Reviews Views Date of last review
6 23039 Thu September 30, 2004
Recommended By Average Price Average Rating
100% of reviewers $363.00 4.8

Board Specifications:
Length:138 cm
Mid width: 16.9"
Tip width: N/A
Rocker height:2.5"
Rocker type:3 stage
Stance options: 18"-23.5"
Fin configuration: 4 Molded, 2 removable
Skill level:Advanced
Construction: Polyurethane foam Aerocore, PBT top
MSRP: $430.00
Buy Now From Boardstop:
  • Liquid Force Wakeboards

  • More Information:
  • Liquid Force Wakeboards

  • Manufacturer's Description:
    Although it may seem crazy, we still consider Shawn Watson an “up and coming rider”. Not that we don’t think he’s already “made it”, but we just know that his potential on the water, and in the design room are still untapped. He’s on a roll, and is taking over the reigns of our sport and going with it. We already think he’s the best wakeboarder in the world on most days, but mention anything like that to him and he’ll say… “nah… I’ve got a lot of learning to do”. The humble kid from South Florida has grown up with LF, and he’s continuing to give us board designs and ideas that will continue to shape the future of our line, and of wakeboarding. He’ll be a leading part of our family for years to come.

    Watson’s Substance series was our top seller last year, for good reason…The board not only rides well if you’re a pro, it also works well for the rest of us. It’s designed for the rider looking for loads of vertical pop, smooth transitions, and a responsive yet mellow approach to the wake.

    There are some changes to Shawn’s ride this year. He’s added some thickness to the nose and tail for strength, and also ran the molded in side fins a bit farther back on the tail for extra control. The sizes have
    changed as well, fitting more into what we think is the perfect size Matrix. We’ve basically taken his perfect board, and made it more perfect.

    Substance Features:

  • Scalloped Diamond Tail
    Extended hold up the wake, and increased pop off the tail
  • Variable Edge Rail Shape
    Soft in the center, sharpens as it nears the tail. A key element to this ride.
    Forgiving when neutral, locks and accelerates when weight is transferred to tail
  • 3 Stage Rocker
    Straight up explosion!
  • Removable, long based center fin
    Allows rider to fine tune the board to desired feel. Watson rides without for a loose fun feel. Mere mortals will appreciate the center fin.
  • Quad channels that grow to deep molded in side fins
    Exceptional hold, clean sliding on rails
  • Keywords: liquid force Substance 138

    Pat McCarthy

    Registered: January 2003
    Posts: 3223
    Review Date: Tue June 29, 2004 Would you recommend the product? Yes | Price you paid?: $399.99 | Rating: 4 

    Pros: Vertical Pop, Responsive Edges, Fin Versatility
    Cons: Loose ride without center fin

    One of Liquid Force's top selling boards is Shawn Watson's Substance pro model. Wakeboarder.com took the 2004 Substance 142 cm version for a test drive, and we wanted to share the results with you.


    The 2004 Substance comes in three sizes, the 142 cm, 138 cm, and 134 cm. For this test we rode the Substance 142 cm version, so we'll speak specifically to it's dimensions. The Substance is a bit wider than the average board with it's 43.4 cm mid-width. Combined with the 142 cm length, it's got a lot of surface area for maximum pop and soft landings.


    As mentioned above, the Substance is a big and wide board. It has a 3-stage rocker with 2.7 inches of rocker, making it a board that pops abruptly when you hit the wake, but the extra size does help it land softer compared to some 3-stage rocker boards. It features molded fins on the bottom of the board combined with a 1.1 inch center fin that is optional. Watson decided to move the molded fins back closer to the tip and tail for added control. The combination of molded fins and a removable center fin gives flexibility depending on if you're looking for a free loose ride, or a controlled ride where the board tracks solidly.


    The Substance 142 has graphics that can best be described as subtle and cool. It looks a bit like art with a futuristic feel, and the colors don't jump out too much. It fits the rider who wants something cool and relaxed instead of flamboyant.

