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  1. #1 All around recommendation 
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    Hello,

    New member here, been wanting to get skiboards for about 5 years now. Hoping this is the year, but I'm looking for some recommendations. I'm fairly new to skiing, and have only been resort skiing here on the east coast. I'd like a skiboard setup were I can continue going to the resort, but also venture out and do some touring/backcountry/cross country type of stuff. I just don't want to be limited to the resort all the time. My budget won't allow me to have multiple boards, so I really need something thats just good enough to get out and have beginner-level fun. I'm not looking for the "best" of anything.

    If you're familiar with the Altai Hoks or similar permanently-skinned skis, I have seriously considered them. They would give me the cross country/touring ability I'm looking for but at the expense of not really being something you'd want to use at the resort. My reasoning for not going that route is because I think a real skiboard and removable skins would give me much more versatility for my money.

    So all that said, are there any recommendations on a basic, beginner level, setup that I could use at the resort but could also put some skins on and use for touring around? A couple years ago when I was looking around I think I was looking at the Spruce Raptor with Ambition bindings, but the total cost really shot down the idea for me. I think it was around $500 for the board and bindings maybe? I feel like that's more into the "best" category, and as a beginner I'm really just looking for "good enough". I'm sure options are different today, so want to check to see what you all thought?
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  2. #2  
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    Quote Originally Posted by JonnieBlaze View Post
    Hello,

    New member here, been wanting to get skiboards for about 5 years now. Hoping this is the year, but I'm looking for some recommendations. I'm fairly new to skiing, and have only been resort skiing here on the east coast. I'd like a skiboard setup were I can continue going to the resort, but also venture out and do some touring/backcountry/cross country type of stuff. I just don't want to be limited to the resort all the time. My budget won't allow me to have multiple boards, so I really need something thats just good enough to get out and have beginner-level fun. I'm not looking for the "best" of anything.

    If you're familiar with the Altai Hoks or similar permanently-skinned skis, I have seriously considered them. They would give me the cross country/touring ability I'm looking for but at the expense of not really being something you'd want to use at the resort. My reasoning for not going that route is because I think a real skiboard and removable skins would give me much more versatility for my money.

    So all that said, are there any recommendations on a basic, beginner level, setup that I could use at the resort but could also put some skins on and use for touring around? A couple years ago when I was looking around I think I was looking at the Spruce Raptor with Ambition bindings, but the total cost really shot down the idea for me. I think it was around $500 for the board and bindings maybe? I feel like that's more into the "best" category, and as a beginner I'm really just looking for "good enough". I'm sure options are different today, so want to check to see what you all thought?

    Hello there, Welcome to the forum. I'm currently Using the RVL8 Revolts. They're the Best all around Skiboards for me. They do significantly well on both groomed runs and back country, and even in the terrain park. I would assume that they will do well with Touring as well. As for setups, I'm only doing alpine so I'm not sure how to help you with that. although, I see these videos on youtube where guys use their skiboards for touring. Let me post some videos here so you can get an idea on how their setups are.

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6qq0RJuMvuQ

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FhoYRaIytN4

    best of luck!
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  3. #3  
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    Thanks for the videos. In one, they are using the Ambition binding which is pretty expensive. Maybe what I'm really after is to find a binding style that will do what I'm looking for without costing a fortune? The price of skiboards range, and I'm sure they'll all get me down the mountain or scoot me across a trail good enough, so maybe that's not really where I'm getting stuck. But the binding decision is tough. I guess I'm looking for something on the lower end of the price spectrum, that doesn't weight a ton, that has both touring and downhill modes, and is releasable. Does such a thing exist?

    AT bindings have both modes and are releasable, but are super heavy and expensive.
    3 pin bindings are light and cheap, but they aren't releasable. I'm not sure the freeheel thing is a problem since I'm trying to compromise.
    Tech bindings are light, releasable, and have both modes, but I only see expensive ones.
    Snowboard bindings can be found cheap, but they don't have a touring mode and aren't releasable.
    Rvl8 softboot bindings can be toured with using the toe strap only, but are expensive and non releasable.

    The tech binding seems like checks all the boxes other than being expensive. Do you all know of any budget friendly ones?

