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Do short boards work for carving hard?


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I'd like to get your opinion on short boards for hardboot carving. 'race style' carving, loading that edge. Do short boards work for you? And if so, how short?

The reason for asking is that I built the board below for my daughter.  145x24.4 cm, 115 eff.edge. Somehow this board appeals to me, I feel like building this board with proper stiffness and putting my plates on it.  My sane mind tells me this is ridiculous. 

But it does trigger me to try something different.  Typically I like long effective edge,  stable boards,  so let's go the opposite way. 

So what's the shortest that worked for you?  and for reference,  how tall are you?

For me,  my F2 Beamer 162 felt too short,  Nidecker extreme 163 felt OK ( longer eff. edge),  everything after that was >170 and that felt much better. 191cm tall.

 

20210227_210145.jpg.1fb87695a44cef365bc8e2e69d11b727.jpg

Edited by TimW
Removed apparent judgement of carving styles :-)
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yep.  Thirst warp 162 Stupid Fun underfoot 5'-10'' 2fiddyish

This seems like a terrible credo...  

I'd like to get your opinion on short boards for hardboot carving. 'race style' carving, loading that edge. Do short boards work for you? And if so, how short? The reason for asking is that I bui

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Depends on the rider and the mountain.

I am 210lbs and 6ft.  I really enjoyed having the MK which is 162 long, 18 wide and 9ish SCR.  Before I rode the MK for the first time I was always a 175 and up kind of guy.  I bought a 180 Proteus and loved it.  It was my favorite board for a long time.

The MK changed my mind.  I now like a short board with a small turning radius, but only on the right mountain.  My home mountains are Pats Peak and Crotched.  They are small and usually have a lot of people on the trails.  Having a small board in these conditions is far more effective and fun.  However, riding a small board at a mountain with much longer and wider trails wears me out.  Too many turns from top to bottom.

I wouldn't go smaller than 160 at my height and weight.  I now have a Coiler Contra 162.  Anything smaller than that would be too small for me but not for someone shorter and lighter.  I think 146 might be pushing the limits of "small".

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Ive ridden boards sub 150 as an adult. They are lots of fun, but sub-optimal. Unless Im goofing around with a beginner, I dont go under anything of typical SL length, and even then only as far as an old 155 prior.

I spent a few days on a 148 sushi last year. It works, but naw.

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6'1" 200lbs. Thirst SF(162) is my goto early season board in the northeast.  Once trails open up I bump it up to an XC(171) which to me seems perfect.  But I would have no problem riding the SF all season as you can hammer it or draw it out. I have an MK as well which is a hoot, especially when you don't have the luxury of real estate, but can leave you exhausted.

That being said, I'm presently at Steamboat with the 8RW(184) and the XC, and I find myself grabbing the XC more so even at a place as massive as this a "small" board is still fun. 👍

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Just got a JJSB 150ClearZ (8/9.2/8.5).  Installed a plate (JJSB) on it.  Note that I'm just a tad shorter than 5'4" and weigh in over  155lbs.

I usually ride runs that are 60-80 feet wide at most, I'd say. 

3 half days on it.  Just love it.  I can turn tight or let it go wide (surprisingly).  Quick edge to edge when playing around.  Feels light event with a plate.

If you are agressive on it, it can be a good workout (HIIT) which is one of the reasons I like it.

No regrets on Jasey's suggestion to go for a 150 than a 155.

 

 

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6'2" and  230 to much in winter mode!  I wanted a turny little bandit to complement my arsenal and the Thirst SF162  is my current all day icecoast ride.        Love the maneuverability and diversity as I can draw out turns  edge to edge  or chew up just one side of the trail with neck snapping hard charging turns and it's still teaching me new tricks!

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Wasn't the original Madd 158 more like a 155? 

My shortest board is 160, Coiler Angry. 5'11", was built for an aggressive 210-lb rider. It's awesome! The 164 Donek MK variant turns tighter, but has a longer/rounded tail per my request. 

And I love a 185 GS race stick too. Depends on the runs available and my mood. If I could pick any run and board, it's my 175 Coiler EC on something steep and wide. But when I'm stuck at a small and mellow hill, the little boards come out. 

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A race slalom board will take anything you can give it, just watch a slalom race. I was told that a small board is more of a challenge for a builder/designer to get just right. Hard to design a board that will meet all the demands in a small package. A bigger board is more forgiving. I've had some great little boards and some that couldn't be pushed as hard. The modern race SL boards are amazing.

But, as long as we're plugging our favorite short boards; Mark's SF is really astonishing to me in that he designed it, built it, and to my knowledge, has never ridden one. I've owned and ridden more than a few SL race boards and it's my favorite. But, I don't race anymore and I like to complete my turns.

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5 minutes ago, bigwavedave said:

Mark's SF is really astonishing to me in that he designed it, built it, and to my knowledge, has never ridden one.

That is amazing. Wow. 

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1 hour ago, bigwavedave said:

Mark's SF is really astonishing to me in that he designed it, built it, and to my knowledge, has never ridden one

His daughter has for sure. I'm still hoping for a demo to ride before season end. I love the Super Conductor a lot. I wanna try the 162SF for comparison then decide if the XC171 is more to my liking or not. I really like the Donek 163 Metal free carve for tight turns. I can't wait to put both to the test to see which one is superior to the other. I have a good feeling the Thirst will surpass my expectations from all the great reviews.   

