Dive into our overview below, and be sure to return for the complete review soon.
The Astra is an exceptional freeride board that appeals to lighter riders with its playful yet powerful performance. Recognizing that many lighter-weight riders struggle to control larger, stiffer boards designed for heavier riders, the goal was to create a board that offers more responsive flex, increased control, and softer landings without compromising performance. The Astra's smaller board length, narrower stance, and basalt technology construction provide just the right amount of flex for controlled edging, boosts, and loops.
With its reliable rail grip, the Astra instills confidence to push boundaries and take on massive jumps. The efficient bottom shape and rocker make the board feel fast through the water and deliver excellent upwind performance. The medium flex strikes the perfect balance between clean and powerful pop while providing forgiveness on harder landings, making it easier than ever to send it.
To enhance rail longevity, new centerline inserts have been incorporated into the Astra's design. The laminate layup is tailored for lighter-weight riders, offering a responsive flex pattern that delivers explosive pop, softer landings, and comfort even in aggressive chop. The board's outline, rocker, and flex work harmoniously to ensure exceptional rail hold for easy upwind tracking and confident boosting.
Foot positioning is more precise on the Astra, allowing smaller riders to maintain control throughout every maneuver and landing. Compared to the Atmos, the Astra features a 20mm narrower stance across all sizes. The laminate layup utilizes e-glass and unidirectional basalt tapes that are strategically oriented to optimize fiber loading, resulting in a construction method that enhances performance.
The Astra excels in smooth carving through turns and offers optimized grip. Its pulled-in tip shape adds durability, while early planing and great low-end performance provide control even in overpowering conditions. The board's ability to absorb impact ensures stable and predictable landings.
At the core of the Astra is a light and strong Paulownia wood core, known for its high strength-to-weight ratio. This hardwood species is highly renewable, making it an eco-friendly choice. The flex characteristic of each TwinTip board is influenced by various design features integrated into the specific board's construction.
Standardized SS316 M6x16mm hardware is used across all TwinTip boards and accessories, simplifying assembly and making replacement parts easily accessible. The Astra is equipped with an integrated deck shape that provides a secure grip for board-offs. The lightweight and ergonomic TPE material used in the Astra's construction ensures exceptional grip, even when wet.
The Astra comes with strong and abrasion-resistant composite fins, along with dogbone washers and M6x16mm standardized screws. The new FlipTech Mounting System, with centerline inserts, is featured on all North TwinTip boards for added convenience. If one side of the board becomes worn out, simply flip the bindings around to have a fresh heelside rail.
Basalt fiber, made from natural molten volcanic rocks, offers lightweight structural reinforcement that is stronger and more responsive than e-glass. The basalt UD tapes contribute to the board's lively feel and lower weight, delivering enhanced pop without excessive stiffness. The use of Paulownia wood as the core material further reduces carbon emissions, as its high shear force and impact resistance allow for reduced foam and resin usage in the manufacturing process.
Core thickness variations, taper, longitudinal and lateral detailing play a crucial role in controlling the overall flex and feel of the board. Board-specific laminate layups further fine-tune the flex and characteristics of each board. By adjusting the stiffness lengthwise and torsionally in conjunction with the rocker line, plan shape view, and profile, each board is optimized for specific performance attributes.
For an optimal riding experience, the Astra is best paired with the new Flex or Flex Pro bindings. These bindings provide soft cushioning and the right amount of grip underfoot. The anatomically-shaped heel cup supports and stabilizes the foot upon landing, ensuring the correct orthopedic position and preventing slipping. The Pure-comfort seamless KnitFlex inners and triple-density footbeds offer a locked-in feel. The Flex and Flex Pro bindings are available in sizes S, M, L, and XL and are sold separately.
In summary, the Astra is a bold all-terrain board designed for lighter riders who seek playful yet powerful performance. Its responsive flex, controlled edging, and comfortable landings make it an ideal choice in various conditions. With features like centerline inserts, basalt technology, and Paulownia wood core, the Astra offers superior performance and an eco-friendly construction.For more information visit North Kiteboarding