Review: 2012 Lib-Tech Birdman

Posted: October 19th, 2011 | Author: | Filed under: Boards | Tags: , , , | 3 Comments »

Lib-Tech does it again. The company that kick-started the rocker revolution and brought magnetraction to the world has a fresh take on the powder board. The Birdman takes a normal board and wraps it with a massive powder nose. The goal is to create a board with unmatched float that still holds an edge traversing across nasty stuff on the way to the goods.

A quick glance at the specs of the Birdman give a hint that something’s going on. The massive 170 has the same contact length and sidecut radius as the Attack Banana 156. It seems that Lib has taken an attack banana-lik design and mounted a massive nose on the board. The nose gives you float when you’re in powder, and the attack banana design gives you control when you’re not.

Our thoughts: Can’t wait to give one a try. One of the big complaints we have with highly tapered pow boards is that they don’t track well on edges. You don’t want to traverse an ice-field above a big cliff on a tapered board. The Birdman solves this problem by keeping the edging of a normal board. And we can only imagine what it’s like to open up in a big powder field on a 170 or 180.

Camber: The Birdman has Lib’s BTX, which is their reverse-camber “banana” design plus magnetraction.

Shape: With a nose like that, it’s clearly directional.

Sizes and Options: You’ve got two choices – massive and gigantic. The Birdman comes in 170 and 180 lengths, both are wide with 26 and 26.5 waste widths.

Review: 2010 Lib-Tech T. Rice (Pointy Shaped)

Posted: January 3rd, 2010 | Author: | Filed under: Boards | Tags: , , , , | No Comments »

0910_Lib_trice_161.5_pointy_c2btxLib-Tech puts a lot of design innovation into the signature models for their resident mad-man Travis Rice. Besides offering ice-gripping magnetraction and a choice of camber options (traditional camber or Lib’s C2BTX), they also offer park-focused blunt nose shapes and powder-specific pointy shapes. We care about powder, so we’re focused on the pointy shaped options.

With no taper and a minimal set-back, this board relies on the old-standby’s of speed and rear leg burn to keep the nose floating. But if you’re like Mr. Rice and spend almost as much time riding fakie as normal even on powder days, taper would only get in the way. And with magnetraction, you aren’t going to be hating life if you stumble on some hard-pack on your way to the deep stash.

Our thoughts: This isn’t the board that you’re going to take on a back-country trip. It’s designed for the rider who wants to rip all conditions; not just powder. We’re purists and aren’t looking for any sacrifice in the white room, but it we could only have one board, this would make the short list.

Camber: Available with Lib’s C2BTX, which is rocker between the bindings and camber underneath them. This gives the fun of rocker with the powder of camber.

Shape: Directional twin-tip with a slight set-back. 

Sizes and Options: The powder tip comes in a 161.5 and 164.5, as well as a blunt tip shape in 153 and 157. You choose between camber or C2BTX.

Review: 2010 Libtech 1986 Snow Mullet

Posted: September 7th, 2009 | Author: | Filed under: Boards | Tags: , , , | 1 Comment »

LibTech1986SnowMulletBTXLibTech’s 1986 Snow Mullet blends the taper of a Fish with features of a freeride board to create what might be the ultimate all-around powder board. Do not be mistaken: this is not Libtech’s Fish – the Mullet is clearly it’s own beast. The Mullet has a slight setback an directional flex and Magnetraction to make the board grip on hard pack without worrying about a short tail washing out. Because of the more centered stance, you don’t size down the way you would on a Fish. Riders that want a big board can get one with a Mullet, and with the centered stance and Banana Camber, enjoy the more traditional powder riding with lots of float and the ability to carve powder like it’s pack and pack like it’s powder.

Our thoughts: I haven’t been on one, but I want to. The Mullet has a unique combination of features to make it sound like a board that can really rip in all conditions, and still bring that huge smile to your face on a powder day. Given the aggressive taper, I’m not sure I’d want a Mullet as my only board, but it should be perfect for those days with mixed conditions. The Mullet seems to be perfect for weekend resort powder days in the Northwest, where you’ll be rocking fresh stashes all day, but working hard to get to them as the slopes get tracked out.

Camber: The board has Banana camber between the bindings, which should definitely further the fun factor of this ride, but is flat from bindings to tip and tail to help maintain edge pressure when you need it.

Shape: The board has a 30 mm taper, but with 1.5″ of setback, it should still ride like a traditional board.

Sizes and Options: The 1986 Snow Mullet is available in a 156, 160, and 165, and 172.