2012 Smokin Big Wig
Places and conditions tested:
Whistler: Heavy deep powder
Mountain High and Big Bear Mountain: Powder, slushy, hard packed, groomers
Mammoth: Powder, hard packed, groomers , slushy
Total days on the board: 9
Boots size: 12
Stance: Goofy, positive 19 front, negative 17 back
Rider Stats: Experience of 20 years plus
Rider style: Big lines and will hike for 20 minutes to get some fresh, old school tricks with a front side 540 as my best aerial, decent butters, some rails and can hold my own in the pipe. Best days are powder with blue skis in the trees with steep terrain and some good sized hits or drops!
Bindings: Burton CO2
Boots: Burton Grails
My first impression:
The first time I saw the board I thought that it was definitely not mass produced and sitting on a rack with many others at REI. I could see that it was hand made for me. The graphics in person were slightly different in color than I saw prior which was a little disappointing but overall i liked the looks. The board is a 157 but looks noticeable smaller for the nose and tail are blunted. The waist seemed small for a mid wide board as well. The weight is average to a tad bit heavier but not bad at all. The magna traction seems different than the Lib TRS or Travis Rice models that I have demoed.
Graphics: Got tons of compliments in Canada and here in SoCal.
Butters: The board is not a noodle but you can butter the board pretty easily. It is stiffer than I thought it would be and for me that is good thing for sure. "I like to go fast!" It doesn't catch edges when your pressing the tail or nose at all. Nose press are easy for the blunt tip and you can spin in and out much easier than any other board I have been on except maybe the Burton Joystick. It definitely provided confidence in trying stuff but again it is not a jib/noodle.
Air time: Stable in the air and very easy to spin. Blunt nose helps IMO.
Take offs and landing: Again not sure SMOKIN Jay altered the magna traction or if the dirt rocker is the reason but when getting into a jump the edges release better than the many other new boards I have demoed. I found I could make late adjustments to be flat based or on an edge to be able to pop in control. Landings were exceptional on the stick. The board is the best non camber board that I have ever hit the kickers with second to none. It is forgiving if you miss a little coming off a spin. It is not hooky but if you need to get strong on edge to keep from butt checking or face planting the board is buff enough to be there for you. In the pipe this board is very fun and the pipe is not my favorite thing but this board just kills it. Simply put the SMOKIN Big Wig is a kicker, pipe, cliff drops or any other thing you can do to get airborne on snowboard machine. Have faith in it and it will be there!
Carving: Let me start off by saying this to everyone on this forum please learn how to get on edge and hold it in and out turns. I know I'm a little old school but watching kooks sliding the back end of their boards quickly side to side down the fall line is just whack. I mean you don't need to go on a euro alpine trip but if you can't carve you'll never be able to hang in the big lines or take your riding to the next level. For those that I watch railing properly from lift, thanks!. Sorry for the mini rant. The Big Wig initiates on to edge in a predictable manner and once there the mellow magna traction is flawless. It is pretty loose at low speeds do to it's dirt rocker profile but I took this board on some serious steep runs in Mammoth/Blackcomb. I was truly nervous that the board would not have the edge hold or stiffness to handle the lines I was going to go for. Fellow shredders I was very surprised at the alleged park flex board when the Big Wig chomped down like a Michael Vick pet. The magna traction and the stiffness of this 157 was killer. I got some chatter but that had more to to with everything else at those moments than the board. Again I was not excepting to ever have this board where it has now been successful multiple times.
Trees: The board is as quick as I want but not squirrelly and the blunted shorter nose and tail can help your confidence knowing the board has a smaller profile when getting through tight areas. My biggest concern with any stick in tree riding and I really had some concerns before I got familiar with the Big Wig is a board that locks in too much. Further a board that is harder to quickly get off edge or one that can't make little continuous adjustments. Being able to do both is the key to ripping the trees safely. Not trying to offend any Lib Tech or Gnu owners but when I demos their boards I knew if I purchased one I would be filing down the edges for the reason I just mentioned. I did like the the Travis Rice camber mtx board big time but it had been detuned. Obviously when I got the Big Wig I thought I would ride it a little and then make any tuning or detuning adjustments before I headed for the forest, seriously none were needed at all.
Different snow conditions: Powder; Powder killer! Frickin amazing in the deep stuff so fun. Floated with no adjustment with the binding position! Barely had to lean back, this board kills powder!!!!!! Just stupid easy to ride in the deep stuff......felt like I was cheating. Crud: Flows right through.....no catch freedom. Groomers: Better in the mid to short turns than the big speed sweeping turns. Hard packed: Excellent hold. Impressive! Icy: I drink beer instead. I don't care to snowboard on ice ever....
Rails and park features: Dirt rocker or the flat base coupled with enough flex to make the park features doable for me. Straight up I like watching shredders getting loose on those features but I just don't get much out of sliding rails or boxes. I can do it but I usually hit the kickers and roll past the rails but when I did jump on a few the board was predictable and solid.
Overall impression: This is the only true quiver killer board that I have been on. It is big enough to handle my size 12's but it felt like a smaller board which made it fun. Is it as solid or as stable as my Premier F-1?..... no but it can hang way better than any park fun board I have rode and I mean by a moonshot. Oh one thing I forgot to mention previously, the board is very close to as damp as my F-1. As smooth as I want a board to ride. This is a seriously amazing product and I have been very privileged to demo many many many boards. Congrats to SMOKIN Jay and his team in Tahoe I will bet the 2012 Big Wig wins a bunch of awards in 2012........Bet!
As advertised by Smokin:
D.I.R.T. Rocker - Magne Traction - True Twin - Park Flex
The BigWig is a Mid-wide, true twin, Quiver killing machine. Wider waists can accommodate your Sasquatch footprint, and gives you more stability when putting down the landing gear. D.I.R.T. Rocker makes it catch free and jib friendly, while Magne keeps you on Trac. The BigWig is a do every thing go anywhere deck for slightly larger guys.
Riding 37/-24 stance angles so your 13s will fit on a freestyle board, lapping the street style line on pinball, shifty
late 180s, landing switch in pow, beers in the parking lot, alternative mind control techniques