Since splitboarding is now the largest growing segment of the market everyone seems to be getting in on it. Arbor has turned their Abacus model into a splitboard for 2014. Gary our resident tester took it out for a spin to see how it stacked up and after a few core shots here’s what he had to say.
Board: Arbor Abacus Splitboard
Interface: Comes with Karakorum tip/tail clips and Karakorum board clips aka K-Clips. The board uses the standard Voile hole pattern.
Camber Option: System Pow Rocker. Basically a full length rocker with what I would call early rise tip and tails.
Bindings: Spark Burner
Stance: Regular, 22 inches wide.
Angles: 15 Negative 15
Boots: Ride Insano size 11.
My Weight: 240lbs
Backcountry Area: Berthoud Pass
Flex: Felt right in the middle. Arbor describes it as a Medium flex. I’d call that an accurate description.
Stability: Decent for the flex.
Ollies/Pop: This has the system rocker design. You are not going to get a ton of boost/pop out of this. Keep in mind, you are probably riding powder.
Butterability: Powder butters were just fine.
Wild Snow performance: With the system rocker it is needless to say it has solid float in powder. In fact that is all I rode this in. It quickly planed up on top of deep snow with minimal effort. Stayed on top for good distances on flat run outs.
Skinning: Surprisingly great for a full rocker board. The rocker between the bindings is not as pronounced as with many other offerings. I had decent contact under the touring brackets. Out climbed several people on splits on some of the more demanding tours at Berthoud Pass in powder conditions. I suspect you might lose a little in firmer conditions found during Spring time.
Rider in Mind: For the splitter looking for the all in one board. It did everything well to above average. More forgiving than most of the directional offerings out there. The splitter with some freestyle flair is also going to find this to be a fine choice.
Personal Thoughts: At first I thought this board was too soft for me. I easily over powered the tail on my first day. To be fair I was treating it like a big mountain board. I decided to take it out at least a couple more times to give it a fair shake. Six weeks later and close to a dozen days on it, you could say I was pleased with it. For the powder hunting mini golfer, it is a good choice. It is also a light split. I did not get it on a scale but I would guess it is just above 7lbs with just tips and clips. Over a long tour the weight savings adds up.
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Disclaimer: This board was loaned to us for review from the Arbor Snowboards Mar
Note: This board was built at the Elan factory but production models will be made at SWS in Dubai.