Tuesday, January 21, 2014

the Big D**K -- Bustin YoFace BGDK Review

Hello Skateboarders!
It's been a while since Longboard-Life has published a review, but we are back and in full swing, so get ready for a bunch of new content!
Today we will be talking about one of the newer additions to the Bustin Boards lineup the YoFace BGDK. The BGDK was built to skate little bit of everything but to specifically excel in freeride and downhill. Although I happen to know that this deck has been in the works for a long time Bustin's new shred stick is joining a market flooded with other topmount, double kick boards. Which means that the questions on everyone's lips all have to do with performance.

Before I can answer I can attest as to how the BGDK actually performs let's go over the technical specifications of the deck.
Kicktails make traveling through town more fun, period. Fortunately for all of those commuters out there the BGDK comes fully equipped with two big ol' beefy kicks. The kicks on the BGDK are not just ample but they are also functional. Functional enough to pop some ollies and get you up and down curbs with style and finesse. However, keep in mind, the BGDK isn't your typical light popsicle shaped street deck; nor was it deigned to be like one. It has some serious weight behind it so ollies on this deck do take some equally serious effort and skill.

Commuting isn't just about looking cool while you get around town, in fact, it's mostly about pushing. The BGDK is not super low, like an ideal commuter would be, but that's true of just about any topmount board. This deck does happen to sport a feature that generally translates to an uncomfortable pushing platform; w-concave. W is great for a lot of downhilly freeridey things but w-concave can just plain suck for pushing around town. It makes feet tired and sore. However, the BGDK is doing w-concave a little differently than many other boards. It has a w-concave that is very subtle and makes sure that your feet don't feel like they are being attacked by junkyard dogs while you are pushing. As someone who generally doesn't like w-concave for any sort of commuting the BGDK made it more than bearable it made it pretty comfy.
Anyone who really likes the push is probably already a fan of using at least 70mm wheels, like at the minimum. Something that really impressed me about the BGDK is the absurd amount of wheel clearance that it gets; especially when compared to other similar topmounts. With no riser I was using wide 70mm wheels with zero wheelbite and plenty of clearance to spare.

Upsides: Tails and Wheel Clearance
Downsides: Weight and Height

As I mentioned earlier the BGDK has a some intense and functional kicktails. The tails are angled in a manner that is akin to a street deck and therefore are ready to generate some pop. However, unlike your standard trick deck this deck is heavy and long. When you are ready to ollie this board get ready to throw down in a serious way. I am not expert at ollies but I can at least get this board up and over a curb as long as I time the pop right.
As far as landing flip tricks the weight isn't as big a factor as I would have thought. Once you get used to handling a big boy board the tails give you more then enough leverage to spin the board without a problem. There is a little bit of concave in the tails that gives you a little additional board-feel and lets you really scoop the board. I found it especially useful for bigger tricks such as big spins.

The platform on the deck is surprisingly comfortable to land on. I find that complicated curvature on a board can make the standing platform a bitch to land on for a lot of decks. While the BGDK sports a bunch of concave and features all of them are pretty mellow. It is precisely that subtlety which keeps the actual platform comfortable to land on.
However, and this may appear to be at odds with my previous statement, the biggest downside to this deck for freestyle, other than the weight, is landing on the board. Not because of the platform itself sucks; like I said it's actually quite comfy. But I found that if you aren't super accurate in landing your tricks (which I have been known be) the sharp rails can make the landings a little awkward.

Upsides: Kicktail Shape and Mellow Concave
Downsides: Heavy and Rails can Hurt

You wanna go fast? You'll like the BGDK.

Here is a board that was designed to hit some of the gnarliest hills you can find without breaking a sweat. That heaviness I mentioned up above is due to this board being nice and thick. That thickness translates to a board that is both very stiff and stable. Which are of course nice traits to have when you're haulin' down a mountain run stupidly fast.
I actually took my BGDK to the mountains with me during the few days of vacation I had between Christmas and New Years and I loved it (wish I had a camera person though...). This board held up to speed super well and despite being such a behemoth of a deck the handling was very responsive.
The concave on the BGDK is very elaborate but not for no reason. Every curve on this deck was well thought out and does indeed serve a specific purpose and one of the big benefits to all those curves is board feel. When I was riding down the mountains I noticed that I was always able to tell where my feet were on the board without having to look down. The 3D wheel wells and the W-concave work together to make a comfortable platform for downhill and give you plenty of reference points.

Upsides: Stiff, Stable, Tons of Board Feel
Downsides: --

I'm about to make a tall claim: The Bustin BGDK has become one of my all time favorite freeride boards.
(Which is saying a lot considering how many decks I have ridden... haha)
There are plenty of downhill/freeride, double kick boards on the market. However, what separates this board from the pack is its very well thought out concave pattern;  and that concave really shines brightest when it's time for freeride. The 3D wheel wells give you a little something-something to nestle your feet into for slides and I found them to be very comfy. Many a board have wheel flares that are too steep or too large and they just feel cumbersome and in the way. The BGDK found a nice medium that is not too big and not too small.
Another tricky concave feature that I feel is often-times over done is W-concave. I really like some nice W for hitting slides and the BGDK has mellow W near the wheel flares that gets more intense towards the center of the board. I found this to be really nice on such a large board because you don't have to be on the steep part of the W if you don't want to be, however, you can make your stance slightly more narrow to take advantage of a more pronounced area of W-concave.
Tails. Can we talk about the tails on this bad boy? The BGDK is rocking big ol' 7in tails that are great for freeride. The tails on the is deck are great for both surfy style slides from the tail and blunt slides. What makes them so nice for sliding is that the concave continues from the deck through the nose and tail. This helps you really lock you foot into place on the tail without a problem.
As I mentioned above, I really like this board for freeride but something I can see other people not liking quite as much is the sheer length of this deck. There are certainly bigger wheelbases out there but BGDK definitely isn't a compact board. Which means it's not the most nimble board on the hill, so if you're into small wheelbase tech-y stuff you should look elsewhere. However, remember there are wheelbase options, so you can definitely opt for the smaller wheelbase.

Upsides: Freeride Friendly Concave and Sick Tails
Downsides: Long Wheelbase

Final Thoughts
Bustin brought a heavy hitter to the table with the BGDK, or as I lovingly call it the Big Dick, haha. This really is a board that can handle a variety of skate styles quite comfortably. That being said people need to remember this deck was designed to hit big hills and bigger slides. The enormous kicks make it fun to dabble with for freestyle but the deck itself is very heavy.
The Bustin BGDK is one of my favorite freeride boards ever and it actually currently holds my personal record for longest heelside slide. This thing pretty much eats hills for breakfast. I would recommend it to anyone looking for a freeride board that can handle a little bit of everything else pretty well too.

Thanks for reading!
Any questions, comments, concerns, hatemail???
Send it my way!!

Stay Awesome,
My Current Favorite Setup:
-Surf-Rodz 176mm 50* RKPs
-Bustin Snipers 66mm 80a
-Riptide WFB Barrels

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