Boa Wheels

New US maker (might just be new to me), has brought out two longboard wheels, which interestingly have the same core hole system as the Orangatang Kegel, meaning that they can be used as a direct replacement, with no change of pully or belt, with Boosted V2 boards.

The wheels, both 83a, are the Constrictor at 100mm and the Hatchling at 90mm.

UPDATE (7/4/18): Ordered some Constrictors and will write a review when they arrive.

Slick Revolution wheel kit for Boosted

hm-boosted-_32.jpg

The UK company are now offering for pre-order (available June 2018) an interesting wheel kit for Boosted Boards, to work both with their own large 110mm Rough Stuff Wheels with treads or, usual favorites, the softer 75a ABEC 11s.

The kit is a really good value at £29.99, for the 56-teeth pulleys and belt-covers. The Rough Stuff 87a duro wheels, which come in red and black, are extra at £74.99 (including bearings); although, I don’t know how they will perform against the slightly more expensive ABECs. on vibration and ride. Equally, I need to check the compatibility with existing belts and the torque and speed impact with the new 56t pulleys and 110 wheels, compared to the stock 50t pulleys and 80mm wheels. Different gearing can increase speed, but reduce torque, or visa-versa; personally, I would like to keep the torque and am not bothered about increasing the speed.

UPDATE: I checked with Slick and it works with the existing belts, with the gearing giving it an increase in speed (and decrease in torque).

 

I have been looking at various wheel-kits, including the excellent kit, for the last month. Much as I like the Orangatang (Loaded) Kegels, at 80mm, on the Boosted they don’t give much clearance for the belt guards and we constantly grind them when traveling over our local rough Victorian pavements and roads; running a 110mm wheel would give greater clearance.

Booster Box.png

 

Sad to see Yuneec Boards no longer made

 

Yuneec gen1
Yuneec E-Go gen-1

 

Sadly it looks like has stopped making e-boards (although I have found no official statement). They are still making their other products, drones etc., it seems that they have just stopped selling their e-boards. I say “sad” as we have had one of the first-gen boards and it is still going strong, it has been bomb-proof, and now used very happily by my 8-year-old.

Its single belt-motor is now a little slow compared to most current modern 20mph+ boards, but now perfect for my you鸿运国际网址官网下载安装ngest getting used to real e-boards (and not toys). It has excellent real 90cm wheels, a progressive remote control, and a nice flexing deck; plus, as said, ours has had great reliability and with minimal battery age sag after 2 years!

You can still buy them from some independent retailers, some of them now significantly discounting them, however, I imagine getting support and things fixed will not be so easy going forward unless you鸿运国际网址官网下载安装 can pick up cheap salvage units to strip for the parts.

I can understand why they stopped, it is still a niche market that is overcrowded with options and now a flood of budget hub-motor boards, some of them really good. Tough competition and not really the market demand to scale up manufacturing and make a good profit – the same reason most of the crowd-funded struggle and sadly will disappear.

Virtually all of the budget boards are now hub-motors; not my favorite technology for our crappy old victorian pavements, but they are significantly cheaper to make than belt-drives – just basically fewer parts and assembly. Hence, it was good to see and launch recently belt and gear-drive options, I hope they do well and make it to some form of sustainable scale.

 

Sad to see the E-Go be no more.
Been great; thanks, Yuneec for the excellent work and all the fun.

Yuneec gen2
Yuneec E-Go gen2

New Electric Conversion Units

Unlimited-Electric-Skateboard-Cruiser-Kit

I have just found a new European maker, , based out of Barcelona. Interestingly they produce both complete e-boards and units to convert existing decks. Three models, of conversion units, are available (pre-order for spring 2018 right now): a “Solo” single hub-motor and battery unit, single hub-motor but double battery “Cruiser” unit, and a double battery and hub-motor “R” unit.

