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Old     (flatwater_rob)      Join Date: Oct 2018 Location: Detroit Send a message via ICQ to flatwater_rob       11-08-2018, 3:58 PM Reply   
Hey gang.

I've been riding a LF Witness for a long long time. It's super comfy and mostly catch free. That being said I want to get a board that can spice up my sessions with....

1) Throwing down mad ollies for buoy bonks and big hops off the wake
2) Give me flex to where I can load the board in and out of carves and throw some big spray
3) Give me flex where I can butter the tail and make it real nasty

You guys have any thoughts? I'm about 5'7 and 165 lbs. I've seen all the Zucky videos, the recent Shaun Murray Low Impact video, and the recent Slingshot Nomad hype relative to boards that might deliver my 3 wishes above. What are you guys liking? Good experiences and bad experiences welcomed.

And if you want to share any pictures in the process that would be super awesome. I'm so bummed as it's already snowing across Minnesota, Wisconsin, Michigan and so on. A few pictures would help warm us up !

Rob in Detroit
Old     (skiboarder)      Join Date: Oct 2006       11-09-2018, 8:23 AM Reply   
Flex is a great option for fun on the water. I'll take my cable board out for a rip when my body is shot.

1.) Super flexy boards do reduce ollie height. I went from the Ronix Kenetic to the Top Notch mid-season (park) and I prefer the Top Notch for a lot of reasons, but I did sacrifice some snap off the water. "Flex boards" are almost all wood/sandwich style constructions and are tougher than traditional foam core boards.

2/3.) You will sacrifice a little response off the wake, but a softer board has a much better feel on the water, IMO. If I never left the water, I would absolute be riding flex behind the boat.

In general a softer/flex/sandwich construction board is a more mellow ride. They are super fun to ride, but they aren't progression machines. Every advantage you get from a flex board on the water turns in to less consistency and power off the wake. That is why 99% of the time, I am riding a proper stiff boat board behind the boat.

***It should be noted that the Zucky videos are enticing, but he is riding a finless, completely flat based board (not easy). The reason it looks so good, is that he is an absolute board control master. That guy has been ripping super hard for a solid 20+ years.***

Last edited by skiboarder; 11-09-2018 at 8:26 AM. Reason: added sucky note
Old     (simplej)      Join Date: Sep 2011       11-09-2018, 3:12 PM Reply   
I switched in 2011 and I ain’t never goin’ back

1. Yes you will get good Ollie pop- better if it’s got a stiff belly and soft tip and tail so you can load it up

2. You will feel the board load up unlike a stiff board, they also edge more like a snowboard than a wakeboard because they’re loose

3. Maximum butterability

The only thing that may suck is you may lose like 6inches from your wake jump because of the way the boards can absorb the wake.
But then again what’s 6 inches over 7/8 feet
Old     (flatwater_rob)      Join Date: Oct 2018 Location: Detroit Send a message via ICQ to flatwater_rob       11-11-2018, 7:52 AM Reply   
@simplej, what boards do you love? SS Response/Whip, Humanoid, LF Timba?
Old     (simplej)      Join Date: Sep 2011       11-11-2018, 2:38 PM Reply   
I’ve been converted to a humanerd but I started on slingy’s then got a CTRL now a on Humanoids- I’ve ridden nearly all their shapes.

I ride the cameo, it’s fast and loose and bucks hard at the wake. Run it as a tri for a little more edge power also a big big fan of the oracle, now the I/O, which has a similar personality but not as fast and a little looser.

Anything that is stiff AF between the feet and flexi tip and tail is gonna get you what you want for boat riding
Old     (davesetter)      Join Date: Jan 2014       11-13-2018, 7:16 PM Reply   
Thoughts on Slingshot Nomad?
Old     (Andy_Mora)      Join Date: Oct 2012       11-14-2018, 8:19 AM Reply   
My brother rides the Slingshot Nomad and he loves it. He likes it for cable but we ride mostly boat. So that's what I'll comment on. In my opinion it's really fast and not very locked in; playful. The landings are good - even if I case the second wake it usually just absorbs the impact. So really good with landings. Easy to use, loose, not overly aggressive. I think my only complaint is that you don't really get that aggressive snap/pop off the wake that some other boards offer. Having said that, I can't really tell when I watch my brother ride. He basically gets just as high as I do (I ride LF Timba) but I found when I tried it, the pop was slightly dampened. The pop feels more like a catapult launch (probably because of the size and flex) as opposed to a quick snap.

