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Old 08-31-2013, 08:13 PM   #1 (permalink)
jtg
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Default Advice: Thought I was dropping 8 cm, but same effective edge..going to ride the same?

So I've been bugging Nivek in the other thread and based on his input and my own research I basically settled on the Buck Ferton (but didn't order yet). I'm about 140lbs and I currently have:

2013 TRS, 154, C2BTX profile, Magnetraction, on the stiffer side, extruded base. At my weight, this length is around the upper limit of what everyone seems to recommend for this board, and I heard people generally go smaller on the TRS.

2013 Burton Nug, 142, V-Rocker, soft-medium (though perhaps not as soft as you'd think), sintered base. Marketing says take 8-10cm off for Nugs, for reasons I don't quite understand, but following that, it seems to be a decent match for my size. It rides comfortably all over the mountain, surprisingly not terrible in powder, but has limitations. I just got it for experimenting because it was super cheap.

I wanted to get an all arounder that was right between these two. I'm mostly looking at 2013 sales that are still around, so options are limited, but there are good deals, and I don't want to overspend on what will be my 3rd board in less than a year. But I don't want a shitty board.

I found a Buck Ferton in 147 and thought this would be perfect. However, as I was about to order, I noticed that the Buck 147 and the TRS 154 actually have the same effective edge. (Edit: The 147 buck actually has more effective edge, 117cm, vs the 154 TRS at 115cm?!) It looks like they have a very similar camber profile as well. Now I wonder if it'll feel like basically the same board.

I'd rate myself as intermediate overall, but here's where I'm at with different areas of my riding at the end of last season. I'm not necessarily looking for a board good at what I already know, but one to help me progress in areas that I'm working on.

Groomers/On Piste: I spend most of my time here, do some blacks depending on snow condition and find them challenging/fun if the snow is soft, struggling with steeper runs, especially on hardpack, but making progress. Blues are no problem, except Moguls. I suck at moguls, and pretty much hate them, but want to nail them down and hate them less, so definitely seeking a board that will be very forgiving on those as I figure them out. I realize that is more a technique issue, but my guess is that shorter and softer boards help here.

Speed: I am not so much a speed junkie, would rather improve technique for the near future. Bombing harder is not something I care about. My top speeds last year were consistently around 35mph, but that was just short bursts bombing certain sections and not at all near my natural cruising speed. That said, comfortable cruising speed does seem to rise more quickly than one realizes, so I expect that to go up, but nothing like some of the speeds I see posted around here.

Powder: I love powder, but even though we get a fair bit, my opportunities to use it are limited because I don't have the skills/experience to go into double-black territory or backcountry. I will hit some ungroomed runs in the morning while it's fresh, and go to a few areas of the hill that are off-piste but don't have many trees or hazards. So far, this is my favorite type of riding, but also some of the least often I get to do. It doesn't make sense to optimize for it, but I don't want a board that will ruin it for me. So probably not a short camber board.

Park: Started playing in the "progression park", still learning to pop, doing smaller kickers and natural features. I felt like the Nug was easier to deal with in the park than the TRS, though with the Nug I ended up biting it on landings more often, even when I felt more like I was doing everything right. Maybe because its full V-rocker and so short (and I also because I need to ride more and suck less). I do some easy boxes, no rails yet, having fun trying to figure out butters and basic spins, etc. Hoping for a board that will help with butters and presses, and really basic jibs, but not compromise everything else. I want jump stability, but I wont be hitting huge jumps anytime soon, so those probably mean soft but not wet noodle, and not full rocker.

Pipe: No interest in doing this anytime soon

Switch: Cannot ride switch at all, really want to work on this, so a true twin is important

Carving: Really need to work on real carving, and need a board that will help me there. Trying to learn on the Nug was...amusing. The TRS made me feel like I had a chance, but really, I was not riding it, it was riding me. Since the other criteria are pushing this towards shorter/softer, this probably means flat, camrock, C3 BTX, C2 BTX, or similar to compensate. But I don't really know what I'm looking for there.

Conditions: We get a lot of very high moisture content snow around here, so a decent amount of powder, but the really heavy powder. Temps often do not stay low enough to keep the snow nice. This makes for a wide range of conditions, but there are many days where powder will fall, melt around midday, re-freeze to ice, dust on crust, etc. Last season I ended up battling ice as much as I did slush, especially at the beginning and end. For this reason, I really want magnetraction for the ice and crust, and a sintered base to hold wax on the slush and stop going over the handlebars.

Unfortunately the magnetraction limits my options a lot, especially with sintered. As far as I know, it's either Mervin, Smokin, a few Rossi, and I heard possibly Jones? Also it would be nice to have less rocker in the middle than C2BTX, perhaps C3 BTX, because I found the TRS to be squirrelly on the flats. But since I'm probably already asking for a unicorn, that isn't a huge priority.

