At A Glance
The Hippy Stick Collection from Liquid Force is something that’s excited me since I saw it appear online, especially after missing my chance to test the Moon Patrol. When I got my hands on the slightly smaller Space Craft, it was safe to say I was itching to try it out.
The Space Craft is a semi-directional kiteboard; we used to call them mutants. However, Liquid Force are keen to point out these boards are not mutants of old, but an entirely new category of shred stick. Capable of being ridden both directions with a bias to the rear, this style of board allows for some serious carving as well as a lot of fun on the water.
Built with Liquid Force’s same bullet proof board construction techniques, the Space Craft features a wood core, LF’s Liquid Rail, Biax/Triax glass fibre layers to the top and bottom of the deck and much more. The rocker line of the board is biased towards the front of the board giving it more of a directional feel. The Spacecraft has a medium amount of flex, allowing not only a smooth ride and landings but good pop and boosting potential.
Available in one size the Space Craft comes with six fins, 4 x 4cm and 2 x 5cm for that extra directional feel.
On The Water
Robin Snuggs and Rou Chater both tested this board; Robin is a hardcore twin tip rider, not afraid for boosting huge megaloops and capable of all the latest freestyle tricks. Rou is a dedicated wave head who’s been riding surfboards for years, he can still throw down on a twin tip when he has too, but seeing him on one usually means something is up like he’s broken his surfboard. We’ve put both the reviews below:
Robin’s take on the Space Craft:
Once I’d set the straps and pads up it was time to have some fun, I didn't even make it past the first few waves, the second I saw a face I was yearning to smack it. Wham. Like a twin tip, the Space Craft seriously grips so you can chuck some spray but has a sweet flowing carve to it. Rail to rail transfer is smooth, and the board flows very effortlessly in turns.
The nose biased rocker line and rear foot position keeps the nose out the water and enhances the feel of your carves. Riding upwind is super easy, after all its a 144cm board, so no problems there. Getting out into some messy stuff, chop is soaked up, and the ride remains smooth. Turning and riding back on the nose didn't present any errors at all, the board rode just like a normal twin tip.
Getting dialled into the Space Craft, the old school moves started coming out, with some blind riding and toeside takeoffs, so much fun! The board just makes you imagine so many new variations of moves you can already do. Even just forcing yourself to ride toeside the other way at times was a good crack. Boosting was awesome with great grip and pop from the board. Just remember if you're going to come in super fast and hard it's worth landing with the nose at the front, the tail did catch once or twice before I got reminded it was semi directional.
Rou’s Take On The Space Craft
I got to ride this board in Mauritius, and while the warm water and cool beers may have clouded my judgement, I headed out on this new style stick thinking it was gonna be a pretty average session. After all the waves were pumping and when the conditions are like that it usually takes about 5 minutes before I wish I had ridden a surfboard!
How wrong was I? Let's just say it would be like saying Enid Blyton was the author of Trainspotting in a pub quiz. This board is mental. I can honestly say I have not had that much fun on a twin tip in years. It’s got a soft nature to the flex, which makes the ride sublime, on the waves the real shock was that the board actually works really well. Linked turns are a breeze, and you can really crank it into some vertical snaps.
“One of the best boards I’ve ridden in a long time!”
My only issue would be the rear fins, maybe a slightly bigger set as a bias for a wave riding set up would be a bonus, a couple of mini surf fins for instance. That said sliding the tail out left right and centre was good fun too. The board boosts too; it was so much fun being on the water, riding waves and actually being able to jump too. Yes, you can jump strapless, but you can’t boost to the moon without seriously worrying for your ankles.
The board cranks upwind and rides on the nose very well indeed, although I found myself stuck in directional mode, just riding toeside and carving the hell out of it at every opportunity. After a while, my legs got knackered, and I remembered I could just ride the nose too. If you love wave riding and have stayed away from twin tips for a while, this could be the ticket. Think of it as a powder board for snowboarding; it’s made for carving and ripping turns. The directional bias makes this a really enthralling experience.
I want one in my quiver; it’s one of the best “twin tips” I’ve ridden in a long time, probably because it isn’t a twin tip!
All in all the Space Craft as an absolute blast, if you are looking for something a little different to throw some variation into your riding without changing from the norm too much this is for you. It is also an easy way to start with directional riding, getting used to carving around with more rear foot bias.
This review was in Issue 64 of IKSURFMAG.For more information visit Liquid Force Kites