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Skateboards: specifications, types
— Skateboard. Traditional skateboards, the most famous and common type of skateboard. Usually, decks in such models are bent upwards on both sides (front and back) and have a symmetrical shape close to oval. This design is convenient primarily for performing jumps and other tricks, so classic skateboards are colloquially referred to as stunts. At the same time, such boards are capable of accelerating well, however, in terms of speed characteristics, they are noticeably inferior to longboards (see below), and in general, they are more likely to be designed for equipped parks and are not suitable for long-distance riding — especially since a classic skate does not work out small irregularities well roads, and even a short trip on a rough surface can be uncomfortable.
— Longboard. A "high-speed" type of board for riding, characterized by increased stability and good acceleration ability, but not intended for performing tricks. Outwardly, “longs” differ from classic skateboards in their increased length (both the board itself and the wheelbase), as well as larger and softer wheels. This ensures stability and smooth running at high speeds. Also note that longboards are more diverse in terms of board sizes and shapes, as well as wheel widths. They can have different specializations: downhill (downhill, involves a large weight of the board, a characteristic shape with narrowing around the wheels and lowe...red suspension), freeride (an analogue of downhill, allowing side drift of the board), freestyle (longboards with curved tails and noses, allowing individual elements of stunt driving), etc. The cruiser is also considered a type of longboard, however, for a number of reasons, such models are distinguished into a separate type (see below).
— Cruiser. Cruisers are usually called longboards, designed mainly for comfort when driving around the city and not requiring much extreme when using. Such models are equipped with slightly wider and softer wheels than the classic "longs", in addition, they may have a curved edge (kicktail) in the back of the deck. Cruisers are also quite varied in shape, they are made in different sizes and with different suspension widths and deck shapes (in addition to symmetrical ones, “fish” boards are also quite popular). Plastic deck cruisers are commonly referred to as mini cruisers (see below).
— Mini cruiser. Another popular name is "pennyboard". A specific variety of the cruisers described above, which differs in the material of the deck — it is made of a special plastic that combines lightness, strength and elasticity. Compared to plywood, such plastic is lighter and more durable, it better tolerates contact with moisture and daily exposure to the open sky, including and in wet weather this is especially important for regular trips around the city. Mini cruisers come in two standard lengths, 22" and 27"; the younger version is more manoeuvrable and fits even in a backpack without any problems, the older one is wider, more stable and easy to learn.
— Rollersurf. He's a "ripstik". A board consisting of two turntables (under each leg) fastened with a torsion bar; this allows each platform to tilt right and left (relative to the rod) independently of the other platform. Another key difference between a rollersurfer and more traditional skateboards is the number and design of the wheels. There are only two of them, one for each platform, while each wheel has a swivel mount (caster) and can rotate 360 °. As a result, the technique of riding a rollersurfer is significantly different from the classic "skateboard", and in general, such boards can seem very difficult to master — after all, the rider needs to constantly move in a special way to maintain balance. However, such riding is not much more difficult than riding a conventional two-wheeled bicycle, and the specific design allows the roller surfer to perform unusual tricks that are not possible with a traditional four-wheeled skateboard. In addition, the manoeuvrability and speed of this variety is also very decent, although some of the "classic" features (such as jumping) are still not available.
— Separate rollersurf. The original projectile, which is a cross between the roller surfer and roller skates described above. Like a regular rollersurf, it consists of two platforms, each of which has 360° swivel wheels. However, in this version, these platforms are not connected by anything, each of them moves separately. In addition, a separate rollersurf has 4 wheels — 2 per platform — otherwise it would be almost impossible to maintain balance. This design further expands the possibilities for performing specific tricks, and can also make it easier to get through tight spots. However, a separate rollersurf is even more demanding on the rider's skills than a regular one; therefore, this variety has not received much distribution.
— Surfboard. Surfboards are a cross between cruisers and rollersurfers (see above for both). Unlike the latter, this type of board has a solid deck, most often in the form of a "fish"; however, the wheels in a classic surfboard are not four, but only three — one in front and two in the back. And some models generally have only two wheels, like a rollersurf. Anyway, riding such a board is more difficult than a cruiser, it requires a special technique, reminiscent of surfing — hence the name.
