26 June 2008

1° Brazilian Contest

Some people may have heard about this, and it's true! The first Brazilian contest it's going to happen on August 2nd and 3rd, at the Hi Adventure Hostel. The park is still a big secret but there are rumors that it is suppose to be 4 meters long!!!! HUGE. It is being made by Kona (OK Ramps owner) and I tell you, it's going to be BRR+ quality. Those who already knows Kona's work know I'm not exaggerating.
We got the french company Close Up sponsoring the contest with over 30 packs, plus the skateboard company Naipe will be donating some stuff. And of course the Brazilian fingerboard companies Massacre Webshop, Downtown Fingerboards and Evolve Decks will be supporting the event.

We have been planning this since the end of last year, so you people can imagine our anxiety, even because this Hostel has this big bowl, not considering the fact of it being on a paradisiac place, with beautiful beaches and gorgeous girls hehe. Here's some pictures of the place:

The whole event it's going to be filmed, so expect good things. I'm not really sure if we are going to have lots of fingerboarders there, we definetly don't have that much as Germany, but in part it's good because the park won't be so crowded (who in the bloody hell wants to share a huge park with other people hahah).
More info soon.

Did anyone say heaven?

25 June 2008

Review: Bonsei Concrete, No Comply decks, BRR kink ledge

I would like to start this review off with the Blackriver-ramps kink ledge. 
I did not order this from BRR, but as everyone knows, the shipping from them is always fast and they always pack their products securely. 
The craftsmanship of the ledge is amazing, like most BRR products so don't be fooled by those imitations on ebay, get the real thing. The wood is perfectly sanded, and coping is flush with the wood, and grinds amazing. 
The ledge is about 7.75 inches tall at the highest point and 4.5 at the lowest. It is also almost 11.5 inches long, so it is kind of a large obstacle.  It can be either high or low depending on what you have it set up on. 
The fun factor of this obstacle is easily a 10/10. You grind or slide down the ledge and just float out of all your tricks, it makes for hours of fun. 


Next is the Bonsei Concrete curb.
I ordered this from Mike Schneider, via flatfacefingerboards.com the shipping took about 2-3 days via priority mail. It came in a priority mail box wrapped in a sponge like material and packaged inbetween a ton of newsprint, it was very secure inside.It can also be purchased from Blackriver-ramps. The block was wrapped in a paper to resemble the actual block itself with the bonsei logo printed ontop.
The curb itself is very very smooth, fresh out of the package it grinds amazing, it doesnt need wax or anything. I have heard of them chipping easily, mine has not even after about 3 solid days of use, however, there is a special substance you can apply to it to prevent chipping, which I am not at liberty to tell, it's what you call secret.
The block itself is a bit low, it's about an inch and a half tall, it does have a nice length and width, about 8.5 by 2.5 inches. The height issue can easily be fixed by putting a few pallets (which can also be purchased at blackriver) or what I did since I have no pallets, is use a couple mini dv tape cases.
The edges of the block are really smooth and grind easily, even after a few days of solid use they stay smooth and grind nice.
The pictures I have taken are after a few hours of use.
I highly suggest you pick one of these up, they are definitely worth the price, shipping can be a bit pricey if you live in the United States, so I suggest buying from Flatface, if you live in Europe, support Blackriver. The guys at Bonsei did a wonderful job and I can't wait to see what they produce in the future.

