AXIS NuSkool 135 (2014)

Axis NuSkool 135 2014

THE HYPE:

The NuSkool’s straight outline in the middle and more curve in the tips make it smooth, stable, instantly comfortable and therefore a blast to use. The bottom shaping is less complicated than some of AXIS’ more aggressive freestyle models, but still provides plenty of grip and a new rockerline allows the board to slide more easily over the water. Coupled with the bottom shape there’s reduced drag, making it faster, providing more upwind ability and solid but smooth landings. The outline, flex and bottom shape combination allow the NuSkool to smooth out chop and still deliver when pushed to the next level. Highly revered by young and female riders as it’s so light, it also has the correct amount of pop that lighter riders need to achieve their goals. A durable PBT top and bottom sheet, coloured and tough PU rails bond very well to the epoxy while the Paulownia wood core is light, strong and one of the most sustainable timbers. The NuSkool’s Biaxial fibreglass laminate and uni carbon layers provide lots of reinforcement and enhanced performance.

Axis NuSkool 135 2014 kiteboard twin tip

TEST TEAM NOTES:

AXIS may be a relatively new brand name to some of you, but designer Adrian Roper carries a huge heritage in board design within the kitesurfing industry. Pulling both AXIS boards out of their boxes for this issue we were impressed by the first impressions of high-quality finish and their light weight. Featuring a shiny finish rather than the more agricultural finish of some more rugged brands, the AXIS NuSkool although more plasticky looking with its PBT top and bottom coat, isn’t lacking in any interior or exterior build quality. The look of this orange model could be argued to look like a groms board, but the black and blue model is more ‘mature’ and classy. Featuring a very stiff central section, moderate flex in the tips the NuSkool is a freeride/freestyle outline with more of an emphasis on freestyle, but is more rounded than full on out-and-out freestyle shapes.

Axis Traction footpad and strap system 2014

AXIS Traction system

In terms of the upholstery and cockpit for your feet, we very much like the most simple AXIS pads and straps that come with the NuSkool (some other boards come with a more high-tech pad, but we like these simple versions). There’s a nice lip around the whole pad, loads of grip underfoot but the beauty and comfort and encapsulating fit of these seem to be in their basic elements. There’s grip on the side of your feet, which seems to be difficult to get right, there’s also good toe-grip, they’re really easy to fit and adjust, are light and, most importantly, good looking. They’re just a single Velcro strip set-up, easy to adjust and although quite generic with standard stiff plastic inserts up through the pad, they provide such a nice fit either side of your feet

The first thing you notice and enjoy about the NuSkool is the connection and feel of control. This largely stems from the fact that straight away you feel very planted on the board, that it’s quick, lively and precise. When we say there are a lot of traditional aspects in this board that we like, it’s a compliment in terms of the ride quality that it provides. Looking at the rails they are narrow and literally just a standard ABS rail with no discernibly special shape, yet the NuSkool provides a lot of control and for intermediates and above you can rest assured that this ticks all the boxes in terms of a light weight, lively feel and it easily stays on your feet with the combination of being light in weight with the great pads and straps. It’s a fascinating fact that the edge feels so good on the NuSkool – get that edge in and it literally feels like it drops a few gears and tracks really nicely.

The ease of use and confidence that this board inspires is a huge aspect. Straight away we were kite looping it and taking a few risks, but the risks never felt as big as they might. There’s nothing sticky about the NuSkool edge to edge, yet there’s loads of grip and when landing hard and fast the NuSkool tracks quickly again.

Axis NuSkool 135 2014 twin tip kiteboard

SUMMARY:

The NuSkool is a freestyle board that’s easy to ride and doesn’t need a lot of technical input to perform well. Early intermediates might find it a bit stiff and that it runs a bit heavily on its rail, but for a keen intermediate and above looking to improve their riding it’s great. Probably too thin and light for boots, but it’s a performance board that will keep lots of riders performing comfortably and with an easy smile on their face. We know bigger riders enjoy the bigger sizes, so it’s not just exclusively for lighter/female riders, although there’s no doubt there are big benefits for them in this board.

KW LIKED:
Sporty performance – if you like the feel of a light, quick board, you’ll enjoy this.

KW WOULD CHANGE:
On this model we’d probably change the bird in the graphic which might deter some riders, but as we mentioned, the 138 in black and blue is rad and there’s a good range of sizes.

SIZES: 138 x 42, 135 x 41, 132 x 40 and 128 x 38cm

More on the AXIS range at: www.AXISkiteboarding.com

 

Here’s the official AXIS product video for the NuSkool 2014 range:

AXIS NUSKOOL 2014 from AXIS Kiteboarding on Vimeo.

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