FANATIC MAMBA TE 84 2021 TEST REVIEW
VERDICT: Flattering and versatile, the Mamba has moved the Stubby design forward, offering a board that will not only turn the most average wave break into an exciting playground, but more than that, it holds its own on those classic days. A board that will progress the developing rider, but still perform for those at the top of their game.
THE LOWDOWN: This year sees the 40th anniversary of Fanatic boards and the evolution of their stubby; it has a redefined shape, but a name from the rich history of the Fanatic brand, ‘The Mamba’. The original board has been evolved towards a parallel outline with a more pulled in nose and tail section. The result has a new look and covers an even wider range of conditions compared to its predecessor. The main functional features of the Stubby are combined with these new developments, which not only gives the board a new look, but they say will also allow quicker adjustments of your turning radius for more fun when the waves get better. In addition, the Mamba has been designed for early planing and mobility through the break. This evolution of the Stubby has a low-drag parallel mid section, more radical bottom shape for the smaller 78 and 84 litre boards, and a tail channel for extra hold and drive. It is designed to do all the things you might expect of the Stubby, like keep speed in sloppy waves, but with these new features is focussed on vastly improving down-the-line performance. The new Mamba also comes with Special MFC Victor Fernandez pro model thruster fins.
BRAND CLAIM: ‘The brand new Mamba takes the place of the Stubby in our lineup and shines with similar attributes in sloppy waves, but comes with improved performance for when the conditions turn on. You don’t have to be a snake to catch every wave.’
PERFORMANCE: From the off the Mamba flatters the ability of its rider. The dome of the deck and pad design make you feel well connected to the board, and whilst it feels a little smaller than the quoted 84 litres, it planes effortlessly and accelerates up to a good speed, feeling lively underfoot, cranking upwind when needed and is able to dart around the break with ease.
It lives up to its Stubby lineage with lots of play through the back foot in the turns to help vary the radius to make up for sloppy conditions or poor rider timing. However it continues to excel beyond the slop and into better conditions. Once in more side-shore conditions, the rails bite well in the bottom turn and you can adjust your turning arc without the fear of the board skipping out on you.
This board is just as much fun on the way out as you have a real connected snowboard type feel, where your environment becomes a stunt park opening up in front of you and makes you confident to go for moves.
Those looking for a more planted feel, or full control in the most extreme conditions, may prefer the Grip, but the Mamba offers great performance in almost every environment, allowing for a fun, fast and exciting ride.
Volume (Quoted): 84 litres.
Length: 218 cm
Width: 57 cm
1ft off (Tail Width): 40 cm
Bottom Shape: Mono concave in the nose and mid-section, transitioning to double concave with vee, the vee becoming increasingly pronounced in the tail, and ending in a channel.
Weight (‘Naked’): 6.44 kg
Fins: MFC VF TRIFIN 180 (US) + 2 x VF TRIFIN 110 (slot)
Sail Range (Quoted): 3.0-6.0
Sizes Available: 78, 84, 94, 104.
Other boards in this test:
THE LINE UP