Slingshot Screamer 5’4 2016 Kitesurfing Review

Slingshot Screamer 5’4 2016

Reviews / Surfboards

Slingshot 34,015

At A Glance

The Screamer from Slingshot is a further development of their ground-breaking T-Rex program from a couple of years ago. The 2016 Screamer sees further refinements on last year’s design; the tail has been redesigned and the rear stomp pad pushed further back with the rear strap positions shifting towards the tail too. This is designed to allow a more aggressive stance and attack, whether riding strapless or strapped-in.

The Screamers stubby shape significantly reduces front end weight, aiming to make strapless airs, spins and flip tricks easier than with more traditional shapes. The parallel rail design that was at the heart of the first T-Rex remains, the sandwich method used features Slingshot’s signature Future Response Technology as well as carbon wraps on the rear rail sections. In short, this board is a thing of beauty that is built to last and offers plenty of flex in all the right places.

Slingshot have embraced the new FCSII fin box system, it’s been around for a couple if years now and on a recent surf trip we actually struggled to find a set of Futures fins whilst there was an abundance of FCSII set ups in town. It does away with the need for a fin key, so you won’t ever be stuck without one plus you’ll never curse as the key slips in the grub screw. We weren’t massive fans of the system when it first came around, but for those reasons explained above, we are all aboard now.

On the Water

Like the Silingshot Angry Swallow we tested earlier this year, the Screamer makes the best of both worlds. The cut off nose means that the board feels like it’s a lot smaller than it is, allowing you make fast turns on small waves. Meanwhile, the board’s parallel rail outline, “pulled-in” thumb tail and single-concave rocker make it a fast and stable choice on bigger waves. So essentially, this is a true all-rounder.

With the stance on the Screamer now shifted back you can really crank out the turns on the waves. Pushing through with your back foot at the end of the turn rewards you with extra spray and a satisfying tail slide that is controlled.

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With the three fin set up on the Screamer, you get plenty of drive and down the line speed allowing you to make huge fast bottom turns and hit the lip with confidence. In the air the board is fun to play with, it launches off the waves with ease, and the compact shape really sticks to your feet when the wind is up. We would love to see some grab rails in the future just to help with some of the more modern strapless freestyle tricks, not that we’ve mastered them yet!
At speed the board is controlled, allowing you to tackle bigger, faster swells without feeling overwhelmed. Through the chop, the rocker and flex combine to offer a smooth, comfortable ride. This board will suit a wide range of riders, from confident beginners to advanced players there is plenty on offer here.

For

Beautifully made, loaded with tech and a great all-rounder on the water. The Screamer will take your riding to the next level, especially if you are looking to have a board that is fun on the small days, yet equally will handle the big stuff!

Against

It’s hard to find anything wrong with this board. I guess if we were pushed, we would love to see some shaping in the nose area to make grabbing the board a little easier for the bigger strapless style tricks.

Overall

Well we have to agree with Slingshot: “Unorthodox by design and radical by performance, it appeals to the new-era of kiters who want both solid wave performance and progressive freestyle capabilities out of the same surfboard”. They’ve hit the nail on the head with the Screamer and we really couldn’t sum it up any better.

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This review was in Issue 53 of IKSURFMAG.

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By Jack Galloway
Jack is a fanatically keen kiter from the South West of England, he loves riding just about anything with a kite from foil boards to surfboards and everything in between. He's competed in the Red Bull Ragnarok snowkite race on numerous occasions as well as some world class kite racing events. He's our Web Editor for the magazine, as well as one of our testers where his vast knowledge of the sport and different kites and boards comes in handy!

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