Never Summer Chairman Review
I wanted to show Vince and Never Summer my support by posting my 1st snowboard review.
After both demoing and riding most of the GNU & Lib Tech lineup, I was turned onto NS in 2010 and instantly fell in love w/ the amazing quality and ride of all their boards.
After going through the NS lineup from 153 SL, 152 Proto CT, 155 Cobra, & 153 Ripsaw; I was ready for something new as my wife and I started to seek out steeper and deeper terrain.
We had the opportunity late last season to visit the NS factory and got a chance to meet Vince after numerous emails back and forth talking shop in the past. It was just amazing seeing how the boards were made and the care put into each one. You could tell everyone at the factory loved what they did and that is something to envy.
I explained my dilemma to Vince about wanting to buy a Chairman, but worried the shortest size 157 would still be too long for me. I generally ride 152 up to 155. He generously let me demo one he had on hand.
Long story short, I’m was ready to retire my Cobra after demoing the Chairman & purchased one a few weeks later. I’m completely sold with my riding style. My purpose for owning a Cobra or the Chairman was to ride it in most conditions and have a blast on a powder day. Since the abilities for the 2 pretty much overlap one another, it was easy to decide I wanted to upgrade to the Chairman due to edge hold, nimbleness, and stiff suspension. Given my progression it was like going from a 370z to a Porsche 911. I thought it would be too much board for me, but to the contrary it seems like it is the perfect board for me.
• Both large radius turns & skidded turns were a lot of fun w/o skipping out like I’ve experienced on the Ripsaw, Cobra, & Proto (would happen occasionally, most likely I’m doing something I’m not supposed to); once I got into the rhythm I could feel myself lifting off and getting some air as I sprung from carve to carve
• Edge hold was fantastic & wasn’t as catchy as the Ripsaw; I think I’ll still be taking out my shorter Ripsaw on icy days though
o I feel like a shorter 153 Ripsaw and a longer 157 Chairman is the perfect 2 board quiver for me
o The edge hold on the Chairman far exceeds the Cobra in my opinion
• Still might have preferred a 154 or 155, but the 157 was deceptively nimble for its stiff flex and length given my height & weight (5'7'' 153 lbs.)
o I’d say turning was very fluid w/o having to force it compared to the Ripsaw 156 when I demoed it last month; perhaps the Chairman was more broken in compared to the Ripsaw I demoed – not sure
o Had no issue riding through the trees, just couldn’t ride as tight as I would have liked only because the length of the board was longer than what I’m used to
o For the stiffness it was so much more lively compared to other boards I’ve demoed (Dark Series, Altered Genetics, Attach Banana, Jones Aviator); all of which were harder to turn and burned out my legs by the end of the day
o The wider waist width wasn’t really noticeable & riding switch was a little awkward, but doable (not that the board was meant for riding switch anyways).
o It was surprising to find I could ride moguls when we didn’t have a choice; I thought it would be difficult given the stiffness and length of the board, but it was no harder to ride than any other NS boards I’ve ridden
• At higher speeds I felt more confident committing and riding w/ my weight in the front down steeps than I was on my Cobra; I could quickly feel any mistakes I made, but could just as quickly re-adjust to keep from eating it; hit 55mph w/o realizing it and usually I have to try to get that fast
• Boosting off natural features felt really good; landing in powder was stable; landing on hard pack sent a little shock up the legs (Ripsaw felt nicer on those types of landings most likely w/ the additional camber absorbing the impact)
• On a day with fresh calf high powder the Chairman feels different than the Cobra in that it is less surfy and had a more of a slice through go fast feeling; both feelings are equally as gratifying, but different
• On a day when it was crusted over top and powder underneath, the Chairman excelled by blasting through the crusted top; on the Cobra I had to force it through the crusted top otherwise most of the time I was just riding the ice on top
• I never noticed it until riding the Ripsaw & Chairman, but the Cobra is very squirrely when riding flat one footed or when strapped in and going slow on cat tracks without much grade; both the Ripsaw & Chairman are very stable when flat and I didn’t have to twist the board on slight edge to keep on course like when I’m on the Cobra (ignorance is bliss)
• My wife also tried riding the Chairman & she liked it, she had no issues riding it even through it was way longer than what she is used to; she was riding my Cobra for the day and after we switched she wouldn’t give me back the Chairman
Last edited by dreamyp00h; 12-01-2015 at 08:15 PM.