Hello and welcome to my Nidecker Thruster review.
In this review, I will take a look at the Thruster as an aggressive all-mountain snowboard.
As per tradition here at SnowboardingProfiles.com I will give the Thruster a score out of 100 (based on several factors) and see how it compares with other aggressive all-mountain snowboards.
Board: Nidecker Thruster
Style: Aggressive All-Mountain
Flex Rating: Stiff (8/10)
Flex Feel on Snow: Medium-Stiff (7/10)
Rating Score: 84.2/100
Compared to other Men’s Aggressive All-Mountain Boards
Out of the 19 men’s aggressive all-mountain snowboards that I rated:
Overview of the Thruster’s Specs
Check out the tables for the Thruster’s specs and available sizes.
Setback 0.75" (20mm)
Sintered (Nidecker's N-9000)
Waist Width (mm)
Rec Rider Weight (lb)
Rec Rider Weight (kg)
Who is the Thruster Most Suited To?
The Thruster is best suited to someone looking for a board that's aggressive and relatively stiff but not hyper aggressive or stiff - still some forgiveness there. Also good for someone who wants basically full camber, but wants better in powder than most trad camber boards (because of the "sidekick" bevel around the contact points on the nose among other things).
For the more advanced rider, not for beginners and even intermediate might have some trouble, unless a really high end intermediate bordering on advanced.
The Thruster in More Detail
O.k. let’s take a more detailed look at what the Thruster is capable of.
Board: Nidecker Thruster 2022, 156cm (254mm waist width)
Date: January 18, 2022
Cloudy and a little misty - visibility was OK in spots but quite bad in other spots.
Temperature: 32°F (0°C) - no wind chill - not a breath of wind.
24hr snow: 0" (0cm)
48hr snow: 0" (0cm)
7 day snow: 9" (22cm)
On groomer: Slushy and ungroomed. Very bumpy uneven conditions even on groomer.
Off groomer: Pretty sketchy - mostly slushy with lots of tree debris.
Bindings angles: +15/-15
Stance width: 21.7″ (550mm)
Stance Setback: 0.75" (20mm)
Width at Inserts: 265.5mm (10.45") at front insert and 263.5mm (10.37") at back insert*
* note that Nidecker publishes the width at inserts (at reference stance) for all their boards - which is really cool. I wish everyone did this! But note that the measurements above are what I took, not Nideckers Measurements. Nidecker have 265mm (10.43") at front insert and 263mm (10.35") at back insert (so basically the same).
Rider Height: 6'0"
Rider Weight: 180lbs
Rider Boot Size: US9.5 Adidas Tactical ADV
Bindings Used: Burton Malavita M
Weight: 6lbs 8oz (2940 grams)
Weight per cm: 18.85 grams/cm
Average Weight per cm: 18.43 grams/cm*
*based on a sample of boards I’ve weighed in 2019, 2020, 2021 *& 2022 models. The Thruster is really close to the average - and felt that way on snow too.
I felt it at 7/10 flex. But if I was on the 159, I think it would likely have been more like 7.5/10.
Nothing to test in, unless you count slush, but based on specs, it should be decent. It's basically traditional camber, which isn't great of powder, but it has "sidekick" which bevels up the contact points at the nose to help with float.
It also has a longer nose than tail, some subtle taper (3mm) and a 0.75" (20mm) setback stance, which also help.
Carving & Turning
Carving: This thing rips a really good carve. There's a big bow of camber (measured at 9mm on the one I rode) and that really helps and it's stiff enough to be able to really lean into that carve. And the combination of the effective edge and sidecut radius felt just in the sweet spot to compliment everything
Ease of Turning: Not effortless to turn/slash on, but not arduous either.
Maneuverability at slow speeds: Takes a bit of muscling and not super quick edge to edge, but not bad at slow speeds either.
Skids: Not super cartchy but not super forgiving of skidded turns either. That sidekick helps to make it less catchy, most likely.
Felt nice and stable at speed and could generate good speed overall.
Crud: Smashes through crud pretty well - not easily bucked around. When you do get a little bucked on it, it's not super easy to correct but not terrible either. Just gotta commit and find a slightly smoother spot to correct if you get thrown off your line.
Bumps: Not bad but not super quick edge to edge either, for weaving between bumps. Going over top of bumps was fine though and hugged them pretty well.
Overall decent for jumps.
Pop: It has good pop when you wind it up, but you've got to load it up to get it to pop. Not super easy access in the pop.
Approach: Nice and stable for bigger approaches. Some maneuverability for trickier approaches, e.g. to less easily accessible sidehits, but not ultra maneuverable.
Landing: Nice and solid on a landing. Not super forgiving of bad landings though.
Side-hits: Not bad, but not amazing. A bit more maneuverability at easier access pop would help there.
Small jumps/Big Jumps: Best for bigger jumps.
Didn't feel too bad riding switch. With that setback, slight taper and a directional flex pattern, I was a little surprised with how it rode switch - not perfect by any means, but very doable.
Felt pretty good getting the spin around and OK, without being perfect, setting up and landing switch.
It's stiffer in the tail and not much press there, but easier to press the nose - not ideal for butters though, with that different feeling between nose and tail (with the nose also being longer than the tail).
Score Breakdown and Final Verdict
Check out the breakdown of the score in the table below.
TOTAL after normalizing
The Thruster is an aggressive board for sure, but it's not one that you have to be bombing full speed on all the time. There's that element of forgiveness to it as well - it's not no holds bar or anything.
And it's one of those aggressive all-mountain options that's also decent in powder - so for those who mostly like to (or have to) bomb and carve groomers, but also want something that can accommodate a powder day, the Thruster covers those bases well.
More Info, Current Prices and Where to Buy Online
If you want to learn more about the Thruster, or if you are ready to buy, or if you just want to research prices and availability, check out the links below.
If you want to check out some other aggressive all-mountain snowboard options, or if you want to compare the Thruster to other aggressive all-mountain snowboards, then check out the next link.
Eugene Y says
I appreciate your work and your reviews on this site!
I am a high-end intermediate level rider. And a beginner at the advanced level.
I snowboard about 30 days a year. Of those days, I spend 7 days in the mountains (groomers with medium snow; and freeride with bumps and crud, sometimes powder and ski tour).
I spend the other days at home, where it takes 1-2 minutes to go down the mountain.
I am primarily looking for a carving snowboard. That can give freeride adventure and has stable on uneven terrain.
So I am in a choice between the Truster and the Frontier.
What do you think of my choice?
I’m leaning more towards the Truster ..
Thanks for your message.
I would be leaning Thruster as well, given that you predominantly want a carving board. The Thruster is the better carver, IMO – and while the Frontier is a little better for powder (IMO), it’s not way better or anything and the Thruster should be decent enough.
Hope this helps with your decision