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Old 04-01-2013, 08:46 AM   #1 (permalink)
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Default Board advice: Neversummer, K2, Ride, Burton vs Gnu

I'm looking to finally bite the bullet and buy my first snowboard. I've been doing a ton of research, but it's tough to decipher all the mag reviews.

I'm 5' 8" and 150 lbs. I'd consider myself an intermediate all mountain rider. I don't really hit the parks much, but would love to get to the point that I could ride the back bowls and go anywhere on the mountain. I live on the east coast so at least half of my boarding will happen on east coast conditions.

I think I've narrowed it down to the following boards:

mid-range boards:
* K2 Raygun - sounds like a solid mid-range board
* Ride Wild Life - a few people have rec'd this to me as another mid-range, but there's not a ton of info on it online
* Burton Custom Flying V - I feel like I have to consider the Custom, but I've heard mixed things about the Flying V's edge control.

maybe step it up if it's really worth it:
* Never Summer SL - everyone seems to love this board
* GNU Billy Goat - looking at a Gnu or Lib Tech board because of their rep in handling icy conditions.

Any advice from experienced riders?
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Old 04-02-2013, 05:26 AM   #2 (permalink)
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Please delete.

Last edited by LA Forever; 04-02-2013 at 05:34 AM.
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Old 04-02-2013, 05:56 AM   #3 (permalink)
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Consider custom camber version for better edge hold.
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Old 04-02-2013, 07:40 AM   #4 (permalink)
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I ride in the East as well and IMO, Lib Tech/GNU and NS have the best edge hold tech of any company I have tried. I'm also a big fan of their camber-rocker-camber profiles, as they have less of a skatey feel than rocker-camber-rocker or flat profiles. The NS topsheet will be more durable than the GNU. I can't speak of the durability of other brands. The Billy Goat will be too stiff for what you want, I am sure of it. Consider the Riders Choice from GNU, which is a much closer match to the NS SL.

FWIW, I just had another friend switch from a Burton board after it broke and they sent him a new one. He liked his Yes The Greats board much more. I have also heard of the Flying V washing out a lot, even after supposed "improvements."
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Old 04-02-2013, 08:18 AM   #5 (permalink)
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Hmmm... haven't ridden the Custom Flying V but been on the Burton Sherlock with Flying V. Didn't like the edge to edge transition on this shape. It's not a continuous movement, but rather a lag phase where nothing happens and the suddenly - tack - the other edge snaps. It's a smoothe ride otherwise but this angular transition could be unsettling at the beginning. Be sure to try it first
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Old 04-02-2013, 11:40 AM   #6 (permalink)
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Thanks for the feedback everyone.

I think I'm starting to lean toward the Never Summer SL at this point. Has anyone compared this board to the Lib Tech TRS or GNU Rider's Choice?

This might be a ridiculous question so go easy on me, but is there such thing as "too much board?" In other words, as an intermediate, would I be better off and have an easier time advancing on an intermediate board vs something like the SL or TRS?
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Old 04-02-2013, 12:03 PM   #7 (permalink)
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I have an 11/12 SL and an 11/12 RC. Newer version have some slight upgrades such as dampening and assym. sidecuts so I can't compare them but in terms of flex they are pretty similar. The SL is significantly more damp. The RC is closer to the Proto in terms of dampness. The SL rides pow better due to its slight setback, while the RC rides switch better because it is centered. IMO the RC is a bit funner to ride and hit features etc but the SL charges harder, it also feels more stable. Edge grip is similar in both cases
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Old 04-02-2013, 12:30 PM   #8 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Parnassus View Post
Thanks for the feedback everyone.

I think I'm starting to lean toward the Never Summer SL at this point. Has anyone compared this board to the Lib Tech TRS or GNU Rider's Choice?

This might be a ridiculous question so go easy on me, but is there such thing as "too much board?" In other words, as an intermediate, would I be better off and have an easier time advancing on an intermediate board vs something like the SL or TRS?
You sound like my twin... 5'8", 150, east coast, and rides a Never Summer SL... well, not yet. Don't get a North Face jacket and 686 pants or people won't be able to tell us apart if we ride the same mountain.

"Too much" board can mean getting something super stiff or super long (insert phallic joke here ). A deck that is too much of both will force you to move more dynamically from the get go because during slow, static turns, you'll have to input a lot of energy for simple torsional twists from your front foot in order to steer. If your past that stage and ARE moving more dynamically, then getting a more "advanced" (read:stiffer) board won't be much of a problem. My very first board, as I stated above was a Never Summer SL. It ended up being perfect as, once I got the technique down pat, I was able to torsionally twist my lead foot for comfortable, slow static turns. I'm of the belief that if you got a super-soft rocker in the beginning, and you aren't disciplined, that can lead to using bad technique because of the effortless turning and catch free ride. You can get away with "ruddering" way more with noodle boards.