Units

The Solo and Cruiser units, with the single motor, looks on paper low-power rated with a max of 840W. The faster R unit, with the double motor, has a more respectable max 1680W, but still not matching the top performing units on the market. In the end, however, only real-world riding will tell how they perform and what is fast enough or not.

What is interesting, besides general design including replaceable hub-motor polyurethane, is that they are specifying IP65 dust and water-resistance (rated as: “dust tight and protected against water projected from a nozzle“), like the similar focused Mellow and Onan units.

Units2.png

Vlogger FabTrav (Fabian Doerig) trying a unit out at the ISPO 2018 Exhibition:

 

 

 

 

Meepo now includes Import Tax

meepo v1.5

The very well regarded, and competitively priced, v1.5 hub-motor e-board is now priced with shipping and import tax (duty and VAT) to the EU, as well as the US.  This is great news as not only is it a good spec board for less than £500 (I have tested the v1 and v1.5 looks even better), but their customer support is very well regarded and, importantly, you鸿运国际网址官网下载安装 can purchase individual components or it all as a kit. This makes fixing issues, although from China, much easier than other similar £500 options.

tax faq
Meepo FAQ

Cost (at time of writing) is £302.52 for the std battery and £446.92 for the more powerful Sanyo model. Cost is the same for either the short 30″ or my preference, the longer 38″.

meepo short

Links:

E-board Myths

pexels-photo-842958.jpeg

(myth – “a widely held but false belief or idea”).

I see a lot of people looking, who are new to e-boards, many who are also new to skateboarding or conventional longboarding – which is great, the more that get to enjoy it, the better the community and the industry will get. Come on in. Consequently, I thought it worth getting some of the re-occurring myths busted to help new folk – so my starter for 5:

  1. E-boards have brakes and can stop – any abrupt stopping capability would be highly dangerous, the good ones have an ability to progressively slow you鸿运国际网址官网下载安装 down, that’s it. You need technique and riding skill, as well as finger control.
  2. It is safe and legal to ride through city traffic (like some no-helmet reckless social-celebrity fuckwit in NY) – in most cities, it is not legal and certainly not safe (god-forbid no helmet).
  3. E-boards are good for long commutes – they are actually a PITA: slower, more stressful, more dangerous and certainly less robust than any cycle. Get one for fun, and the occasional commute, but really just fun.
  4. You can ride happily in the wet – a few e-boards have water-resistant ratings on some parts, but that does now include things like the bearings, which will rust quick. More importantly, you鸿运国际网址官网下载安装 significantly lose grip both on the road and deck in the wet – 20mph with minimal grip..? I can show my accident photos as to why it is not worth it.
  5. They are consumer ready items, just buy and go – this is still early days in the market evolution. Based on the community and personal experience, more e-boards turn up with faults or quickly develop faults, than not; hence, be ready and think how you鸿运国际网址官网下载安装 are going to things fixed. Equally, they all need a basic set-up and importantly set-up for you鸿运国际网址官网下载安装r weight and riding, which may mean changing the bushings. I am still amazed that e-boards don’t ship with a range of different duro bushings and some instructions as to why they are important and how to change.

Disclaimer – sure, these are just my opinions, nothing more. I am happy if you鸿运国际网址官网下载安装 disagree, just not on the no-helmet riding bit – just don’t do it folks. Brain damage is not cool.

 

Buying you鸿运国际网址官网下载安装r first e-board

geekwrapped

I see quite a few people looking at, or who have bought, e-boards who are completely new to the whole scene, including conventional skateboarding or longboarding. It looks cool, which it is; fun, which it is; and a good commuting option, which it is not. The last point I will save for a separate post, but let’s assume the first two work.

Before I get into some good ways to start and what you鸿运国际网址官网下载安装 will need, there is the fun bit of choosing you鸿运国际网址官网下载安装r e-board and, to me, if you鸿运国际网址官网下载安装 are new to this whole scene, there is one really big question to ask you鸿运国际网址官网下载安装rself first when choosing you鸿运国际网址官网下载安装r e-board: “what am I going to do when something breaks (they all do) or when I brake it (we all do)?”.

