With the influx and cruising popularity of eSk8boards, and the seemingly endless supply of them, it could be confusing knowing what to actually look for. Here is a list of questions that will help you pick the fun electric board that’s right for you.
If the skateboard doesn’t go too fast, yes, certain eSk8s are wonderful electric transportation vehicles (EVT) for beginning riders. However, electric skateboards are a serious investment (some cost over $500 and a few of the “big dogs” are well over a thousand dollars). Therefore, it’s strongly recommended to buy a regular/non-electric skateboard for beginning riders – so they can get used to riding. There are a lot of free riding tutorials on YouTube for beginners and intermediate riders alike, from standing on the board to push-riding, to ensuring maximum safety and more.
It is difficult if you’ve never been on a skateboard before. It’s even more difficult maintaining balance while the board is in motion. However, as is the most case in life, the more you practice a certain activity or skill, the more efficient you’ll become at performing this skill/activity. Hardly anyone ever gets on a bike and knows how to successfully get from one end of the driveway to the other without falling. Balancing (and riding) an e-skateboard, or any skateboard for that matter, requires practice. Practice, practice, practice.
Yes, e-sk8s can be used as a regular skateboard. However, it is strongly discouraged they be used that way. Electric skateboards have one (or two) motors that can be damaged if taken for a grind at the skatepark. Esk8s have hundreds of electric parts (not to mention Lithium-ion batteries) that, when damaged, can and will explode. This could be potentially fatal, and most definitely cause an injury. In theory, eSk8s can be taken to a vert ramp and be used for tricks. In practice, though, they should not be.
In the simplest terms, “Longboard” refers to boards that are longer than 3ft. and shaped like a surfboard. Longboards were specifically designed to be ridden down steep hills, as their “carve” (or turning ability) is a lot tighter and more agile than regular-sized skateboards. Imagine slalom skating competitions where riders carve around orange traffic cones at high speeds. This is the “heart” of Longboarding.
Regular-sized Skateboards are designed for street and vert tricks. Thusly, they should not be taken downhills – as they were not constructed to be used like that. In the same manner, Longboards should not be taken to skateparks or used for grinding, as this isn’t their primary purpose.
The “lifetime” of an e-skateboard depends on how you treat it and whether you take care of it or not. There is no way to tell if eSk8s last longer or not, because it depends entirely on how well you take care of your investment. If you leave your electric skateboard out in the rain, or constantly drop it from X amount of ft., then no it will not last longer than a non-electric skateboard.
This is not an easy question to answer, as almost every other board is constructed from materials for specific reasons. Here is a list of the common materials eSk8 decks are made out of:
• Canadian Maplewood
Sometimes, manufacturers combine these materials together to make an even sturdier deck. Boards made from aluminum are “faster” boards, due to aluminum’s light (but strong) weight. By comparison, boards made from 2 parts Maplewood to 7 parts Bamboo are understandably heavier.
Yes. A lot of boards can carry only so many pounds (usually 220-240) before drastically slowing down. The size of the board goes hand in hand with the “total weight capacity” of the board, as–in general–longer and wider boards have more power wattage in their motors. For example, the Swagtron Voyager is 42” long – which is MASSIVE. However, it is this long so it can carry people who weigh 330lbs – making its size a great option for heavier-set people.
It depends entirely on the motor(s) and power wattage the board manufacturer put on their product. Total travel distances vary from board to board; one board’s “normal range” is 13 miles, while another one’s is 20+ miles. This is due to the motor of the board, which could vary anywhere from 350W to 500W to 750W.
Hub motors are often called in-wheel motors or hub motor. These motors require electric power (provided by the batteries) to run, and are usually attached to the wheel. Single motor hubs, normally, have a power wattage of 350W, 500W or 750W. Belt motors under the deck to connect the motors to the wheels via a pulley, gears and clutches. Belt systems were used until 2015, when hub motors gained prominence. You’ll have to look hard if you want to buy a belt system. This is because hub motors are more efficient – easily upgradeable, have fewer moving parts (meaning there’s less chance of a breakdown), and the brakes have a quicker (and stronger) response time.
No, as this is not necessary. Each eSk8board is sold with a handheld remote controller, which accelerates and brakes the electric skateboard when the corresponding button is pressed. These remotes are manufactured by the company for a reason: they should be the only device that controls the electric skateboard.
Yes. Integrated LED lights keep the rider safe at night by making him/her visible to other traffic. There are also LED strip light kits that can be added beneath the deck for a seriously-cool tricked out board. (Imagine those bright neon lights beneath drag racing cars.)
No electric skateboard is waterproof. However, a lot of them are water-resistant. Water-resistant boards (from reputable manufacturers/brands) are graded with an IP-56/IP-65 certificate. Boards with this certificate specifically passed hundreds of water tests without catching fire or being damaged in any way. This is similar to the way that quality Hoverboards receive a UL2272 certificate (which is a certificate designed to test the safety and electrical components of electric devices).
Yes! While all eSk8boards can be ridden by kids (5-10 years old), they shouldn’t be. A lot of boards are powerful, huge, and could seriously injure them. That’s why some brands made kid-friendly electric skateboards. These skateboards have lower max. speeds, are considerably lighter, and cost a lot less than “adult” eSk8s.
If you bought from an untrusted/low-level brand, yes the board will catch fire. Largely, fires happened (Hoverboards, for example) in the past when Li-ions were first introduced to electric motors. As the technology was new and fresh, every “what if” scenario wasn’t caught in the testing lab. That was a long time ago, though, and premium manufacturers willingly send their products for hundreds of industry-standard, regulated tests. If these boards don’t pass every battery, electric and safety test, they aren’t released to market. This is why it’s important to never buy an eSk8 from a brand nobody in the world has heard of.
I hope you found the answer to any questions you may have had, and that the process was less painful than you might’ve imagined. As is the case in the tech world, electric products are continually evolving each year. That’s why it’s important to keep asking yourself these questions every now and then, to ensure you always pick the perfect board that’s right for you.