    The Ride

    The first thing I noticed about the Substance was the pop off the wake. The 3-stage rocker and board width allow you to really generate some serious vertical pop off the wake. When I first hopped on it I had to lay off my normal edge in order to stay under control at first. After a few minutes I had settled in and started to adjust to the pop.

    The other primary feature I noticed is the board is slow, yet fast. I know that sounds strange, but it generally has a feeling of being a slower controlled board in the water. However, as soon as I decided to edge in any direction it sliced through the water quickly and with ease.

    Landings felt solid and there wasn't anything negative that I experienced about how the board handled in the water or in the air.

    I also tested it without the center fin and the ride was definitely loose, but still quite easy to control by staying on my edges. I'd imagine most advanced riders would prefer to ride this board without the optional center fin.

    The Bottom Line

    It's easy to see why this board is a top seller. It pops very well, and most riders crave that hang time. It's also responsive in the water and is a good reflection of the way Shawn Watson rides. It's versatility of being able to use just molded fins or include the center fin is convenient if you like to mix things up or adjust your tracking level for different water conditions.

    The bottom line is if you're looking for a board that has great vertical pop, is fast while also feeling like a relaxed board, and has some width and size to it, then the 2004 Substance will be a great fit for you.

    Registered: July 2004
    Posts: 34
    Review Date: Sun July 18, 2004 Would you recommend the product? Yes | Price you paid?: $350.00 | Rating: 5 

    Pros: great pop with good speed and just a very good board overall
    Cons: NONE

    I recently bought this board and when i first took it out for the ride it took a little while to get used to it but once that kicks in its all up hill from there. I also ride without the center fin because for me it tracks well without it and i like a little looser ride.

    Registered: July 2004
    Posts: 2
    Review Date: Mon July 26, 2004 Would you recommend the product? Yes | Price you paid?: $380.00 | Rating: 5 

    Pros: awesome pop, good speed, easy to ride
    Cons: ?

    This board is awesome. I was riding my friends hyperlite byerly and the substance is so much better. I feel much more in control and it has given me more confidence to go bigger. I love this board.

    Registered: July 2004
    Posts: 27
    Review Date: Sun August 1, 2004 Would you recommend the product? Yes | Price you paid?: $305.00 | Rating: 5 

    Pros: Everything
    Cons: none

    Awesome board!! I love my board, I had the byerly and the substance OWNS it. Nothing wrong with this board, the pop is awesome, it tracks well, but allows you to do surface 180's easy. Awesome board. (Check Ebay for deals, I got mine for $305 at the beginning of the season brand new)

    Registered: January 2003
    Posts: 853
    Review Date: Wed August 11, 2004 Would you recommend the product? Yes | Price you paid?: $380.00 | Rating: 5 

    Pros: Pop, smooth feel, tracks well, optional center fin
    Cons: white in color, may get discoloured in murky waters

    I bought this board without demoing it, and I was extremely happy with it. I used to ride a 2001 Obrien Answer. The pop on this board took me a while to get used to, but its a straight vertical pop and is a very good representation of how Shawn Watson rides. This board is very smooth and quick, pops very well and lands just as smooth. Optional center fin for looser feel or more tracking in rough conditions. Definitly worth my money, and the graphics are sick. Im going to be keeping this board for a long time!

    Registered: September 2004
    Posts: 1
    Review Date: Thu September 30, 2004 Would you recommend the product? Yes | Price you paid?: None indicated | Rating: 5 

    Pros: Tracks well and huge pops
    Cons: Non Yet

    I used to ride an Evo 138 it didn't really work well for me. Ever since I got this substance 138 it did wonders for me. I ride with the center fins on don't really like the loose feeling. The board holds it's edge really well on the water. It really reponses to what ever tricks u want it to do especially surface tricks. This board gives me bigger air and the landings are just soft. I would highly recommend this board.

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