Inside the World’s Greenest Board Factory

Seattle-based Lib Tech crafts its snowboards, skis, skateboards, and surfboards in-house. With the collective energy of 30-plus years of board building and riding, their experiMENTAL Division handbuilds new shapes, flexes, contours, blends, and constructions, while working with the world’s top pros to fine-tune their product.

 

Courtesy Lib Tech.
Lib Tech’s Travis Rice Gold Member.

 

 

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Lib Tech’s parent company Mervin has been building boards for over 25 years. And their craftspeople need healthy work and play environments so they can achieve maximum shred. Thus their eco-practices are among the world’s greenest.

Norm Nelson, Mervin’s resident eco-hero and environmental process consultant, explains their deep eco-process background:

“Years ago it was very apparent that the composites industry is very toxic whether it was surfboards, airplanes or skis, but there were choices to be made and safer alternatives. Sometimes the more environmental options were cost prohibitive, but surprisingly often they were both safer for us to use and less costly. Although unconventional, this process required more skill, research and craftsmanship resulting in a stronger, higher performance product. Having our own factory and controlling the entire process from start to finish allows us to make these decisions and activate immediate real change.

In the 80’s, our environmental snowboard efforts were often met with ridicule or confusion but today we are excited that people are much more aware of how small, fragile and interdependent we are as citizens of this earth.”

Some of Lib Tech’s eco-practices:

  • They use non-petroleum based bio-plastics made from castor beans.
  • They don’t use any cancer-causing toxic automotive lacquer clearcoats.
  • They use soy-based elastomer sidewalls instead of toxic ABS.
  • They use only low VOC (Volatile Organic Compound) epoxy resin systems.
  • Their basalt fiber is additive-free & less toxic than conventional fiberglass.
  • They use water-cleansed grinding systems to minimize airborne particulate levels.
  • They use only renewable forest products for cores. Columbian Gold is FSC “pure” certified. Fast growing trees have long fibers & natural pop. Wood is nature’s fiberglass!
  • Their wood sawdust is recycled as a soil additive and scrap wood is donated as kindling.
  • They recycle all our scrap plastics (base cutouts, etc.).
  • Their factory heating runs on renewable based biodiesel.

More on Lib Tech here. Lib Tech is a partner of BC’s Eagle Pass Heliskiing in the heart of the deep-pow Monashees.

 

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