A little R&D at Burton Snowboards

November 14th, 2012, by Mike

JG is a legend in the snowboard world. He’s been working for Burton Snowboards for twenty-five years and was a team rider for four years before that. He’s a product tester, meaning his job is to literally snowboard, all year, all around the world, with some of the best riders. In fact, last year he rode and tested 121 different boards. And you don’t get this job by taking the green trails. JG is a machine, no matter what board he’s riding or what conditions he’s riding in – he’s fully dialed in with what the board, the boots and the bindings are doing.

But when JG’s not on the snow he’s skating the bowl at Burton. So when he first saw that we were making skateboards, he asked us if we could take the Brixham model and modify it a little for his needs. Of course we said sure but we also had to explain that we are limited in what we can do based on our press capacity and our molds. It’s probably hard to to hear that when you’re accustomed to having Burton behind you, but we were excited to get him on a board, and get some video, photos and feedback. And feedback we got!

One of the biggest things that concerned us is that making longboards and making pool boards require different processes. For example, the pressure put on decks when cranking around corners at full speed is way more than that put on a longboard. Most pool decks are pressed at 10,000 psi. Our press currently can only handle around 3000. So we’re waiting every day for JG’s damage report – but after a bunch of hours hammering the thing, he still hasn’t broken it.

Coming up with solutions is a process that we love. What are some of the changes we’ll focus on as a result of the testing? As much as we love the full-deck bamboo fabric grip surface we developed, it’s just doesn’t provide enough grip for this type of skating. So we’ll be testing a new type of grip made from 100% recycled glass. We’ll also work towards strengthening our press to be able to handle increased psi so we can expand our line. Lastly, we’re working on some new press-molds which will allow us to create shapes with increased camber for toe and heal hold, kick at both ends and more. How soon we come out with a next-gen pool board is hard to say. But we cherish this process of building products, getting them under peoples’ feet and coming away feeling like we’ve learned something. So thanks JG for all the trust and support!

Grain Surfboards Skate

Grain Surfboards Skate

Grain Surfboards Skate

Grain Surfboards Skate

Grain Surfboards Skate

Grain Surfboards Skate
Thanks for the photo Shem Roose


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4 Responses to “A little R&D at Burton Snowboards”

  1. Colin Boyd Says:

    JG in da house!

  2. hoon Says:

    nice. can’t wait for the production models.

  3. Cholo Says:

    Never more stoke

  4. montee Says:

    JG LeGee!!

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