If you鸿运国际网址官网下载安装 are DIY handy, and with a little experience of, electrical and mechanical DIY, then it is much easier – simply buy a board which you鸿运国际网址官网下载安装 can get spare parts for and you鸿运国际网址官网下载安装 are good to go.

soldering.jpg

However, most people in today’ consumer world are not that capable and don’t need to be for most other things. If you鸿运国际网址官网下载安装 aren’t DIY handy, then choose you鸿运国际网址官网下载安装r board very carefully, is the best advice I can give you鸿运国际网址官网下载安装. When something stops working (and it will) do you鸿运国际网址官网下载安装 really want to be trying to send back to China? You can buy off Amazon or eBay, but they don’t fix things when they stop working. Answer this question, work out you鸿运国际网址官网下载安装r plan for fixing, before taking any more steps and certainly before parting with any of you鸿运国际网址官网下载安装r hard-earned money.

What does this mean, well, if you鸿运国际网址官网下载安装 have a local retailer, a friend with one already, someone selling in you鸿运国际网址官网下载安装r country, choose that e-board over anything else you鸿运国际网址官网下载安装 read is ‘awesome’ online. Even if you鸿运国际网址官网下载安装r local option is more expensive, not as fast or, quite frankly only available in pink stripes, yellow polka-dots and with unicorns patterns in the grip-tape (hey, actually I am first in line for that).

Remember, it WILL break or you鸿运国际网址官网下载安装 WILL break it and then what?

If you鸿运国际网址官网下载安装 need help then there is a list of European retailers that I know of here: https:///european-makers/

Answered that, then go ahead and choose what works for you鸿运国际网址官网下载安装 and you鸿运国际网址官网下载安装r need for speed, range, terrain, looks, carry-ability, riding style etc.

How much are you鸿运国际网址官网下载安装 going to pay?

Import-400x267 (1)

When you鸿运国际网址官网下载安装 do you鸿运国际网址官网下载安装r calculations just be aware of any import duties and shipping that might apply, not just from the purchase but when you鸿运国际网址官网下载安装 need spares or even, depending on you鸿运国际网址官网下载安装r country, when getting an existing board fixed and shipped back. Those belts that you鸿运国际网址官网下载安装 need to replace might only be £8 each, but £60 in total to get two of them shipped to you鸿运国际网址官网下载安装.

I keep thinking about getting a Meepo kit and fitting it to one of our existing longboard decks, but the import duty in the UK, shipping from China, would add on at least 22.5% to the cost, as I would have to import it and be subject to both import duty and VAT.

What to learn on

lush smba
Next, I have a suggestion for you鸿运国际网址官网下载安装, which you鸿运国际网址官网下载安装 may not have considered – buy a conventional push longboard as well to learn ok and get early confidence. If you鸿运国际网址官网下载安装 are new to all this, the last thing you鸿运国际网址官网下载安装 want to be doing is trying to learn how to start, brake, switch-ride etc when you鸿运国际网址官网下载安装 are doing 20mph or more with cars, people, and rough old pavements. Conventional push longboards are relatively cheap, easy to resell, and much easier to get confident on; as well as being fun in their own right. Knowing and being confident with a few skills will make a huge difference in enjoying you鸿运国际网址官网下载安装r e-board or not.

Helmets and more

helmet

Next, choose you鸿运国际网址官网下载安装r helmet – it is essential, a must; don’t do it without one and ignore all the irresponsible tossers and fuckwits on YouTube weaving in and out traffic with no helmet – arrghhhhh.

