Hello and welcome to my Arbor A Frame Snowboard Review.
In this review I will take a look at the A-Frame as a Freeride snowboard.
As per tradition here at SnowboardingProfiles.com I will give the A-Frame a score out of 100 (based on several factors) and also see how it compares with other Freeride snowboards.
Board: Arbor A-Frame 2023
Price: $649 (USD recommended retail)
Flex Rating: Stiff (8/10)
Flex Feel: Mid-Stiff (7/10)
Rating Score: 83.2/100
Compared to other Men’s Freeride Boards
Out of the 35 Men’s Freeride snowboards that I rated:
Overview of the A-Frame’s Specs
Check out the tables for the A Frame’s specs and available sizes.
Traditional Camber | Except not quite as it's Arbor's "System Camber"
Sintered (Arbor's "Sintered Plus" base)
Waist Width (mm)
Rec Rider Weight (lb)
Rec Rider Weight (kg)
Who is the A-Frame Most Suited To?
The Arbor A-Frame is best suited to a more of a advanced all-mountain or freeride/powder kind of rider who wants that one-board quiver that is capable anywhere on the mountain.
I would suggest it to riders who want to spend bluebird days carving up groomers slashing everything in site without feeling like your going to catch a edge and suffer the consequences and then when the snow falls they are hunting fresh lines in the trees going as fast as possible looking to find a natural feature to pop off of.
Definitely not a beginner friendly board but suitable for any rider who is a upper intermediate and up.
The A-Frame in More Detail
O.k. let’s take a more detailed look at what the A-Frame is capable of.
Board: Arbor A-Frame 2023, 158cm (254mm waist width)
Date: March 24, 2022
Sunny with barely a cloud in the sky.
Temperature: 30°F (-1°C) in the morning, warming up to 36°F (2°C) in the afternoon.
24hr snow: 0" (0cm)
48hr snow: 0" (0cm)
7 day snow: 27" (69cm)
On groomer: Hard packed but not icy.
Off groomer: Icy and crunchy to start but softened up as the day went on.
Bindings angles: +12/-9
Stance width: 21.3″ (540mm)
Stance Setback: Setback 3/4" (10mm)*
*on effective edge - on total length of board setback more like 2.8" (70mm)
Width at Inserts: 10.63" (270mm) at front insert and 10.55" (268mm) at back insert.
Rider Height: 6'1"
Rider Weight: 180lbs
Rider Boot Size: US9.5 Adidas Tactical Lexicon ADV
Bindings Used: Fix Yale: M
Weight: 6lbs 6oz (2880grams)
Weight per cm: 18.23 grams/cm
Average Weight per cm: 18.59 grams/cm*
*based on a sample size of around 200 models that I’ve weighed in 2019, 2020, 2021, 2022 & 2023 models. The A-Frame was a little lighter than normal on the scales and felt normal in terms of weight, when riding.
Unfortunately no fresh snow had fallen recently but we were able to get a feel for the board and that coupled with the specs gave us a good idea of what this board would be like in powder.
The A-Frame is a directional board with 8.7mm of taper plus a longer nose and shorter tail helps sink the tail when riding in the powder. However no rocker in the profile isn't ideal when riding in deeper snow.
Compared to most full camber boards I think the A-Frame would still excel in powder. It may not have any rocker but it has everything else you could want when riding deeper snow.
The Arbor A-Frame features their system camber which essentially means the camber profile reduces towards both the nose and tail. This made carving really smooth as you get the full camber profile feel without the catchiness that usually comes with it. The A-Frame can lay out any type of carve you want but I preferred long drawn out carves with it.
Ease of Turns/Slashing: Considering its a full camber board I felt it was really easy and enjoyable. Despite having a semi locked feel overall, particularly when you really engaged in a carve, it let's you get a little bit loose as well, allowing you to kick out that tail and slash with minimal effort.
Maneuverability at slow speeds (nimbleness): More Nimble than I was expecting. It was pretty quick edge-to-edge at slower speeds.
Skidded Turns: Not at all catchy to me. I would say the system camber again plays a large roll in this.
Not my first choice for bombing a hill as fast as possible but its full camber profile makes it quicker then average still. Felt nice and stable at speed and didn't notice it get chattery. Had a nice amount of glide to it as well which was nice.
