Snoplanks Model A Review
Cons: Expensive, hard to butter
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Our Analysis and Test Results
Handmade in Bend, Oregon; the Snoplanks Model A has an edge to it. It brings the progressive and lively characteristics of bamboo into an all-mountain freestyle/ ride package. Its seeming burly construction looks likely to have your back no matter how large you send that cat-track or how bumpy the landing is.
The Snoplank A is a beast on edge. However, you don't have to work hard to get it there. This board was easy to get on edge and transition from heel to toe. This board likes to ride and turn fast. It favors medium and long radius turns at higher speeds and has a strong, soft camber profile reinforced with carbon and fiberglass to provide in turn support and stability when mashing through crud. The medium to stiff camber ride provides knife-like edge hold in firm conditions. The profile of the board maintains a connected feeling with the snow. You can feel the entire edge working to provide security. Sounds pretty good, right? Just wait till you hear about the bamboo.
Bamboo has a progressive flex. This means the more you flex it, the stiffer it gets. We like to think of this as a powerband on a dirt-bike. You can cruise in the regular range, but if you really engage the throttle, the RPM's kick up and amplified power. The turning experience of the Model A is similar because of the bamboo. We felt that we would accelerate out of our turns more than your standard wood core. As the energy was built up throughout the tour and amplified in the power band to accelerate us. This was a very unique feeling to the snowboard, which we enjoyed. It made shorter radius turns require more technique and strength than most other boards. Overall this board has a lively edging style that prefers a high speed and longer turns.
Float in Powder
This review began in the spring of 2019. Due to snow haven't had the opportunity to test the board in powder, but testing for this metric is currently in progress. With a camber profile, we expect this board to require a fair amount of user effort and most likely would not be out choice for days with six inches of snow or more.
Stablity at Speed
Zoom Zoom. Whether its ice, moguls, or slush bumps, the Snoplanks Model A didn't seem to care what type of surface was below us. Its medium-stiff camber profile showed no signs of chatter when straight-lining. Overall we found this to be a very confidence-inspiring ride for straight line or landing whether the terrain be smooth or bumpy.
This board means business. Its meant to be your everyday board and is very versatile, it can handle anything you throw at it. We could hit jumps in the park, slash berms, and pop methods of side hits around the mountain. It still likes to play around. We found we were able to sit into our butters and the bamboo core really locked us. Being a stiffer flex, it did take a little more effort to get them to lock in. The board has a freestyle meaning to the term playfulness. Our testers found it more difficult to maintain a playful style at lower speeds and slashing turns at medium speeds. That is because it is built to handle and excel at the gnarliest of terrain
Popping and Jumping
Stability and power are two strengths of this board. It has a subtle directional shape that allows for plenty of tail to pop and land off of. The bamboo core has the same amplifying effect with pop as it does with turning. With some leg strength and technique, you can pop this thing to the moon — although it can prove challenging to harvest this benefit without these components.
As with any craft product, the Model A comes at a higher price tag than most solid boards, primarily because they're using very high-quality materials manufactured by hand in the US. There is definitely a great ethos to supporting brands such as Snoplanks, who are snowboarders making high-quality snowboards. The feeling and ride of the Model A is truly unique, and something you can only get from this brand; this is awesome and adds value to the product. Strictly speaking, talking about price to performance, some boards provide a higher score at a substantially lower price.
The Model A provides a distinct feeling that is exclusive to Snoplanks and their construction. This board is built to be your everyday board that can do whatever you ask and do it well. It provides an incredibly stable ride, which increases your confidence and security when conditions are not the best. Its medium-stiff flex (from the bamboo core) blasts through what is in your way, and it has a versatile directional shape ideal for takes and landings. This board is ideal for a rider who wants to push themselves in advanced terrain and put a freestyle flair all over the mountain. We wouldn't recommend it for beginners because of its love for speed and progressive nature of its core and profile.
— Isaac Laredo