— Electroskate. An electric skateboard equipped with an electric motor and a battery to power it. Such a board is able to ride on its own, without effort on the part of the rider; for control, a remote control is usually provided. The main disadvantage of electric skateboards, in addition to high cost, is a significant weight — from 8 kg. Because of this, this variety is only suitable for riding on a relatively flat hard surface (asphalt, rolled soil) — for “crossing”, and even more so for stunt riding, an electric skateboard is not suitable.
— Skatecycle. Very original devices, according to the principles of design and movement, are similar to the rollersurfers described above, but also have significant differences. The name comes from the Skatecycle, the first device of its kind. The main external feature of skatecycles are wheels — these are rings that do not have central axes (the so-called "centerless wheels"). There are two such wheels, they are connected by a rigid rod, and inside each of them there is a platform for the foot. The fastening of each platform allows you to tilt it back and forth, and the wheels themselves can be rotated relative to the central rod. Actually, due to the “snake” movement, the skatecycle rides, while the rider does not need to push off the ground. Such models combine compactness, ride comfort and quite extensive possibilities for performing tricks.
— Balanceboard. A specific type of board used exclusively for training and performing tricks in one place and not intended for riding. The balance board consists of the board itself and a cylindrical roller on which this board is placed; in order for the roller to move only in the right directions (along the board), special guides are provided in the design. True to its name, the balance board is great for balance exercises; it can be used both as a stand-alone stunt tool and as a training tool in the off-season. In addition, there is evidence that such boards contribute to the development of stabilizing muscles, which is difficult to achieve with conventional fitness; so balance boards have found application even in sports medicine and rehabilitation programs.
The dimensions of the deck — in fact, the boards of the skateboard — in length and width (according to the largest dimensions).
Both small and large boards have their advantages and disadvantages. So, a short and narrow deck contributes to manoeuvrability, but puts forward additional requirements for the rider's skill — it can be difficult to cope with a small "nimble" skate, especially at high speed. A long and wide board, on the contrary, is more stable, but it is difficult to make sharp manoeuvres on such a skateboard. In addition, the optimal length for each type of skate (see above) also depends on the age category of the skater: for example, classic skateboards in the “adult” version have boards no shorter than 600 mm, and anything less refers to children's models. The width, in turn, can be determined by the size of the foot: a person with a large size (from 44) may simply be uncomfortable on a narrow deck.
Detailed recommendations on the optimal dimensions for each type of skate and planned riding features can be found in special sources.
The material from which the deck of the skateboard is made.
— Canadian maple. Due to its strength and density, combined with elasticity, Canadian maple is considered the most suitable material for skateboard decks, however, such boards are not cheap.
— Chinese maple. A variety of maple, somewhat inferior to the Canadian breed in terms of performance and durability, but also much cheaper.
— Russian maple. Another relatively inexpensive analogue of the Canadian maple. It is similar in features to Chinese, but for a number of reasons it is used much less frequently.
— Chinese birch. Low-cost option, used infrequently, mainly in children's boards. It is inexpensive, but it does not have any special advantages.
— Bamboo. According to its properties, bamboo is primarily suitable for longboards, and therefore it is mainly used in this type of boards (see "Type"). However, relatively few bamboo models are produced.
— Plastic. Plastic is considered to be a low-cost option, but this stereotype is not entirely justified. The fact is that there are many varieties of this material: for example, mini-cruisers(see "Type") use high-quality plastic that, according to some manufacturers, can even survive being hit by a car...wheel. So it would be more correct to say that the quality of a plastic product directly depends on its price category. Of the common features of all types of plastic, it is worth noting the absolute insensitivity to moisture and the ability to take on the most complex shapes and colours; the latter facilitates the creation of skateboards in original design and unusual constructions.
