Slackline Industries Boss Line Kit Review
Cons: Expensive, involved set up process, heavy
Manufacturer: Slackline Industries
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Our Analysis and Test Results
The Slackline Industries Boss Line Kit is just that… a BOSS! It's like the Trickline on steroids. This kit has so many features, it's ridiculous, and every feature has a well-thought-out purpose.
The webbing has a great dynamic bounce. Combine 100 feet of the stuff with two heavy-duty ratchets AND a ratchet handle extension for extra leverage, and you can get this thing tight enough to be a mega trick-line. This kit isn't for everyone, but it certainly reigns supreme for function and versatility, especially when compared to the other two-inch lines.
Ease of Set-up
For set-up, this kit comes with two round slings for tree anchors, two heavy-duty Alpha ratchet, one ratchet handle extension for cranking the line tight, two back-up safety lines, two tree pads, and two shackles. As you can see, with more features come more steps for set-up. However, depending on how tight you decide to make the line, some steps aren't needed. For example, if you don't use the ratchet handle extension, you can skip the slow release and the backup line. This involved process, unfortunately, takes a few more minutes and results in a lower score in this metric.
Even though there are a few more steps, and it does take longer, the set-up process is straightforward. For the most part, it is the same process as any other ratchet based system, but there are independent anchor slings and since there are two ratchets, you first, get one side started, then tighten from the opposite end. Having that second ratchet helps get the highly elastic webbing tight enough for aerial jumps and tricks.
The slow-release is a feature that comes with this kit that you can decide to install or leave off, but if you plan on using the ratchet extension for an extra tight trick-line, both it and the safety back-up line are required for safety. Installing the slow release requires a couple of wrenches to switch out two bolts, so switching back and forth isn't a super quick process. Once you release the line, you have to rewrap the slow release webbing to prepare it for setting up next time.
The Boss Line kit is about as versatile as slacklines can get, but with so many extra features, this line starts to feel a bit cumbersome. We wouldn't want to walk this twenty-plus pound behemoth of a kit into the backcountry, in which case, a long one-inch primitive line would be a much better choice.
If you are okay with a more involved set-up and want a kit that will fit anywhere and offer top-notch performance for a number of different disciplines, this kit is a serious player. However, if you are just looking for a two-inch kit to learn on this is more kit than you would need.
Slackline Industries knows how to put together a high-quality complete slackline package. From the long, easy-to-rig Base Line to the dynamic shorter Trick Line, each one shows great attention to detail. This line is no different.
The Alpha ratchets are more powerful than normal two-inch kit ratchets and have tighter tolerances, so the webbing stays aligned when you tension it. The extension handle for the ratchet, which allows you to get the line super tight, is very well-engineered.
The round slings that are used for the anchors are top quality tubular sewn loops that will last a long time, and since independent of the line, they can be replaced if they start to wear. Using the two stainless steel shackles, you attach the ratchet to the anchor slings reducing the need for girth hitching the ratchets to the anchor, which in turn reduces wear on the system.
The safety back-up lines are decent but not the most polished product SI makes. However, they do serve an important purpose, which is, keeping the ratchets from flying at your face in the event of a catastrophic ratchet or strap failure…which would never happen, right?! But, if it were ever to serve its purpose, I would be glad I had it, and wouldn't be concerned about the stitching details.
If you set this up using the slow-release, releasing this system is incredibly easy and painless. Simply un-velcro the webbing from itself and let it slowly get unwound. No loud SNAP to anticipate. No added abrasion to the line.
If you don't use the slow-release, and instead have a shorter line with less tension, releasing it is a lot like the Gibbon Surferline and can be a bit harsh, but manageable.
There is no shortage of features with this kit. The tree pads included in the kit are somewhat short, so we recommend ordering a couple of extra, but otherwise, this is a complete kit that will cover all the bases. The two Alpha ratchets have plenty of tensioning strength, and a ratchet extension handle does a great job of getting the line super tight for when you want to throw down and do some flips or aerial stunts.
Safety backup lines are nice to have for peace of mind. With these guys in place, if any part of the anchor fails, it assures the ratchet won't become a projectile. Wrap the safety line around the same tree as the ratchet anchor, thread it through the ratchet handle and loosely secure it by fastening the free end through the double D-ring buckle. Make sure the plastic buckle is clipped and tie an overhand right behind the d-rings.
For when you have this kit strung tight and/or long, the slow release mechanism comes in handy and makes for a smooth release of the line tension.
This kit comes with a nice zippered carrying bag for lugging this 20+ pound monstrosity to the park, and while most bags included with slackline kits, tend to be low quality, this one is great and should hold up well.
If you are looking for a full-featured kit, this kit is going to please the purse/wallet, but if you are a casual slacker and not looking for anything too advanced, you will get more value from a more basic line.
No other kit in our test comes close to being as complete as this. Whether you are looking for a trick-line, a long-line, or just a basic park-line, this kit will be a top performer. The complexity of this kit will be a deterrent for some casual slackers, but if you are looking for the best of the best in a two-inch kit, this is hard to beat.
— Adam Paashaus