Best Snowboards for Buttering Tricks in 2019
Since all snowboards are not created equal, carving snowboards are no exception.
Carving is an intermediate snowboarding trick and requires specialized snowboards, hence if you want to carve, it is much important to know about what type of boards you would actually want and why, which will all be discussed in this guide.
So read ahead to find out all about snowboards carving and what snowboard you would want for it.
What is Snowboard Carving?
Snowboard carving is a trick which is used for gliding smoothly over snow. It is smooth because the nature of contact between the snowboard and the snow is only a line(along the side of your snowboard), giving the rider minimum possible friction while snowboarding (apart from the case when you are in the air).
Snowboard carving involves making a gentle sinusoidal shaped carve in snow, the carves being best described as ‘sharp and clean cuts’ in snow.
This is particularly useful in the cases when you don’t want to lose speed while turning, or want fast progression along an arc. This technique falls under intermediate snowboarding and can be done fairly easily once you have proper and sufficient practice.
What Type of Snowboard is Good for Carving?
Since carving involves sudden turning at intervals at a high speed, alpine snowboards are the most suitable snowboards that can be used if you’re just a beginner and have started to practice carving.
Alpines are narrower, but stiffer if you compare them to all-mountain and freestyle snowboards. These usually are configured for riding and carving downhill, so they are obviously not ideal for performing stunts and tricks.
It is generally made stiff as well. Alpines also have a raised end, which is meant to go forward, and due to this construction, it is only meant to go only in one direction. Distinctive design features also include a longer but narrower design.
If you are an experienced snowboarder, racing and other types of snowboards can be used as well without any problems.
How to Choose Snowboard for Carving
Snowboard for Carving: Features to Look for
Flex means how much the board should bend longitudinally at the center when a person is riding it and stiffness is the property of resistance to flex.
When you go in the market, there are varieties of boards available depending upon how stiff they are, so it is quite important to know how stiff a board you should buy.
For carving, our recommendation would be to go for a board on the stiffer side.
This is because, at the end of each curve, you need to initiate the other curve in the opposite direction, which is only possible if the board provides sufficient rebound.
If the board is too stiff, it might throw you off because it will provide too high a rebound to be handled. Also, stiffer boards have higher maneuverability, since they don’t flex too much, and go in the direction you want to immediately.
On the other hand, if the board is soft, it will tend to lose speeds at the point where you need to change the direction, as it will transfer all the force you applied to the snow.
Now, the flex itself is dependent on the factors such as your weight, what speed you ride the board on et cetera, hence, you need to consider them as well while buying one.
An important thing should be noted that if you are a beginner trying to learn how to do the carving, it may prove problematic to you on stiffer boards, because, as discussed, it will provide a quick and strong rebound, which will be needed to be handled.
Selection of proper length of a board should be done, as it affects how you carve, for which you can keep the following discussion in mind, which summarizes all the important points.
It is well known that longer boards are difficult to steer, as you need to put more force on that side of the board to steer it. On the other hand, we have shorter boards, which are very easy to steer, due to their smaller size.
So, to many people, smaller boards seem the better choice, but there’s a catch. When you are carving, you need the board to be as stable as possible and not react to irregularities in the terrain, and as you might have guessed it, longer boards are suitable for that purpose.
This is because longboards have a larger surface area and are heavier, which helps them to normalize and dampen the vibrations that happen due to the irregularities in the terrain quite easily.
Also, since longer boards also have longer edges, there is a larger line of contact, which makes it even more stable than shorter boards specifically for carving.
However, it should be noted that longer boards are bulkier and may need some time to get used to if you have only used normal or short boards before.
Carving snowboards are generally in a directional shape and are optimized to perform while at higher speeds, as with the case of specialized boards, to help you carve efficiently and easily.
And it should be a matter of no surprise that width affects the surface area of a board, and as discussed earlier, the surface area of snowboard matters when it comes to the matter of ride comfort.
But the problem with having a wider board is that it will take more time and effort to switch the incident edge. So, it is recommended to go for a narrower board, if possible, as it will allow you to switch edges freely and quickly, giving you the option for narrower carves as well.
But there is a problem with narrower boards as well. To support your weight over a less available area, they have to be constructed with stronger, more expensive materials, which increases the cost of the board.
Also, keep in mind the length of your boots while you shop for a board, as too long a boot can result in overhanging boots touching the snow while you carve, and create additional drag, lowering your speeds.
Conventionally, snowboards had a straight edge, but currently, you can also find snowboards that come with a wave-shaped edge, marketed as Magne-traction edges. These snowboards look not only cool, but feature increased traction over straight-edged snowboards, as they have a larger incident edge and hence, more blade surface area.