The Timba feels different. It's loose and fast but feels a lot more aggressive/abrupt with pop off the wake. I really like it! I find it really easy to use. It's so fast for me and feels like I can get a lot of vertical pop with minimal effort. It's pretty stiff, so it doesn't really feel like a "flex" board to me. I'm coming off a Slingshot Response though, so I guess stiffness is relative. The Nomad does feel flexy and you notice that as you ride.
My only complaint with the Timba is that I can't use it at the park. It's supposed to be a crossover board and has a grind base. I don't know what's wrong with me but the bottom is so sticky that it's virtually unusable for me. I tried to wax it, but I still stick on everything I hit. I used it for a whole day at Westrock and stuck on everything. I switched to a Humanoid at the end of the day and was completely fine. I was warned Liquid Force slides a little slower than some other boards but this one is too much for me. I'm sure most people don't have this problem because obviously there are tons of people who ride LF so keep in mind that this is just my experience.
Old     (Reez)      Join Date: Mar 2010       11-15-2018, 2:00 PM Reply   
Quote:
Originally Posted by simplej View Post
I’ve been converted to a humanerd but I started on slingy’s then got a CTRL now a on Humanoids- I’ve ridden nearly all their shapes.

I ride the cameo, it’s fast and loose and bucks hard at the wake. Run it as a tri for a little more edge power also a big big fan of the oracle, now the I/O, which has a similar personality but not as fast and a little looser.

Anything that is stiff AF between the feet and flexi tip and tail is gonna get you what you want for boat riding
So how’s the io on boat? A more playful version of the oracle ? loved the predictability and landings on that board
Old     (simplej)      Join Date: Sep 2011       11-16-2018, 6:20 AM Reply   
Quote:
Originally Posted by Reez View Post
So how’s the io on boat? A more playful version of the oracle ? loved the predictability and landings on that board
Not sure, have not ridden it yet.

its a very similar shape but with different bottom features
Old     (flatwater_rob)      Join Date: Oct 2018 Location: Detroit Send a message via ICQ to flatwater_rob       07-15-2019, 1:40 PM Reply   
Wanted to follow up on my first flex board experiences beind a boat. I ended up getting a 142 Slingshot Solo. Kind of took a leap of faith. I put on some new Parks bindings and have absolutely been amazed. The board is super light and really thin. First time landing a big air I was blown away at the softer landing. Completely night and day from a conventional board. Since the board is relatively flat on the bottom I was worried that it would be loose. However this board tracks extremely well, is easier to slide since it doesn't have bottom channels, and it really isn't prone to catching edges. The best part is the flex. It makes slashing, ollying, and playing on the the wake soooo much fun. I guess it's the snowboard feel that you get when you load up the tips. Had no idea what I was missing. Agree with others that have said you up a little off the wake, but it hasn't affected me. Plus the extra flex in the tips has saved me on a few backseat landings and helps me riding backwards/transitions because it's easier to get more weight over the front of the board. Long story short = I love the slingshot solo and the fun of the flex. THANKS simplej !

The only outstanding question - will this board gradually get softer and lose its feel? Have to see how it holds up this summer.
Old     (Ttime41)      Join Date: Nov 2011       07-17-2019, 7:57 AM Reply   
Quote:
Originally Posted by flatwater_rob View Post
The only outstanding question - will this board gradually get softer and lose its feel? Have to see how it holds up this summer.
Nope, that's another benefit you get with an all wood core. It doesn't soften over time like a traditional foam board. It'll stay as snappy as day 1 until the day it finally gives out all together.
Old     (skiboarder)      Join Date: Oct 2006       07-17-2019, 8:16 AM Reply   
Quote:
Originally Posted by Ttime41 View Post
Nope, that's another benefit you get with an all wood core. It doesn't soften over time like a traditional foam board. It'll stay as snappy as day 1 until the day it finally gives out all together.
They do breakdown and they are never that snappy to begin with. Over the years, I have had friends swear by sandwich construction boards, but one set on a stiff board and they are going to the moon.