    I'm wondering if maybe this is just a sport I can't afford yet and I'd be better off with a cheap Altai Hok type of device that I can glide around on hiking trails with and just continue renting at the resort whenever I go there.
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  4. #4  
    Hardcore Skiboarder Wookie's Avatar
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    A couple of thoughts:

    A) Altai Hoks & other permanently-skinned skis: Most of these are not great downhill skis and wouldn't be something you'd want to take out in a resort. A decent set-up isn't going to be cheap either. To make the Altai Hoks work you need a full setup and the right touring boots. A universal binding with a hiking boot will just be sloppy. For me these setups tend to work best for backcountry/sidecountry hikers that skin up a little, then slide down a little, and repeat not skiers that are looking to skin up to a point and have a nice long ride down.

    B) The "do everything" setup: Even in the ski world this is a bit of mythical unicorn hiding behind bigfoot swimming with the Loch Ness monster. There are people searching for it but most know it doesn't exist so why try to find it.

    C) The "beginner" setup (aka Budget setup): In the long ski world they work hard to produce a ski set-up at almost every price point from a mix of budget items and high end. Some of the budget stuff is great and some is crap. The skiboarding world is much smaller and the good brands cannot afford to have budget and high end lines. RVL8, Spruce, Twoowt, Summit boards are essentially all good quality and what varies is performance aspects to suit riders (stiffer, softer, rockered, wider, etc.). Then there are "skiblade" brands that are great starters but you can out grow them quickly. So what are the best ways to get into skiboarding and stay on a budget? You can buy a pair of "blades" and know that you might outgrow them and save for an upgrade in a few years but the majority of riders start with a used set-up from one of the brands noted above. That's what I did and many others on this forum did too. If you don't see what you need in the current For Sale posts simply post a WTB (want to buy) add where you are looking for a touring set-up that can be used on piste and in the backcountry (if they don't come with skins that's a simple add-on later.)

    D)The options: So what set-ups fit the resort/backcountry skiing mix. Well you'll need to get a nice pair of touring boots and find something with a touring binding but look for any of these options:

    • RVL Spliff -- The Spliffs are used by a few freeskier skiboarders and are solid resort boards.
    • Spruce Sherpa -- Plenty of guys riding in bounds and touring on these. Note that Spruce is selling some of their gear at 40% off regular prices right now.
    • Spruce Raptor -- You mentioned this one and while Spruce is no longer making these maybe you can find a used set.
    • Hagan Off Limits 130 cm -- a good short ski and Hagan makes a skin for them. $500+ new but can be found used
    • The Hybrid -- Get yourself a solid pair of used skiboards with a softboot setup, a pair of snow shoes, and good backpack. Hike up the hill in snowshoes and switch to skiboards for the slide down.


    Last thought is ping Forum Member jjue. He is Jedi Master level in creating backcountry skiboard set-ups but rides them in-bounds too. Hopefully he'll chime in on this thread and add his two cents.
    Boards:
    2016 Spruce tuned Head Jr. Caddys - 131cm
    2013 Spruce "CTS" 120s
    2010 Spruce "Yellow/Red" 120s
    2018 Spruce "CTS" Crossbows - 115cm
    2016 RVL8 Spliffs - 109cm
    2008 RVL8 Revolt "City" - 105cm
    2017 RVL8 Sticky Icky Icky - 104cm
    2011 Defiance Blades - 101cm
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  5. #5  
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    Hi JonnieBlaze, welcome to the forum , interesting you mention the Altai Hok , I have experimented with many of these kinds of skis , the precursor of the Altai Hok . was the Karhu Meta which had a permanent skin and a universal type binding (strap binding ) , these did not really work well for resort skiing or even for gliding down in the backcountry and a removal skin is much nicer. The idea of a strap binding that would also provide good control on downhills when pared with a nice stiff snowboard boot , was also a dream of mine . After a lot of experimentation , the best do it all skiboard , that can also be doubled as a backcountry touring board straight out of the box is a the RVL8 Blunt Xl pared with a RVL8 soft boot binding , when pared with a stiff snowboard boot this set up works great at the resort as well as for touring . If you get serious and want to do deeper pow and steep icy slopes and need to climb with a board equipped with ski crampons , you could get the Rockered Condor which has inserts that can be used for ski crampons .
    Here are some details ....https://www.skiboardsonline.com/foru...ad.php?t=15121

