|Overall Rating||Liked it!|
|Riding Level||Advanced - Expert|
|Fits Boot size (US)||8-10, 10-12|
|Manufactured in||USA by Mervin|
|Camber Profile||Mostly Camber|
|Stance||Setback over 20mm|
|Approx. Weight||Feels Normal|
|On Snow Feel|
Lib Tech EJack Knife 2019 - 2018 Review by The Good Ride
The Lib Tech EJack Knife is one of those boards that shines on hard snow, loves to bomb and carve. It’s a very aggressive board that requires you to be on your game at all times and doesn’t float super well in powder. It also rides almost like a double ender on groomers and you don’t feel the taper as much as you would with boards like the Gnu Mullair. It’s a really fun ride for those that like full camber and all that aggressive spring it brings into your daily ride.
The 2019 Lib Tech Ejack Knife is pretty much the same ride as the 2018 model we rode so this review still stands. The only thing is they now have a 162 and 162w to fit more people.
Ethics Statement: We don’t get paid by the manufacturer to write these reviews. We do make money from the “Where To Buy” links, but this is our best attempt at an honest and objective review from an average riders’ perspective.
Days: 4+ days. Hard PNW snow with some good patches, some softer wet snow and 1 foot to 1.5 feet of moderately thick PNW powder.
Conditions: Pretty firm Mt. Bachelor Snow with some good patches here and there for
Riders: James (Size 9, 5’10” 185-195lbs) and Grant (Size 11, 150lbs 6’1″)
Boots: Adidas Tactical ADV, Burton SLX
Bindings: Union Atlas
Set Up: 22″-22.5″ Centered 18 front -9 back
Flex: Feels on the stiff side of medium for sure but as it breaks in it will probably get more on the medium side.
Sizing: Thought I wanted a 157 but the 159 worked well.
On Snow Feel: Very locked in and camber dominant is an understatement. It’s more like pretty much all bowed out camber. I thought there might be some early rise in the Lib Tech EJack Knife like the Box Knife has in the tip/tail but my board didn’t. It even seems like the bow of camber comes down abruptly at the tip and tail. It felt very 2000’s which isn’t really a bad or good thing. It’s more about what’s your thing. If you want surfy then I’d probably go with the Mullair but if you want of a board that blurs the lines between All Mountain and Freeride then this could for sure work. You could call this Freeride or All Mountain and you would be right both times.
Edge Hold: Really strong grip that can handle hard days really well. All this camber and their middle mag (.5MTX I think) worked well together to provide a lot of grip. It’s really been refined over the years to not grab hard in the softer snow.
Turn Initiation: The Lib Tech EJack Knife likes a straight line but can also go from edge to edge rather well. It’s not super quick and I felt it bordered on the medium side of med/fast.
Turning Experience: The healthy bow of camber that makes this locked in and full of consequence if you fuck up makes it a joy to turn. The spring out of each turn was so rewarding and fun. It’s really fun to turn this board but I had the most fun making medium to wide turns. It didn’t get washy either and it almost doesn’t feel like it’s got 8mm of taper.
Carving: Loved laying it over and seeing what it can do. You can carve on almost any kind of board (even continuous rocker) but this is the kind of board that makes carving fun.
Skidded Turns: Scary to skid turns or get off your game and skid out. The Lib Tech EJack Knife felt like it wanted to make you pay if you got off your game.
Speed: Bombs really well and felt pretty damp. Also, the base has a lot of natural glide along cat tracks. It works well for those that might not always wax their board.
Uneven Terrain: Not super easy to weave in and out of bumps and after 3 days I still haven’t been able to get into a rhythm when I’m there.
Powder: The Lib Tech EJack Knife has a tapered tail and you can get 6″ back on board with a 22.75″ stance width. So in about 1 foot to 1.5 feet of PNW powder, I felt like I had to be vigilant with my back foot pressure to keep that nose up and I thought this would float better. I set it all the way back at almost 6″ with a 22.5″ stance width and it felt like the nose was pointing down like a chub but not a full on boner. Not a soft cock either but just not where I’d like it to be for powder riding these days. If this was the all camber 2000’s I would have been fine with this and would have felt it would have been better than many rides out there. If you like camber boards in powder you will find this a very good ride. I compared it against the Loaded Algernon and Yes PYL. The Yes PYL didn’t even feel like it was trying to float and the Algernon was not quite as good as the PYL but had a good bit more float than the EJack. It felt also like the nose wanted to be a part of the turn and didn’t like if I was trying to turn off the back leg. It wanted to go straight more than turn in this thicker powder and didn’t like weaving through messy off piste bumps to get to the un-tracked stuff. It was rather thick grabby stuff so it might be another story in the light stuff. If you know how to keep your speed and get a good plane going then this could be fun but if you want effortless modern float then this won’t be the call.
Buttering: I could butter off the tail better than I thought or maybe physical therapy made my back leg stronger.
Switch: The Lib Tech EJack Knife surprised us here. It’s no true twin but it did much better than we thought a tapered directional board like this would be. It feels a bit lopsided but you can easily get used to it.
Jumps: If you are all about a strong snappy ollie and there will be lot’s of air in return. It just likes to pop.
