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Thirst TS M2 202


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I got to ride it today, first day of the season for me and there was enough coverage to warrant riding a new board.  So here's the story.  I've always wanted a Tanker 201 but they were a little wider than what I prefer to ride.  I also heard that their build quality suffered when they moved production to China.  So I hassled Mark for over a year to build a board like the Tanker but narrower and Thirstier.  He did, it rocks.

It snowed a couple of inches yesterday so the groomers were pretty soft today.  A carving board would have been fine if you didn't try to tip it on edge too much.  The TS was perfect.  I took it through 2" of fresh, down some steeps, through chopped up groomers, I did fairly short radius turns on a cat track, and cranked some big deep carves as well. This is the longest board that I've ever ridden and is surprisingly forgiving.  Mark built in a generous amount of flex in the board, and a fair amount of rise in the tip and tail.  As I drove home I was thinking, if I was to go on a trip where I didn't know what the weather would be and I could only take one of my boards, which one would I take?  The TS. 

I will update this when I get to ride on some hard pack.  I'm pretty sure it will rip. 

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  • 2 months later...

I just took it out in 7-10" of new.  I even did some tree runs, which was a little scary until I realized that you can maneuver it like a much shorter board.  Not only does it float, it's pretty easy to turn.  I was able to get fresh stuff in some flat sections that nobody else dared, It never got stuck, just floated on through.  Then I railed some pretty tight turns on the groomers.  Someone needs to buy the one that Mark has in stock, you wont be sorry.

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I've since found out the available twin measures 201.5cm, waist is 20.8cm, and has black sidewalls.  Inserts are 4-position set at 20"  (min 17.5" to 22..25" max 2x4).  Sidecut CA-SCR is about 11.8m.

Since I'm a 57cm stance that's too tight for me.  I'll have to save my $ and go custom.

Sweet whip.

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  • 1 month later...

After driving Mark Miller absolutely crazy trying to figure out which of his many designs would work best for me, i connected accidentally with the board that satisfies a life long Thirst for a carving board that is forgiving, stable, rails turns and rides all over the mountain. The connection came while i was on a call with Mark during which he shared the fact that he had the sister ship of Keenan’s TS in inventory. He explained that he was dying to mount it and take it for a test drive but didn’t want to do so because it would reduce the board to used and take from the sale price. I asked for a picture and was intrigued by the sight of it. I got Mark back on the line, and he detailed the boards specs. I want to say the flex index is 157 which is on the lightest end on the spectrum for Mark’s boards. The effective edge is likewise very short relative to boards 15cm shorter. After corresponding with Keenan, I decided to take a chance on it. My only regret is that i didn’t let Mark mount it up so he could experience the absolute perfection of this masterpiece. When i first climbed on, i felt the edges at slow speed and was like uh oh. With some speed everything became fluid. Conditions were perfect, wide open groomed run and i laid the board on edge, looked to the right, and there it went. Suddenly i was railing long smooth turns like i never have before. The board initiates effortlessly. I decided to give it more pressure, it tightened up, i sunk into the center and my hand was on the ground. Shoulders forward, the length carried my large frame (250#/6’1”) so predictably and before i knew it was carving beautiful linked C shaped turns into the 11.8m sidecut. I had my bindings set at pretty high angles for my initial ride and sent a picture to Mark explaining how much i enjoyed the board. I commented “i wouldn’t want to get on the wrong side of her” because the transitions were a little sticky. Mark wrote back suggesting i decrease the angles to their minimum to create more leverage to balance the boards width. No more sticky transitions. The board suddenly became super nimble. I honestly couldn’t believe it. Who am i anyway? I’m just an old surfer looking for a sweet bottom turn. This board feels like dropping into a head high super glassy wave on a favorite longboard. For the record, Mark Miller is an artist. His workmanship is impeccable, the graphics are just beautiful and how he took 202cm and turned it into an all mountain board that is forgiving, stable, quick/tight turning and super easy to ride is beyond my comprehension. Maybe a little help from a friend...Thanks Keenan! 