    https://www.skiboardsonline.com/foru...ad.php?t=15105
    This last post was on the 88 cm Blunts which actually work pretty nice in pow as well , but that was before the 100cm Blunt Xl came out , which are the bomb as an all arounder, works great in resort snow , pow and touring and . pairs very well with the
    RVL8 soft boot binding which also functions as a touring binding ala the universal binding on the Altai Hok but with way , way better control ..
    I also have used hard boots and AT touring bindings, the problem is that RVL8 skiboards and Spruce skiboards sold here are not meant to be drilled for touring bindings, so . some added work is necessary to add reinforcing plates . Jeff Singer does custom AT binding set ups on his Spruce Sherpa and Osprey boards which are great skiboards which I have also used in the backcountry with touring rigs set ups designed by Jeff Singer
    https://www.skiboardsonline.com/foru...ad.php?t=16956

    Good luck !
    Boards :
    Blunt Xls -SBOL Modified GNU Rear Entry Snowboard Bindings
    Rockered Condors- SBOL Modified Sims Cipher Snowboard Bindings
    Rockered Condors - Backcountry modified RVL8 Receptor Binding -
    Spliffs -Backcountry modified RVL8 Receptor binding
    Spruce Osprey - Center Mounted with Spruce Backcountry riser/ Ambition AT binding
    Spruce Sherpa - Rear Mounted with Spruce Backcountry riser/ Fritschi AT binding

    Boots:
    Ride Insano Snowboard Boots
    Full Tilt Booters
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  6. #6  
    Moderator / Hardcore Skiboarder Greco's Avatar
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    Thanks for all the great info Jack. Just two corrections. I don't think Jeff does the AT mounts any longer. And, please use the name RVL8 instead of Revel 8. This came about from a cease and desist letter a number of years ago.

    Sent from my SAMSUNG-SM-G930A using Tapatalk
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  7. #7  
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    Quote Originally Posted by JonnieBlaze View Post
    Thanks for the videos. In one, they are using the Ambition binding which is pretty expensive. Maybe what I'm really after is to find a binding style that will do what I'm looking for without costing a fortune? The price of skiboards range, and I'm sure they'll all get me down the mountain or scoot me across a trail good enough, so maybe that's not really where I'm getting stuck. But the binding decision is tough. I guess I'm looking for something on the lower end of the price spectrum, that doesn't weight a ton, that has both touring and downhill modes, and is releasable. Does such a thing exist?

    AT bindings have both modes and are releasable, but are super heavy and expensive.
    3 pin bindings are light and cheap, but they aren't releasable. I'm not sure the freeheel thing is a problem since I'm trying to compromise.
    Tech bindings are light, releasable, and have both modes, but I only see expensive ones.
    Snowboard bindings can be found cheap, but they don't have a touring mode and aren't releasable.
    Rvl8 softboot bindings can be toured with using the toe strap only, but are expensive and non releasable.

    The tech binding seems like checks all the boxes other than being expensive. Do you all know of any budget friendly ones?

    I'm wondering if maybe this is just a sport I can't afford yet and I'd be better off with a cheap Altai Hok type of device that I can glide around on hiking trails with and just continue renting at the resort whenever I go there.
    Anytime Brother! I hope you've checked out the posts from all these Skiboard gods. They are really helpful and interesting. I hope you find what you're looking for and once again, Welcome to Skiboarding
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  8. #8  
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    Thank you all for the recommendations.

    Considering the current sale on the Spruce boards, do you think the crossbow is a good contender for an all around board like I'm looking for? Realize it's not quite the same as the blunt, osprey, or other recommendations, but it's a super good price. I'm around 140lbs, so not sure if that would play a role.
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  9. #9  
    Hardcore Skiboarder Wookie's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by JonnieBlaze View Post
    Thank you all for the recommendations.