"flex boards" are good for cable and for super-mellow sessions. The just aren't high-performance machines. I don't even know if there is a single "flex board" on tour this year.
Old     (lesstalkmoreride)      Join Date: Nov 2008       07-17-2019, 9:44 AM Reply   
I was going to argue with your they "aren't high-performance machines" because they are.
However, you also have a good point about them not being used by tour riders.
However however, tour-riders are almost exclusively boat (sans Oka and few others), so they are missing out on all other fun parts of wake.
I've ridden exclusively SS decks for nearly 11 years and their style has never of board has never held me back (wake, cable, minimal winch), just my lack of talent.
They do get a little soft over time, as they should with good loving, but they physically break nowhere near as easy as plastic or whatever the other ones are made of. (I used to burn through 4-5 ronix decks/year riding wake only)
Old     (tampawake)      Join Date: Mar 2008       07-18-2019, 6:00 AM Reply   
wait there is a tour. People wakeboard? All I see is over priced barges that plow water at 10 mph create rollers from hell.
Old     (Ttime41)      Join Date: Nov 2011       07-24-2019, 7:28 AM Reply   
Quote:
Originally Posted by skiboarder View Post
They do breakdown and they are never that snappy to begin with. Over the years, I have had friends swear by sandwich construction boards, but one set on a stiff board and they are going to the moon.

"flex boards" are good for cable and for super-mellow sessions. The just aren't high-performance machines. I don't even know if there is a single "flex board" on tour this year.
Hmm, I learned every mobe and advanced trick I know when I moved from a stiff Hyperlite Marek to a flexy Slingshot, but given your logic I guess that isn't possible. This is confusing

What I've always preached with flex boards is that if you have bad technique, you're not going to get the pop you would on a traditional board. If you have the patience to wait till the top of the wake for the snap, you can get just as much or more. If you need proof, check out the video here: Notice the winning rider's setup

To your point about the tour, the companies with the money to sponsor the top tier contest riders make stiff boards. It's that simple. Although, Guenther rides a hybrid board behind the boat and actually rides it finless. Flex isn't for everyone. It clearly isn't for you. That doesn't mean others aren't going to perform better and enjoy themselves more on a flex board.
Old     (Bagar55)      Join Date: Aug 2013 Location: Mineral, Va       07-24-2019, 7:33 AM Reply   
Would you consider a Watson Dose or Ronix Darkside flex boards? Not sure how they compare to a SS or others. I love the old Watson Hybrid and have been trying to decide on a new Dose, maybe Darkside or something else similar. Unfortunately do not have a way to demo them.
Old     (skiboarder)      Join Date: Oct 2006       07-25-2019, 10:58 AM Reply   
Quote:
Originally Posted by Ttime41 View Post
Hmm, I learned every mobe and advanced trick I know when I moved from a stiff Hyperlite Marek to a flexy Slingshot, but given your logic I guess that isn't possible. This is confusing

What I've always preached with flex boards is that if you have bad technique, you're not going to get the pop you would on a traditional board. If you have the patience to wait till the top of the wake for the snap, you can get just as much or more. If you need proof, check out the video here: Notice the winning rider's setup

To your point about the tour, the companies with the money to sponsor the top tier contest riders make stiff boards. It's that simple. Although, Guenther rides a hybrid board behind the boat and actually rides it finless. Flex isn't for everyone. It clearly isn't for you. That doesn't mean others aren't going to perform better and enjoy themselves more on a flex board.
If you are that strong of a rider, I dare you to try a proper boat board. You will crap your pants. And Oka's board is made of wood, but it is rock hard. That is why he has two boards...
Old     (Ttime41)      Join Date: Nov 2011       07-26-2019, 2:56 AM Reply   
Quote:
Originally Posted by skiboarder View Post
If you are that strong of a rider, I dare you to try a proper boat board. You will crap your pants. And Oka's board is made of wood, but it is rock hard. That is why he has two boards...
Haha I've gone back to stiff a few times, and even tried riding one for an extended period just last Summer. I didn't enjoy it, and my riding actually suffered for about a month. I felt right at home as soon as I picked up my SS Solo though, and progression continued.