Jibbing: Nofuckingway. Not brand new but maybe after the flex mellows out.
Pipe: The Lib Tech EJack Knife seems like it would be a really fun board in the pipe but the pipe isn’t ready so not 100%.
So all in all the Lib Tech EJack Knife is a great board for those that love full camber rides. While it might not be the best choice for those that see a lot of deep thick powder it really shines for those that see lots of hard snow and are looking to go hard and just annihilate groomers.
Lib Tech EJack Knife Specs
Lib Tech EJack Knife Images
Lib Tech Company Information
Lib Tech EJack Knife User Reviews
Perfect daily driver
Coming for two decades of Burton Customs, I gave Lib Tech a try with this one, as I felt somehow limited with the Custom in the backcountry and on Icy snow. And it was a great choice. This board kills it on groomers and in the trees, very easy to carve and very quickly on an edge. The flex is perfect for my needs, stiff but still playfull, this thing loves to take off. Very reliable for carving, riding switch out of a reverse carve is super smooth for a directional camber. Feeling very secure as well in the bumpy backcountry. For deep days I still take my K2 Cool Bean or my Jones Flagship over this one, but every other day they stay in the quiver. My only complain is that they didn't put a sintered base on this one, if they had, I would have doubled this beauty for sure, as it perfectly fits my needs. Not a big issue, tho, but hope they change the base for the next model.
HONEY, I'M HOME!!
Just bought the 159 Lib E Jack Knife a few weeks back and I'm STOKED!! 7 days on this board so far and all of them in DEEP powder. 3 days low viz, no wind in waist to chest deep Steamboat champagne fluff and 3 blizzard days in Mammoth over the big dump last Sat-Wed (2/2-2/6) with Wed being the Bluebird dream day.
Per usual, The Good Ride review is spot on. If you are an older gentleman that lives for the positive pressure that comes from pushing hard against an aggressively cambered snowboard, this is your sled! I had no problems floating this in the deep stuff as long as I wasn't in too flat an area. Unfortunately (or fortunately I suppose), I encountered very few groomers or flattened groomed trails until the end of the day's riding when I was heading in from slaying pow, but the board felt great on edge there and dealt with the chunder in those zones well too. I'm am not a jib guy, but I do like to flick 180s and 360s here and there off the flats or small natural hits and they felt great with this board. It feels pretty quick edge to edge and has a very powerful engine for carving and a punchy, positive pop with that deep camber. I think this is going to be my new daily driver from speedy fresh groomers to moderate /large amounts of pow. Hard to break away from Lib once you are riding them. Current other boards in my quiver consist of:
Lib Attack Banana 161
Lib Hot Knife 156
Burton Flight Attendant 162
Above boards are all 3 years old or older. The 159 size and camber of the E Jack actually fits my style perfectly. I'm really excited about riding this more. Well done Lib and Eric Jackson. Cheers Biesty and Good Ride Crew!
Aggresive very good fast carving board
Excellent at carving, very smooth and fast. Can handle pow very good, incredible edge hold on hardpack. Good at jumps, but not a park board. Hard to jib.Best suits to aggresive riders.
- medium bordering on stiff
-Holds an edge on anything with mellow mtx
- Destroys cord + hard snow
- It's basically full camber
- Very fast + fast edge to edge when paired with medium/stiff bindings.. I have k2 formula on mine
-easy to carve and ride in general
- taper allows for easy turn initiation
Typical damp, fast mervin freeride deck.
Capable in any situation beyond days deeper than 6 inches. Float is limited because the Rocker is short, and the board is relatively narrow.
- Not a park deck for rocker riders
- Best for Those who like to haul ass, carve trenches and can control straight camber
Ejack Knife 159. (I'm also riding a 161 Mullair and 161 Ultimate Ride this season so you have an idea of the boards I'm contrasting it against)
Got this board with a huge amount of expectation for ride quality, as I'm not a huge fan of the flaming fish graphics.
Long story short, the board was underwhelming pretty much everywhere for any purpose. For aggressive charging I found this board is mediocre at best. For fun cruising I found the board to be mediocre. For powder, I found this board to be mediocre.
So, why? First, the intention to make this board stable resulted in a not-so-poppy board which really needs oomph to get airborne. It feels like its working against you to stay on the ground, even when heavily loaded up and pointing directly at a lip. Second, the problem is that it actually isn't stable either. This board doesn't sacrifices pop for world class stability, you actually get neither. Its a jittery board that bucks and jumps around the harder and faster it is pushed, especially when the snow isn't perfect. That doesn't inspire confidence to push it harder and faster.
The board is quick edge to edge, and I actually enjoy it at slower speeds much more than charging. I think it would be a great board to teach an intermediate rider to move dynamically from edge to edge since it really encourages turn initiation.
My final thought on this board is that while it has some good qualities, I don't want to ride it. My Ultimate Ride is stupid poppy, rides better switch, is way more stable and confidence-inspiring at speed, is more fun messing around at lower speeds, and actually rides powder just as well when set back slightly. The Mullair (broken :( so sad) was WAY more fun in powder, more poppy, encouraged big moves and lines, and was more fun.
Maybe I got a lemon from Lib, I hope that's the case since this board was supposed to be rad.