Barracuda correspondance with Burton
I`m in Japan. Want to buy a powder board as I`ve spend all my time the last 3 years riding backcountry and the leg burn is killing my enjoyment, even with my set set back to the max. Wanted a Malolo, but can`t find a 162 over here, which is the length Burton recommended for me when I enquired.
So I thought I`d go for a Barracuda. Once again, 161s are in short supply, but 157s are numerous.
I`m 184cm and 155lbs, mostly limbs, size 9.5 US. Regular board is 158.
I mailed Burton, wondering which length they`d recommend, having previously trolled all the forums trying to get an idea of what I needed. They recommended a 157. What follows is the discussion that ensued:
The barracuda has “Raduction” which will make a shorter board feel much more stable and ride like a board that is a few cm longer because it will have an effective edge that is similar to that of a longer board. Also, the board is wider and has more torsional rigidity which will contribute to the stability of the board. Based on your weight, I think 157 – 159 would be a pretty ideal board size. The 157 Barracuda will ride more like a 160, and should satisfy your personal preference of riding longer boards (even if it is only a 157). I recommend the 157 Barracuda for your size and riding style."
Just to check - a week ago when I was searching for a Malolo second-hand, I mailed burton and received this comment:
"If you can get your hands on a 162 you'd probably enjoy it more but we think the 158 will be ok because of the specific shape.
Would this be the same for the Barracuda, or do you still think the 157 is best?"
I was suggesting the 157 Barracuda based on the fact that it is supposed to be ridden a few cm shorter than what you would typically ride, but again it is up to you to determine your personal preference. Because you are tall but light weight with a relatively small boot size, I feel that the 157 would be stable enough for you and very maneuverable (especially in the trees). If you would like more high speed stability, you can go with the 161, but if you would like more maneuverability the 157 might be a little more fun."
"Sorry - with the s-rocker, wouldn`t the 161 feel and handle like a shorter board anyway in the trees, so feel maneuverable anyway?
I`ve read the noose can be be a bit loose on groomers (I only ride them transiting really). Which length would be more stable for that?"
"The S-rocker will make the Barracuda float better in deep snow and will allow you to initiate turns a little quicker. However, it is the “Raduction” that makes the board ride and feel like a longer board. This is achieved through making the board wider with more torsional rigidity and a longer effective edge. Personal preference definitely comes into play when choosing your board size, so ultimately it is up to you. It sounds like you are leaning toward the 161, and I don’t see a problem with that. It will feel and perform more like a 164, but you should be strong enough to manipulate it."
End of correspondence.
My questions are -
Do people agree with this?
I understand the tech spiel and I know the downsizing theory...but I`ve also read that one doesn`t have to. Sometimes I wonder whether they push the downsize thing strongly to back-up the tech claims, and that it might not be so necessary...
I would like the board to be nimble though, but also stable at speed. Would a longer board have a tendency to flap more at the nose on groomers (I only ride them getting off the mountain)? With my high centre of gravity, I`m concerned the 157 will not offer the stability, despite Burton assuring me that it will feel like a 161.
Experiences, thoughts, comments, recommendations anyone?
Thanks for reading.
At your weight you'd be fine on either board. I ride a 58 and 64 Capita Charlie Slasher, both float me really well and I weigh more than you. If I were you I'd hold out for the longer Cuda or if you want to wait until next year the Charlie Slasher comes in a 61.
Thanks for the response Shralp.
Why would you go for the larger board?
Why is it so hard for you to find a 61? Since you're a Kagura guy, you must live near Tokyo. Go walk around Kanda.
Or get one off the auctions:
if you want the 62 malolo:
BURTON AURA 10 malolo fish barracuda - Yahoo!
the malolo is better than the cuda. I'd say, if you can wait, get the 59 landlord next year.
or, if you're not limited to Burton, the 61 k2 ultra dream is good, or a 56 jones hovercraft
Thanks for the reply.
Limited to internet shopping, so can`t go for a stroll during the week. Couldn`t find a 61 for under 6-man.
Would you go for a 161 or 157 in my position?
Cheers for the Malolo link. Aura is just a special edition Malolo released in Japan - right?
Why the Malolo over a Cuda?
Yeah, but if I wait this year, next season comes round and I reassess options again...I`d still like to use a new board this weekend (season) when I head to Nagano and Kagura - while theres still good snow about. Plus I just got a 6-man tax rebate that I`ll blow on nothing if I wait!
The Malolo has a bigger taper.20 mm vs 15mm
I don't like the cuda rocker. It goes under the front foot and it makes you naturally put your weight on the back foot. On groomers you have to make an effort to put your weight on your front foot to use the whole edge. The malolo's rocker was much better.
I used a couple malolos for many years in the Nagano backcountry.
What's your regular board btw?
I`ve been riding a my first ever board for the last 5 seasons. Its a Salomon Forecast 158. Taught me lots about boarding. I`ve had a great time on it, but the leg-burn...like I said, I practically never use the slopes anymore, unless it`s with some skier friends and girlfriends who don`t venture backcountry - once a season at Joetsu. Even then I manage to find some powder.
Yeah, I`m a bit hesitant on the s-rocker. I naturally put my weight back, from using my current board for several years, stance set back and leaning back to keep the nose up. Maybe it would be hard for me to adjust to leaning forward a lot.
That Malolo you posted the link to was an Aura. I`d found it on Japanauction too. Its just tagged as a malolo.
Are there any second-hand places in Kanda? I really want one of the last 2 years malolos. Graphically, before that on the bottom they look like predator with the mask off.
I decided to look for a Cuda because I still wanted a rocker board and at a length that would be suitable for my weight. Burton recommended the 162, but like I said, I couldn`t find one. They said I could get away with a 158, but I`d probably have more fun on the 162. I like the idea of riding a shorter, more flickable board through the trees though.
I also wanted to move to EST bindings and the channel system, for the usual reasons....so I ended up searching for a Cuda.
oh man, sorry about that aura link. just did a quick malolo search and it was white, like the 2010.
ok, first of all, the channel is great for getting the perfect stance width. Apart from that, it doesn't do much. Once you set your stance then you don't use it anymore, so if you're fine on 4x2 then nothing will change.
EST bindings are not worth getting imo. Getting the equivalent binding in reflex will get you 95% of the same feel, def same or better performance AND you are not limited to Burton boards.
I highly recommend this board (and it's a great price)
12-13 2013 K2 SNOWBOARD ULTRA DREAM 161
edit: just looked closer. d'oh it's sold out!
The k2 ultra dream in a 161. Perfect size for you. It's got rockered tips for pow float, yet still rides like a regular board for harder snow. If you're doing backcountry, then you know that it's not always pow, and it's good to have an allmountain board over a pure powder board (the malolo is a good allmountain board too though).
Larger surface area = more float, the tapered shape still makes the board turn quickly so even my 64 Charlie is still easy to ride in tighter trees.
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