Posted by:on June 2nd, 2002
So this thing looked kind of interesting on the web site a couple of years ago. Sure, it was a little kooky, but it could be functional too. When it arrived, many months after it was ordered (no joke) it was well crafted but not very functional. The wheels were slow as hell and required a steep incline to get any speed. It’s as if they were rubbing on the axle or something. Since then Flowlab has updated the axle with little spacers in between the wheels. While this might help the speed, it also creates a loud annoying rattle. After spending several days with the board, I can certainly say that I had some fun on it, but I’ts more of a novelty than a board you’ll want to use on a regular basis. Rather than wrestle with the Flowlab, it sits in my closet and I ride a conventional stick when I’m in the mood for some downhill.
Lately the company has been advertising in some of the bigger mags and holding some wacky contests. It’s clear by the pictures that they can be made to work well. The ads tend to show a lot of minipipe and launch action which ironically seem to be contrary to the purpose of the design, which was to facilitate and emulate carving on a snowboard. Lately they’ve been combining a standard truck with the Flowlab truck and even using drop down boards. Hey, whatever floats your boat. File under interesting but expensive diversion.
Competing Technologies: the BMW Streetcarver and a bunch more. There was only one at the time I boought this, but since then there have been different approaches as well as the inevitable knock-offs. So much so that I’l lhave to list them all in a separate feature some time.
Cost: $250 at time of purchase. Now starting around $200. UPDATE: Now you can get these things at grocery stores.
Bottom Line: Slow, heavy, and expensive.
www.flownation.nl In the Netherlands!
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