|Riding Level||Advanced - Expert|
|Fits Boot size (US)||8-10|
|Manufactured in||USA by Mervin|
|Camber Profile||Mostly Camber|
|Approx. Weight||Feels Light|
|On Snow Feel|
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Lib Tech Swiss Knife 2020 - 2016 Review by The Good Ride
The Lib Tech Swiss Knife is a tapered directional board with a centered stance on sidecut making it an interesting hybrid between a tapered directional freeride kind of ride combined with an aggressive mountain freestyle personality.
The 2020 Lib Tech Swiss Knife is practically the same ride as the one we tried in 2019 so the video review still stands. However, we did update/expand on the written review to reflect what’s happening in 2020. There are also 2 wide sizes available in 2020 as well.
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.
How This Review Happened: We had a couple of laps at a frantic manic demo day.
Conditions: Utah firm to hard snow.
Riders: James (Size 9, 5’10” 185-195lbs), Jimbo (Size 11, 5’11” 160lbs), Peter (Size 8, 5’11” 185lbs), Tim
Boots: Adidas Tactical ADV, Burton Ion, DC Transfer Knee
Insoles: Sandsole Custom Insoles, Footprint Insole Technology Gameghangers Low Profile
Bindings: Bent Metal Solution
Set Up: 22.5” Centered 15 front -9 back
Approximate Weight: Feels like it’s on the light side of normal.
Sizing: There is more sizing for 2020 and it now works with normal and mid/wide-ish riders. So if you just look at the waist width to determine your board size that doesn’t work as well with the Lib Tech Swiss Knife and the taper it has. For example, the 158 we rode has a 25.7cm waist but a tail that is 29.1cm. That makes it pretty doable for most size 9-10 boots. Felt maybe a touch big for Peter and I but it feels like the sweet spot is a size 10 boot for the regulars. Then the wides should be a good fit for most 11-12 boot sizes. Jimbo with Size 11 boots would have liked the 2020 158w better.
Flex/Buttering: Not an easy board to butter and it has a med/stiff poppy feel to it. Like all Lib-Tech HP boards, it has a lot of snap to it.
On Snow Feel/Ability Level/Skidded Turns: This C3 profile, unlike the Lib Tech BRD with some early rise in the nose/tail, is pretty much full camber from tip to tail with only a passive bend in the middle. It’s a very locked in aggressive/technical ride that feels like full camber. It isn’t a board that’s easy to skid a turn if you get off your game and it likes an expert rider on it. Strong advanced riders could probably handle it too.
Edge Hold: Pretty strong grip that seems more on the mellower side of Magnatraction but strong overall in comparison to the rest of the industry.
Turn Initiation: Medium to medium-fast for Peter and Me with our normal-sized boots with Jimbo’s 11’s.
Turning Experience/Carving: The Lib Tech Swiss Knife is a powerful hard carving ride that needs some more back foot weight than the front but it really springs out of a turn if you are a strong rider.
Powder: We aren’t too sure here as often boards that have a longer nose than tail and taper have more set back on board than you would think for a centered sidecut. It might be better in powder if there is a lot of sets back on board but riding full camber boards like this in the past were never that fun in powder if you couldn’t set them far back. If you ride a lot in steep terrain and know how to keep your speed/float in full camber rides then this will be fun. In comparison to the easy floating hybrid shapes these days though, it seems like it wouldn’t be as easy.
Speed: Fast and bomby. What makes this kind of middle ground turn wise also makes it pretty good for pointing it. The board handles high-speed chatter well, feels locked in and likes to go straight. The base is pretty good too and even though it wasn’t recently waxed the base had competent but not exceptional glide.
Uneven Terrain: Pretty good for powering over the messy stuff and decent enough for weaving around bumps.
Switch: Definitely different but doable.
Jumps: Great board for going big and while it’s not a true twin for the ripper that takes off/lands either foot forward it really can send it. It seemed annoyed at us for going so small on it.
Pipe: We didn’t have a pipe but for me, I would like the camber drive wall to wall but it felt a little too straight liner for me there. If you know how to rip pipe this could be really fun and it likes the kind of rider (not me) who goes big.
So because of The Lib Tech Swiss Knife’s aggressive nature, this is a hard board to recommend for the everyman but there are some out there who will read this and want to take this home to meet mom.
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