What Types Of Longboard Decks Should You Get?
Longboard decks come in many different styles. The style you choose depends on what you are going to use the board for most often.
On top of the shape or form a longboard deck comes in, they also come in a variety of materials.
After reading this guide, you will know the primary elements that longboards are made of as well as the different styles of decks you can choose. You will understand why you might want to pick one form of a deck over another.
Materials Decks are Made From
Before getting into the different style of longboard decks and the reasoning behind each one we will look at the material that longboard decks are made of. There are three primary materials used for the best longboards, and each has there own advantages and disadvantages. The three materials we will cover here are maple, bamboo, and carbon fiber.
Maple wood has been used for many years for skateboards and is very popular. Some of the reasons for its popularity is that it is cheap and abundant. Also, it is a very durable wood meaning that your board will last you a long time if taken care of properly. One downside to maple though is it is a denser wood. This means that maple boards may not be as easy to ride as some of the other options.
Bamboo is the next option we will discuss. Bamboo boards have gained popularity the past few years. This is because they are light but also still durable. The cost of bamboo has been going down, but these still cost a bit more than maple. Also, they are more flexible which can cause riders issues until they get used to it. Boards made of bamboo though can still be used for any riding, and one final benefit of them being light is they are a lot easier to carry.
The last material is the most expensive type used for longboards, and that is carbon fiber. Due to the extra cost, most people consider carbon fiber boards as the pro boards, but anyone can use one. Between the carbon fiber is foam to help keep it extra light. They are perfect for pushing off a race line fast and moving effortlessly.
Shapes of Longboards
Now that we covered the materials boards can be made of we can move on to the different forms. There are two main kinds of shapes, and that is directional and symmetrical. Directional boards are meant to go in one way. Usually, the front-end is more rounded or pointed, and that is how you can know it is the front. For symmetrical decks, they look the same on both ends.
The decks can come in all kinds of different cutouts though. Some allow for more wheel clearance and cut in at the wheels and then are fatter at the middle. Others, on the other hand, are shaped like long ovals almost. Depending on the kind of riding you are doing most will help you decide which to get.
For causing you want something aerodynamic and same goes for downhill riding. Ordinarily directional boards are best for this because they cut through the air better. If you are doing tricks, especially 180s and things, then that is when you would probably want the symmetrical board.
Outside of how the board is cut out you also have how it is curved. Longboard decks typically aren’t flat. There is a lot of variety in how a deck might be concaved. You have radial which means that the board looks like a U.
This is the most common and gives an excellent grip. One that is similar to this is progressive which is higher on the sides and more aggressively sloped than the radial, giving it better grip.
Next is the W concave which is mainly at the end. With this design, you can turn faster and more precise. Tub boards are like the radial, but the slop is more progressive on the sides. Then you get asymmetrical boards where the curve is not even.
These are used to turn better but can be hard to get used too. The last two are pretty rare, and that is convex and flat. Flat boards have no curve and allow a lot of feet room. Convex boards look like an upside-down U and offer a more natural feel for your feet.
Mounting of Deck
Next, we will look at the mounting of your longboard deck, as this will affect the riding too. You have two types of mounting which are over the top and drop through. Over the top, the board mounts right on top the trucks.
On drop thru the trucks goes through the board and are installed in the middle. The advantage to drop thru is that the board is lower which helps lower the center of gravity.
Another way to get the board lower is by having a drop deck board.
These boards drop down in the middle where your feet are.
The deck is higher at each end. You can have drop decks in both types of truck mounting. If you combine the drop thru mounting with a drop deck, then the deck gets extra low.
There are a few other features to look at with longboard decks as well. That is a longboard can have a curve lengthwise on top of the curve it has with wise.
There usually is only two types of curves though when it comes to this kind. You have camber boards which have the middle part raised slightly from the ends. It looks like an upside-down U if you look at the board from the side.
Then you also have rocker boards which have a slight curve down in the middle. These are different than drop boards that have a precious angle where they drop down. Rocker boards, on the other hand, are more smooth and look like U’s from the side.
The last thing to consider for your skateboard deck is a kicktail. This is when the end of the board is curved slightly. It is used the pick the board up without binding over. You just step on the end, and it raises up, and you can grab the other side. It is also used a lot for tricks, so if you plan on doing tricks, then you will probably want a kicktail.
You should choose a deck of best longboard brands, it will help you make sure you will find the good one.
As you can see, there is a lot of variety in longboard designs. You can have different materials along with different shapes. Then on top of that, you can have different types of curves on the board and a few added features. Lastly, decks mount differently too depending on what you are riding the board for. For cruising or downhill racing you want a board with a lower center of gravity. This makes it easier to keep control at higher speeds. For other types of riding, you might want your center of gravity higher, so it is less strain on your body when riding.