The story of my board starts when I worked at a juice bar in Santa Monica and had my bike stolen from my balcony in Westwood, which I thought was a nice enough area to be able to store my bike outside of my living room. I didn’t even have the bike for 2 weeks before it was stolen!
fast forward a month of two of commuting by bus when I met a very short term coworker that was a semi-pro downhill guy that had just moved here from Texas with the intention of just skating in the mountains in Malibu for the rest of his life. I asked him if he could make me a board with all of his used stuff that he gets for free from his sponsors since I’ve never skated in my life before hand and had no idea if I’d even like it, and he was like sure, $40 bucks. I got some awesome wheels, solid raw Randall trucks, great bushings, a great board, and some AMAZING bearings from him.
I was totally in love with the board and how convenient/quick it was, but I was also getting tired of the negatives of having to push myself all over town. I was ruining a pair of vans every three months and was always showing up sweaty wherever I went, which wasn’t okay as my go-to way to get around. I wanted the speed of a bike, but I wanted for it to never leave my sight. Thus began the search for an electric board.
I frequent Reddit and found the small esk8 subreddit, which eventually led me here around February/March when it seems like a new board was being posted every few hours. So I read through all of Jasons posts on what things affect what and why, then decided to start looking for parts.
I wanted my board to be as efficient and effortless to operate as possible, I wasn’t worried about top speed. I also wanted a board to travel with, which put limitations on the batteries. After much reading and research, I repeatedly read over several sites that the lower kV a motor has, the more efficient it runs and the less heat it generates, which sounded perfect. I went to hobby king and found the 149kv SK3 ON SALE for $48, so I immediately purchased it.
For the batteries, I knew that 12s was the most powerful we could go, but I still needed to keep my batteries under 100wh, which led me to buying 3x 4s 6.6ah batteries and wired them in series in such a way that still allows me to charge them individually. This allows me to travel within the FAA regulations without sacrificing performance.
For the wheels, I wanted the smallest wheel I could possible get, since it’ll take less energy to move them. However, I knew I couldn’t go too small because then you’re putting your components closer to the ground. I decided on white 83mm flywheel clones for the front, and for the rear I used two of the 71mm Sucrose Initiative wheels that I already had. Local skate shop sold me a set of spacers for 4 bucks, which enabled me to reap the benefits of the small wheels without putting my components too close to the ground. A++
For the VESC, I was originally going to buy from Enertion, but after the nutroll regarding the pulleys I bought from him, I worried about corners being cut with the production of enertions vescs and decided to buy a handmade one from Chaka, which I cannot say enough great things about.
I originally bought a paris truck to mount the motor on, but after chatting with Dexter from Torque Boards, he informed me that its way better to use caliber. I asked Dexter if he could make it an option on his site to just buy one truck, since most of us only need one, and he was cool enough to do it! So I got my caliber truck and motor mount from him.
Everything has been working magnificently, with the exception of the motor mount. I need to find someone to weld it to the truck, since I can’t seem to get it to stay secure in place, even with the heat shrink they recommended I use.
All in all, this board is excellent. I’m baffled by the range, the torque, and how well it handles hills! I was nervous taking it up the first big hill, but it completely ate it alive and the motor wasn’t even close to being hot. I think the next step I’ll take is having the batteries slimmed, and trimming the board down to 21" so that I can put it in the overhead without anybody complaining, and maybe adding another vesc/149kv motor combo. I also really need to paint it and build a real enclosure.
Pics coming shortly! My phone is busted and I’m waiting to get a new one.