2017 CrazyFly Bulldozer 140 x 42cm review

KW reviews a European made, high quality freeride/freestyle board for the experienced rider!

 

THIS TEST FIRST APPEARED IN ISSUE #86 IN MARCH 2017

 

 

TEST TEAM NOTES:

As with the Sculp kite, the presentation of the Bulldozer is first class and there’s a feel good factor as you unwrap it. Thankfully, it’s the build quality of the product itself rather than the packaging that stands out most, though. A credit to having their own factory in Europe, the bonding between the top and bottom sheet is absolutely mint. Seriously good, the quality must be top three of anything we’ve ever seen recently. Fractionally longer footstrap screws to help the thread bite more easily would be our only request for change. The Bulldozer is relatively light and thin though for a freestyle board, so perhaps it’s all just very finely measured.

 

 

The CF Hexa pads and straps have always been fairly stiff when brand new. Before hitting the water we spent time making fine adjustments to the strap in terms of how far forward they sat over our feet and where we wanted the tightest pressure. Although they are stiff and uncomfortable if you set them up incorrectly, if you spend the time customising the set up, you can get them just right for you. The toe-grip is also excellent, allowing you to have a looser fitting strap, but still finding the grip you need.

The quattro concave is stunningly well machined and runs along the length of the board. Although the board is fairly thin, there’s still a lovely amount of shaping in the rails, offering smooth bite. The wakestyle 3.0 fins are very low profile but this board is much more focused on freestyle performance than easy freeride grip. On the water the Bulldozer is immediately playful and switches very easily. It’s loose, but with technique you can find lots of grip. The response is stiff, and although it’s perfectly ridable in straps without causing leg ache and handles strong winds without too much trouble, it will excel in boots when you can get more and more performance out of that stiffness. If you’re looking for advantages in unhooked performance the Bulldozer is superb and allows you to land flat with softness and control.

 

 

The entire base of the board gives you so much grip and drive forward when you engage it in a wave face. The rail may be loose at times for inexperienced riders, but when it comes to feeling the surf sensation of that rear tip when engaged in a wave face, everyone will love that. Having said that, it takes skills to ride at speed on a relatively loose board (looser in straps) and get into positions to do things like that! If you’re an intermediate, the Bulldozer isn’t the easiest board to ride, but for anyone with fairly good board skills who is looking for a beautiful, lightweight and relatively comfortable freestyle machine, the Bulldozer is a cracking option for non-perfect, real world conditions. It’s energised to the max!

 

 

SUMMARY:

The Bulldozer has a high natural speed and although works well in straps, will suit riders looking to ride more regularly in boots. It can still be a good stepping stone for the progressive freerider, but you need to be on your game. The robust build quality of previous Bulldozers seemed to override the connection you felt as a rider and numbed the all-round riding comfort. Massive improvements in that regard this year and the classy, refined feel is now more in line with the production quality.

 

KW LIKED:

Sublime build quality that doesn’t come at the expense of added weight or loss of feel.

 

KW WOULD CHANGE:

Although there’s comfort here for good riders, intermediates will find it loose and, therefore, stiff.

 

BULLDOZER BALANCE POINTS:

Build quality: 9.5

Fixtures and fitting: 8

Speed: 8

Pop: 7

Drive: 7.5

Flex: 6

Comfort: 7

Looseness: 4

Grip: 7.5

Upwind: 8.5

Slider proof: NA

Boots applicable: Yes. Standard 6” binding compatibility

Freeriding: 6

Freestyle: 9

Ease of use: 6 (Higher for good riders who’ll love it)

 

SIZES: 143 x 43, 140 x 42 and 135 x 41cm

 

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