    Considering the current sale on the Spruce boards, do you think the crossbow is a good contender for an all around board like I'm looking for? Realize it's not quite the same as the blunt, osprey, or other recommendations, but it's a super good price. I'm around 140lbs, so not sure if that would play a role.
    The Crossbows were my go to board last season. They are great compromise between short playful boards and longer more stable boards. For someone your size they'l ride great in all conditions. The sale price is also fantastic.

    If you are going to buy from Spruce I suggest you email the owner first (Jeff Singer - jsinger@spruceski.com). Let Jeff know you are interested in the Crossbows but also looking for a backcountry set-up on a budget. While he doesn't seem to be selling any touring bindings right now he may have an old set that he is willing to sell. He's a great guy and he'll work with you if he can. Worst case you'll just get a pair of Crossbows at a great price.
    Boards:
    2016 Spruce tuned Head Jr. Caddys - 131cm
    2013 Spruce "CTS" 120s
    2010 Spruce "Yellow/Red" 120s
    2018 Spruce "CTS" Crossbows - 115cm
    2016 RVL8 Spliffs - 109cm
    2008 RVL8 Revolt "City" - 105cm
    2017 RVL8 Sticky Icky Icky - 104cm
    2011 Defiance Blades - 101cm
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  10. #10  
    Hardcore Skiboarder jjue's Avatar
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    I agree the Crossbows are great and work well at the resort and in the backcountry. I have an original Jeff Singer touring riser which has a Fritschi AT binding on it and just screws right in to the inserts in the board which I use for backcountry and a regular Spruce riser for the resort . Here is a video of how they work in backcountry type snow and for touring . Like Wookie and Greco says I am not sure Jeff Singer is doing any more AT binding modifications on his boards and you defintely cannot drill this board for AT bindings , the board is too thin for that. You would have to check with him.
    Here is a video and a post about the Crossbows in the backcountry.
    https://www.skiboardsonline.com/foru...ad.php?t=16945
    Boards :
    Blunt Xls -SBOL Modified GNU Rear Entry Snowboard Bindings
    Rockered Condors- SBOL Modified Sims Cipher Snowboard Bindings
    Rockered Condors - Backcountry modified RVL8 Receptor Binding -
    Spliffs -Backcountry modified RVL8 Receptor binding
    Spruce Osprey - Center Mounted with Spruce Backcountry riser/ Ambition AT binding
    Spruce Sherpa - Rear Mounted with Spruce Backcountry riser/ Fritschi AT binding

    Boots:
    Ride Insano Snowboard Boots
    Full Tilt Booters
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  11. #11  
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    I think I'm going to go with the crossbows considering the current sale. And just to get me started, I'll probably get the spruce riser and SX10 bindings for it too. Once I get comfortable with them, I might build a short DIY riser with a simple telemark binding for very light touring/cross country type trips.

    One thing I'm confused about is attaching skins if/when I ever go someplace outside of the resort. What connections are used at the tip and tail to attach the skins? I read somewhere on here someone recommending ClimbingSkinsDirect.com. On their site I see this "70mm tip or tail stretcher": https://climbingskinsdirect.com/stor...tegory=1854647

    Is this what people are using on both the tip and tail or are there other options?
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  12. #12  
    Hardcore Skiboarder jjue's Avatar
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    Hi Johnnieblaze, I use the Climbing direct tip and tail skins on the Crossbows , which has a stretcher on one end and a hook on the other , works fine .
    https://climbingskinsdirect.com/stor...tegory=1854647

    yes building a short high density riser for a telemark binding which you can remove is great and I have done that for Spruce boards

    https://www.skiboardsonline.com/foru...ead.php?t=4857


    good luck!
    Boards :
    Blunt Xls -SBOL Modified GNU Rear Entry Snowboard Bindings
    Rockered Condors- SBOL Modified Sims Cipher Snowboard Bindings
    Rockered Condors - Backcountry modified RVL8 Receptor Binding -
    Spliffs -Backcountry modified RVL8 Receptor binding
    Spruce Osprey - Center Mounted with Spruce Backcountry riser/ Ambition AT binding
    Spruce Sherpa - Rear Mounted with Spruce Backcountry riser/ Fritschi AT binding

    Boots:
    Ride Insano Snowboard Boots
    Full Tilt Booters
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