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Old     (brownclown)      Join Date: Jun 2008       12-28-2009, 4:25 PM Reply   
Has anyone ridden either of these that can give some feedback? I'm thinking of a few boards and bindings, but these two have popped up on my radar. Hyperlite Forefront with Focus bindings and the O'brien Ace with Device bindings.
I'm old with bad knees, so big air and crazy tricks are not in the plan. I like stable and hard edging. What I like about these two are that they have 4 removable fins that I can play with the setup.
Old    Andy Nintzel (andy_nintzel)      Join Date: Sep 2004       12-29-2009, 3:24 PM Reply   
Brownclown,

Hey man, I have ridden the O'brien Ace, its a solid beginner board that is very easy to ride and very forgiving. I would suggest something with a bit more of a center spine, take the O'brien Coda, or the Natural for example, both track hard and have great pop and a solid secure ride, but with the added center spine the board breaks the water much softer than you will get with the Ace.

Check these out.

http://www.the-house.com/wakec-obrien.html
Old     (brownclown)      Join Date: Jun 2008       12-29-2009, 4:48 PM Reply   
Thanks for the link Andy! I'll check it out.
Old    C-Dub (cwfunrider)      Join Date: Sep 2006       12-31-2009, 10:29 AM Reply   
Don't forget about the player. It's super stable.
Old    Corey James McKenna (coreym)      Join Date: Sep 2008       12-31-2009, 3:03 PM Reply   
Brownclown - Forefront would be a great board for you. It is a hard edging board when you cut, but it is still a forgiving edge under your feet. That will translate into less edge catches. It also has a landing zone to soften your landings and comes with 6 fins instead of four so you can customize your ride and the board can progress with your riding ability. It also has canted footbeds to make it easier to initiate your toe edge and many other features to the board. Let me know if you have any other questions and I will do my best to answer them or I will get ahold of the shaper Greg Nelson to answer the questions for you. Thanks.

Corey M @ Hyperlite
Old     (brownclown)      Join Date: Jun 2008       01-02-2010, 8:37 AM Reply   
Corey,

Thanks a lot for the great advice! I actually have quite a few questions that many people here have answered, but I've never had anyone from a manufacturer answer them.
I'm showing my age a bit, but I want something that is as stable and fun to ride as the old Hyperlite Skurfer 2 that I got when I was in college. I found it last summer as I was cleaning out a storage unit of my parent's. I took it out and had a ball! I could go wake to wake, grabs and stuff that I hadn't done in MANY years.
Probably 8-10 years ago (that's a guess) I bought a Hyperlite Dean Levalle. That was a completely different feel and very loose, which I don't like.
So, I would like to find something that is stable like the old Skurfer, but that was designed in this millennium. I've had so many great suggestions on this board and it's kind of overwhelming. Last summer I had someone suggest The State. I've had others suggest the Marek as well as a few from other companies.
I'm 5'9 160lbs and old. I destroyed my acl on a slalom course and the other acl I killed in high school. I wear 2 braces when I ski, board, snow ski, etc...My job requires all limbs and brain to be fully operational, so I won't be doing anything inverted or crazy. The reason I want to know as much as possible is that we don't have many pro shops around here that allow demos. I don't want to get something that I will not like or ride.
I hope I didn't write too much Corey. Thanks for putting your thoughts out there!

Todd
Old    Andy Nintzel (andy_nintzel)      Join Date: Sep 2004       01-02-2010, 3:09 PM Reply   
The O'brien Player would be a solid. The Board has 4 molded fins and 1 removable center fin. With the fin on it tracks like bullet. Remove the fin and the board is way looser but still tracks hard on edge.
Old    Corey James McKenna (coreym)      Join Date: Sep 2008       01-05-2010, 7:04 AM Reply   
Sorry for the delay, its my first day back and I only checked in a few times during the break. Everyone will tell you something different, but here is my take.

To the best of my knowledge, you wont find anything that is currently made that will match the ride of the Skurfer. (That was my first board too) The shape, fin and stance is no where near what they are today. The Skurfer was more bouyant, asymetrical (had a tip like a surfboard) had surf fins on it and was made so your weight was over the tail instead of centered. The closest you could get to this would be to get a short surfboard and and screw some Teva's to it. haha

The Forefront and the State are both good boards, and depending on who you talk to you will get completely different answers. Mine is for the Forefront. (these features also are what it makes it better for you over the other companies boards too)
-Molded footbeds - raised on the toeside to make it easier to initiate a toe side edge (which for most people is harder to initiate than heelside edge) The State doesnt have this and to the best of my knowledge neither does any other boards.
-Variable edge design - This edge is softer under your feet to be forgiving on landings and on flat water tricks. You will be less likely to catch the edge since it is rounded. The edge changes to a sharper edge as it moves to the tip and tail. It needs to be sharper there because that will be the edge that will hold the turn. Another attribute that the state and many other boards dont have.
-Toe side extended channels - helps hold the edge while cutting
-Molded in anti slip fin - also helps hold the edge
-landing zone - softens landings (think of smacking the water with the back of a spoon rather than a flat knife, less slap)
-4 removable fins - ability to change fins to help the board progress with your riding progression. (actually comes with 2 extra fins to help progress, learn switch, or possible just give you a ride closer to the skurfer if you put the larger fins in the back)
-Subtle 3 stage rocker - not many beginners boards have a 3 stage rocker. That is why this board is such a great tool for progression as well as learning.
-there are a few other attributes but with out holding it in my hands it is hard to remember them all.

There are always negatives too. The Forefront is a little heavier than the state. (but you may not even notice a difference when you put on boots) There might be some people that come on after me to tell you what they dont like about the board also.

Many people will give you advice just to step up and by a pro model board. I am not one of those people. There is a reason why there is boards that are related to riding levels, and it is not just about price. This post is getting long, but I will go into detail if you want me to.

Let me know if you have any other questions. Thanks.

Corey M @ Hyperlite
Old     (brownclown)      Join Date: Jun 2008       01-05-2010, 8:11 AM Reply   
Nice Corey!
What size would you recommend? 139? I'm 5'9 and 165lbs.
What boots would you recommend?
Is there a difference between the '09 and '10 models?

Thanks again for the great info!

Todd
Old    Corey James McKenna (coreym)      Join Date: Sep 2008       01-05-2010, 9:27 AM Reply   
Yeah, I would go with the 139 for your size. That will give you good pop without being too big to control.

As for boots, go for the Focus boots. Either 2009 or 2010 on those. IF you get a 2010 board get a 2010 boot, and visa versa. The focus will hold your heal down well, be easy to get in and out and comfy too. Or you could go pro model on boots, but that is your choice and opens up a bunch of options depending on what you are looking for.

The only performance difference between the 2009 and the 2010 is the insert pack. the 2010 is a 6" hole pattern and those boots are torsionally stiffer and will have less heel and toe lift. You will get a better price on 2009 boards and boots at some shops.

Corey M @ Hyperlite
Old     (brownclown)      Join Date: Jun 2008       01-05-2010, 2:48 PM Reply   
Corey,
Thanks again for the great info! I talked to my local shop and they said I could bring it back as long as it still looked new. I'm going to go check out their Forefronts on Thursday. Thanks again for the advice.

Todd

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