How to Choose the Best Electric Longboard
If you are looking for a means of transportation that you can use for pleasure as well as a serious means of getting from one point to another, an electric longboard may be just for you. Put aside all of your preconceived notions about toys and other conveyances of youth. This is real transportation. So strap on your helmet and take a test drive through this guide for How To Choose The Best Electric Longboards.
What is an electric longboard?
Generally speaking, an electric longboard is a same thing as your conventional skateboard, except that it's wider and longer than a skateboard, and has an electric motor that provides propulsion. In most cases, a hand controller provides the control over the movement the board provides.
Just as is the case with virtually anything mechanical, knowing something about what you are looking for is the first step in making a selection for the best longboards for your purposes. Below is a list of the most important features of an electric longboard and why each is so important to your selection.
First to consider are the electrical parts. These include the batteries, motor, control, and charger.
The Battery and Its Backup Power
Just as is the case with anything that uses a battery to provide power, an electric longboard gets its power from an onboard battery. This is a must since you must consider the range of your longboard and whether there is enough power in the batteries to do what you want to do. The only problem in years past has been their weight. Fortunately, today's lithium batteries make that an issue of the past. A good battery will get you from 7 to 18 miles on a charge.
Motor and its Capability
The motor is another matter that has a lot of variables to consider, each one that needs to be narrowed down for you to make the best selection for you. Motors come in a wide range, from differences in weight, differences in drive systems, and wattages. In most cases, a 400-watt motor will get you around fine. Opt for a 2,000-watt motor, and you will be climbing steep hills faster than a speeding bullet.
Most electric motors are controlled with either a thumb or trigger grip controller. In most cases, the trigger grip is easier to use, and is lighter on the finger too. Personal preference rules here.
Chargers are another issue that depends on your riding plans. Some chargers will give you a full charge after only a half-hour or less; others take up to 3-5 hours to give you a full charge. All electric longboards come with their own chargers. Consider a fast charging charger.
These are the primary hardware parts of an electric longboard. These include the deck, truck, wheel, and bearing.
The deck of the longboard is, quite simply, the long and flat part that you stand on. It won't take long before you discover that there are many variables in decks, each one catering to a different want. Some are wider and shaped different than others. Designs are also widely varied. Most of the deck made of maple, bamboo, and carbon fiber. In this department, it's almost completely a matter of personal choice.
The trucks of the longboard are the metal pieces that help to give the longboard balance and hold the wheels in place. They come in two widths, 150mm and 180mm. They also come in two kingpins, reverse and standard. An electric longboard truck is different than ordinary long board truck. Try to select a reverse kingpin responsive truck.
Wheels are yet another significant variable on longboards. Soft wheels are more common, however, since they tend to soften the bumps that you find on the most common roadways and sidewalks that longboards are faced with. Things like size, lip and contact patch are prime considerations.
Bearings are tiny steel or ceramic balls that help make the wheels move. A lot depends on such small things, but they are all important. The net effect, however, is the better the bearing, the better your ride. Choose an ABEC 9-11 rated bearing.
The riding range you get on a single charge is a huge consideration for a top quality longboard. After all, what good is a full charge if it doesn't get you to where you want to go before another charge is required? Even worse is getting somewhere, then not being able to get back...especially when you didn't think to bring your charger with you. The average riding range is 6 to 10 miles, but best is 15 to 20 miles.
The weight of your electric longboard is another important consideration. Heavy generally means stability, until you realize that at some point you will have to pick it up and carry it. If you have to carry it frequently, then try a lightweight electric longboard.
What good is a nice longboard if you can't afford it? The good news in this is that you don't need to spend a lot of money to get something nice. Generally speaking, an electric longboard will cost you anything from about $200 for something basic, to $1,000 and more for a good model.
Warranty and supports
Anytime you are dealing with something electronic and mechanical; you are accepting the possibility that something will go bad. For this reason, try to find a good warranty. They are all slightly different from each other.
Considering Purpose of the Electric Longboard
For simply getting from one place to another, a good basic model would be perfect for you. The temptation here is to go for cheap, which is not a good strategy for a something that will take you far and keep you on the road for a while. You want something that will tolerate abuse and use for a while, and ditch the styling.
Just as is the case with commuting, traveling will require that you have an electric longboard that will last for the long run. This includes battery life as well as how it's made overall. There's nothing more frustrating than having a board that falls apart before a long life, or can't maintain a decent charge to get you someplace and back again. In this case choose one that can lead to 15 to 20 miles per charge.
Just out for a nice ride? Get something that's easy to use but still "cool." Being sturdy is important here, but looks are good too.
This depends a lot on your style. Carving involves a lot of both on and off time. If you're okay with quitting for a while to recharge, you might be able to get along with a secondary battery, but make sure the board is sturdy, durable, and maneuverable.
Now, for the moment you have been waiting for, the verdict. Unfortunately, this is easier said than done. After you have read this far, you know that much depends on what you want your electric longboard to do. Whether it's a cheaper alternative to getting to work or pure fun and games, you can rest assured that there is plenty for everyone to choose from.
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