You say you're an intermediate, but that could mean a wide range of things. If you're just past the stage where you're linking slow static turns down greens or blues, then you're in the lower intermediate stage of riding. If you're starting to dynamically carve/skid down blues, and maybe some blacks, then I would say you're in a higher intermediate stage. Depending which stage you're at depends which boards you can use effectively.

After getting my SL, I wanted to charge down the mountains even faster, so I went and got a NS Raptor after my ~40th time up the mountain after I was comfortable dynamically carving/skidding down blues and some blacks. I'm glad I waited because if I got that board earlier, it could have lead to a lot of painful falls. Until I can go down moguls and steeper terrain dynamically carving, I won't consider myself an advanced rider, but I still am good enough to use and appreciate a more "advanced" board like the Raptor.

Last edited by Mel M; 04-02-2013 at 12:33 PM.
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Old 04-02-2013, 03:07 PM   #9 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mel M View Post
You sound like my twin... 5'8", 150, east coast, and rides a Never Summer SL... well, not yet. Don't get a North Face jacket and 686 pants or people won't be able to tell us apart if we ride the same mountain.

"Too much" board can mean getting something super stiff or super long (insert phallic joke here ). A deck that is too much of both will force you to move more dynamically from the get go because during slow, static turns, you'll have to input a lot of energy for simple torsional twists from your front foot in order to steer. If your past that stage and ARE moving more dynamically, then getting a more "advanced" (read:stiffer) board won't be much of a problem. My very first board, as I stated above was a Never Summer SL. It ended up being perfect as, once I got the technique down pat, I was able to torsionally twist my lead foot for comfortable, slow static turns. I'm of the belief that if you got a super-soft rocker in the beginning, and you aren't disciplined, that can lead to using bad technique because of the effortless turning and catch free ride. You can get away with "ruddering" way more with noodle boards.

You say you're an intermediate, but that could mean a wide range of things. If you're just past the stage where you're linking slow static turns down greens or blues, then you're in the lower intermediate stage of riding. If you're starting to dynamically carve/skid down blues, and maybe some blacks, then I would say you're in a higher intermediate stage. Depending which stage you're at depends which boards you can use effectively.
You sound like the perfect person for me to ask about board sizing on the SL. I read somewhere else on the forum that someone roughly our size/weight had the 155 SL (could have been you?), but suggested sizing down a bit. Any thoughts there? I'm roughly a size 8 in most boots, but am currently sporting 7s in the burton ions.

Very helpful on the "too much board" question. I'd say I'm probably an advanced intermediate at this point. I can carve dynamically reasonably well on groomed greens, blues and some blacks, but I'm still working on my form. The wheels come off this wagon and reveal some bad habits once I hit tougher blacks, ice or chop.
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Old 04-02-2013, 10:24 PM   #10 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Parnassus View Post
You sound like the perfect person for me to ask about board sizing on the SL. I read somewhere else on the forum that someone roughly our size/weight had the 155 SL (could have been you?), but suggested sizing down a bit. Any thoughts there? I'm roughly a size 8 in most boots, but am currently sporting 7s in the burton ions.

Very helpful on the "too much board" question. I'd say I'm probably an advanced intermediate at this point. I can carve dynamically reasonably well on groomed greens, blues and some blacks, but I'm still working on my form. The wheels come off this wagon and reveal some bad habits once I hit tougher blacks, ice or chop.
My boot size is a 7.5 Salomon Synapse. The length isn't as important as the waist width and I tend to go with boards with smaller waist width's for easier torsional control for my small feet. Also, anything 250mm or over waist width-wise, I would barely have toe/heel overhang.

My two boards are...

Never Summer SL 153 (waist width 244mm)
Never Summer Raptor 156 (waist width 248mm)

I believe the next size up in an SL (155) has a 250'ish mm waist width, so that was my primary reason for going with the 153.

There is a caveat that the Raptor is stiffer, so I do have a hard time torsionally twisting the board in a slow, static turn anyway. If you're dynamically carving, you can definitely get away with a 155 because you'll be using a lot of force turning the board and be using much more than just your ankles and knees to twist the board. On the whole, I feel I get a lot more agility with the SL than I do the Raptor. Some people on another thread have commented how the Heritage felt "stiffer" than the Raptor in similar sizes, even though the Heritage itself is supposed to be a softer board. I really feel this has to do with the 255mm and higher waist width found on all Heritage models.

IMHO, I just don't think it's worth losing the agility of the 153mm for what could be a marginally more stable ride on a 155.

Last edited by Mel M; 04-02-2013 at 10:28 PM.
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