Burton Custom Review
The Burton Custom has been around forever and a few days. It’s actually an easier ride than it was in the past but with the addition of so many catch free easy floating hybrid profiles in the market these days this old traditional camber version has become a bit obsolete when looking for a one board solution. Still it’s a fun board to turn and if you love traditional camber rides this won’t disappoint. Other than a few minor tweaks not much has changed for 2017.
So the Burton Custom is still probably one of the most well known snowboards in the industry. As the world of snowboarding got easier with these hybrid camber and hybrid rockre catch free profiles it made the Custom Camber seem more aggressive, more catchy and less of a versatile all conditions ride. So even though it’s not the all conditions ride it use to be it’s still one of the better camber boards out there. This would be a good compliment for someone who already has a Custom Flying V for powder. I personally think it would be really cool to see it as a hybrid camber board. Maybe even take PurePop Camber to a new level by adding more rocker. I think it would bring back a lot of that all mountain love I had for this board back when everything was camber.
Conditions: Anything you can think of.
On Snow Feel: It feels very stable between the feet and offers a good ride for accomplished riders who understand the benefits and consequences of camber. This is a great board for directional groomer riding and carving but if you know how to handle camber you can take an aggressive switch/all mountain freestyle approach to the mountain as well. It’s a board that helps you get the most out of turning.
Powder: This use to be a pretty good powder board and nothing really changed about the ride except for hybrid shapes have made powder riding easier. If you like camber in powder you will be happy but if you are use to hybrid shapes like the Burton Custom Flying V you will find this a lot more work on your back foot. You also might find that if you lean forward too much you will go cartwheeling. Again I’d love to see a little early rise rocker and maybe even a more powder friendly nose/tail added to the Custom’s design.
Turn Initiation and Carving: Nothing beats camber when it comes to carving and the Custom 2012-2017 has close to the great spring out of a turn as the first Custom I tried in the early 2000’s. Back in the day the Custom was more directional like the Custom X but today it’s twinish shape is still really fun. Burton really figured out how to make edge to edge transitioning more fun than almost any other board in it’s class. You do this the most when riding the mountain so why not make it as rewarding as possible. It’s not super quick edge to edge but its springy and rewarding. Short radius to carving turns are really fun with the custom. The addition of the newer tech like squeeze box which tools out the core gives this a fun feel and has improved over past models.
Speed: The Custom can bomb if you want. It’s not as good as the Custom X but it can handle higher speeds pretty well. The Custom has a nice blend between speed and a more forgiving nature (for camber) when conditions start to change for the worse throughout the day.
Uneven Terrain: You can ride with good shock absorption from first thing in the morning on a crowded day to the last chair and the board won’t pass the varying impact up to you. Not many boards can offer this at this flex level.
Edge Hold: The addition of Frost Bite or what use to be called pressure distribution edges helps the Custom hold a better edge and it borders on great. It’s got good hold for most conditions people want to ride in but it still excels in medium to softer snow over firm to harder snow.
Flex: Since the introduction of squeeze box the flex has become a little more playful without loosing it’s ability to stay aggressive on the mountain. It’s still no easy task compared to the Burton Custom Flying V to butter but it’s easier than it use to be. If you are a stronger old school rider you might really like buttering around on this board.
Switch: The twinish shape isn’t bad but it’s definitely different riding switch. Even though the Custom Flying V has the same shape the hybrid rocker profile makes the ride switch easier than the Custom. Still the Custom isn’t bad after a little time with it.
Jibbing: Not really as easy as the hybrid shapes these days. This is more of a pipe and Jump board.
Pipe: If you keep the edges sharp the Custom is a really fun board to drive from wall to wall but it’s more for the technical pipe rider than the guy just looking to give the pipe a try and try to have fun.
Jumps: One thing that is hard to duplicate with the hybrid and rocker shapes is the pop you can get from the camber model of the Burton Custom. This is a great board to generate your own air with and a fun board to look for stuff to ollie off around the mountain. The 2014 and above model has a bit of an advantage over the previous years but all are really poppy. A perfect set up would be to use the Cartel EST with hinge tech or the Genesis EST with hinge tech as well to get even more pop. Even though I’m personally not a fan of EST bindings proprietary tech I can’t argue that it doesn’t add extra pop.
The Custom didn’t sit still while everything moved around it but instead continued to refine the way old school camber works and feels. If you want a great all mountain board that leans on the aggressive side in today’s world of snowboarding the Burton Custom could make you pretty happy.