Review: The Chimera.
By Dane Loomes.
clipped, bat ?
As the little Mexican girl in the old el paso ad was known for saying.. “why not both?”
This is the story of how I came about a little piece of board design history. A prototype which seems like it was ironically never even tested…
Until now at least anyway.
Browsing gumtree one afternoon, an ad pops up with what looked like one of the modernised versions of the classics that science boards have been making the last few years.
Ad says the board is brand new, never used, and at a price I would say is very reasonable.
I msg the guy and organise to pick it up the following day. Easy as that.
On arrival, a 50 something year old guy answers the door and brings out the board.
He doesn’t really look like the bodyboarder type, and didnt have much to say about it other than again, it had never been used. So I assume it was an unwanted chrissy or bday present for his young bloke. I give him the cash, he gives me the board, off I go.
Stoked on the purchase and intrigued by the tail design, I jump online looking for info as soon as I’m home.
Alas my search reveals nothing, and so, being somewhat of “vintage” design/style, I go to the world of board knowledge that is facebooks VBC.
A couple of hundred likes and 50 odd comments from the worlds biggest boog gurus later, and I’m told it’s not at all the standard/modern remake board that I thought it was., but actually a one off test dumby that mike had made a few years back. A prototype they all called it.
A bit ironic I though, a board made for test purposes only, which then never got tested?
Theres not a scratch, dint, nor mark on the thing.
As far as I can tell , the plastic came off. The screwdriver went through. Plug was screwed in, and then….
(Excuse the grubby fingerprints)
Now if you haven’t guessed already, I’m not a collector.
I’m quite the naive opposite.
For 15 years now, I’ve bought boards, trashed them to bits and then either binned or given them away.
But with my latest VBC knowledge I feel like I have something a bit special here. So what does a guy(who doesn’t collect) do with a board like this?
Re-sale it? Ride it? Store it? Destroy it?
Does this board ignite the collector addiction flame within me? Will I never toss another board again?
Haha, not quite..
But it does seem an injustice to not ride a board which was made for that one sole purpose.
Somebody made it, and somebody must test it.
The later is me.
These are my observations..
The board is 41 inch. That suits me..
I usually ride 41-42 inch.
Being based on an older design it’s a fair bit wider than I’m used to but buoyancy wise that makes up (and a bit) for the slight lack of length. still very rideable for a guy of my build.
Now for the interesting parts.
The channel’s, quad. With the outside channels being a bit wider, and a flat section in the middle..
Seems to be the go-to setup for all the new science boards.
I have others with this channel design and it works.
A lot of drive from the bottom turn and still releases easy for spins thanks to the flat section.
The tail, looks to me like a bat but with the outsides clipped, angling up/out.
A bit like the verses wifly but with a bat lump in the middle rather than V.
Her maiden voyage was a mere 1-2 ft reefy right bowl.
Lacking a bit in size, but punchy enough to get a tube and spin or roll on the way out.
The board pretty well rode exactly how I thought it would.
Bats are known for the extra float and loose feel, cut off the corners and , suprise, it will probably slide around even more.
The quad channels I actually expected to hold it in line a bit more, but I found they didn’t really compete against the way the tail design let’s it go.
The only one variable I should mention is that I took her out waxless..
We all know what a slimy new deck feels like first session. Did it add to the loose, slippery feeling I noticed?
Maybe a bit, but I’m still convinced this tail design is a wild beast with a mind of its own.
To sum it up, I think it’s a pretty cool board, maybe a bit of a special board. But for someone who knows and loves the slim template, clipped crescent combo. Not the board for me..
Better suited to a big boy, or a collector who appreciates it for what it is.
If you are interested youre already too late. (Sorry).
It found its forever home before this review could be published.