required me to work on my torsional flex technique (not a bad thing, since it's good technique but noticeably different). Both were similar length boards, so I assumed it had something to do with either the width of my stance or sidecut, but really don't know.
I know that sounds pretty pompous, but think of it as research. You're prepared to drop a lot of coin on a setup, make sure that you don't buy a board that merely compensates for today's riding style but not next year's. I've got a friend who rides totally counter-rotated and always skids his turns. You can't tell him anything and he spends money on boards like it's going out of style. Always looking for that perfect combination of edge bevel, sidecut radius and flex that will allow him to carve prefect turns. Well, duh...it's not the board!
I'm trying to look a couple years down the road without killing myself today, so you're on the money with my dilemma.
Without anything to compare it to, it's going to be hard to make the choice on spec's alone. I have no idea what the flex rating of my board is, I'd have to look it up and even then, I won't know if that number is comparable from brand to brand. But I can tell that this board is softer or that board is stiffer when I ride it.
::nod:: Stiffness I figure I'll have to handle and test in a board shop. Just trying to make sure there's no other tech I should be worried about. I mean, I can grab a K2 illusion for $100 right now, and a Never Summer System or Burton Custom for $300+. I want to make sure I'm not missing anything on the "cheap" board.
Maybe buy a cheap board (or rent something you can get spec's on) and learn what you hate/like about it? Then you'll know that you want something longer than this, stiffer that that, wider than this, etc.
Trying, my friend. It seems my options are rent SUPER entry level boards or demo a mid-to-advanced level board. The "decent" beginner to intermediate boards don't really seem to be hitting the rental/demo counters.
You're obviously prepared to invest time and money and getting the perfect setup probably isn't going to happen on your first purchase. You'll probably be buying another in a few seasons.
Absolutely something I'm ok with, as long as I get more than, say, 10 days out of my "beginner" set up. If I spend less on my board set up than the rentals for the same time period costs me, then I'm fine with it (my wife might be another story, but I'll cross *that* bridge when I get there. :P).