This review will be biased towards myself, being a heavyweight rider at 20st so may not reflect what others may find. Generally the composite and design overviews wont be, that much.
Nobile 2HD £599 4kg Complete
Shinn Monk2 £549 3kg Complete
The board build designs are completely different. The 2HD has a Dual Concave underbelly enabling early and super fast glide. Plus with a flat progression rocker and being as stiff plank you can put oodles of weight (or pressure if you will) into the foot-straps and the board will retain it’s shape. This can, however, lead to harder landings, or it would if the deck didn’t have anti vibration technology built in, which it has. Although the 2HD is a very very stiff board, due to the 3D moulding the tips are more flexible enabling easier pop and more manageable re-entries.
The Monk2 had a core design based mainly in Alabasia wood which gives more or less equal flex throughout the length. Compared to the 2HD the Monk2 is as pliable as a wizards sleeve! This is great if an easy more forgiving ride is what you’re after. As said above, big doods are not necessarily after an easy ride as from launching onto the sea you’re already demanding huge forces from a board, that at its uppermost is designed for someone 6 stones lighter. To manually stand and flex the board by hand, very little force has to be put to the Monk2 to make the whole body flex, the 2HD is like trying to flex a kitchen worktop.
Here you can see a comparison of each boards ‘Sidecut’, where the Shinn has a more rounded heel edge, this would give a more snappy turning characteristic. The 2HD being straighter means I can put huge amounts of heel edge in without driving the board too far upwind and stalling the kite and/or board.
The foot-straps are a large factor to the overall weight of the 2HD, they’re quite heavy which has positives and negatives. On the positive side having a slightly heavier overall board (slightly heavier 1kg complete with strap) becomes apparent if you’re laid out in the sea and ready to get your feet in the straps. I found with the lighter Monk2, and having feet like a hippos head, with the straps as wide as they’d go I couldn’t force my feet in easily enough for hasty starts, as I pushed my feet in, the board would move away. Sometimes I even had to start with my feet hardly in the straps at all. Once moving though (unless lack of strapage had removed you from the board all-together) you can intercourse your feet back into the straps pretty easy. The straps/pads of the Shinn are the comfiest I’ve ever tried, I even have a spare pare of these ‘slippers’ as they’re known, sat as spares for previous other non Shinn boards. The lower deck pad is constructed from what they’re calling ‘memory foam’, very soft sponge that after a few hours of use settles in pliability to fit any riders foot shape. Would this mean you could then only sell the board on to someone with size 13 feet? Dunno!
The 2HD straps & pads are HUGE and a lot harder in comparison. I find that with the 2HD IFS Pro pad my feet slip in there like a rat up a drain pipe! Also because they’re slightly looser I can rotate my feet pretty freely so I can have my back foot more 90 degrees when really tying to push upwind…. which is nice. The foot pad of the 2HD is no way as comfortable as the Shinns, no way hose! The Shinn beds are like Diabetic slippers, I’d say the 2HD’s are twice as stiff, and don’t mould to your foot shape.
I might actually try the pads of the boards swapped just for the hoot.
Last note on these pads, for big-foots, which ever foot is facing forward I like to slightly point that foot into that direction. There is more padding on the outer area of the 2HD IFS than the Shinn Slipper which I can feel, making my small toe and outer tarsal feel better protected, apposed to the Shinn where it feels my outer foot is pushing against hard plastic strapping.
The fins are pretty identical on both boards (don’t forget these boards are fro the same factory in Poland where Nobile boards enhanced with the technology of Mark Shinns mind were designed) and both boards have the G55 style layout. These give excellent traction and also allow good drifting when required for redirection.
The rocker line (curve of the board) initially is quite similar in both boards, but it’s also apparently what happens to this rocker line under load. The flatter the board the better it will keep an edge. Owing to the flex of the Monk2 the Rocker is easily flattened out when under load or landing a jump, causing the land to be pretty soft but with me a tendency to lose a lot of speed. The 2HD would be hard to straighten to straiten out with a wrecking ball but does produce stable landings though after a few hours the knees and hips can suffer.
To sum up, for a hard core slammin’ ride go for the Nobile 2HD. For a relaxed, easy going, chilled, blowing kisses at the babes type adventure, go for the Shinn Monk2
Author : Mr.M
T-Shirts are easy to find, it seems prints and wall art is a little trickier
Please share links to artists and places that release wall art & prints.
Megan, Kitesurfer & Artist living in Antigua.
Megan's Prints: https://www.lifeofmegan.com/prints/
Megan's Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/megananxo/
How Megan creates her drawings:
Feel free to share any links to other people selling kite related prints.
Spotted this on YouTube a review of the Axis Prototype Foil Board
video by Gunnar Biniasch. Just a bit of history, Axis kiteboarding owned by Adrian Roper, a Christchurch New Zealand lad, used to be Underground kiteboarding. They make some great boards, I have one of their kitesurf uni-directionals. It's a Nov 2016 video, so perhaps the boards has gone from prototype to released.