Loaded's Tarab is the latest in a long line of dancing decks from one of the best longboard brands in the business.
Loaded have done a lot to further longboard dancing over the years, coming up with the Longboard Larry inspired Loaded "Dancer", then refining it to the "Bhangra" some years later.
Dancing has evolved hugely in this timeframe, starting out with a focus on footwork and basic flips back in the early 2000's - now longboard dancing has a baffling array of its own ollie, manual and flip combos for you to learn.
Loaded have learnt a lot about deck construction in this time too.
Put all this together and distrill it into the deck, and you've got the Tarab.
The Tarab is right up there at the cutting edge of longboard deck design and construction.
Like a lot of Loaded's newer boards, it's built around a bamboo core sandwhiched in between Basalt fibres - a natural fibreglass alternative.
Longboard dancing is very hard on decks - rails and nose/tail sections especially take a lot of impact and abrasion.
With this in mind, Loaded have added urethane nose and tail bumpers, which really do make the nose and tail last a lot longer if you're kerbing your deck frequently.
They're also added UHMWPE (UltraHighMolecularWeightPolyEthelene - similar to the material used in Slide Pucks) along the top of the rails, right down the length of the deck - so if your board lands upside-down on a failed flip trick, it'll survuve the impact a lot better.
There's a layer of cork on the topsheet for a little extra damping and grip fopr your feet.
Similar to Loaded's other offerings, the Tarab comes in two flex options. The stiffe flex has an extra layer of bamboo under the cork topsheet to stiffen things up a little. We suggest that you choose your flex basede on your skating style as well as youre weight - if you're super agressive and doing a lot of ollie based tricks, the stiffer flex will be less prone to snapping and offers a bit more pop.
Loaded have really thought about the Tarab, and you can see the rider feedback throughout the shape and profile of the deck as soon as you pick it up.
The concave is pretty mellow - Loaded's focus is comfort for cruising and footwork, not grip. If you want to do a lot of sliding, look elsewhere.
The nose and tails are also pretty mellow, which makes for a less responsive "pop" - most longboard dancing decks are like this now.
There is a little rocker running along the length of the deck, which really adds to the deck feel. We really like rocker here at Vandem, it acts to cradle your feet and puts your knees together a little more.
The deck is totally symmetrical in shape and profile, as you would expect from a modern dancing deck - flips and shuvits are great on the Tarab.
Loaded have moulded in wheel wells and "grab rail" channels down the rails inboard of the trucks. An interesting addition which acts a nice reference point if you do a lot of "flip-the-board-up-and-grab-it" stuff.
The griptape fnishes the deck off - Loaded have specced their own die-cut griptape design, with more gripe over the nose and tail and less in the center of the deck - so spinner and drag footwork moves are a bit easier, without compromising the grip that you really do need at the nose and tail.
In short, Loaded have put a lot of thought and expereince into the design and manufacture of the Tarab, and it shows!
How does it skate?
In a word, it's awesome.
If you're a committed dancer, there's a lot you will like about the Tarab.
The shape and concave are mellow enough for a cruise around, but technical enough for the latest dance moves.
It's long, as it needs to be to accomodate some footwork, but not so long that you can't use it as an every day cruiser.
Underfoot board feel is really, really nice. We wouldn't want to hit the hills on the Tarab, but that's not really what it's for - as a cruiser and high-end dancing longboard deck, the Tarab is really the new benchmark.
Loaded's new contruction is really very impresive too, adding a lot of durability to a lively-feeling deck with good pop.
In fact, the only real downside we can see to the Tarab is the price - for what it's designed for, allowing for personal prefernce, it's pretty much perfect.
All that technology comes with a hefty price tag - like a lot of Loaded decks, the Tarab is definitely not a cheap option.
Here at Vandem we are big proponents of setting yourself up with quality gear from the outset - and if you're a dancer trashing decks all day, you'll really appreciate the quality inherant in the Tarab's shape and construction.
However, at £250 deck only there are some interesting alternatives that are worth a look.
For a very similar deck, without quite as many bells and whistles but also at less than half the price, the Lush Legend is definitely worth checking out. It's maple and fibreglass soaked through with epoxy - so whilst it's not going to last as long as the reniforced Tarab, it's a tough, light and flexy setup. A simple, refined symmetrical shape with a little rocker profile lends to great board feel.
If your focus is footwork and surf-style longboarding, check out the Lush Kisiwa. It's way longer than the Tarab, and not intended to be flipped and chucked around in the same way. It's dead flat and makes an amazing cruiser for those who want to make a statement. Handmade in the UK too!
If you really want to stand out though, check out swallowtailed the Hackbrett Wasser. This is a real monster of a longboard, but it's also a very technical construction and concave profile. The Wasser is much more at home on the hills than a Tarab, so if you're looking for a "big gun" for your quiver, this is where it's at.
The Tarab is available as a deck only, or a complete. We offer the Tarab built up in two options: Classic with cast trucks, or the Premium with the Sabre Forged Precision trucks for super high strength and a smoother turn.
We can also build up a custom complete with whatever trucks and wheels you want - get in touch to learn more!