Post subject: Re: Sidecut: how it affects board ride characteristics
Posted: Wed Jul 06, 2011 4:02 pm
Joined: Thu Nov 19, 2009 9:16 am Posts: 517 Location: Salida, Flagstaff
Personally, I would not want a board with a shorter radius towards the nose for my riding, as this creates a quicker turn entry and also loads up the nose of the board considerably-this is exactly the opposite of what one wants on the steeps (as an example). On the steeps the worst possible fall occurs when the rider goes "over the bars", and a board which wants to enter the turn very quickly is hard to control in this respect. For steep terrain one wants a board that will enter the turn gently, and then provide good edge hold through the middle and end of the turn.
The substance of this discussion is interesting.
While I agree that short turn-in radii are not desirable in steeps, the turn-in radius and the subsequent down-board side-cut shape are two separate issues. I do think there's an interesting question about where one wants more radius along the length of the board for steeps. I sense that's the issue you're getting at, Barrows.
I prefer longer side-cut radii in steeps and at speed; it affords stability. But for me, this is especially true of the tail, where less side-cut translates into a large, relatively-even zone of edge pressure that yields both power and stability.
Shorter and progressive tail radii often feel to me as if most of the pressure is being focused on a relatively small section of edge near the tail. In the most tenuous situation, this can yield a choppy ride, a grossly-unevenly loaded, and thus unpredictable, board, and can feel more prone to tail hang up exiting turns.
For steeps specifically, I'd be interested in trying to relatively short (upper 170s), stiff board with a regressive sidecut--one that blends a 10m nose radius into a 14m or 15m tail radius, sans tail rocker and with only a bit of taper. I could see such a shape turning in quickly and nicely (without hooking), then affording lots of power and stability for edging once in, and being a bit friendlier and less prone to hang-up at turn release.
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