These boards might be well-suited for high-incline riding, but they actually perform worse than straight-edged boards while carving. This is due to the fact that the wavy-edges increase traction, so it becomes difficult to switch edges quickly and in a very high speed, and give way more turning effect.
Wavy-edged snowboards also dig in deeper in the snow, as they produce a sawing effect and is primarily the reason for not being recommended for carving.
Hence, if you are a beginner, use straight-edged boards first, and then when you start to get hold of the things, try a way-edged board and see which suits you better.
Shape of the nose
Shape of the nose also plays a role in how much control you have over your board while you are carving.
Boards with longer noses provide a larger incident edge as compared to boards with a stub or a square-shaped nose.
Some people also prefer pointed nose because it helps them to carve aggressively, due to very less effort required while switching from one edge to other.
Gender selection matters
Whenever you will go shopping for a snowboard, you will find that the classification of boards is done on the basis of gender as well.
This is due to the fact that usually, women are shorter in height and have less weight compared to men. Hence, the boards are made keeping that in mind, hence, women’s boards also have a narrow side-cut and waist width, which allows for accommodating smaller frames and feet.
Also, since muscle to weight ratio is different in men and women, the boards are designed to be slightly stiffer, to help them throw the board into carve easily.
Best Carving Snowboards
Capita Defenders of Awesome Snowboard (For Men)
Coming from Capita, we have Defenders of Awesome snowboard. It is an all-terrain board, which means that it can be used on most of the surfaces.
It is made from FSC certified dual cored core, which helps to increase its ability to withstand higher forces. It also has carbon fiber beams, which help the board to be sturdy, even when it is light.
The top and bottom are of biaxial nature and is made from a plant-based resin, which increases its durability and strength. Also, the top sheet has a metallic underlay and is made from PLT technology, while the base is made from UHMWPE, which has higher abrasion resistance and a smooth surface.
The sidewalls are Kevlar bound, which makes it look sleek and ensure that it can take everyday beatings without any problems.
As far as real-life performance is concerned, you should not worry, as it is a very well stabilized board. Sometimes, due to its stiffness, it can pop, but that is only when you do too hard a press on the board.
It comes in four sizes (152, 155 wide, 160 and 161 wide in cm), with two different color schemes, which vary with the size you choose. Due to the darker shades and its paint job, the board looks phenomenal both in bright and dark lighting.
If you are thinking to buy this snowboard, just go for it. It is an amazing board and you cannot go wrong with your purchase.
Capita Space Metal Fantasy Snowboard (For Women)
From Capita, we have a Women’s snowboard, the Space Metal Fantasy Snowboard.
It can be easily regarded as one of the best women’s park boards on the market, and to back this claim, it has won Transworld Good Wood Award four times. It is suitable for intermediate riders. The reverse camber shape makes skiing on this board an amazing experience.
Its core is made from poppy, with no irregularities and finger joints, which provide a uniform flex over the board and uniform response throughout the board. The core is also FSC certified as ‘Select Core’.
This board is touted to perform exceptionally-well for carving on slopes, usage in parks and even surfing in powered snow.
Similar to the Capita Defenders of Awesome snowboard, the top and bottom are of biaxial nature and is made from plant-based resin, which increases its durability and strength. It also features a X-X-X[TRUDED] base, which gives a very hard and durable surface.
It has been said by Capita that it is a park board, but that is just for classification purpose and in real life, it is much more than that.
It comes in one color and three length options (145, 147 and 149 cm), and as with other Capita products, has unique graphics on it, which looks fashionable and is sure to turn some heads.
Lib Tech TRS HP C2 Snowboard (For Men)
If you are into wave-edged snowboards(Magne-traction edges), Lib Tech has got your back.
The Lib Tech TRS HP C2 Snowboard is a men’s snowboard, featuring an all-mountain deck. It also has a shortened rocker zone with an elongated camber.
As with snowboards with Magne-traction edges, this snowboard is suitable for hard snow riding as well. It is marketed as a medium-stiff board and has a twin-true shape, which aids in riding and landing.
If you noticed, the C2 in the snowboard comes from the C2x profile on which the snowboard is made. This means that the board has an aggressive rocker zone in middle and elongated camber zone, which run out to tips, allowing greater control.
In this board, the Magne-traction edge creates 7 points of contact along each side.
It comes in a single color and three length options (154, 157 and 159 cm) and the 157 and 159 cm options are of wide configuration.
In this article, we learned all about snowboard carving and the snowboards suitable for it.
The recommendations made by us for the best carving snowboards can be followed for buying good snowboards, that perform well. But if you want to buy one for yourself, go ahead but keep all the discussed points in mind, and you will not be disappointed.
We tried to cover all the points, and at last, we hope that this article was helpful for you. Wish you all the best for carving out in the snow.