So considering that, is the Buck Ferton a bad choice if I already have a TRS with the same effective edge? Are there others I should consider?

Also I know that many of my experiences above could be misconceptions and skill issues, so if it sounds like I'm making bad conclusions, definitely steer me accordingly.

Other boards I considered (all 2013):

Yes Jackpot and Slash Park, but after learning that Tragna Maction is not Magnetraction, and hearing that there were major inconsistencies with what came out of the nidecker factory, I've passed on these

Rossignol Templar, but passed on it because it is a directional flex pattern and a setback stance. However, if the flex doesn't totally ruin buttering and/or make switch riding really difficult to learn, and I can just mount my bindings forward to get a centered stance, I would still consider this board. But can you do this on a directional flex board without messing up the balance?

GNU Rider's Choice Nivek says the asym pickle core with softer heel on the recent models is really bad and had him washing out, which is already an issue for me, so that scared me away.

Others I'm not sure if I should be considering are Smokin Superpark (too stiff?), and Danny Kass (supposedly for aggressive riders, not sure why).

(Edit: Can't math, meant dropping 7cm)

Last edited by jtg; 09-01-2013 at 06:39 AM.
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Old 08-31-2013, 09:39 PM   #2 (permalink)
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First, the TRS and Nug are close enough in the way that they ride that there is not much of a point of getting something in-between.
Second, and more importantly, it your points sound more like rider/technique issues than board limitations. Specifically:
  • Your Nug should be pretty much perfect for moguls.
  • At 35mph you are nowhere what both of these boards can do comfortably.
  • There is absolutely no need to have a true twin to learn/practice switch riding. A directional twin/slightly directional board will ride switch just fine. And the TRS is a true twin anyway.
  • Carving: The Nug actually carves surprisingly well – if you have issues with it then it is definitely a skill/technique problem. Same for the TRS.
  • TRS is not a squirrel-ly board (especially at 35 mph or less), so again that points to skill/technique.

Please do not take this the wrong way, but rather than getting another board that is pretty similar to what you have already, you would be much better off investing in some lessons. Your current two deck should serve you well for a few years to come based on your stated riding and conditions.
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Old 08-31-2013, 09:48 PM   #3 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jtg View Post
I wanted to get an all arounder that was right between these two. I'm mostly looking at 2013 sales that are still around, so options are limited, but there are good deals, and I don't want to overspend on what will be my 3rd board in less than a year. But I don't want a shitty board.

GNU Rider's Choice Nivek says the asym pickle core with softer heel on the recent models is really bad and had him washing out, which is already an issue for me, so that scared me away.
Nivek's comment pertains to the 2013-2014 Riders Chose. If you are looking at the 2012-2013 version, most are non-asymmetrical in the first place and even the asym ones do not have the same issue. Finally, not everybody agrees with Nivek's take of the softer core on the heel-side being a problem...

In any case, the RC is basically a TRS. And the Buck Ferton and Superpark are the Smokin equivalents of the TRS/RC, so again they will not ride any differently than what you already have.
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Old 09-01-2013, 01:31 AM   #4 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by hktrdr View Post
Nivek's comment pertains to the 2013-2014 Riders Chose. If you are looking at the 2012-2013 version, most are non-asymmetrical in the first place and even the asym ones do not have the same issue. Finally, not everybody agrees with Nivek's take of the softer core on the heel-side being a problem...

In any case, the RC is basically a TRS. And the Buck Ferton and Superpark are the Smokin equivalents of the TRS/RC, so again they will not ride any differently than what you already have.
My Mervin rep made it out to be the RC was full Pickle tech. I don't remember there being more than one version of the RC for 2013.

As for my opinion on their full Asym, here's my logic to back up my experience. What can carve harder, a Custom X or a Camber Custom? Custom X. The primary reason is it's stiffer. Why then to give you a better ability to carve harder on your heelside would you then go and make the heelside softer? They do it to make your initiation easier. When was the last time you said, "man, I really have a hard time starting my heelside turns". I'm goin with not since you first learned how to link turns. But I bet you've thought to yourself many times that you have a bit harder time holding onto your heelside turns and really driving through them. So what's the real problem? Initiation or turnability? Turnability. And stiffer boards turn harder.
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Old 09-01-2013, 01:55 AM   #5 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Nivek View Post
My Mervin rep made it out to be the RC was full Pickle tech. I don't remember there being more than one version of the RC for 2013.
You are correct and I was wrong: 2012-13 was the first season were the RC was only available in asym/Pickle. 2011-12 was the last season with the choice between asym and sym - and before Mervin introduced the new core, I believe.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Nivek View Post
As for my opinion on their full Asym, here's my logic to back up my experience. What can carve harder, a Custom X or a Camber Custom? Custom X. The primary reason is it's stiffer. Why then to give you a better ability to carve harder on your heelside would you then go and make the heelside softer? They do it to make your initiation easier. When was the last time you said, "man, I really have a hard time starting my heelside turns". I'm goin with not since you first learned how to link turns. But I bet you've thought to yourself many times that you have a bit harder time holding onto your heelside turns and really driving through them. So what's the real problem? Initiation or turnability? Turnability. And stiffer boards turn harder.
I do not disagree with the conceptual argument, but frankly in practice it does not matter or does not work that way (at least in my experience). RC still carves nicely but obviously nothing like a stiff camber stick like the Custom X - even on the toeside it is nothing like a Custom X.
Do I think the softer core on the heelside was necessary - not really. But it does not have much of a detrimental effect either, especially for a deck like the RC - different story for something more charger like the ASS/Impossible.
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Old 09-01-2013, 05:52 AM   #6 (permalink)
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Thanks for the feedback. Here's the thing though...what you claim are two similar boards are night and day for me. Skill isn't a factor in that particular detail. Could a skilled rider manage to do all of those things on either board? Sure, I have no doubt. Maybe you've ridden such a wide range of boards, that relatively speaking, the differences could be bigger.