Lastly we have No Comply decks. I got this deck from Todd, the owner of No Comply, for being on the team. This particular model is a new one, when ordering you can ask for the Tim Alexiel mold.
The shipping was extremely fast and the deck was packaged in a mouse pad, inside a small box, inside a bubble mailer, very secure.
The craftsmanship of the deck is amazing, the dips are nice and even, the holes are drilled perfectly, perfect lacquer, and the graphic is brilliant. I had the option of getting the graphic as an everslick, but I chose to get just a normal one and it out, the graphic will be available as an everslick when Todd opens and it is my graphic.
I set the deck up and immediately had no trouble adjusting to the shape. The deck has a super realistic shape as you can see in the pictures, the tail is slightly shorter than the nose just like a real board. It has awesome pop and the perfect amount of concave, not too deep but not too mellow, right in the middle. The kick height is also right in the middle for optimum performance.
The plies are very brightly colored and it also has white plies, which hasn't been seen on many fingerboards.
Over all, I suggest picking one up when Todd opens, I am not sure of the price at this moment, but the decks will definitely be worth it.
I would also like to take the time to review No Comply flex tape. Flex tape is a soft griptape material similar to rip tape or fbs smooth tape. It is .5 mm thick and has a nice smooth feel to it, more similar to fbs extra smooth than rip. It comes in precut and uncut pieces, the precut pieces come in regular and wide, to cover both kinds of deck sizes. You can also get die cut designs in the the flex tape.
The grip is really good, however there are some faults with it. I have noticed when using it I have alot of trouble popping regular kickflips, I am not sure why this is, my theory has to do with the thickness of the tape, sometimes thinner isn't always better. The tape also tends to shred kind of easily after long periods of use. It is a good product, but probably not my preference to rip, but it is definitely worth trying out, what doesn't work for me, might work for someone else. You will be able to purchase it soon off of the No Comply site, coming in the near future. Here are some pictures of the tape and it compaired to rip.
thickness comparison
flex tape
rip tape


23 June 2008


Massacre Webshop is hosting an online video contest! This is one in a recent surge of contests within the Brazilian scene.

Best translation I can do.


1 video per contestant
15-20 seconds max
Any obstacle
Any type of fingerboard
Videos will be judged on technique, style and creativity.
Must be posted (poster?) on the fingerboardbrasil.com forum.
Must be posted on Youtube.
Deadline for videos is the 30th of June
More info here!

Mike Schneider is looking for graphics for Flatface decks. There are some prizes involved. The winner gets a few surprises plus they get their choice of a deck from any one of the rider's decks. More information.

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The online fingerboard scene has evolved so much since I joined it back in 1999. Initially, it grew from an unorganized group of people held together by a string, which was their common interest in fingerboarding. Unfortunately, almost no people that I can remember from the techdecks.com forum. Since it was unorganized and unprofessional, people had little to gain from the online community back then. Companies were little more than kids selling cardboard and glued together popsicle sticks.

Slowly but surely fingerboarding evolved. Thanks to innovators like Gary Moyer of Moshmelloz and the global influence of Blackriver Ramps, people realized that they could take it more seriously and make products. Look at the list of the longest lasting companies in the FFI scene. Arctic Hardware (Martin Ilsley), Primo (Brandon Jones), and Flatface (Mike Schneider) all have been around for a very long time and are some of the more successful companies in our scene. How did they succeed where others failed? By respecting their customers, developing great products, and through their own passion for fingerboarding, these companies were able to thrive.
Professionalism is vital to me. If I am going to pick between two companies that sell identical products, I always choose the product which is more professional. Service, quality, and packaging all play into my decision. Professionalism is what separates Blackriver from other companies. Alot of it comes with experience. There is a framed paper in my office that states: "If you think something is more important than a customer, think again . . .". The aforementioned companies, and others who I have not mentioned, all seem to fit well with this motto. Honestly, how is a company going to survive otherwise?
It is astonishing how a forum of kids/teens/adults went from selling ragtag products to having a full-fledged economy in the transactions forum, where professional quality products are being traded/sold hourly. After I returned from a two year long hiatus, I was amazed at how much different the scene was. Prior to my hiatus, Vegas was the big deck company in FFI. The shape was inconsistent, the plys werent sanded, and the quality compared to the decks nowadays was lacking. (Vegas' were amazing for performance tho :) ) Berlinwood was around, but few in FFI ventured to buy one. Wheels were made out of rubber, and there was no such thing as riptape. When I came back, the transaction section had more posts per day than there were in a whole year prior to my leaving the scene. The decks were shaped like real skateboards, and had bright graphics. There were bearing wheels, and tuning equipment. I could not believe the growth in such a short amount of time.
I was excited, yet daunted by all the changes I saw. I was worried that people's love of fingerboarding would be diminished by the want of free products/sponsorship. I did witness a few who were in it out of material want. A few people sold products, yet did not send the items, thus taking money. Others scammed newer people by selling them fake products. Being cheap and greedy might lead to some short term satisfaction, but diminishes ones own character.
Luckily, there are plenty of people who are honest, and hard working that makes the scene shine brightly.