According to the North website their North Select twintip is a 100% freeride board. It is described as a fast, light and responsive board and is build with Textreme Carbon. Out of curiosity we checked what Textreme Carbon actually is. Apparently it is not just a marketing term, but an existing material.
TeXtreme is the trade name of Oxeon’s “spread tow” carbon fiber composite. TeXtreme is different than traditional carbon fiber because the individual fibers are configured like extremely small ribbons, not round strands of carbon as with conventional carbon fiber. The wider, flatter orientation of TeXtreme carbon fiber means the individual carbon fibers nest closer to one another, producing a denser, stiffer, stronger interlace of carbon fibers. Since the carbon fibers are arrayed in closer proximity to each other there is less room for the matrix material, the “glue” that makes carbon fiber solid. Less matrix means more carbon and more carbon means better stiffness and energy management. It also means North can use less carbon fiber to produce an even stronger and lighter board.
It could be an coincidence, but it seems that the use of this material that is also used in the North Team series, makes the boards about 350 euro’s more expensive than the ones without (for example the North X-ride, which should be the second choice for freeride according to the North website). The positive side (money-wise) is that North boards are well known and relatively easy to sell for a good price on the second hand market.
We tested the North 2015 Select to see how we liked the ultimate kiteboard, the fastest, lightest and most responsive board in the range from the Austrian brand
We tested the Select in steady 20-24 knots , with a 9m Dice 2015 and a 10m Rebel 2015 in choppy to small sized waves. Right on the spot we we’re able to compare it with several other boards (the F-one Acid HRD carbon 132*40 2015, the Clash 138*40.5 Reincarnation 2.0 and the Team Series 2015 from North). Some of the 2014 North twintips had issues concerning the amount of spray in the face, which was very unpleasant. This clearly has been solved with the 2015 version. But the real surprise of the Select board was it’s speed, or rather it’s slowness. North claims several aspects, but the claim super fast rocker line and fastest board in the range doesn’t show in reality. It might even be one of the slowest board we tested so far. Even slower than the F-one Acid, which clearly isn’t designed to be fast with it’s high rocker line. As the 2015 Jaime surprised in it’s enormous speed, the Select 2015 has quite the opposite.
The 2015 Select is – as promised- really really light. Not only in your hands, but also on the water. It is exactly that light feeling which is very welcome when jumping. The weight really attributes to the way it is alive when edging for a nice kicker. On the water the board gives you immediately a different feeling, which can be best described as ready for anything. It felt bumpy but not bouncy and a bit to loose on the water like a car with to much power steering.
There are a couple of dimensional aspects, like the rocker, the flex and the tips which determines usually the way a board feels. These aspects are very well described on the progression blog. Some of it is described in this review and/or by the North website. But, for example, the aspect “tips” is not described. The North Select 2015 has rounded tips. This usually means that a board has less pop and should be better for carving turns. The same can be said for the single concave. It should give the board extra control and more grip. Our experiences with the Select 2015 are totally different from all that. This raises the question how come? It could be due to the use of the special material or some other dimensions we have overlooked. Fact is that the Select has a lot of surprises.
List price, North Select 2015 (without straps/pads) Eur 949,-
North Entity Pads/Straps 2015 Eur 169,-