I took the large 100mm 83a Boa Contractor wheels off the Boosted Dual (put back on the original Kegels for a while) and, for a laugh, put them on the drop-down Zenit AB deck to see how it works with such big wheels. The answer is it slows down the conventional push longboard, but the ride around the local rough-pavement parks is great… surprisingly good.
Here is the UK, in autumn, pavements like these are typical – rough stones and lots of debris, but the big Boas just ride over like they are nothing. The different is actually remarkable and enough to me think that I might not put the big Boas back on the Boosted.
The key here is the drop-down Zenit AB deck, with the big wheels – although the wheels raise up the whole set-up, it is still all very stable with the deck drop-down and not tippy at all. The downside, although not enough to put me off keeping this set-up, is how much the big 100mm wheels, even at 83a, slow down the board and a lot more effort is required to push. If this was an LDP (Long Distance Push) set-up it would be a real workout!
Oh, one final thing, if you are going to buy a set of these wheels, don’t get them in white – they get discoloured and show up road crap real quick… get the red.
Finally got round to putting the Teamgee H3 unit on to the 121c Aileron deck and boy does it look good.
I really like this 31″carbon-fiber deck (it is one of my favorites), which has a nice concave top and big aggressive kick-tail. It feels more like a rigid downhill board but still carves really nicely.
Although the H3 unit is slow uphills (single low power motor) it is still surprisingly fun on flat ground carving under power. This is the same deck that is being used on the new Arc Board Aileron, with the Arc Board fusion drive; which should make for one hell of a board – I am looking forward to testing one.
Fitting the H3 was easy, as it is meant to be. I used two half-risers (a riser bad cut in half) to cover a gap between the rear of the motor unit and the foam on the front of the unit.
I really like the look of these recycled aluminum decks from the small US maker Beercan Boards of Douglas, Gorgia – yes, they are made from recycled beer cans and other aluminum and plastic products. Very cool, and I am very tempted but suspect I would have to incur import tax and duty.
They do some nice custom/limited editions versions, including a stunning 38″ Punisher version.
They also make their own wheels in 70, 72, 73 and 76mm
Finally got to mount the H3 unit (this is an advance/pilot unit) to our 32″ custom made Hecs Deck. It took longer than I thought because I lost the remote, which has now thankfully turned up.
Fitting the unit was relatively easy; I used one 2.5mm riser pad and half of another to build up the gap the trucks had with my deck curving quickly away for the kick-tail.
Riser pads installe
Gap from the curve of the deck for the kick-tail
This is effectively a slightly smaller battery (2200mah) and single motor version of the H6 – it rides virtually the same, with nice progressive control, sharp braking (be careful) and the odd reverse button.
Hector of Hecs Deck is moving workshop and has two interesting 40″ custom ‘last out of the workshop’ decks for sale, both in interesting blue tinted wood. One a fish scales, similar to one I already have which is a really interesting wood pattern. If you are interested contact at firstname.lastname@example.org.
I have been looking, purely out of interest, at various mechanical braking options for conventional longboards.
Most people will either just run-off the board if things are getting all scary, or footbrake if not going too fast. A few, with more experience and practice, can slide a board, but that still needs space and safe situation to do so. The concept here is of having another mechanical option.
In summary, there seems to be three different types of solutions:
1. Braking on the wheel – Mingo Skateboard ‘The Frog’
Mingo Skateboard’s ‘Frog’ device is attached to the exposed truck (drop-through deck) and foot pressure forces brake levers on to the wheels. The reviews I read were not that complimentary, including it scaring the wheels – a shame, and I might still try it, as it does not require any drilling into the board.
2. Braking on the road – Pogo, Handmade & Boolah Boards
German company Pogo, Korean Handmade and US Boolah Boards use the same simple mechanism of the foot forcing down a brake bad against the road. Some require a hole drilling for the foot pad and others use the space some trucks have with drop-through deck mounting. All require the arm with the brake pad attached to be attached (screwed or bolted) to the deck.
3. Braking on the truck – Brakeboards
Australian Brakeboard use a daily sophisticated truck based mechanism a little bit like a bike disk-brake. Mechanical more complex than the others, but can be used without screwing or drilling any holes into the deck. Shipping and tax are sadly incurred getting it to the UK, plus the only options seem to be either buying that Rat Board, with 150mm trucks, or their custom 180mm trucks at $500; add in tax and shipping and the latter is a very expensive solution.
(As ever, let me know if I have missed any other solutions).
To start with, I thought I would try with a braking on the road solution and ordered the Korean company Handmade’s Slide Brake (which seems to be just sold on Amazon). It is quite a simple solution, to work with one of our drop-throughs (probably the ZenitAB, but might use the Kaliber Affe) but it does require me to drill a hole for the arm screw/bolt… which will hurt!
I will do another update once installed and tested.
I found another small European maker, the French company Alkamist Longboard, with some nice looking downhill boards and some very stylish wheels. I will have a look more at the wheels and am very tempted. Never been one for white wheels, but these are the first that got my attention.