I very sadly have one friend already with permanent brain damage after a minor no-helmet cycle fall. Not a life for anyone. After the helmet, get whatever protection you鸿运国际网址官网下载安装 want, it is you鸿运国际网址官网下载安装r legs, arms, knees etc. And it is not just other traffic, people, dogs or roads that you鸿运国际网址官网下载安装 have to worry about, remember… it will break… if it disconnects at 20mph or the wheel shears off or the motor jams, you鸿运国际网址官网下载安装 are most likely have a trip to a hospital. The perfect empty smooth tarmac road is still not danger free. Adopt the view that you鸿运国际网址官网下载安装r e-board, as well as everything else around you鸿运国际网址官网下载安装, want to kill you鸿运国际网址官网下载安装 and you鸿运国际网址官网下载安装 get it.

Tools & Checks

t-tool
Finally, pick up a few tools (you鸿运国际网址官网下载安装 don’t need much), like a T-tool and anything else you鸿运国际网址官网下载安装r board needs, and get familiar with some basic maintenance checks – if there is nothing from you鸿运国际网址官网下载安装r board maker (use that as a judge on quality and support), then start here: https:///2018/02/01/checking-before-riding/

Check, tighten and loosen.

IMG_20180128_161250__01__01__01.jpg

When you鸿运国际网址官网下载安装 board arrives always check the trucks, connectors, nuts, bushings, washers, cups etc. Personally, I would always take off the wheels and check there are spacers, speed-rings etc. in place – one of our boards previously turned-up missing speed rings, so we now always check. It is easy for it to happen if the quality control is not great and with most cheap boards right now, it does not seem to be.

Tighten or loosen the wheel nuts and kingpin screws – there is an optimum for them, just like with wheel nuts, neither too loose or too tight. Remember, over-tightening the kingpin nut onto the bushing cup does not increase the stability, it just deforms the bushing and reduces its ability to progressively manage all multi-dimensional forces it has to balance.

Earlier post on “how tight“: https:///2018/01/27/truck-bushing-how-tight/

Get the right bushings.

oust-bushings

Finally, on the bushings, find out what the stock/default bushings are and if necessary replace them. Personally, I have yet to be impressed by any stock bushings, so personally would always change them for ones from a reputable make, like Venoms, Blood Oranges, Riptides, Oust etc.

If you鸿运国际网址官网下载安装 are not sure what bushings to use, I would set up you鸿运国际网址官网下载安装r board like a conventional downhill board with barrels, board–side and road-side and a durometer rating that matches you鸿运国际网址官网下载安装r weight for a stiff downhill ride.

If you鸿运国际网址官网下载安装 are not sure of the durometer to use, this post includes some calculators: https:///2018/01/27/bushing-duro-calculator/

12355768_10207190551617654_1249908273_o

Checking before riding

IMG_20180128_161250.jpg

Thought it worth getting down on virtual paper what I check before riding, as I was asked a few days ago by someone who had just taken up skateboarding.

When I take any of the boards (conventional or electric) out of the under-stairs cupboard, I always do the same quick 30-second check with a T-tool in hand.

At the end of the day, the last thing I want when traveling at 10, 20mph or more is anything jamming, disconnecting, losing grip or breaking.

What I do:

  1. Check the grip-tape is not coming off.
    (turn over the deck)
  2. Trucks are screwed tight to the deck – no wobble or any movement.
  3. Bushings are not deformed or cracked.
  4. Kingpin nuts are not too loose or tight (at their optimum)
  5. Wheels not torn or cut (and about to shred).
  6. Wheel nuts not too tight or loose.
  7. Wheels bearings run smooth and quiet (each wheel) and not rusted.

As said, usually no more than 30 seconds.

boosted
Dual-motor Boosted.
For the E-Boards, I then spend a few extra minutes on:
  1. Battery status – remote controller and board.
  2. Ensuring all exposed electrical connectors are tightly connected.
  3. All compartments (battery and controller) are tight to the deck.
  4. The motors tight and aligned (we run belt drives).
  5. No belt wear or damage – anything, and I will change them.
  6. Remote control wheel/trigger moving freely (not switched on).
    I then switch on the board and put on the ground (I am not stood on it) to give it some resistance.
  7. Remote pair the board and handset and quick forward and back.

