Positives

  • Fun Back footed carver
  • Fast Base
  • Set Back Inserts for Pow
  • Not as washy as the Shaper Twin.

Negatives

  • Front footed carves can feel washy.
  • Can feel loose one footing/flat basing

Summary

The Never Summer Shapeshifter is a very versatile tapered directional all mountain board the never summer line. It’s very comparable to the NS Cougar and Proto Fr but has more taper and a different camber profile. If you want a little more set back and float at the expense of a more stable ride this might work.

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Riding Style All Mountain
Riding Level Beginner - Expert
Fits Boot size (US) 10-12
Manufactured in USA by Never Summer
Shape Tapered Directional
Camber Profile Hybrid Rocker
Stance Centered
Approx. Weight Feels Normal
Split No
Powder Good
Base Glide Great
Carving Good
Speed Good
Uneven Terrain Great
Switch Good
Jumps Great
Jibbing Average
Pipe Great
On Snow Feel

Semi-Stable

Turn Initiation

Medium/Fast

Skidded Turns

Semi-Easy

Flex

Medium/Stiff

Buttering

Moderate

Edge Hold

Hard Snow

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Never Summer Shapeshifter 2024 Written Review Review by The Good Ride

Ethics Statement: We don’t get paid by the manufacturer to write these reviews and this is our unfiltered opinion. 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.

A Breakdown Of How It Rides And Who Its For

Never Summer Shapeshifter Review - The Good Ride

How This Never Summer Shapeshifter Review Happened:

Borrowed this for an extended demo and sent it back.
Size: 156
Days: 4
Conditions: Some decent but not exceptional powder, firm but fair groomers and
Riders: James (Size 9, 5’10” 185-190lbs)
Boots: Ride Torrent, Ride Fuse
Insoles: F.I.T. Gamechangers
Bindings: Union Atlas
Jacket: Jones Mtn Surf Anorak, Jones Shralpinist Stretch Jacket
Pant: Jones Mountain Surf Bib, Jones Shralpinist Stretch Bib
Helmet: Smith Maze
Goggle: Smith 4D Mag
Gloves: Burton AK Clutch Mitt, Drop Tahoma Mitt,

Similar Boards We Like (but not the same): Korua Otto, K2 Manifest, Yes Typo, Jones Frontier, Ride Algorythm, Ride Shadowban, Salomon Highpath, Yes Standard Uninc, Yes Basic Uninc, Cardiff Lynx

James’s Set Up: 21.5” Wide. Sance Angles +18/-3 in pow and set all the way back with the powder inserts. -18/-9. Close to Reference on groomers.

How It Was Tested

I often rode the Never Summer Shapeshifter against the Proto Fr and Cougar. I almost always used the same boots, bindings and took the same runs.

Approximate Weight

The Never Summer Shapeshifter didn’t feel heavy or light. Felt pretty normal for a mid/wide. (We don’t put in the exact weight because with wood cores there is no consistency in a boards weight)

Sizing

Even though the 156 is more of a mid/wide it was the right size for me to test. It’s the best fit for my size 9’s, 185lbs and 5’10” frame.

Here are some ideal US boot sizes for these boards. You can of course go bigger or smaller depending on your riding style and boot’s footprint, but these work best for not turning the board slower than it should be and not having the dreaded Toe & Heel Drag.
153: 9.5-10.5
156: 10-11
159: 10-11
For weight I would stay close to Never Summer’s recommended weight ranges and if anything on the upper end. These boards are well built and can handle a heavier rider. Make sure it matches your boot size.

Shape

The new shape of the Never Summer Shapeshifter has a very similar design to the shaper Twin but just didn’t feel as washy in the tail this time around. It still needs more back foot weight but it’s much better than before. Not sure what they did but I like it.

Camber/On Snow Feel/Ability Level

The Never Summer Shapeshifter has that easy fusion rocker & camber profile with a shorter more pronounced camber in the tail going to rocker to a mellow elliptical camber in the front foot going to a little early rise. Neither the tip or tail come anywhere near to touching the ground.

You have a very forgiving but a loose/autospiny feeling ride in all conditions but softer snow.

Flex Personality

Never Summer Shapeshifter Flex

The Never Summer Shapeshifter demo I had felt a lot stiffer and more damp than its flex rating. It didn’t butter easy or feel easy to ollie in comparison to the Proto Fr and especially the ultra poppy Cougar.

Uneven Terrain

The Never Summer Shapeshifter feels damper than what you would think for the rating. It might be the demo I had though. Even if I did Never Summer makes very damp rides so it will do very well in everything from hard micro bumpy snow to soft uneven snow.

Edge Hold

The Never Summer Shapeshifter has solid grip in hard snow and I like what this sidecut is doing. If you want to step it up the Couger will grip a touch better and the Proto Fr even better than both.

Speed

The Never Summer Shapeshifter is pretty good at a straight line even though it has this loose kind of camber profile. Just make sure the edge is slightly engaged and it should go pretty fast. It’s best for straightlining into a jump though and not the whole run.

Base Glide

Never Summer does a great job with their bases. They all glide so well.

Turning Experience/Carving

Never Summer Shapeshifter Heelside carve

The Never Summer Shapeshifter was quicker than I thought for this waist width and I could almost commit to a pretty hard carve center weighted when more close to a reference stance. It worked but really lit up when I leaned back into the camber in the tail. There is very good spring out of the turn for a rider who likes a back foot weighted turn. Every time I tried to drive on the front foot it got a little washy in the back. The rocker in the middle combined with the taper in the tail makes you have to commit to the tail.

It’s a pretty balanced turning experience.

Powder

So for a freeride board the Never Summer Shape Shifter is lacking but for an all mountain board this is jamming. It’s a very good floater thanks to the 10mm of taper and the set back inserts. It’s no Valhalla or Swift but it’s very good for a tapered directional twin as they call it.

Switch/Park

Switch was a little better with the Cougar and Proto Fr but overall very good for 10mm of taper and different camber under each foot. I was pretty surprised it worked as well as it did and I found myself riding switch a good bit.

Final Thoughts

So overall, the Never Summer Shapeshifter is a pretty versatile ride. It favors directional riding for sure but it really allows you to mix it up riding style wise depending on moods and conditions.
If this review helped, we’d appreciate if you:

 
Never Summer Shapeshifter Specs

 
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2024

Never Summer Shapeshifter User Reviews

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