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LIB TECH MagnaTraction? For Real or Just Hype?

post #1 of 21
Thread Starter 

I'm in the market for a new board and I've been hearing a lot about the Lib Tech Skunk Ape (I'm 6'4", 235 lbs) 

I mostly ride the east (Sugarloaf, Killington, etc.) but I have taken trips out west, Europe, Japan....   The description of the Lib Tech's seems to fit well with east coast conditions (holding their edge on ice and hard pack) and I'm hoping that they can handle powder, like pretty much any board on the market can already. 

Has anyone demo'd or bought one and are they the real deal or is it just marketing?

 

post #2 of 21
The mtx is real, but it's actually more a concept and the degree of waviness varies from model to model.  Some people prefer mellower versions or non-MTX sidecuts (if the board has traditional camber) if they already know how to carve well -- the more aggressive versions can feel grabby.  I don't know what version of MTX the Skunk Ape has. 
Edited by CTKook - 4/6/10 at 10:56am
post #3 of 21
Before I skied I snowboarded pretty exclusively on Lib-tech's with MTX. It's totally the real deal. They have licensed it to other manufacturers. Jeremy Jones has elected to use a mellow version of it on Jones Snowboards.

I recently got my GF a new board with MTX. She's so stoked on it it's not even funny.
post #4 of 21
It does work, though there is a reason that Jeremy Jones is using a "mellow" version of it.  It's really damn hooky.  Hard to get out of your turns if you are not on it.  They didn't like the standard Mange.  I think you are going to see this as a trend with companies that license that tech from Mervin.  Neversummer has their version called Vario Grip which I personally think works worlds better than Magne.  Gives you that extra traction but flows smoothly.  Nidecker has their "Ultimate grip" which is also their version of Magne.  I haven't demo'd it, so I can't say much on the performance, but Nidecker has been making boards as long as anyone.  They are also a quality company.
post #5 of 21
^^^ One part of all the design options is that talking to knowledgeable shop employees/etc. etc. can be more helpful than ever.  For the Skunk Ape in particular, someone @ either Mervin (LibTech) or a good shop can probably tell you how aggressive its version of the sidecut is (they make a full range from "toothy" to mellow within their own line).  Also, you didn't mention your foot size...
post #6 of 21

i have a 2009 jdub and i love it it have melow wave and hold edge better than my old board only got to use it 1 time but put 14h of riding on it was on end seaso for 150 had to have it at that price

post #7 of 21

I helped a teen age girl buy a Gnu last year with MTX.  She immediately fell in love with it.

 

post #8 of 21

wonder how long till ski  company start to tinker with magtrack  i will never go back to strait edge

post #9 of 21

Magnetraction is a pretty good for icy conditions but it does feel like a bigger board likely from the waviness of the sidecut.  I do think the mellower mtx would be more for an all around board though.

post #10 of 21

I put 40 days on a rossi one mag regular camber last season. The board definitely has great edge hold, however I am still a little unsure if magnetraction REALLY makes that much of a difference. I think there is a little bit of placebo affect going on for me. If the conditions are good (powder, packed powder, groomed) I personally cant tell a difference. It probably grips better than a traditional edge tech board on less than ideal conditions. I rode a skunk ape a few years ago and It seemed heavy and stiff just my 2 cents.

post #11 of 21

Lib Tech makes really great boards but the reviews I have seen for that exact one haven't been that great I would say about 3out of 5 stars rating on that. You should maybe check out the Travic Rice if you're willing to stick with Lib Tech then.

post #12 of 21

Haven't tried Lib Tech but I demoed a Rossi One a couple of years ago and was blown away.  It was a pure ice day at Stratton and I was testing gear provided by the manufacturers.  The boards I was riding couldn't hold an edge and I was about to switch back to skis when someone suggested the Rossi with MagneTraction.  I was able to carve the icy conditions even riding switch!  It made a believer out of me.

post #13 of 21

I have been riding a Never Summer (women's Infinity) and this year I got a Roxy Envi made by mervin with MTX--  similar to the NS Lotus.  I was always happy with the NS vario sidecut and I don't feel a big difference with the MTX.  It isn't grabdby at all on this board but holds an edge nicely in all conditions.  Both boards are rocker camber and ride really nice.  It will be called C2 on a mervin board.   

post #14 of 21

I wish companies would stop making fancy edge technologies and just produce some boards with bigger sidecut radii. Its hard to understand the exasperation unless you both ski and snowboard but seriously.... 9 metres? What the hell am I supposed to do at speed with that?

post #15 of 21

Heard Burton is doing magetraction now. And Alex - there are plenty of long radius skis in the trash bin that can be had - just turn a pair of em into a splitboard.

post #16 of 21

Sean at Donek Snowboards would be happy to make you one at whatever radius you want.  Http://www.donek.com.

 

I have an old Incline 168 from 1999 and it still carves like crazy, even with dull edges.  The way he designs the boards make them very flexible (by that I mean adaptable, not soft flexing).  It won't lock you into 1 arc like a lot of other boards do.  Talk with him and see what he recommends for the style of riding you want to do.

post #17 of 21

+1 on getting Sean at Donek to make you any board you want. I currently own two Donek snowboards and have had 4 or 5 over the years. They're awesome and his customer service and build quality are unequaled.

post #18 of 21

The word on donek is they're good freecarve oriented boards.  Magnetraction from Lib Tech expands horizons and they also make great boards of all types.

 

As far as why snowboards have such short radiuses, it relates in part to the width of the board.  Basically, leave it to the manufacturers.  A modern board with, say, a 21m radius would definitely not leave you in your happy place.

post #19 of 21

If I leave it to 99% of the manufacturers what ill get is this:
-soft flex

-full rocker or hybrid camber

-162cm top end length

-8m sidecut radius

-fully rad graffiti graphix

 

I fully understand why they build these boards, they are easy to learn on and park is cool with the kids. Additionally, its a very small market that wants to hike out to big lines and mach down open faces. From a business perspective it makes sense. I also know that I can get something built to my liking (or even standard!) from Donek, Dupraz, Chimera, Prior, Glissade etc. I guess I just wish that some of those big R&D dollars were spent on refining characteristics that I look for instead of making boards more rail friendly. Pipe dreams I know...

post #20 of 21

While I have two friends that swear by lib tech magnetraction and say that won't ride anything else, my own experiences have been disappointing. I live in the NE and ride primarily in VT. My current set up pairs a Burton Custom (2010, I think) with Cartel bindings. Last year I spent a week in South Lake Tahoe riding and spent 3 days on a lib tech board wih magnetraction. It snowed about a foot each day so I can't speak to the edging capabilities but I can say that the board felt very heavy and cumbersome for the size. Unresponsive, slow to turn, deliberate. Especially compared to the Custom. I eventually traded it for aa quicker, mmore responsive board. Out in the trees is the last place you want to be worries about agility.

 

 

post #21 of 21
Quote:
Originally Posted by Alexander Waugh View Post

I wish companies would stop making fancy edge technologies and just produce some boards with bigger sidecut radii. Its hard to understand the exasperation unless you both ski and snowboard but seriously.... 9 metres? What the hell am I supposed to do at speed with that?


Just found a really good 2 part video by Sean Martin of Donek Snowboards on the physics of snowboard turn shapes, which applies to skis as well.  I don't see any mainstream ski or snowboard manufacturers actually describing what kind of turn radii they put in any particular board or ski.  I'm sure most use variable radii but with Donek, you can order exactly what you need.

 

 

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