— Composite. Decks that combine several dissimilar materials — for example, wood with a layer of fibreglass or plastic with a layer of carbon fibre (carbon fibre). This combination allows you to combine the advantages of individual materials and compensate (at least in part) for their shortcomings. The specific composition and properties of composites may vary; here, as in the case of plastic, it makes sense to focus on the price category of the skateboard. However, mostly high-end composites are used in modern skateboards, and such a board is most often a sign of an advanced model.
— Aluminium. Aluminium (more precisely, aluminium alloy) is characterized by high strength and durability with a relatively small weight, and it also transfers moisture without problems. On the other hand, this material is expensive, and springs rather weakly and is poorly suitable for jumping. Therefore, it is used mainly in rather specific types of skateboards, such as separate rollersurfers and skate bikes (see "Type").
Number of deck layers
The number of individual layers of material that make up the deck.
"Puff" construction is used mainly in wooden decks (see "Deck Material"); plastic or aluminium is more justified to make whole. The use of several layers allows you to achieve the necessary combination of elasticity for skates with bending strength in any direction. To do this, each layer of wood is laid with fibers in its direction.
Theoretically, the more layers, the more directions in which the fibers of the tree are “stacked”, and the lower the likelihood that the load will go in the “weak”, poorly reinforced direction. In addition, it is multilayer decks that most often have additional inserts that further reinforce the structure (for example, made of carbon). On the other hand, the differences between different models depend much more on the characteristics of the material than on the number of layers. Therefore, when choosing, it makes sense to pay attention not so much to this parameter as to more "close to life" characteristics — primarily the material of the deck and the price category of the product.
Now on the market there are decks made from such a number of layers: 6 layers, 7 layers, 8 layers, 9 layers, 10 layers.
The material from which the skateboard suspension is made is the devices responsible for attaching the wheels to the deck.
— Aluminium. The most common suspension material for modern skateboards. Aluminium alloys, at a relatively low cost, are distinguished by excellent strength and corrosion resistance, they are suitable for both relatively simple skateboards and advanced professional models, and they weigh relatively little.
— Steel. Compared to popular aluminium, steel, on the one hand, costs a little less, on the other hand, it weighs more. At the same time, this material does not have any special practical advantages, and therefore is much less common.
— Plastic. Plastic is mostly characterized by low cost and ease of processing. However, for "serious" skateboards, in which the suspension is subjected to significant loads, this material is not suitable: popular grades of plastic are not reliable enough, and advanced high-strength varieties are expensive, it is more justified to use plastic or steel instead. Therefore, the plastic suspension is a sign of children's models, designed for light weight and easy riding without much "extreme".
— Composite. A composite is a heterogeneous composition in which several immiscible materials are combined. This term is often associated with advanced high-end models, but in the case of suspensions, the opposite is true — composites are relatively inexpensive solutions and are used in...low-cost models, which, moreover, are mostly intended for children and are not designed for significant loads.
The main material used in the construction of the wheels of a skateboard, more precisely, the material of the "tyre", the outer part of the wheel that is in direct contact with the road (the central part of the wheel is usually made of a different, more rigid material).
— Polyurethane. The most common material — to the point that most manufacturers do not use other materials at all in the wheels of their skateboards. Polyurethane can be both hard and quite soft, it provides good grip, while being quite reliable and durable.
— PVC. Polyvinyl chloride is a type of plastic, initially transparent and colorless; however, it can be produced with the addition of dyes. In terms of performance properties, it is significantly inferior to polyurethane, and therefore it is rarely used, and only in low-cost models of skateboards.
Rigidity of regular skateboard wheels.
This parameter is denoted by a number and the letter A; the higher the number, the stiffer the material. Higher stiffness allows the wheel to maintain speed better, increase wheel life, make it easier to slide (drifting, for example) and perform jump tricks more efficiently. On the other hand, soft wheels work out small bumps in the road better, they have better grip and manoeuvrability, and they are also less noisy. Accordingly, the choice of wheel stiffness depends primarily on what surfaces and in what places it is planned to ride.
In general, wheels up to 80A can be classified as very soft, up to 87A — soft; such solutions are best suited for driving on not very smooth, worn asphalt, paving slabs with an abundance of joints, etc. Indicators 88A — 95A correspond to medium hardness, such wheels are designed mainly for high-quality "urban" surfaces like a new sidewalk. Rigid wheels are marked from 96A to 99A, they are designed primarily for skate parks and other specialized surfaces; and indicators of 100A and more correspond to professional-level solutions.