It's okay if some people prefer different things than you. What brings you joy on your board is different than what brings joy to others. If leading the crusade against flex on boat is your thing, that's fine. Just here to offer a different perspective and share what gets me stoked.
Old     (Javi)      Join Date: Aug 2016       11-23-2020, 4:57 PM Reply   
Very interesting feedback from all. I wanted to provide a bit of my own feedback based on the fact that I am looking at also purchasing a SS Solo or a SS Pill.

I kiteboard and about 10 years ago when kiteboarding got big into wakestyle, every manufacturer switched to wooden boards. All our boards are considered flexboards because we do not use a wake. We throw all our wakestyle tricks loading the board against the flat water. Wood is much more responsive/springy than foam. Poplar wood and bambo tend to be very popular on kiteboards because they last their feel and are very light. Some woods will loose the springback feel sooner.

Slingshot for those that may not know, first did kiteboards before they went into the wakeboard scene which they entered when cable parks got popular. For flat water load and pop tricks you need the flexible tips to load up, but the board has to be stiff on the center or you will not get enough pop. I've ridden many boards that are too soft and just don't give you enough pop and others that are too stiff and the tips just don't load up well. All pro-level wakestyle kiteboarders use "flex boards" but they are carbon reinforced and very stiff. But they do flex. The large stiffness between the bindings is balanced with thinner springy tips to give you some crazy pop.

For wakeboarding I have always used a stiff foam board and never thought about transitioning to a wooden flexible board. That was primarily because I can be lazy and rely just on the wake to give me the pop (a stiff board will not absorb the load placed on the wake sending you up easily). However, there are two things that have me thinking about transitioning. (1) I am turning 40 and I need softer landings which I feel I may get with a board that can flex a little. (2) I would like to do other tricks like I do behind the kite with the boat. I can do flat water relays, S-bends, S-bends to blind, back rolls, front rolls, tantrums, with the kite really low nearly touching the water, similar to the boat. Obviously the kite is still a bit higher which helps with the lift, but I mean I can do all that with it pretty low, not nearly as high as a cable would be. But behind the boat over flats, I can pretty much only do back rolls and I still many times need at least a little wake from a passing fishing boat or something to pop against. I can't really just load up the tips on my rigid CWB board. I am pretty sure that if I can get a relatively stiff flex board, it will be very fun behind the boat + it will provide softer landings. Based on my years of experience with flex boards kiting, I can guarantee that you will need to load up different when you hit the wake than how you would approach it with a stiff board, but if you do it properly, you can get some big air, but the board can't be like a noodle or it will absorb to much of the wake.

With that said: Any thoughts on which board you guys recommend. Has anyone tried the SS Pill? How does it compare to the SS Solo? Or even how those would compare to the LF Timba. I cannot demo any so I need to take a best guess. Main use would be behind the boat and only one or twice a year at the cable. I happily have used my beat up kiteboard at the cable and it works great, just a bit too fast due to the low rocker, so every now and then it kicks me off the cable path if I throw a big flat water trick like a raley.
Old     (Andy_Mora)      Join Date: Oct 2012       11-25-2020, 1:39 AM Reply   
I ride the LF Timba behind the boat and I like it. It's nice and fast and responsive. Felt similar to my old slingshot Response but a little stiffer and snappier off the wake. It's been my favorite board so far for riding boat. My only complaint is that it seems a little heavy. I'd like to get a lighter boat board next time around if I can. I originally got it to use at the cable as well. I HATE it at the cable. It's very stiff and for some reason it's so sticky on plastic I can't use it. Maybe it's just mine, but for some reason the grind base felt like sandpaper when I tried it on rails (Westrock). I tried to wax it up like crazy too but it didn't help much. I stuck on everything. Later in the day I switched to one of the Humanoids they had for rentals and it slid lightning fast on every feature. So that was the last time I used my Timba at the cable. Boat = love it! Cable = hate it!
I'm pretty sure my next board will be a SS Native. I think it'll tick all the boxes for me. Just seems more straight forward and predictable than the Solo or Pill, but to be fair I haven't ridden either of those.

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