I've decided to build a new splitboard from scratch. i want to make it more of a tapered pow shaped board so i think i'll base the template on my option northshore 159.
now some questions i have:
- Camber - go with traditional / the same as whats on the board that i'm copying or should i go for rocker a rocker? will the rocker ride like ass if i have traditional rails? - rails - go traditional route or magnetraction? is there anything techinical about magnetraction, or does it just involve putting seven lumps down the rails? - puck inserts - what is the pattern for factory split disk holes - woodcore - any recomendations for specie of wood to use?
any other suggestions to incorporate?
should be interesting. I'm going to start making a press in the next week or so and go from there!
Joined: Fri Nov 12, 2004 1:43 pm Posts: 439 Location: Western Washington
I hate to rain on your parade, but the reality is you have not even begun to provide enough info to make even a good stab at a size/shape. A foot of pow on crust? Maybe a 159 tapered shape is ok. Chest deep pow? Forget it, I wouldn't wait for ya. Trees, steeps, slower riding? OK. Fast deep pow fields? Unless you are a strong rider I wouldn't use that shape. Look at the various pow guns out there, esp. the Prior Spearhead and glean some ideas. Magnatraction? This is your first board, can you bend the hardened steel edge material consistently w/o warping it into this shape? A good properly sharpened edge will give you as much ice traction as Magnatraction. Cores?? Hmm, I'd go with a lightweight wood core (bamboo?) with something strong in the insert areas for integrity. I'll leave that choice to the pro's. Just some things to think about...
_________________ Find out just what any people will quietly submit to and you have the exact measure of the injustice and wrong which will be imposed on them (Frederick Douglass)
i'm not too concerned about the template shape, I have ridden the stock 159 northshore in up to waist deep pow and it's handled really well in a range of scenarios. A lot better than standard freeride board up to 165 i have ridden in similar scenarios anyway. It's not like i will be riding heli lines in alaska on the thing.. steeps trees and powder fields are all fine... I will probly never come across 60 degree spines and chutes with chest deep anyway!
i'm more interested in investigating whether it would be worth considering rocker, and magnetraction was an after thought of that scenario. Most likely i won't go the magnetraction route as it's intended as a pow board anyway.
I have never pressed a snowboard before but don't see anything involved that i'm not capable of. Have pressed many skate decks in the past and shaped and glassed a number of surfboards. Through shaping surfboards i have learnt that almost anything rides ok and works ... it's some little tweaks and perfections that turn it into a great board
Joined: Sat Feb 04, 2006 8:59 am Posts: 549 Location: Stowe, VT
I think I'd keep it pretty straight forward for your first board. If I were building a board, I start out with a solid board, instead of having to learn how to build a board and make it a split at once. I try to learn one thing at a time. Along that line, magnetraction-style edges and rocker are yet another variable in board design that have to be worked out. I'd stick with the known quantity for the first pass. If you do it that'll be sweet!
Joined: Thu Nov 23, 2006 10:12 pm Posts: 36 Location: Vancouver, BC
I built a solid board a while ago and based on my experience, I would say just buy enough materials for a few boards and start out simple because chances are high that you won't be happy with something on your first one. Mine had a delam problem along the sidewalls - otherwise it turned out pretty decent. It was still a fun project and I want to try a splitboard once I have a bit more free time.
I would also put a bit more thought into the geometry as well because that is a big part of the reason to build your own in my opinion. Also, unless you make an adjustable mold you are stuck with whatever length you make the mold for, so unless you are a tiny guy you probably want something longer than a 159cm. Don't forget the added weight of all the gear you will be carrying - if you like how your option shape rides just make a longer version of it.
Based on some of your questions, before you go through the trouble of pressing your own board, you might want to spend some time on a reverse camber deck with magnetraction. I say this because last year I had a brand new fish, a new khyber splitboard and another new regular deck (a trs lib tech non-banana) and made the "mistake" of getting on a skate banana. As far as magnetraction goes, it's the real deal. Yes a properly tuned, razor sharp normal edge will hold as good on ice but as soon as that edge dulls, you feel it and you need to sharpen often for the grip. On the other hand, the mag edge holds like velcro even after the edge dulls. I tuned my skatebanana far less than a regular edged board and never felt like the edges were anything but razor sharp. It's like buying race tires for your car that wear 3 times as long as your street tires. Win-win. And then there's the reverse camber. Rides like magic and works everywhere. From chest deep pow to boilerplate steeps, you end up just buttering everything at any speed. I've since sold my khyber, the fish and the other board is for sale. Sorry to sound like such a cheerleader but I feel like someone gave me a magic snowboard and not many people know about it, you know? Another cool thing is that on flats you glide way further and faster because only the middle of the board is actually contacting the snow so it's like you're on a little disc. Also, don't ever change your stance from center, even on the deepest pow days because you ride these from the center of the board, giving you equal power to each foot, so no more back leg burn and your front leg will get as strong as your back leg since you can charge and pivot easier off your front foot than with a regular board, especially in big bumps. Bottom line is this new design allows the board to corner so much harder than a regular cambered board; it allows you to literally slice the mountain to pieces and it's sooooo much fun. Stable too. I'd try splitting a skate banana before building something old schoool from scratch, not that there's anything wrong with that, of course. Either way, good luck with your project!
toddo start at www.grafsnowboards.com Home depot has 1 foot by 6' poplar boards in stock usually. The trick is to find the ones that ideally weigh less than 8 lbs per board. I use a fishing scale and a strap. I also like Paulownia, but you will have ot mail for it. It has a good tight structure and weighs less than poplar. You might want to refine your target board. I make my boards with between 1 and a half to two inches of taper, but that is a 175 to 190 cm board with rocker for Utah Backcountry. I dont see why you would hassle with a magnatraction edge (which will be very hard to pull off on your first run) for a board with rocker and lots of taper for backcountry. I'd go stragiht to a convential board off the racks if you want it to have good hardpack performance.