It is worth noting that the wheels are usually made removable, and if necessary, they can be replaced with others, harder or softer. However, one must also take into account the fact that the entire design of the skateboard is usually designed for a certain rigidity of the wheels, and significant deviations from th...is parameter are undesirable. And you should not forget about the type (see above): for example, it is hardly worth looking for especially soft wheels for a traditional stunt skateboard.
The diameter of the wheels, nominally installed on the skateboard.
The speed developed by the skateboard is directly proportional to the diameter of the wheels, and the acceleration is inversely proportional. In other words, other things being equal , larger wheels will accelerate more slowly, but to higher speeds. Accordingly, when choosing for this parameter, it is first of all necessary to take into account what is more important: good speed (for this it is better to choose larger wheels) or the ability to “tear away” (small ones are suitable for this). In addition, the large diameter makes it easier to overcome small bumps on the road.
It is also worth remembering that each type of skateboard (see above) has its own requirements for the size of the wheels, due to the specifics of the application: for example, high-speed longboards have larger wheel diameters than classic stunt skateboards. Accordingly, only models of the same type can be compared with each other according to this indicator. Detailed recommendations on the optimal diameter for different types of skateboards can be found in special sources.
The wheels are usually made removable, which means that if desired, wheels of a different diameter can be installed on the skateboard. However, they should not differ greatly in size from regular ones. You should be especially careful with large wheels: it may turn out that the deck will reach them whe...n tilted, and this is fraught with falls and injuries.
The thickness of the wheels, nominally installed on the skateboard.
The thickness in this case means the width of the wheel, roughly speaking, the width of the track left during movement. The general principles in this case are as follows: narrow wheels are convenient for tricks, in particular in grinds (sliding along pipes, railings, etc. directly on the suspension), but they require flat surfaces; wide, in turn, behave better on rough roads, they are more stable and work out small surface flaws more efficiently. Accordingly, narrow wheels are typical mainly for stunt models designed for skate parks and other specialized locations with high-quality coverage; wide, in turn, are better suited for longboards and "city" cruiserswho often have to travel on less than perfect roads.
The wheels in modern skateboards are made removable, if desired, they can be replaced with wider or narrower ones. However, it is still not recommended to deviate from the “native” width value — riding can become uncomfortable, if not dangerous.
The bearing is responsible for fastening the wheel on the axle, it is thanks to it that the wheel rotates — which means that the characteristics of the wheel rotation directly depend on the characteristics of this part. Without going into technical details, we can say that the class determines, first of all, the accuracy of manufacturing bearing parts. But higher accuracy, on the one hand, reduces friction, making the bearing (and wheel) more “fast”, on the other hand, it reduces the life of the part and significantly affects its cost. Accordingly, it makes sense to look for high-quality bearings primarily for professional use; and for a simple ride without much "extreme" relatively simple solutions are quite suitable.
Most modern skateboards use ABEC 3, ABEC 5 and ABEC 7 class bearings, which are sufficient for most applications. The minimum class is ABEC 1, it is found mainly in low-cost and children's boards. But the super- precision ABEC 9 and ABEC 11 are mainly used in professional longboards, for which high speed is crucial.
Note that most skateboards allow you to replace regular wheels with others with higher-end bearings.
The stiffness of the shock absorbers used in the suspension of a skateboard.
The value of this parameter is generally similar to the stiffness of the wheels (see above). For example, hard shock absorbers hold speed better and are more comfortable when jumping, while soft shock absorbers are better suited for uneven surfaces and manoeuvres with energetic turns. In general, optimal stiffness is related to the type of skate (see above), riding style, rider skills and the features of the surface on which you plan to ride; more detailed recommendations for each specific case can be found in special sources.
The power of the motor installed in the electric skateboard (see "Type"). A more powerful motor, on the one hand, allows you to develop greater speed and better cope with high loads (climbs, heavy weight of the rider). On the other hand, high power affects the weight and cost of the skate, both due to the characteristics of the motor itself, and due to the fact that it requires more capacious batteries.
