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Old 01-05-2013, 02:47 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Default Beginner Gear advice: 32s, Carbon Credit, Lotus

Hi all. I'm currently taking lessons in Washington. So far I've only used rental equipment. I really love snowboarding and would like to buy my own gear.

Here's what I'm looking at:
Female, 5'7"
199lbs
riding beginner slopes on mountain

Boots:
32 Binary Boa or 32 Lashed Fastrack. I tried them on and they feel good. Not too stiff and not too soft.

I have not taken a look at bindings just yet. Suggestions??

As far as boards go. Should I go low level beginner like:
Salomon Lotus

OR beginner-Intermediate like
GNU Carbon Credit

There's about a $150 price difference. Just wondering if I'll benefit from the GNU since I'm a beginner.

If anyone has any other suggestions on boards or binding, please let me know.

Thanks.
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Old 01-09-2013, 01:41 PM   #2 (permalink)
jtg
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Quote:
Originally Posted by eware3000 View Post
Hi all. I'm currently taking lessons in Washington. So far I've only used rental equipment. I really love snowboarding and would like to buy my own gear.

Here's what I'm looking at:
Female, 5'7"
199lbs
riding beginner slopes on mountain

Boots:
32 Binary Boa or 32 Lashed Fastrack. I tried them on and they feel good. Not too stiff and not too soft.

I have not taken a look at bindings just yet. Suggestions??

As far as boards go. Should I go low level beginner like:
Salomon Lotus

OR beginner-Intermediate like
GNU Carbon Credit

There's about a $150 price difference. Just wondering if I'll benefit from the GNU since I'm a beginner.

If anyone has any other suggestions on boards or binding, please let me know.

Thanks.
I feel like there is usually no reason to buy those beginner boards (I don't actually know anything about that particular one, so I'm just going based on price point.)

For $250, craigslist is full of really lightly used higher end boards. People with disposable income seem to buy good gear and either go through it quickly or give up the sport.

For example, this guy used his carbon credit 5 times and is trying to unload it for $300 (might not be your size, but these deals are all over):

156 dark blue GNU snowboard

At the end of your beginner season, you can either keep it if you like it or flip it for basically what you paid and not have to worry much if it's the "one true board" you want to spend a lot on right now.

GNU riders choice used 4 times, comes with boots and bindings, for $300. That board alone retails for around $550.
http://seattle.craigslist.org/kit/spo/3523013394.html

Last edited by jtg; 01-09-2013 at 01:45 PM.
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Old 01-09-2013, 01:53 PM   #3 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by eware3000 View Post

There's about a $150 price difference. Just wondering if I'll benefit from the GNU since I'm a beginner.
I don't have much more to add than what was already said, but I would anticipate that you would benefit from a nicer (tech specs) board. The added benefit is as you progress you will grow into it instead of needing to buy another snowboard sooner than later.
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Old 01-09-2013, 01:56 PM   #4 (permalink)
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Yes thanks for the feedback. I went with the Carbon Credit (it was on sale too). I think you guys are right.
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Old 01-09-2013, 02:00 PM   #5 (permalink)
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and glad you're loving the sport! One thing you'll hear repeated over and over on these forums is that boots are probably the most important piece of gear when starting...

Try on as many boots as you can, and remember that they will pack out so they should be snug but not painful when brand new. Most people make the mistake of buying boots too big.

I personally like mid-range Burton bindings but you'll get various opinions on the forum.

As far as the board goes, it's not really critical at this stage, you won't notice the difference between a $300 board or a $450 board until you've had many more days under your belt.

The advice of buying used is good for first timer gear, just make sure you get something in the proper size (there are size calcs that can help) and I wouldn't buy something more than a couple seasons old. Check your pricing because used gear should be about 1/3rd the MSRP of new gear at the most. Half price is about right for gear that was purchased new but never used, even one day on the slopes and I think half price is still too much for it.

Have fun!
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Old 01-09-2013, 02:15 PM   #6 (permalink)
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I know sport chalet was selling off their carbon credits for 229 for mens
id assume they would have for womens as well?
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Old 01-10-2013, 10:45 PM   #7 (permalink)
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o hi dere.

I'm pretty new to snowboarding as well but just bought a Carbon Credit as my second board. I started on a GNU 11up (like a Rider's Choice in long & wide sizes) and just bought a never used Carbon Credit from last season. I rode it for the first time last weekend and really liked it. The banana ("rocker", "reverse camber") shape tech felt great. I was riding a real nice day with tons of fresh snow but with the banana I never felt like I was even close to catching an edge. The Magnetraction is cool. Never in the way when you don't want it and helps in less than perfect conditions! All these things will help make it an easy board to learn on. You'll like it if you haven't gotten out on it already!

Definitely don't cheap out on boots! Go ahead and get a good deal on lightly used stuff for the rest of your setup, but spend the extra on boots! If you find a deal on some boots that are practically brand new - maybe, but it's worth it to get a brand new boot because the liner and everything will start to mold to your foot as you ride it. You can even get lots of liners heat molded if you really want to. As the boots break in they might loosen up and you might find you get a little heel lift or a couple of other little problems, but those can be fixed fairly easily as long as you got a comfy, snug, well-fitting boot.

As for bindings and flex on everything - you might have to experiment a little to find out what you really like, but I do enjoy a little stiffness in my setup. Stiff means responsive, and that's important (in my opinion) when you're learning and need to make evasive moves quickly to avoid any trouble. The guys at the local shop I go to are all into park riding and hard freestyle so they tend to like soft stuff and also tend to recommend the same. The boots and bindings I got are both mid range quality Burton stuff and a 5 and 6 out of 10 on their flexibility ratings respectively. You'll have to experiment though and if you stick with it and get serious about it you may go through phases trying differing things and having evolving preferences.

Finally on mens vs ladies gear - since you're bigger than the tiny girls that I see on the slopes here, you might want to consider mens gear as well. As a taller guy I tend to have a pretty limited selection so I can already sympathize with you there On the flipside, I rode with a girl on the weekend who had just bought a new high end womens Arbor board and she said it really made a difference. Primarily in the physical weight of the board and how much lighter and easier it was to ride.

Best of luck, enjoy your new found addiction, and hope to run into you out there!
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