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  • bushflyer1600949550

    Kheo Trooper Landboard

    i purchaed this board along with my kite as part of a package. kheo was chosen over other brands after investigating various mtb and kite mags and seeing the brand had some pedigree and was popular amongst kiteboarders. quality constuction at a budget were also defining factors.

    the board differs from other models in several areas:
    - longer wheelbase to promote stability
    - larger tyres than some of its competitors
    - alloy frame and ply deck as opposed to composite deck
    - spring trucks not skateboard trucks

    also i was intrigued by the grab handles built into the board and the boards slightly higher weight than its competitors. though this can be disadvavtageous if starting in light wind, the upside is increased momentum over difficult surfaces and constant line tension leading to less luffing, which had proved a problem on the beach with a friends scudda 35.

    first rides
    initially i took the board to a few gentle hills in the area often on the way to the flying site. the first thing i noticed was the softness of the elastomer suspension. while this proved to be excellent at absorbing bumps and shocks, the speed wobbles could develop on smoother surfaces which led to a particularly nasty faceplant involving me landing on the keys in my pocket at 25mph+, ouch.

    i found it better to leave the straps a little loose to facilitate sharp exits, something which happened a lot in the early days. the large area of the board means its easy to get comfortable when just cruising down a hill on the way to the beach, and once confidence is gained, the board can be be make to carve beautifully.

    out with the kite
    first tries were at my local beach on hard smooth sand and it was easy to get going on the board. the length promoted good tracking up and cross wind, though speed wobbles remained an issue they could be calmed by lowering my centre of gravity and pointing my toes forward. the longer length increased the turning circle compared with other boards but this could be overcome with practice.

    only small jumps have been tried as im still getting used to jumping while moving, but the handles prove useful though the weight is a little too much for my 4m kite unless i fly it agressively. but thats not what this board is about. its for leaning back against the pull, scything beautifully across the sand; body, kite and rider working un unison to cruise with mininal effort and fuss. slides are easy to accomplish on this board both on rough and smooth terrain (though your sense of balance has to be resonable) and though a little rattly, it rides rough ground with ease. i think the rattles are from my c**p assembly skills, not a design defect!

    personally i really like this board. the stability and smoothness over difficult ground are leagues ahead of the lighter, skateboard-trucked boards. this board can be used for small jumps but its forte is cruising/freeriding. its a good beginners board as it can be used most places and isnt as likely to spit you off as some. however, its quite heavy which may put some off and it needs harder shocks for beach use. but its tough as old boots and will last forever, and if you shop around you can get last years model without the fancy colours and graphics and pick up a real bargain. go on,give it a try and cruise in style.

    By : bushflyer

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