Should I buy a Splitboard or Make a Splitboard?
DYI or Factory Split?
There are two ways to get your hands on a splitboard and get into the backcountry.
Option 1: Make your own (DYI) out of a normal snowboard.
Option 2: Purchase a factory made splitboard.
Option 1-Make your own.
This is no doubt the cheaper option. If you have a board lying around you can hack it into a split, but by no means is it easy.
The guy does a great job and explains it well but a LOT of work is required. Yes it would be cool to say you split your own board but chances of messing it up are a higher in our opinion and you don’t want to end up having problems with it down the road while sitting on the top of a mountain. Additionally, you need the right tools and set up to do it the right way, which might increase the cost of building a board yourself.
There are several shops that will do it for a fee. We recently spoke with a local shop (Salty Peaks) and the price they gave is listed below. The overall price isn’t too bad considering you are splitting a board you already have lying around. But after adding it all up you really aren’t saving that much in the long run. So if you are on a tight budget this may be the way to go to get into the backcountry.
Rough Cost for DYI splitboard
$0 Cost of board (if you already have one)
$120 To split the board
$40 To epoxy the inside fresh cut edge (No metal inside edge)
$150 For the actual split kit hardware
$85 To mount split kit hardware
Pro and Cons of a DYI splitboard.
Pros-Costs less, already have a board to use, you can feel like a man and do it yourself.
Cons-You’re riding a split that wasn’t meant to be a split, no inside edges of skis while in climbing mode. Biggest of all is that you cannot adjust the stance once it is set.
Option2- Purchase a factory built splitboard.
This is a the expensive option as boards can range anywhere from $500-$1000. Although you can always search the local online classified ads or eBay for a used setup.
This is the better option in my opinion if you have the funds. The board come straight from factory as a splitboard. It was intended to be a splitboard from its conception. It has inside edges and holes predrilled for all of the hardware you will need so there are no bolts on the underside of your board. The biggest Pro is you will be able to switch your stance from goofy to regular and adjust your stance angles as much as you want.
My first splitboard was an older factory Burton S series Splitboard. I loved that I could get into the back country but I HATED the board. It was big, stiff, and hard to turn. I wouldn’t even dare catch a little air on it. It was like driving an old Buick in the streets of New York City. But more recently I purchased a K2 Panoramic and have loved it. It is a night and day difference., It is shorter, lighter, and easy to turn. The technology and number of companies making splitboards has increased a lot on the past few years and you can get a great quality splitboard now.
Rough Cost for Factory splitboard
$500-1000 New OR $300-$800 used.
$150 For the actual split kit hardware (if not included)
$150 skins (if not included)
Total=$300-$1500 (depending on if you buy new or used)