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Build VS Buy - people who have done both?


#1

Hi all.
Fairly new to the forums, but have been scouring the pages a little bit.

Pretty much I’m wanting an electric board, caught between the two options and can’t seem to make a final decision.
I’m mainly looking for transport/commuting, but coming from a 1000+cc motorbike, I’m wanting something that I can still get excited with. In saying that I’m also after simplicity and reliability for day to day use.
I’ve tried a rental E-Go, which got my interest in electric boards, however with perhaps underwhelming performance.
I’m fairly new to skateboards as such, with some snowboarding background, however I feel I picked it up pretty quickly.
Not even positive what sort of board I should be looking at to start with.
I’m a qualified mechanic with 8yrs working on cars, and some auto electrical work, so I reckon a board build is definitely within my grasp. I just don’t want to have to be fiddling with something everyday.

Basically, looking for anyone who has built a board and found it has over complicated things?
Or has bought an off-the-shelf board and wished they had built one?

Are the benefits of building one worth it when I just want to ride?

Thanks in advance for any and all feedback.
Nick


#2

how dangerous do you wanna live speed wise because just 15mph on a 38 inch piece of thin wood feels fast!


#3

buying is easy. but performance probably wont be that great.

building is a little bit harder but you get to learn stuff and it makes the ride even more enjoyable because you made it.

there is another option… get an experienced builder to make one up for you.


#4

Not looking for extreme speed, but being able to use on bike lanes and being able to keep up with most cyclists would be nice.


#5

Thanks for the tip.

Can I ask what you ended up going with?
Performance is preferred, reliability is a must, as also is the consideration of cost between the two.


#6

go diy then, you get a learning experience, it isnt that hard, and your board can be custom made for your conditions


#7

I built my own. (and several others)
for me it was more of a cost thing…


#8

I built mine with no previous experience and it was initially an attempt to save on cost. At the time there weren’t any similarly-priced options that met my needs. The fun of building it won me over, and now I find myself equally excited for the riding and the thrill of creating and building something. @lowGuido is right that the feeling of riding an esk8 that you built yourself is unmatched. I also like knowing that I could fix any problem myself. If you buy one off the shelf you have to send it back for repair in many cases.

However, since you said that you “just want to ride” I think that it would be better for you to buy one. The cost savings, after you buy all your parts, tools, and a bunch of things that you probably didn’t need, ends up being small.

Most COTS (Commercial Off-The-Shelf) esk8s will get you up to biking speed (15mph) but you might find that acceleration and hill climbing are a bit tame. That is fine for many folks.

If you want an off-the-shelf, no-modification-needed option, Evolve’s carbon series looks cool.

But since you mentioned speed and performance, I think you’d be more happy with one of the pre-built DIY rides that @onloop @longhairedboy or @chaka sell. (Enertion, Longhairedboy, and OllinBoardCo). That would get you started with a solid kit and if you want to tinker with it later you can! Also, any one of those sellers would help you out if need.


#9

I would recommend building it yourself!! It’s half the fun! Let me know if u need any help! I am finishing up my first build and hope to ride this week!


#10

Since it’s a builder forum, you’ll find most of the people chiming in will recommend DIY. My experience with the E-GO is what brought me here as well. I wrote a pretty dense article about it here. I can relate to that feeling of wanting to spend more time riding than building but I also didn’t realize how much better the ride is when you customize your board to exactly how you want it. One thing to keep in mind is that waiting for parts could take awhile. If you have the patience it’s totally worth it.


#11

Had your exact dilemma when I started looking at eboards. Thought seriously about buying the inboard M1 and Marbel boards, but couldn’t quite pull the trigger. Then I stumbled across this forum and learned I had other options.

Ultimately I went the route @treenutter suggested for you and bought a prebuilt DIY board (Enertion Raptor dual). For me this was the perfect choice because:

  • Better than off the shelf performance and range for roughly the same price point.
  • I was able to learn about each electrical and mechanical component on the board vs mystery electronics and programming for off the shelf boards.
  • DIY forums made me feel confident, if worse came to worse, I could find information on how to repair/replace broken components.
  • I’m a little lazy and a lot impatient, I wanted something ready to ride!

Two months into owning the raptor and I have zero regrets. Fair warning though, this bug bites hards, I’ve already order the parts for my first DIY build.


#12

LOL! True Talk…
I’m waiting for a pile of parts right now…Someday…
@loose_nickers IMO. I’d jump in and start doing some research before you either choose to buy a complete or go the notorious DIY way. I think you will find that you can go a lot more custom with DIY and the idea of replacing parts yourself beats the hell out of sending your board in for repair to a manufacturer. The shipping cost alone would suck enough. Having an experienced builder from the forum build you one would be the best bet if you are uncertain about your skill set or lack the proper tools. DIY is a visceral experience. Frustration, waiting, research, waiting…LOL


#13

There is one simple question to ask yourself.

Do you LIKE building and repairing things?

If yes, then DIY is the way to go. There is nothing more satisfying than making your own, to your own individual specifications, and being able to repair it.

If no, then there is nothing more frustrating.


#14

I build for me and for other people. I also repair, consult, and in general support the community, so i definitely am a builder over a buyer.

That being said, there’s definitely a third category there. People who are willing to pay for premium parts as well as skilled labor to have a completely unique high performance custom eboard definitely make up a non-marginal group. I get info requests all the time about what i can build for people and for how much. First they are shocked by the expected performance, then they are shocked by the price. Free shipping doesn’t seem to help, but i’m worth the price, so whatevs peeps.

That’s my domain at the moment. I’m hoping to sort of become the Orange County Choppers of hand crafted high performance eboards while everyone else goes systematic and assembly line.

I guess my customer is still a “buyer” but definitely more of a discerning buyer than that of say… a Yuneeq or Boosted or Lectric or Shenzen’s latest flaming knockoff catastrophy.


#15

@longhairedboy You are one of the enlightened masters of this craft. I have been super inspired by your builds and your unique sense of style. Then there’s the way you have integrated the wiring into the board itself. I feel lucky that I get to watch you do your thing. I’m humbled and grateful for all of your posts/pics. Gotta plug your page, dude! http://longhairedboy.com/ Thank you.
@RunPlayBack You have inspired me tons already. I watched your videos and was lost in that world. Your camera work was smooth and natural feeling. I totally dig the one where you bust that manual. Your videos were some of the first glimpses into the world of ESK8 that I had ever seen. Reading the article you wrote in the link you posted http://runplayback.com/how-i-built-a-diy-eboard was inspiring too. You are a cool dude. I can vibe out a kind and generous spirit. Thank you.
@torqueboards Special shout out to Dexter@ http://diyelectricskateboard.com/ Dexter has been very helpful and responsive to my questions and concerns. Really grateful for all of your positive input, Dex! Thank you.

SO what I’m vibing between the lines here is that you can get a prefab board, buy a kit, or have a builder make you a rig, but the real privilege and opportunity here is something more. Don’t think of ESK8 building as a means to an end, but an opportunity to be part of a really talented and positive community. It’s not all about the boards, it’s about the love. So yeah…Don’t buy prefab boards. Be a part of a community. Spread the love!! :v:


#16

wow thanks for the kind words bro!