In the most modest models, the engine power is only 150 – 200 W; such motors are intended more for assistance in overclocking than for full-fledged independent movement. In the most powerful modern electric skateboards, this parameter can reach 4 kW, which allows you to reach speeds of up to 40 km/h.
The maximum speed that the electric skateboard can develop (see "Type"). This parameter is quite approximate, since the actual maximum speed will depend on the weight of the rider and general driving conditions. Nevertheless, according to this parameter, one or another model can be quite reliably evaluated and compared with other electric skateboards.
Electric skateboard range (see “Type”) is the distance that the board can travel on one battery charge. Usually, this paragraph indicates the power reserve, provided that the skate moves completely independently, without the help of the rider. Thus, additionally pushing off the ground, you can increase the actual driving range. Nevertheless, the main parameter is precisely the power reserve, directly stated in the characteristics, it is by it that it is worth evaluating and comparing different models.
The capacity of the battery installed in the electric skateboard (see "Type").
Battery capacity is one of the parameters that determine battery life: the higher it is, the farther the skate can travel on a single charge, all other things being equal. However, it is worth emphasizing that the actual battery life will depend not only on the properties of the battery, but also on the engine power. Therefore, only models with the same power can be compared by this parameter, and to assess battery life, it is better to focus on the power reserve directly indicated by the manufacturer. Specifically, capacity data may be required mainly for special tasks — for example, searching for a replaceable battery.
Full charge time
The time it takes for the electric skateboard battery (see "Type") to fully charge from zero to 100%.
This parameter allows you to estimate how long it will take to replenish the energy supply. Note that you can not pay much attention to it if the charge lasts for a day, and the device is charged at night: even for the most capacious batteries, the charging time does not exceed 6 hours. But if you cannot do without recharging during the day, you will have to take into account how long does it take.
glowing wheels / deck
The presence of lighting in the wheels and/or deck of the skateboard. Such lighting, usually, is based on LEDs, and it can be powered by generators driven by the rotation of the wheels — this allows you to do without batteries (however, the type of power supply should be specified separately).
Additional lighting not only gives the board an interesting appearance, but also contributes to safety at night — the skater becomes more visible to drivers and other road users. However, extra parts built into the wheels or deck will inevitably degrade performance. Therefore, this function is found mainly in mini-cruisers and rollersurfers (see "Type"), intended for children and adolescents and not designed for particularly extreme use; professional whiteboards are generally not equipped with backlighting.
Max. rider weight
The maximum weight of the user that the board is designed for, more precisely, the maximum weight that it can bear in normal use.
Under no circumstances should you exceed the recommended weight. There is a fairly high probability that the skate will not break immediately; however, a breakdown can occur at any time, and even after overload, already under the permissible weight. This is fraught with a fall and injury, not to mention the fact that such cases are not covered by the warranty. And for the full use of the skateboard, it is highly desirable to have a small margin of weight — at least 10 – 15 kg. This will give an additional guarantee in case of abnormal loads (for example, hitting an obstacle) and in some specific situations — for example, if you need to carry a heavy backpack with you.
Models with a weight limit of up to 70 kg can be conditionally attributed to children, although such a skate may also be suitable for a teenager. The average is the maximum weight, which lies in the range from 70 to 100 kg — such boards are already suitable for boys and girls. A limit of more than 100 kg is typical for fairly advanced models, originally designed to be used by adults.
The total weight of the skateboard as standard.
The weight of the board, compared to the weight of the rider himself, is very small. Therefore, you should pay attention to this parameter first of all in cases where you plan to regularly carry the skate with you — in your hands, in a backpack, etc. Theoretically, it is desirable to use lighter boards to perform jumps, but in fact, the difference between the same type of models is most often not so significant as to significantly affect the effectiveness of jumps (they will rather depend on the features of the deck and suspension).
Separately, it is worth mentioning the significant weight of electric skateboards(see "Type"), due to the presence of batteries and electric motors.
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