Crud/Chunder: Was able to smash through crud/chunder with minimal effort thanks to the larger nose. It didn't feel like you were getting bucked around very often and if you did it was easy to correct.
Trees/Bumps: Shorter tail makes it quick edge to edge it had no issues absorbing bumps as well. I really enjoyed it in the trees too as it was easy to maneuver between and around them.
Let’s Break up this text with a Video
Not specifically made for jumps but did a lot better than I anticipated.
Pop: The A-Frame had much more pop than expected. Granted you need to work for it as it's a little difficult to access but once you are comfortable and used to it, you can really get a lot of pop out of this board.
Approach: It felt stable especially when riding at something with decent speed. I really enjoy the shorter tail as well it allowed for quick easy adjustments when required.
Landing: Felt pretty stable and forgiving on most landings. The one thing I noticed is you can't land too tail heavy due to the tail being shorter.
Side-hits: Had a good time on side hits. It wasn't catchy which allows you to keep your speed and use the pop to your benefit when desired.
Small jumps/Big jumps: I found it capable on both but overall would prefer it on a medium sized jump.
Not ideal for switch riding. The tail being shorter than the nose, on top of the 8.7mm of taper, make it difficult it. Still capable at riding switch for shorter distances, if necessary, but it will take some getting used to.
Really enjoyed the A-Frame for tail butters/presses its almost effortless to lean back on the smaller tail and press it. I found the Nose required more effort, which makes sense.
Score Breakdown and Final Verdict
Check out the breakdown of the score in the table below.
TOTAL after normalizing
Overall the Arbor A-Frame is a fun versatile board that can be ridden anywhere on the mountain. It definitely excels at carving and powder riding though.
It really doesn't have any weaknesses. It can carve just about anything, handle powder with ease and has enough pop and playfulness to take on side hits or jumps when desired.
I was expecting something stiffer and less nimble and more of a powder/carving/speed specialist, and whilst it did excel in those areas, it was surprisingly good in other areas and surprisingly versatile.
More Info, Current Prices and Where to Buy Online
Check out the links below for more info on the A-Frame, where to buy or if you are researching prices or available sizes.
If your keen to check out some other Freeride options or to see how the A-Frame compares to other freeride decks check out the link below.
Ed Reeve says
What would be your choice of bindings for the A-Frame? Cartel-X, Malavita or another?
I think the Cartel-X would be a really good match to the A-Frame. Malavita doable, but softer than optimal for it, IMO. Anything from our all-mountain freeride binding list would be a good bet, IMO. Or if you wanted to go stiffer, you could also look at our freeride bindings list.
Ed Reeve says
Thanks for taking the time to reply, much appreciated. Keep up the great work.
PS Now in my 50s (not “Not in my 50s)
You’re very welcome Ed. Yeah, I guessed that’s what you’d meant!
Ed Reeve says
Thanks for reviewing the A-frame. It’s a great looking board and sounds great for my needs.
I’d appreciate your advice for my next board please.
I’m not in my 50’s and taking my kids out on the slopes so I’m mostly carving groomers and occasionally going back country through trees so looking for a board that’s great for carving and powder. I don’t ride switch or park so the A-frame could be the board for me.
I’m 6ft and 172 pounds with US size 10 boots. Which size and board would you recommend?
Keep up the great work.
Thanks for your message.
I think the A-Frame could work well, assuming you’re an advanced level rider. I would be leaning 158 for your specs. You could go 162 as well, if you were going to be bombing hard most of the time, but given you’ll be out with the kids it sounds like you’ll be riding more chill in the groomers. Also to note that this board is wider than the waist width makes it look, so the 158 should still give you good powder float (and the fact the board is suited to riding powder as well). So taking all that into account I think the 162 is probably going to feel too big. It might be doable if you were riding big mountain all the time, but otherwise, I’d go 158 for this board.
Hope this helps with your decision
Ed Reeve says
Thanks again. Last question. I was about to purchase the 158 but found the 159W at a considerable discount. I guess it’s going to be slower to turn on Groomers which I’ll be riding most of the time but give more float on the occasional powder days. My boot size is US 10 so the 158 is probably the better board but just wondered what you thought as it’s nearly $200 difference?
I think the 159W is going to feel too wide overall. The regular width is wide for a regular width board as it is. Yes, you’d get more float in powder, for sure, but I wouldn’t personally make the trade off in this case, as tempting as that cost saving is.