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How to build a snowboard balance bar / rail

Posted on: Aug 1, 2011 Listed in: Equipment by Chris Skinner

build a snowboard balance bar(1)
Here’s something to keep you busy and still working on snowboarding throughout the summer! A snowboard balance bar / rail.

Great for fitness and trying some new tricks out in the safety of your garden, or front lounge, which ever you prefer. If you are a super newbie then definitely build yourself a balance rail. For advance riders, this is a real good platform to build your snowboard skills for street rail get-ons (non ride on boxes / rails etc).

Because the beam is higher than you, it encourages, good pop and locking in the board onto the rail.

This isn’t a new idea and it’s been around for a while now, but I thought that I would document the building of my balance bar/ rail and showcase it up here.

Construction

I’ve gone through the step by step stages and listed out all costs and time spend.

Step 1:

First build-a-snowboard-balance-bar4up if was off down to Homebase to get some wood, screwsand vanish!
Note: I shall presume that you already have the following: Saw, Screwdriver, Drill, Sandpaper, Pencil and a ruler / measuring tap

Step 2:

Back home and out with the saw. Cutting the wood into the following sections: 56.7in, (144cm) 13in (33cm) and 13in (33cm).

Step 3:

After a quick sand down, 2 coats of vanish were applied.

Looking good so far!

Step 4:

Measured up where I wanted the two ends of the wood to be fixed – drilled holes for screws in the balance beam and pilot holes in the supports, applied glue and fixed in place.

build-a-snowboard-balance-bar8 build-a-snowboard-balance-bar9

Step 5:

Counter sunk the screws and a quick check over, then stood back and admired. Looks good I think, apart from the bird poo. He must have been watching and thought he’d spoil my work, although I thinks it adds an urban feel….

build-a-snowboard-balance-bar10

Costs and Time Spent

Roughly around 1hr 30 from getting the wood home, cutting it up and putting the whole thing together (2 coats of vanish taking up the majority of the time).

  • Wood: £10.51 – Dimensions: 82.7in x 3.1in x 3.1in (210cm x 8cm x 8cm)
  • Tin of Cuprinol Total Garden Wood Treatment Varnish: £10.00 (only used half a tin)
  • Pack of Screws: £3.90
  • Labour: Priceless…

Total Cost: £19.41 (taking in account half a tin of vanish used)

So for under a 20 quid you can get yourself your very own balance beam!

Results

Had my first ever session on the bar last week and although the actual wood I’m balancing on (3inches) is a tad on the thin side, I’m really enjoying the progression so far.
If I were to repeat the build I would go for a wider (thicker) piece of wood.

It’s great to if you don’t quiet get a trick right as there is no forward momentum to make you slip / crash out. You just slide off one side.

While this is something that would need to be considered when taking the trick to an on-snow environment, the beam works co-ordination, balance and the biggest of all, confidence. Get the trick dialed over and over on this and you won’t even think about it twice next time you do it on snow.

A great tool for anyone who is serious about progressing fast and taking their riding to the next level.

Finally, Gavin over at www.afterbang.co.uk wrote a similar post last year and you can read that here. He also has a video of him trying his balance beam out.

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