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Black Box 87 Carbon, SURF (Germany), June 2013
|This test was featured in the June edition of SURF Magazin!|
Starboard Black Box 87 Carbon: "The Bruch Toy"
Length: 215 cm
Width: 62 cm
Tail Width (at 30cm): 42.1 cm
Thickness: 12.2 cm
Volume: 87 liters
Fin: 2 x 15.5 MB Twinzers + 12 MB Twinzer
Wherever the Black Box makes an appearance, people look, wonder and try to touch it. Can a wide and short concept like that work with a tail that is the Encyclopedia definition of “square-tail”? Add a voluminous bow and you get a very straight outline with a stubby nose.
Dany Bruch's design comes in two constructions (Carbon and Wood) and only size (87 liters) for now.
Equipment is A+ with very comfortable footstraps and grippy footpads.
On the Water:
During your first few meters – note that this is a positive statement – the shape doesn’t feel as special as you thought it would be when you looked at it on the beach. The Black Box isn’t the first one out of the gate and won’t win you any top speed prizes either, but it will start planing without too much resistance and goes well in straight lines, without any control issues. The board feels composed underfoot and you are never at risk of taking off in the gusts, although the Black Box's smaller fins require some finesse from the rider.
Regardless, the Black Box is not your standard wave board. The minute you grab your first wave, you realize that you might as well throw everything you know about waveriding over board. The Black Box will slice through turns with ease although the tighter arches are more technical to complete due to the width of the tail. Ridden over your front foot, it's versatile, eager to turn and consistently radical in its approach to the wave. In windy, choppy conditions or seriously big waves, the short shape will meet its limitations as the rather sharp rails become a little nervous.
In return, the board holds its speed exceptionally well in smaller waves and onshore conditions. The fact that the Black Box has relatively less grip on its fins will be welcomed by tricksters waveriders as new-school moves like takas and backside 360’s are easier to stick, especially with this compact shape and voluminous bow. Never mind the light wind; you will pull them off!
You are looking for an all-round wave board for strong winds. And you don’t just want to ride waves but also have every intention to carve through flat water. Or you might even not go into the waves all that often if you’re honest? Then please forget about the Black Box! But if you are an aspiring or experienced waverider looking for a genuine, skatey waveriding feeling with less wind and crappy conditions, enabling you to do takas, lipslides, then the Black Box just might be your new favorite board!
To go to the Black Box product page, click here