Beginners Longboard Buyers Guide

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Posted June 19, 2013 by in Articles





Picking out a longboard shouldn’t be a complicated thing but if you don’t know were to start it can start to seem like it. I understand more than anything that most beginning longboarder simply want to go out and tare up the streets but before picking out your first longboard you should know what your getting and what you want.

Something to remember about longboard decks
-The longer the board the more stable the board.
– The shorter the board the easier it is to maneuver and make quick turns.

One of the first questions you need to ask yourself before choosing a longboard is what type of riding you plan on doing. If you just want to cruse around campus or if you plan on carving up steep hills.

Longboarding Deck Styles

Cruising

If you plan on simply cruising around pretty much all longboards are great for cruising around. But if you plan on cruising around a big city where there are a lot of obstacles, you may want to get a mini longboard which are smaller in size than the standard longboard thus easier to maneuver.

Original Pintail 40 Longboard

Carving

If you want a board especially for carving then you want a board with a good amount of flex. The Loaded Dervish is a great board for carving.

Loaded Dervish Sama Flex 1 Complete Longboard Skateboard

Freestyle

Freestyle riding consists of flat land dancing to trick and carving. Medium sized boards make the best freestyle boards as they give the best of both worlds: stability and maneuverability. Kicktails are also a good addition to freestyle longboards as they allow you to maneuver and do pop style tricks like ollies. These board should also have some flex to them too.

Krown Rasta Freestyle Elite

Downhill

These types of longboards are best suited to experienced longboarders. These boards have flat decks and a longer wheel base. Flex is a bad thing when choosing a downhill longboard, you want a strong sturdy board that will not bend under pressure while going high speeds.

Quest Formula One Downhill Longboard Skateboard

Slalom

Slalom longboards are built to dodge and weave around obstacles. These boards are not as common as the other types and mostly used competitively.




Longboard Deck Material

Maple

This wood is the traditional wood used in skateboard and longboard deck construction. Maple lasts and is a good all around wood for longboards.

Bamboo

This wood has recently risen in popularity in the skating world. Bamboo is very light compared to maple and is much more flexible.

Carbon Fiber

This material is the most expensive. But it is well worth the price, carbon fiber is light and hard to break.

Longboard Trucks





Regular skateboard trucks and longboard trucks differ slightly in that longboard trucks are wider and have softer urethane bushings. Both these differences make it so that longboard trucks are easier to maneuver and stable. The best way to chose trucks for your board is they don’t already come with them is to chose ones that width wise are close to the width of your longboard deck.

There are two types of trucks to chose from, Standard trucks and Reverse-Kingpin Truck. The standard trucks are the same style of trucks that have always come with street skateboards. Reverse-Kingpin Truck on the other hand are specially designed for longboards and are specially designed for superior maneuverability. Both Standard and Reverse-Kingpin Trucks can be suitable for use on your longboard, but your best bet is to always go with Reverse-Kingpin Truck.

Longboard Wheels

Longboard wheels are larger than regular street skateboard wheels. 54-59mm are the average size of skateboard wheels while 60mm or more is the size of longboard wheels.

The two most important things when it comes to deciding on what wheel to buy is hardness and diameter of the wheel.

A general rule is the longer your longboard is the bigger the diameter should be of your wheels.

The hardness of a wheel is also an important factor in choosing longboard wheels. Wheel hardness is usually measured in an A measurement system.

  • 70a – 88a – these wheels are very soft perfect for going over rough terrain such as cracks and pot holes.
  • 89a – 96a – these wheels are slightly harder making them faster, yet less grippy
  • 97a – 99a – these wheels are very fast but do not gripe the pavement well

Bigfoot Longboard Wheels

Bearings

My personal recommendation for longboard bearings is anything made by Bones. This company knows how to make great quality bearings, and has them at all different price ranges. If your looking for a good pair of inexpensive bearings check out Bones Red bearings.

Bones Reds Precision Skate Bearings

End

Having said all this its important to remember the most important thing when buying a longboard is personal preference. If you feel more comfortable riding a certain type of board over another type of board go for it. Also safety is key when first starting to longboard, make sure you buy a helmet and pads with your first longboard.

Sector 9 Platinum Series Eye Dropper Complete Longboard