TABOU 3S 96L PRO EDITION 2013 TEST REVIEW
Tabou sell their 3S range as an easy-to-use, all-round line blending freeride, wave and freestyle performance together. The collection is designed to be fun in all conditions, with sizes ranging from 76 right up to 116 litres. They’re available in either LTD Carbon Kevlar Sandwich construction (tested here) or Standard sandwich construction.
AT A GLANCE
• Thick cushioned and ramped footpads
• Quality Tabou footstraps
• Tabou Freeride Powerbox fin
• Deep double concave hull with Vee in the tail
• Narrow blunt nose with winger and narrow swallowtail
• Fairly flat deck with some dome around the rails
Despite being one of the smallest boards in the test and having a fairly stretched, narrow looking outline, the 3S’s volume is well distributed and surprisingly stable underfoot. (It’s not the narrowest on test, but is the longest.) Again unexpectedly, it pops up onto the plane extremely early and accelerates quickly with very little rider input required. This is a fast board in a straight-line and incredibly comfortable and controlled at speed, especially on deeper downwind runs, where you’ll easily feel confident to sheet in and go for it. At first glance the deep and upright fin supplied looks somewhat of a mismatch to the skinny, retro, wavy outline, but the 3S’ lively, playful side really comes into its own around the corners. It carves superbly through gybes and holds speed well through the turn, almost guaranteeing an exit at maximum speed every time. (A smaller fin would see those arcs tighten up.) It’s incredible fun in choppier, bump & jump conditions where the good top-end speed can be put to use for jumping. For freestyling it’s pretty capable of throwing all the standard stuff once you’ve fitted a smaller fin and it would also be fun in some small surf.
The 3S is a total package of surprises that’s all about…fun! This board is a complete blast, whether you’re on flat water or in rougher conditions, here’s a versatile, small freeride board that can crossover and deliver extra freestyle and wave performance too. As such an easy board to ride, it will suit riders of all levels who simply want to get maximum enjoyment from their board, go fast and turn with style.
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