For me, the difference is big enough that I lost all interest in the TRS after using the Nug. I rode the Nug for 5 or 6 days before the season went totally shitty and much preferred it. It's very agile and it was much softer.

I took the TRS out one final time after being used to the Nug and it was a big step backwards. I had to be very aggressive on it, which was pretty fun while it was working, but my skill level only allows me to ride that aggressively in certain ideal situations.

Again, do keep in mind, my TRS is also too big for me at my skill level. Maybe my ideal board is a just a shorter TRS. I'm not experienced enough to say what differences were due to sizing and what was inherent to the board. I'm really skeptical that accounts for all the differences I experience between these two boards, but I'm open to the possibility.

To clear up a few of your specific points:


Quote:
Originally Posted by hktrdr View Post
  • Your Nug should be pretty much perfect for moguls.
Agreed, I am not blaming the board at all for that. The Nug, at 142cm is way easier to handle moguls with than the 154cm TRS. It's like using cheat codes in comparison. I mentioned it to give an idea of my skill level, not to say that it's the board's fault. Until I am better, I don't want to take an aggressive board through moguls is all I'm saying.

Quote:
Originally Posted by hktrdr View Post
  • At 35mph you are nowhere what both of these boards can do comfortably.
Of course it isn't. The reason I said that was to make it clear that any recommendation that sacrifices Mach 1 stability would not actually be a bad thing in my case because I don't need it. If I didn't mention this, someone may have avoided recommending certain boards because not compromising here would be important to skilled riders. I'm just providing as much info so I can get the best recommendation.

Quote:
Originally Posted by hktrdr View Post
  • There is absolutely no need to have a true twin to learn/practice switch riding. A directional twin/slightly directional board will ride switch just fine. And the TRS is a true twin anyway.
Thanks, this is good info and opens up my options a bit. As mentioned already, this detail is not a complaint about the TRS, it's provided to give a good recommendation. I had heard that directional is simply no good for switch riding.

Quote:
Originally Posted by hktrdr View Post
  • Carving: The Nug actually carves surprisingly well – if you have issues with it then it is definitely a skill/technique problem. Same for the TRS.
Acknowledged that my skills aren't there, but again, these are still night and day. Also, your claim that they ride the same here pretty much goes against everything I've read and heard from another owner (who doesn't suck). The consensus being that the Nug is pretty shitty for carving. I had a much easier time failing to lay a trench on the TRS. I'm not talking "scarves" or anything, but really laying into it. There is zero question that someone who is good could carve with the TRS, to be clear.

Quote:
Originally Posted by hktrdr View Post
  • TRS is not a squirrel-ly board (especially at 35 mph or less), so again that points to skill/technique.
This is low on my list of complaints because I can deal with it, but I actually found it squirrelly going slower, cruising while flat. The first time was when I relaxed and it surprised me, then I caught an edge and ate shit. Since then I haven't, but it's scared me a few times. I did not have this problem on a full cambered deck at all - I could basically sleep at the wheel in comparison.


Quote:
Originally Posted by hktrdr View Post
In any case, the RC is basically a TRS. And the Buck Ferton and Superpark are the Smokin equivalents of the TRS/RC, so again they will not ride any differently than what you already have.
Are you saying that a 147 Buck Ferton will ride no differently than a 154 TRS? Because this question is about size as much as anything.


Other specific complaints about the Nug at my skill level:

- "Frostbite" edges provide nowhere near the grip that magnetraction does. This isn't huge but it's enough to bug me.

- Sometimes the board is not under me when I need it to be. On less than perfect landings, or on steeps where I got too far in the back seat, and especially when leaning back in powder, the Nug does not forgive. The tip and tail are so short that it punishes me for my mistakes more than the TRS does in those situations.

Last edited by jtg; 09-01-2013 at 06:06 AM.
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