5BCFF88B-BFD1-4678-A754-B54333C62797.jpeg

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Glad you got to ride it before the season ended and thanks for posting a review. I was talking to Mark around the same time as Keenan over a year ago about getting something similar. I thought 202cm sounded too big, so went with something shorter. After seeing how it turned out and reading Keenan's impressions, as well as having a recent personal revelation that maybe bigger is better, I contacted Mark last week about buying board #2 only to hear it just went out the door to you. 

No worries though, as I am now in line for a custom built TS. :biggthump Maybe he'll also make one for himself while the jig is set up for it. 

Good review, thanks.

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Cool! I’m sure you are going to enjoy it. I had the same experience with his old 8RW that he offered me. I waited a couple of days and it was gone by the time i asked him to ship it. Any interest in a Thirst X. It’s a bit short for me and stiffer then i like. I’ll post it if not. 

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On 4/5/2021 at 5:33 PM, Heenalu Kahiko said:

Cool! I’m sure you are going to enjoy it. I had the same experience with his old 8RW that he offered me. I waited a couple of days and it was gone by the time i asked him to ship it. Any interest in a Thirst X. It’s a bit short for me and stiffer then i like. I’ll post it if not. 

I already have a few Thirsts that overlap the range of the X, but thanks anyway. Looks like Mark might be building a few of these big "stimulus" boards in the near future.

I never skied at Okemo when I lived in VT in the early 70's, but I'll never forget visiting a couple, who were friends of friends, and lived in a log cabin atop Okemo and manned the fire tower. Thought it seemed like the coolest gig ever.

 

 

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On 4/5/2021 at 9:17 AM, bigwavedave said:

Glad you got to ride it before the season ended and thanks for posting a review. I was talking to Mark around the same time as Keenan over a year ago about getting something similar. I thought 202cm sounded too big, so went with something shorter. After seeing how it turned out and reading Keenan's impressions, as well as having a recent personal revelation that maybe bigger is better, I contacted Mark last week about buying board #2 only to hear it just went out the door to you. 

No worries though, as I'm now I'm in line for a custom built TS. :biggthump Maybe he'll also make one for himself while the jig is set up for it. 

Good review, thanks.

After today it's a confirmed slush slayer.  

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  • 1 year later...

I've had a chance to get out on mine a few times now.

First in 4-8" of powder on top of a soft groom that, once tracked out, was tossing me around quite a bit.  I started out on the 181 swallowtail PC which was doing fine, but I wanted to compare. These were conditions I had hoped the TS would do well in and it did not disappoint. It really smoothed out the ruts while making big radius turns across the hill as if it was fresh groom.  This came to mind....

On 4/4/2021 at 6:43 PM, Heenalu Kahiko said:

This board feels like dropping into a head high super glassy wave on a favorite longboard.

There were still some 6-8+ inch windblown piles of powder in some flat spots where others came to a stop (there was a headwind too) and this board just floated and glided though. It really floats, more than I expected, just like Keenan said...

On 2/24/2021 at 5:46 PM, Keenan said:

Not only does it float, it's pretty easy to turn.  I was able to get fresh stuff in some flat sections that nobody else dared, It never got stuck, just floated on through. 

The next day was a first day groom where, if you carved hard, you broke through a soft top layer and sunk down several inches. It was challenging. Even skiers were complaining. This was another set of conditions that I had hoped the TSm² might smooth things over, and it did. It had enough float and weight distribution so as not to sink in so much while carving hard.

This is definitely a useful (and fun) addition to the quiver. I am a bit surprised that only one snowboarder has asked me, "how long is that board?".

Thanks to @Keenan for bugging Mark to design and build the TSm². And, of course, thanks to Mark for actually doing it. 

Looking forward to riding it in spring slush, hopefully not for a couple of months or so.

 

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