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Hands-on Gear Review
Cons: Ratchet tricky to release, not durable and wears down webbing.
The Gibbon Jibline slackline is a top notch trickline and the one used in many trick contests. This is also one of the best beginner slacklines because it is easy to walk, easy to set up, and a good value. That said, the Gibbon ClassicLine is even better value and easier to walk. We would go with the Classic if you are a beginner and the Surfline if you are wanting a trickline with lots of versatility. The Gibbon Surfline is the longer version of the Jibline (98 feet vs 49 feet), does not have the rubber coating, and costs $40 more.
The Gibbon Jibline follows Gibbon's standard simple method of rigging. It is a 2 inch wide line, sold complete with all you need to rig a slackline. As with most kits we reviewed, the only thing missing is tree protection.
The Gibbon Jibline is made of the same webbing as the Gibbon Surfline. The only difference is the length, color, and the rubber coating added to the Jibline for traction. Also, since the Jibline is half the length of the Surfline, it comes with a smaller ratchet, sufficient to tension the Jibline at maximum length (48 feet).
Check out our complete Slackline Review to see how this compared to others.
RELATED: Our complete review of slacklines
OutdoorGearLab Editors' Hands-on Review
The Jibline was created as a follow up to the Gibbon Classic Line in an effort to better serve those progressing in the world of tricklining. The Jibline has a very stiff feel as a walking line. For jumping, it has great rebound speed, and a reasonable amount of stretch to provide a soft landing.
Although traditionalists criticize the use of 2 inch wide slacklines, the truth is, the pioneers of slacklining experimented with 2 inch wide material in the early 1980s. Scott Balcom, the first man in the world to walk across the famous Lost Arrow Spire Highline in Yosemite National Park, walked his first highline on 2 inch wide webbing. One inch wide webbing was more common slackline material only because it was a standard part of climbers' gear.
The Gibbon Jibline is excellent for flips, static poses, and pretty much all aerial tricks. If you are just starting out, and you want a line that will work for you all the way to your first front flip or backflip on the line, the Jibline is a great choice. If you are already progressing and plan to walk lines longer than 48 ft., we would recommend the Gibbon Surfline instead.
The Gibbon Jibline slackline follows suit with Gibbon's super easy rigging method. It is very fast to rig, and the instructions are easy to follow.
The width of the ratchet matches the width of the webbing – a very important design component. This allows the webbing to be contained properly by the ratchet spool. (Beware of kits that sell 2 inch wide ratchets with 1 inch wide webbing – this does not work.)
The ratchet sold with the Jibline has deep teeth in its locking mechanism, which means once it is set and locked, it never came undone.
We found that 2 inch wide webbing is excellent for tricklining. We got fewer bruises from the line when landing on 2 inch wide webbing as compared to tricklining on 1 inch wide webbing.
The Gibbon Jibline comes with only a few complaints. Although the ratchet caused serious wear on the webbing (as was true with other ratcheted kits) the Jibline ratchet did take longer to wear out the webbing. Perhaps this is because even at its longest length, very little webbing is stored on the ratchet, resulting in less webbing to be abraded by the ratchet when the line is detensioned. In any case, the webbing was damaged after some use. We would like to see Gibbon provide some form of protection for the webbing from this type of wear.
The Jibline is limited in its length, and therefore, its versatility. The Gibbon Jibline is made of webbing that we really like walking on at longer lengths. For this reason, we would recommend the Gibbon Surfline over the Jibline if you want to start surfing or walking lines longer than 48 ft. in length
— Damian Cooksey
OutdoorGearLab Member Reviews
Most recent review: June 22, 2012
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