That’s it, done; only takes a couple of minutes. Happy to know if I have missed anything you鸿运国际网址官网下载安装 do.

 

UK Law & E-Boards

pexels-photo-373289-e1517159463364.jpeg
I have been doing some digging into what is the current situation with UK law and using our e-boards on public roads and pavements.
First off, it is important to note that I am not a lawyer, nor transport official, just an enthusiast with a vested interest, so please take this as nothing more than my interpretation and comments.
law.jpeg
I have seen a number of people comment on various forums that the situation is a “grey area” or “unclear”. Personally, I don’t think it is unclear, I think is very clear – it may wrong, based on antiquated laws and little understanding, but it is still clear and unfortunately illegal for us to be on the public road or pavement.
With the exception of cycles (with pedals) where there is specific classification, it looks very strongly that our e-boards are classified as “motorized transport” on public roads and therefore, subject to UK road law. Plus, unless you鸿运国际网址官网下载安装 are on an OneWheel, as e-boards have four wheels, they are classified as cars and not motorcycles or mopeds. This means they need to meet safety, registration and licensing laws.
Ref: Department of Transport, Road Vehicles (Construction & Use) Regulations 1986. 
car_photo_410482
So unless you鸿运国际网址官网下载安装 can get you鸿运国际网址官网下载安装r e-board through an MOT, with insurance, seat-belts, working brakes, lights etc., we are illegal on public roads; great on emissions, but still illegal. The situation is no better it seems with regards to riding on pavements; as under section 72 of the Highway Act 1835 (yes, 1835!) it’s is an offense to ride a vehicle (and we are on motorized vehicles) on the public pavement.
At some point, the UK, even Europe, may do something to classify e-boards (and e-scooters) separately, like bikes and e-bikes, but there seems to be no sign that will happen in the near future or more – sadly, and frustratingly, we will be illegal on all public roads and pavements for many years to come. If you鸿运国际网址官网下载安装 want this stupid and antiquated situation to change – write to you鸿运国际网址官网下载安装r MP, join a (responsible) action group etc.
2013_london-Rd_
Not wishing to incriminate myself, if I was (I stress “if I was“) to consider taking my e-boards out in the UK, in an emergency situation or after a moment of illness induced memory loss, I would choose to not antagonize the authorities and keep my riding to empty back-roads (not weaving ‘NY-Casey-style’ through city traffic!) or slowly on relatively empty pavements. It would wise to even be careful with cycle lanes and paths, which are generally still public roads or pavements.
My personal experience with law-enforcement in the UK has been nothing but good. A few police officers have shown interest and just asked general questions on the technology and how you鸿运国际网址官网下载安装 control an e-board; but then at the time I had been both riding safely and respectfully of the environment and people around me. I do fear, however, that over time the situation will change for the worse and the authorities (as with aerial-drones now getting increasing banned in public places), after some high-profile dangerous incidents, will be forced to publically enforce the laws. All it will take is one or two serious injuries, the videos on YouTube and we will all be left with only our 鸿运国际网址官网下载安装 driveways and group-hiring of privately owned racetracks. Want to know when e-board prices will drop? This is when there will be a flood of pristine second-hand e-boards on the market, but sadly nowhere to use them.
Why do I write all this – well, besides protesting responsibly and making our views known to those in power, we need to learn a lesson from what is happening to flying drones in the UK. Please, please, ride responsibly, not just for you鸿运国际网址官网下载安装r own safety, and those around you鸿运国际网址官网下载安装, but because right now we have a special time in the UK and we could lose it very quickly.

Interesting Gear: Ridge EL1

Ridge_EL1_bcL073_021_-_Copy_grande

, the Liverpool (UK) based company have brought out a small, almost a penny board 27″ deck, in-hub motor e-board called the , that weighs only 3.5kg. The main thing, however, besides the obvious European support is that it is only £350. My first thought was “toy”, but reading the on their site, it needs to be taken seriously as a small high portable fun deck.

Esk8 Sweeden also did a good video review: