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Ippy's Snowboard Buying Guide

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namsapalooza View Drop Down
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  Quote namsapalooza Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Topic: Ippy's Snowboard Buying Guide
    Posted: Jun/15/2011 at 8:45am
this was super interesting.

is there something similar on bindings? that would be informative as well.
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  Quote wpiass Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: Jun/15/2011 at 8:47am
best snowboard guide ever!  i can't tell you how many times i've referred folks to this.
be talkin to ya
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  Quote willbab1 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: Jun/22/2011 at 5:26pm
Very useful, Cheers.
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  Quote joshua87 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: Jun/27/2011 at 7:45pm
great thread, thanks
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  Quote elderwang Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: Jun/29/2011 at 12:38am
bump, needs to be at the top of the forum page at all times!!!
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  Quote thesupaflies Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: Jul/18/2011 at 4:59pm
this was incredibly helpful for me picking out a new board. thanks a lot!!

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  Quote ippollite Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: Jul/31/2011 at 9:29pm
i keep losing this and wanting to link it to people asking about the sierra boards, so im going to be a narcissist and post it once again, only in full, and on here so i dont lose it. 

Sierra reverse crew is the 2010 custom V. It IS the 2010 custom V, (im not just saying it is like it :) Its made by burton for sierra from the same press as the custom V. It was a late release (feb2010) board) So if you want a nice burton all mountain board that will carry you through your progression in a fun loose playful way it might be a nice choice. 

(Things to consider in the interests of accuracy (you might want to skip this if you dont really care about the details): It has been suggested its the 2011 custom-V, but the 2011 custom-v doesnt actually exist :) The 2011 custom was the flying V camber (camber and reverse camber), not straight reverse camber. 

It also does not have the burton channel system, but a standard 4*2 insert pattern. This means you can use any bindings you like with it (except Burton EST), but it also means you dont have infinite stance options.    
It doesnt have frostbite edges (which is a reverse sidecut at the bindings adding a little extra grip). 
Finally it does not have infinite ride, so it will over time mellow down (as most boards do). 

And one more thing: you may have to tune the top sheet by filing it if you want it to stay chip free. Most sierra boards DO have topsheet issues (including the capita ones). Although cosmetic and not affecting your ride, if you do buy one, go hunt down the thread on how to keep it from chipping and get to work (it takes about 5 minutes), and will keep you more than happy. 

The sierra crew IS the 2009 Burton Custom. Again a mid season (ie, late) release for sierra made entirely by burton. It has the same qualifiers above so no need to repeat them. If you think youll be riding for a while, then its a great board. If not, and you just want to check out and maybe hit up the resorts a few times a season, then its probably best to go with something a little softer (the sierra team for example) or something more playful (the reverse crew/stunt). For an absolute beginner it might feel a bit much. But for a progressing beginner it'll help you push your fundamentals probably more than any of the other sierra boards. Probably :) Horses for courses and all that. :) Who knows what you really want to do until you experience it? :p 

The sierra stunt IS the 2010 Burton Blunt. You mentioned it above so youll be glad to know that we have it and you can buy it. :) Truth is though im often reluctant to recommend it just because i think people will outgrow it pretty fast and want something a little more on point once they start hitting the red and black runs. Perfect for mellow cruising, and also great for mucking about in teh park though, so if you just want a board you can have FUN with messing about, this one is for you. You'll get your basics down no problem and still get a carve out of it, but the faster you go, or the more difficult the terrain the less likely you'll feel in control. That's not to say in 10 years time you couldn't slay double black diamonds on it, of course you could, but as a beginner you'll find it washing out on you and losing its edge a bit the gnarlier the speed, pitch and conditions get. So yeah, AWESOME board for an absolute beginner, great board for a park rat, and great board for just cruising. But a little weak for a progressing beginner and someone who wants to get a strong foundation. For that you maybe want to go for the crew (or lesser, the reverse crew, or the sierra team) as i say. 

The Sierra Bluebird Stunning to look at. I saw one at niseko and its absolutely beautiful, but its maybe not the best choice for you. Its based on the burton Guru, which is a medium flex directional board. It comes with a 5mm taper (which just means the widest part of the tip is 5mm fatter than the widest point of the tail), the aim was to give it a spot of extra float for pow days. 5mm isnt all that much though so if you are buying this for a crypto-powder board (to the generic 'you', you of course arent) then id probably size this up a bit. Still, its a bit much board for a beginner so i'd probably look elsewhere. 

The Sierra V spot Im only putting this in for the sake of completeness. Its based on (and i hope you understand based on means IS), the Burton social of 2010. Its a soft flexing park rig similar to the stunt. I used to think it was a bit stiffer, but almost every review starts with the words "I was surprised how soft this board felt" so im gonna have to go with the masses and declare it as a super soft ultra forgiving easy playful ride. Its got burton's V rocker, is super mellow, probably wont hold up on a serious charge unless you've got some technique learned elsewhere, but will be a blast to muck about with and learn on. 

NON BURTON BOARDS BY SIERRA 

Sierra Team: Based in collaboration with Flow, this is the Flow team with a slightly softer flex apparently. Hey! im reading the same stuff you can read too :) 
If you feel the stunt might be a bit too soft, the reverse crew might be a bit too loose, and the crew might be a bit too aggressive, this could be the board you want. Standard camber so youre getting your fundamentals down, nice and cheap, and soft enough to be forgiving whilst letting you progress as you start tackling the other parts of the mountain. It also comes with a sintered base which i found pretty surprising. Definitely this one sounds like the board of choice for people who want to get their technique down but don't feel a burning need to turn up every day and practice their carves or pop. 

The Sierrascope 

I love this board. You cant buy it because it sold out ages ago. But its a blast. Flat between the bindings and edges that kick up gently giving you an awesome playful ride. Im not sure how id feel for absolute beginners on it, it strikes me more as a board youll really enjoy once you have our fundamentals down and get to really feel the mischief of it. But nevertheless definitely an awesome fun board for anyone that wants to cruise everything the mountain has to offer. :) 

There you go. My recommendations based entirely on my own prejudice in liking you to get your fundamentals down early is in order: 

The team 
The crew 
The reverse crew 
The bluebird 
The stunt 

But in order of having a playful easy time of those early days: 

The stunt 
The team 
The reverse crew 
The crew 
The bluebird 

And in order of long term progression (eep! qualified to mean progression around the mountain - from greens to reds, to blacks, to diamonds, to off piste to the whole bally lot! if its rail progression then this would probably be something else). 

The crew 
The team 
the bluebird (?) 
The reverse crew 
the stunt 

And in terms of cruising and just mucking about: 

The stunt 
the reverse crew 
the team 
the crew 
the bluebird 

And in terms of slashing pow 

the bluebird (ridden longer) 
the reverse crew 
the crew (ridden longer) 
the stunt 
the team 

I am literally pulling all of this out of my ass you understand :) 
You can decide for yourself what you want based on the idea of the boards above :)
m00m
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  Quote Spazzychaz Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: Aug/28/2011 at 5:38pm
Thats an interesting read. i was really thinking of getting a stunt but seems like it may be to much like the board I have.
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  Quote pibimbap Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: Aug/29/2011 at 9:52am
What board do you have? :P

And ippy, what do you mean by 'a strong foundation' in reference to the Sierra Stunt? Like... carving fundamentals?

You would think it would provide a strong foundation in buttering, but I suppose that's not what you mean. :P

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  Quote ippollite Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: Aug/30/2011 at 6:22pm
yeah, i kinda caught one of them when i realised the phrase 'long term progression' carried precisely that qualifier (carving and bombing), so added a disclaimer there. I guess you found another one :) 

Language is a tricky business. Being accurate and nuanced requires a bit more care than sometimes im capable of. So in that regard, yes, strong foundation is definitely referring to a specific part of your ride. I would say its one of the most crucial parts, but then again so is your stance and switch which buttering improves upon a great deal. Ah, its a hard life trying to say something nuanced and interesting whilst dodging bullets :p

Betwixt scylla and charybdis. On the one hand you want to avoid saying all boards are the same, and on the other hand you have to avoid overplaying the differences. And then when you throw out terms like "strong foundation" or "long term progression" or "playful" or "forgiving" without qualifying them further and adding to the confusion, well you see the problem. Its bewildering when youre actually trying to simplify :) But then thats the nature of simplification :p You leave shit out that will invariably come and bite you on the ass.

So a good lesson i guess and a reminder that everything comes with a qualifier in thsi game. The key is to harass the people posting in generalities into revealing their assumptions in the language their using :) 

Tomorrow we'll look at religious language and discuss equivocal versus analogous language in the attributes of god and what it could mean to the way we understand and interpret religious language. And maybe if we have time we'll sink our teeth into Anthony Flew's reading of John Wisdom's parable of the gardener. 
m00m
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  Quote lettuce Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: Sep/08/2011 at 11:37pm
Sweet post, I forwarded this to my newbie friend and it helped him greatly!
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  Quote Cooperla Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: Sep/15/2011 at 1:11pm
I have two questions on boards and this seems a good place to ask them.

1. I ride a twin, and have my stance centred. That's what I'm totally used to and comfortable with. The board does ok in powder, but i know it would ride a little easier and be a little less work on my legs if i set the binding back a little. My question is how will that affect the ride on the board under normal conditions? Since it's a true twin, isn't it designed to be ridden centered? How far back should i move them?

2. There's a general agreement that reverse camber boards are less stable at speeds than camber. Ippollite mentions it several times in his excellent guide. I get that it's all relative and stuff - diferent board/weight/riding ability. But can you qualify what that really means though? If "less stable at speeds" means being pointed straight down the hill on a black run, I'm not sure it's really relevant to most people. If it means squirreling around any time you get above jogging pace, then that would be different.

Love the guide - thanks for taking the time to write it.
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  Quote JBburton 18 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: Sep/15/2011 at 1:23pm
for the first part, a true twin doesn't mean that it is designed to be ridden centered... it simply means the snowboard is simetrical... the t.rice is a true twin, and i ride that setback no problem, feels great for me in all conditions regular and switch, and just works for me... you can always experiment with different stance options and change them on the hill if you have to.  you will never know unless you actually try it out...
 
for the second part, reverse camber has the contact points at the nose/tail raised in the air, which results in maybe slightly inferior edgehold at times, whereas camber has the contact points in the snow, giving it a solid edgehold when initiating into a carve...  something you could also look into is a hybrid camber like c2...  i personally like c2 vs. burtons flying v for example, since c2 has noticeable camber sections under the foot... it makes a noticeable difference when riding, and gives both the benefits of rocker and camber, and i feel there are very minor drawbacks if there are even any at all... also, magnetraction does appear some snowboards, and is in almost every mervin snowboard i believe (i don't think the hammock has magnetraction, but that doesn't matter anyway).  so if you see something that says c2btx, btx, or mtx, then it has magnetraction... magnetraction basically provides 7 bumps along the sidecut to basically serve as extra contact points on the snow... it helps a lot with improving edgehold on non-full camber snowboards, and it is there when you need it to grip onto snow or ice... however, some people feel as if mtx is too grippy and kinda pulls you along the snow, although i do not feel this way... some snowboards also have mellow magnetraction which is only 3 or 5 smaller, much less noticeable bumps... i know that is featured in several if not all of the jones boards. 
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  Quote Cooperla Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: Sep/15/2011 at 1:35pm
Thanks JB, that's helpful. How far back do you set your bindings - like 1 inch?

My second question was really about how fast you'd have to be going to notice the difference in technology?
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  Quote ippollite Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: Sep/15/2011 at 1:39pm
in answer to question two. Reverse camber boards often have the contact points raised. They also often have less effective edge. 

The result is really that you have less support on your edge. The faster you go, the more likely youre going to be on a sharper edge (ie carving), so reverse camber boards will have a tendency to just slide out from under you because unlike with camber boards, theres no contacts biting into the snow and keeping you stable. 

Of course, this is all fixed by good technique. :)

And regarding question 1. 

A few effects off the top of my head (but do keep in mind these are pretty much exaggeration for the purpose of observation so to speak. You likely wouldnt notice all that much difference to be honest).

The first is that your weight being sat further back on the board means you are going to be loading and unloading the tail easier. 
2 effects: 1. slightly less snap than the boards capable of. and 2. Easier and more frequent pop. :) 
Sounds weird, but there you go. Basically move yourself a little down the back of the board and youre going to be over the boards sweet spot without too much effort. So you will be popping it easier, you wont be using that full length to get resistance. More a tweek. 

Please understand this point was an exaggeration just to draw out something thats really tiny and almost imperceptible though. :) 

This means slightly poppier turn release as well as slightly easier turn initiation (since the board is going to feel a little looser and more pliable at the front as well). 

Basically you get more control at the back, whilst leaving the front to feel a little less rigid. Its kinda the design philosophy of a lot of directional boards. softer nose, stiffer tail, easy turn initiation, poppier turn release. 

So thats one effect.

The other is of course float. 

The final one is that switch is going to put all those positives and put the board the wrong way around. So you have less control at the back and too much weight at the front making turn initiation clunky. And thats why we all dont ride directional boards (because if snowboarding was all about riding in one direction, they are WAY better designed for the task - its also why lots of people hate directional sidecuts by the way, but thats for another time). 

So thats probably the main effects youre going to have from it. Youll get a directional-lite feel, have a bit more pop with a bit less pop intensity, better float, and a marginally more tricky time in switch (and thus a marginally more beneficial time in the positives because its not really going to make tooooooooo much of a difference - itll feel different of course but not so different that youll think youre on a completely different deck). 

Basically try it out for yourself and see how you like it. I know a couple of people on the forums like riding off-center on their decks. Im probably one of them :) It doesnt feel that big a deal in switch, and just gives you a bit more versatility for the conditions i think, so why the hell not eh? 
m00m
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  Quote ippollite Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: Sep/15/2011 at 2:08pm
or what jbburton said :) 
And its not really a specific speed, its more a case of how hard you're riding on your edge. Truth is, on a reverse camber deck you probably wont be riding a hard edge. You will (more likely) be sliding into your turns more than you would on a camber deck (where youll be leaving those beautiful pin-like tracks behind you). But if you do start picking up a bit of speed the chances are youre going to be relying more on those edges for stability. And without the extra support of your contacts, youre going to be relying a lot more on your balance and technique to stop the board from just sliding out under you. So its not all about speed, its all about your edge in relation to your technique :)
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  Quote Cooperla Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: Sep/15/2011 at 2:34pm
Alright, I'm going to move the bindings back and check it out. I don't ride switch too much anyway so i don't see that as a big drawback.

I'm going to see if I can demo a reverse camber board and check it out. I am curious to try it, but I can't buy five different boards for every style and condition so for now i'll just try tweaking my board a little.

Thanks for the info. Are you from the UK?
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  Quote ippollite Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: Sep/15/2011 at 3:47pm
yupyup, did my spelling give me away? :)
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  Quote Cooperla Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: Sep/15/2011 at 5:53pm
Haha, yeh, or something you wrote in the guide - I can't remember.

I'm from Southampton but I live in CA now.
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  Quote Drewboy95 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: Sep/16/2011 at 5:44am
Dude Thanks so much for posting that im kinda a newbie to all the different boards and this really gave me a better understanding!
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  Quote kirkalicious Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: Sep/16/2011 at 4:12pm
Looks like an extremely helpful guide, props to the OP
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  Quote firstcrack Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: Sep/17/2011 at 7:48pm
Definitely helped me when purchasing a board. Great write up.
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  Quote adddt Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: Sep/26/2011 at 8:55am
really nice guide , highly recommended
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  Quote vinzo Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: Oct/04/2011 at 8:19am
thats some good information
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  Quote bwen Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: Oct/11/2011 at 3:21pm
Some great tips here, I should have read this thread before buying my board
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  Quote sawjai526 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: Nov/15/2011 at 2:36pm
thanks for sharing!
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  Quote neojester22 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: Nov/16/2011 at 12:25pm
wow amazing... you should put this in a PDF format
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  Quote sawjai526 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: Nov/17/2011 at 6:53am
very informtative guide. thanks!
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  Quote ippollite Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: Nov/17/2011 at 2:05pm
dude, dont be a dick. You get one chance to tell me how awesome i am. After that you better have some bloody questions LOL
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  Quote carebear Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: Nov/17/2011 at 2:26pm
Originally posted by ippollite

dont be a dick, dude. LOL
I don't know if they were being sarcastic, but I have used this many times and genuinely think it would be a great idea to make a PDF and post somewhere at a high-level on the site.
 
Sometimes I want to find and have a tough time locating in a pinch with the search tool.
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  Quote ippollite Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: Nov/17/2011 at 2:31pm
ah, that was referring to the dude using this thread as a points receptacle as if i wouldnt come in here every time theres a post on it to read what it says. I have a MASSIVE ego. 

As for pdf, ive no idea. Honestly, as ive mentioned before the whole thing needs editing. about every two or three months i make an effort to read the whole thing just to see how my thinking is lining up, but I get really bored at the first hurdle and barely make it to the section on sizing. :)

If i ever get round to editing it (and maybe a couple more seasons of experience under my belt) i might have another crack at it, but ill probably start from scratch. :p
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  Quote DaRobsterr Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: Dec/02/2011 at 7:03pm
Thanks this helped out alot.Booked marked this ;)
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  Quote Saionbuss Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: Dec/26/2011 at 6:02am
This is the best buying guide I found so far. Great work! I will mark this page. On the other hand, how many of us are so professional and need a detail guide as this to buy a snowboard?

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  Quote b0r3dguy Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: Dec/27/2011 at 9:24pm
Thanks for the guide! I bookmarked this and also e-mailed to a couple friends who I'm trying to convince to go snowboarding with me.

Does anyone know if there's a similar guide for bindings?
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  Quote ChiTownRon Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: Jan/07/2012 at 3:30pm
Really solid guide for a noob like me. Thanks. Definitely bookmarking this.
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  Quote Nire333 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: Jan/21/2012 at 11:09am
Thanks so much for writing this. It helped so much. I now know i want a 147cm reverse camber jib board with a deep radial sidecut.
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  Quote Gtone287 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: Jan/25/2012 at 8:39am
Lots of great info on here.. Never knew so much went into the making of snowboards.. lol thanks!
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  Quote wpiass Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: Jan/25/2012 at 12:13pm
ipp, when are you going to get a link to this on the homepage to make it super easy to find?  i think it would be very helpful
be talkin to ya
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  Quote ippollite Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: Jan/26/2012 at 7:16pm
not my department im afraid. All i can do is flag it :) 
m00m
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  Quote kcsnowboard Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: Mar/15/2012 at 8:35am
wow lots of info here. thx ippollite. is there anything like this for newer boards?
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  Quote ippollite Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: Mar/22/2012 at 2:01am
Its like the british constitution im afraid. Theres a TONNE of info about more up to date boards and tech, but just like Her Majesty's constitution, it is yet to be codeified. It's there, but its not been abstracted into a single document. :) Id check Snowboardingforums and easy lounging as well as angrysnowboarder and shaysnowboards for more current info. Most of the info here should still be relevant, but without clips like this:



The guide just feels wholly incomplete. (ps, i actually like the idea and would love to try it out). 

Plus no mention of my current go to board, the ride berzerker :) 
m00m
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  Quote jusssssstinnn Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: Jul/06/2012 at 6:56am
thanks for the guide =]
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  Quote hish911 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: Dec/30/2012 at 8:59pm
Im about to pick up the sierra reverse crew, is this a good board for beginners. Ill mostly be doing free riding. Also any opinions on the board itself compared to others.
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  Quote kevinj07 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: Jan/01/2013 at 12:44pm
Great guide, helped me purchase my first board. Thanks!
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  Quote fj5 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: Jan/01/2013 at 3:17pm
Originally posted by hish911

Im about to pick up the sierra reverse crew, is this a good board for beginners. Ill mostly be doing free riding. Also any opinions on the board itself compared to others.

As long as you're choosing the appropriate length, I think the R.Crew would be an excellent board to start with.  May not be the "easiest" but the rocker shape will definitely make turning easier.  Great deal on it right now too!  Best of luck.  Make sure you get good quality boots that fit perfectly.  As for bindings, you could pair the R.Crew with the Sierra Rome S90.

As for the last line, what sort of comparisons are you asking for here?  Do you have other boards in mind?
Check out my channel & SUBSCRIBE! www.youtube.com/fj5
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  Quote GoldDragon Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: Jan/02/2013 at 11:33am
THis was a very helpful guide. thank you!
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  Quote GOBANANAS Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: Jan/02/2013 at 12:15pm
wow, very long, but very helpful. helps clear up a lot of confusion with reverse camber
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  Quote Force136 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: Oct/02/2013 at 6:09am
thanks a bunch! I ultimately decided on the reverse crew as my first board, I cant wait til it gets here
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