I was wondering about the waist width when first researching the SL and based on Snowolf's review of the 158 Heritage (with a waist width of 25.4cm and his size 8.5 feet). I asked him if he thought the the board was too wide and he replied that the ultra-responsiveness of the camber sections in the RC tech was well suited for smaller-footed riders even at those widths. The SL has a 25.2cm waist width (for comparison, my Slayblade 153 has a 24.8cm ww). Other reviews of the NS men's boards (by Shayboarder who has smaller feet than myself) never mentioned the WW being an issue.
Another reason for going to a 155 board (and thus wider width) is that I generally ride in big-mountain resorts with more pow so that should be better than the 153 with respect to floatability.
2012 SL 155, is 25.1 cm waist... so you are only 1 mm off, off course 25.1 - 24.8 is only a 3 mm difference (meaning the white part of your finger nail is more than that). Seriously, in this particular instance I don't think that is the issue.
I'll back you up Geo. I have demoed a lot of stuff. A LOT. I could offer a lot better options than the SL. The SL failed for me. The Evo and Heritage were much better in their respective categories.
I doubt I ever own a Never Summer. Just seems to me, if you are avoiding the one board quiver option, there are boards that are better in each category.
The SL is a damp, I thought stable board (I have ridden a lot of RC type boards). However, it is so plank like, that it just doesn't have the fun and snap of other boards in their category. Plain and simple, unless you are a beginner, ride the SL and then ride the Coda from Arbor. Tell me which board you liked better without lying. I think newer riders love the SL because it is definitely more damp and stable at speed than the Coda. But the Coda has way more response edge to edge, the grip tech is better edge technology, and the snap and pop is on another planet compared to the SL. But for a beginner to advanced beginner borderlining on intermediate, I get it. For good enough riders, the little extra chatter at speed doesn't bother you.
If you want a quiver killer, the SL is great. Damp and stable to make ANYONE comfortable bombing. But if you are willing to buy a couple boards, get something that is excellent in certain categories, and weaker in other categories, and become a better rider so that issues of dampness and stability mean less to you because that little extra chatter when bombing no longer scares you.
Even as a one board quiver killer, I can think of boards right now that are better than the SL. The Arbor Coda, the Lib Tech TRS, the Forum Double Dog Destroyer (fun board, little dampness, and edge hold is weaker, but the snap and responsiveness are worth it if you can ride well), K2 Turbo Dream, Ride Machete, the list goes on.....
Thanks for the info. I will have to try out the Arbor Coda (and the Westmark) when I get a chance. For 2012 - I rode the Evo, Proto CT and SL... and ended up liking the Proto CT the best.
You have to buy the right size board to do a proper evaluation! With your height and foot size, you should be on a 153. There is a significant difference in waist width between a 153 and 155.This difference is what accounts for your lack of nimbleness in turn initiation and edge to edge response. I am your size and have ridden both lengths.
Footsize is a consideration... he could definitely go with a narrower board. But according to the specs, his old K2 Slayblade 153 was 24.8 cm waist and 29.2 cm tips compared to a 25.0 cm and 29.5 tips for the SL 155. That's only 3 mm and I'm pretty sure the few people would notice much of a difference in that. To give you an idea, I have ridden boards that have 18 cm waists (that is a noticeable change in edge to edge response).
I have also test ridden the 2012 SL 153 and 155 (I own the 2009 SL 155) and I don't think the would 153 be stable enough for him (I'm like 15 lbs lighter than the both of you and fine the 155 pretty easy to turn), but who knows...
The NS SL does not shine in icy conditions. If you ride firm snow most of the time, a hybrid camber board or a Mervin C2 Btx board might be a better fit. Look for a board that has a waist width less than 25.0. You'll be a much happy camper.
The SL is a hybrid camber board... in fact the Mervin's C2BTX is arguably either a copy... or a refined version of NS's RC tech (Mervin came out with it a year after NS, replacing their first generation BTX). Now I'm becoming more and more interested in trying out the C2BTX... (the 1st gen BTX left just left a bad taste in my mouth)
Video of me messing around on the NS SL155 on a mellow slope.
Another video, at 0:45 you can see me flat-boarding quite a bit down a slope to hit a 40-foot kicker. That's the same jump you see at the start of the video (my friends are lazy and it's hard for me to get them to film me).
12-23-2011 03:27 PM
I usually demo 1-2 days, depending on how much I like it. Rode the Heritage for 2 days. Rode the SL for a day. Rode the Lynn for a day, then rode the T Rice the second day.
Usually I go a whole day, because you need to adjust to the board. A couple runs IMO is worthless. You need it at least a day.
Would be curious to get more experienced opinions but I would assume a reg camber or Flat\0 camber is always going to be better for flat base riding than anything reverse camber.
What I noticed immediately about the zero camber of the Slayblade compared with the SL was the increased stability that the board offered since it had full-contact with the snow. Compared to my old cambered board, it was a night and day difference w/r/t higher-speed flat-basing. The negative issues I've read about the zero camber profile was that there was a tendency of the board to get "sucked-into" the snow in heavy/wet snow conditions due to the full contact (which I've never experienced mainly because I ride in CO and UT mostly).
Good to see I wasn't imagining things about the flat-basing issues.
I just posted this in another thread:
"I caught an edge at Hunter Mountain on Monday and must have been going about the same speed. I was flat basing it somewhere at the midpoint of the trail (Belt Parkway for those familiar). Board got squirrelly underfoot as I rode over some ice. Pretty sure I caught my front edge, it happened so fast. But, I hit my face on the ice/snow before I could react and proceeded to flip head over heels 2 times. Racking my head both times...well my face was the first time. I have a bruise on the bridge of my nose and my neck it just barely soar. I made it out pretty good considering. I think it helped that my body ragdolled and I didn't try to stop myself."
I was riding my NS Premier for the second time and definitely noticed some squirrelliness when flatbasing. Won't be doing that again.
12-23-2011 01:20 PM
It probably is. And I haven't ridden a Slayblade. I actually didn't ride the Turbo Dream with Harshmellow. I rode the model the year before without it.
You are spot on with turn initiation. I have found in every category, that you can find boards with quicker turn initiations than the Never Summer option. My favorite board of theirs is the Heritage, which I would consider buying, but the responsiveness is something that always holds me back. Ride a Jamie Lynn the next day, and compare. It's scary....
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