Ladies and gentlemen, please allow me to introduce the Loaded Dervish Sama: the successor to the legendary Loaded Dervish. The Dervish has been one of the favorites in the Loaded lineup for years now; ever since it was released, it was a crowd pleaser. The Dervish was one of those boards that was meant to accommodate most riding styles and it did a pretty good job doing that over the years. And now, we have the Dervish Sama. It is essentially the same board you know and love, but with some slight modifications to make it even more shreddable and interdisciplinary friendly.
Now, before we talk about that, how about some tech talk. The measurements of the board are similar to the old Dervish. They made the deck slightly longer to accommodate for extra nose and tail kick (it was 41.5”, now it measures 42.8”). The deck is also a ½” wider than it used to be and is now 9” wide through the standing platform. Same wheelbase (measured inner hole to inner hole) of 31.5”. The EFP is right around 27-28”. The board construction is the same, as well: vertically laminated bamboo core sandwiched between epoxy and tri-axial fiberglass and CNC precision cut drop-throughs. The curves on this board are really something to note. The concave on the Sama also seems to be a bit more noticeable compared to the older Dervish. It has the Loaded camber/concave combo that you can find on a few of their other boards which gives it a good amount of spring under your feet while not being too flexy and still having the ability to lock your feet in.
A subtle change, but a big plus in my opinion: Loaded finally got away from the clear, spray-on grip and threw on something a little coarser that your feet will stick to better and that will ultimately last longer. They have what seems to be regular skate grip through most of the boards standing platform and then switch to a coarser grip on the nose and tail. This allows for easy movement and shifting your feet around on the main platform while still ensuring grip where you need it. For the graphic, Loaded explored something besides the Islamic inspired artwork (it will be missed) and switched to something a little more fresh. It is very abstract and for some reason reminds me of a cityscape or tall buildings or something, but that’s just me.
Before I continue, the setup I’ve been riding is the Flex 1 with Paris 180 trucks, Otang 70mm 83a purple Stimulus and Otang purple Nipple bushings all around. I weigh 175lbs and the board has a stiff, but lively flex underfoot. I would have to really try if I wanted to bottom out the board (I’m actually not sure if I could). I used this setup as my go to board for commuting, lower speed free-riding and just about everything in between.
As I said before, the board is similar to the previous Dervish, but with some slight improvements. Remember me mentioning the extra inches added to the length? Well, since the wheelbase stayed the same, it means the extra length was put to good use on the nose and tails. They also upturned the kicks a tad (the coarser grip at the ends of the board helps as well) to create more leverage and a more locked in feeling for manual and shuv-it tricks. They really feel solid with all of my weight on them (likely due to the reinforcement with extra fiberglass here). Worrying about your feet slipping off the nose and tail is now a thing of the past!
The added ½” in width makes a difference as well. It gives the board a larger standing platform and a more substantial feeling underfoot. It allows for a little more confidence in your cross steps and you won’t have to worry as much having your heels or toes drag off the edge of the board while sliding. It also allows you to put your weight just a little bit further from the board center in order to get more slip into your slide.
Beyond that, not too much about the board is different. The board rides like the old Dervish, but with a bit with a bit more confidence added from the kicks, grip, concave and wider platform. Because of the board’s design (drop through, symmetrical shape) it slides like a buttery piece of cake and makes most free-ride and freestyle tricks pretty easy to land. The dropped platform and lightweight bamboo construction (a complete weighs around 7.0 lbs) also make this board nice for pushing around town—your quads will thank you for having a lower standing platform. It’s also light enough so that you hardly notice it when you carry it around (just another plus for the commuters). The flex gives the board a fun and energetic ride for carving, while also making the board more comfy on rougher pavement. With my weight and the flex 1, it was a bit difficult to get the full energy returned from a carve which made pumping with this board a challenge.
Another new thing to note is that the flex range has been widened since the previous Dervish. No longer are you limited by two flexes; you have three to choose from! The usual rules apply here: flex 3 is for either the lighter weight riders (75-150 lbs) or for those who want some wicked flex, flex 2 is the in between and flex 1 is for either heavier riders (170-250+ lbs) or for those that like a stiffer ride. As I said before, I chose the flex 1 and I am right on the cusp of weight limits so the ride was not very forgiving. By getting the stiffer flex, I sacrificed a bit of the board’s liveliness for some extra stability at speeds and a bit more durability when taking tougher impacts.
With the new changes to the Dervish, I would say this board is ideal for those who want some serious carving action, but can still hold its own when freeriding slower hills. This board can hold a lot of energy in it’s when going in and coming out of a turn due to its camber, but to get the full benefit you need the right flex. Loaded provides good guidelines by posting weight limits with each flex. However, if you can, try to stand on the different Sama flexes at your local skate shop (or friend’s house) to pinpoint the right flex for you. If you want something that’ll be more stable at high speeds and more durable with bigger drops, think about going a flex stiffer. If you want something that pumps and carves for days, maybe try the lighter one.
If you have any questions, feel free to ask me and I’d be happy to try and answer them. And, as always, skate happy and spread the stoke!