Edited by snowburn
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PhilW hasn't posted here yet, but I'm pretty sure he would echo my recommendation to carve a Kessler KST 162 slalom race board HARD. Just make sure you've done some pre-season quads muscle and cardio-respiratory conditioning first.

Careful carving the Donek MK really hard. You'll come round so fast you'll kiss your own a**!

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Great to get so much feedback! Thanks!

5 hours ago, BlueB said:

I see exactely 0 reasons for somone that tall to ride a 145cm carving board... 

I have to agree on this one🤪

 

15 hours ago, lonbordin said:

It's interesting... I enjoy riding it but I don't trust it. Way too easy to overpower.

 

I had the same with the shorter boards,  when my riding developed they became too easy to overpower, whenever there was a softer spot I would lose it. Over 20 years ago though, with a modern board built to my weight and liking it should be better.

 

But all the responses convinced me that I should add a shorter board to my quiver. Not a 145😉, but consensus seems on a 160ish, 145-150 EE board as a turny board for busy days.

Currently thinking along the lines of a 22cm wide, lowish camber, metal board. This should keep things a bit calm. Of course a high camber carbon pogostick is also fun but I don't see myself riding that all day and keeping up with it.

Most of you seem to have quite narrow short boards. If my memory serves me well I quite liked the little more width that the asyms had. Bigger feet might be a factor there.

 

 

 

 

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My short boards are all 20cm waist. I'd like to try a 22 waist on the next one for lower angles. Bruce (Coiler) and Sean (Donek) both were a little hesitant at building 20 waists vs. the standard 18 waists for the Angry and MK boards, but I wouldn't go back. 

Extra thoughts:

Front-back weighting becomes pretty critical on short boards. You can get away with some mistakes on a 185 board that'll have you folding the nose or wheelie-ing out of control on a 160.

Stuff happens fast on a short sidecut. Pressure placement issues tend to develop into instability real fast. I think harnessing that edge of instability is what makes me love the little boards. Think lightweight formula car vs. GT Autobahn cruiser. Or fighter jet vs. SR-71 bomber. 

Timing that weight shift from the tail at the end of one turn, towards the nose for the next turn, having the board hook and rocketing around your center of mass with high G-loads in a fraction of a second - I'm excited just typing that! 

This is a boring green run anywhere but the prairies, riding an Angry on a cold and hard day. Not my finest work, but it's the best video I have: 

https://youtu.be/LdeoU66OdTg

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1 hour ago, Corey said:

My short boards are all 20cm waist. I'd like to try a 22 waist on the next one for lower angles. Bruce (Coiler) and Sean (Donek) both were a little hesitant at building 20 waists vs. the standard 18 waists for the Angry and MK boards, but I wouldn't go back. 

Extra thoughts:

Front-back weighting becomes pretty critical on short boards. You can get away with some mistakes on a 185 board that'll have you folding the nose or wheelie-ing out of control on a 160.

Stuff happens fast on a short sidecut. Pressure placement issues tend to develop into instability real fast. I think harnessing that edge of instability is what makes me love the little boards. Think lightweight formula car vs. GT Autobahn cruiser. Or fighter jet vs. SR-71 bomber. 

Timing that weight shift from the tail at the end of one turn, towards the nose for the next turn, having the board hook and rocketing around your center of mass with high G-loads in a fraction of a second - I'm excited just typing that! 

This is a boring green run anywhere but the prairies, riding an Angry on a cold and hard day. Not my finest work, but it's the best video I have: 

https://youtu.be/LdeoU66OdTg

So very glad to see this vid. I am no Corey but this reminds me of me hot lapping Eagle’s Rest at Jackson. Even I can link up pencil lines on a hill like this that Corey is carving on, not as well as he is doing it, of course, but I can get it done. Make that hill a couple of degrees steeper and I end up slarving to scrub speed. 
This was huge for me to learn this season. I went from being ever discontent to being able to call myself a beginning carver. To graduate from beginner to solid intermediate (hip dragger) on steeper slopes will take a lot more work. 

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@Corey nice vid! I can understand that Bruce and Sean were a bit hesitant, as it changes the character a bit, but I also think I will like the lower angles more. 

@lowriderI have been thinking about a skwal but doubt I will like it.  So it will not get priority,  building is time consuming and I have a few others planned. Maybe if I bump into a used one.

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14 hours ago, SunSurfer said:

PhilW hasn't posted here yet, but I'm pretty sure he would echo my recommendation to carve a Kessler KST 162 slalom race board HARD. Just make sure you've done some pre-season quads muscle and cardio-respiratory conditioning first.

Careful carving the Donek MK really hard. You'll come round so fast you'll kiss your own a**!

The KST 162 is my hardest charging board (being 6 foot 1 and 185 lbs).  Every once in a while I get that board to come around so fast I almost knock out some teeth with my knees.

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My shortest board is an Angrry 160 18 waist width, I'm 5'6 and 165 pounds.

When riding the Angrry I can feel my heart pulsating, it is a good cardio exercice.

I feel it more difficult to ride than my nirvana 174 as it's harder to recover from a mistake.

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The illustrious original Madd 158 (really more like 155) was simply too short and narrow for me (5'11", 210 atm, 28 mondo).  I love my F2 Proto 163.  It's great for early season ice, and crowded or narrow trails.  Honestly I would disregard anything shorter than that.

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