How To Choose An Electric Skateboard?
Jun 09, 2023
- Riding style
- Motor power
- Types of motors
- Battery life
- Deck size and shape
- Wheels and trucks
- How Much Should Electric Skateboards Cost You?
- Review websites
- Which WowGo board is for you?
As a well-known electric skateboard brand in the industry, we are often asked the question: which board is right for me?
Electric skateboards are expensive compare to traditonal skateboard so it’s understandable that you want to get the one that’s right for you and not waste your money.
A comprehensive video of how to choose an electric skateboard, by Daniel Kwan:
In this article, we’ll help you narrow down the choices and show you things like what features you should care about.
Choosing an electric skateboard can be a bit overwhelming, especially with so many options available on the market. But don't worry! You will become familiar with the market as soon as you spend a little more time on a few rounds of research. Here are some factors to consider when selecting an electric skateboard.
Commuting is one of the most popular uses for electric skateboards. Many urban dwellers have found electric skateboards to be a convenient and efficient mode of transportation for their daily commutes. A good commuting electric skateboard should offer reliable battery life, a comfortable ride, and a decent speed range. It should be lightweight and compact for easy portability, especially when using public transportation. Practical features, such as LED lights for visibility and wider wheels for stability on city streets, can also enhance the commuting experience.
Carving refers to a riding style that mimics the motion of surfing or snowboarding, involving a series of "S" shaped turns. This style is usually preferred by riders who enjoy the feeling of fluidity and the thrill of leaning into turns. Electric skateboards used for carving should be flexible, allowing for smooth and responsive turns. They should also have high-quality trucks that offer good maneuverability. Typically, a carving board will have a longer deck and softer wheels to ensure a smooth ride and good grip during sharp turns.
Off-roading is for those who want to take their electric skateboarding adventures beyond city streets. Off-road electric skateboards are designed to handle a variety of terrains, including dirt, grass, and even gravel. They typically have sturdy construction and feature larger, knobbier wheels that provide excellent traction and stability on uneven surfaces. Off-road boards also require powerful motors to overcome challenging terrains, and a higher ground clearance to avoid getting stuck on rocks or roots. It's important for an off-road skateboard to have a robust battery life to ensure it can handle longer rides in the wilderness.
Freestyle riding involves performing tricks and stunts. Riders who enjoy this style will often look for electric skateboards that are lightweight and responsive with a good balance of flexibility and stability. Features like kicktails can be advantageous for performing tricks.
Downhill riding is all about speed and control as riders race down steep hills. Electric skateboards used for downhill should have high top speeds, reliable brakes, and stable trucks. Stiff decks are generally preferred for downhill riding as they provide more stability at high speeds.
Slalom riding involves navigating through a course of obstacles, usually cones, in the shortest time possible. Boards used for slalom riding should be highly maneuverable with responsive trucks and a narrower deck for quick and sharp turns.
- Long-Distance Touring
For those who enjoy long rides or touring, electric skateboards with a longer deck and a high-capacity battery are preferred. These boards should provide a comfortable ride and have features that aid in endurance riding, like larger wheels and a more powerful motor.
- Street Riding
Street riding involves using features of the urban environment such as stairs, railings, and benches to perform tricks. Electric skateboards for this style should be robust and durable, often with a shorter deck and harder wheels for better control during tricks.
Motor power standards differ by brand.
As the heart of an electric skateboard, motor power is one of the crucial thing to an E-skateboard. But remember not to be fooled by specs!
We suggest that you compare motor specifications within the same brand, as mentioned by Daniel Kwan in his video. This is because there is no industry standard for reference. This will give you an idea of how much of an upgrade the product is. Otherwise, comparing motor specifications between two different brands is meaningless, as there are different standards and methods used to measure motor power.
Look for a board with a motor that is powerful enough if you like the high-speed experience. Choose a board with enough power if you just want to curise around.
Motor‘s theoretical power (A rough explanation)
If you're interested in understanding the theoretical power output of the board, you can use a straightforward formula: P = UI, where P represents power, U stands for the voltage of the battery, and I is the amperage supplied by the ESC. For instance, if the ESC outputs 20A for a single motor, and the battery supplies 42 volts, then theoretically, the motor's peak power would be 840W.
However, it's essential to keep in mind that in the real world, there will be some power loss due to various factors.
Types of motors
Hub motors are electric motors that are seamlessly integrated into the hub of a wheel, typically on the rear wheels. This makes them very discreet, as they are concealed within the wheel itself—a notable benefit for those who lean toward a minimalist or inconspicuous design in their electric vehicle or device. As these motors rotate, they directly power the wheel's movement, requiring no extra moving parts and offering an almost silent operation. They come in various fixed speed configurations, allowing for some flexibility in performance.
If you're feeling adventurous and have a robust battery and ESC (Electronic Speed Controller) enclosure, you can even take a skateboard equipped with hub motors to a skate park and ride it just like a traditional board. While the wheel options are somewhat limited, due to the motors using sleeves as wheels, there are plenty of replacement sleeves available, and new designs are regularly hitting the market.
One unique feature of hub motors is the ability to manually kick-push your board if the batteries die. With the regenerative braking feature, you can actually gain a little power back into the batteries. The quiet operation of hub motors can add to the enjoyment of the ride. Furthermore, their streamlined design translates to less required maintenance, potentially saving on long-term costs. However, it's worth noting that hub motors may not offer as much power as direct drive motors and are usually significantly less powerful than external motors.
In summary, hub motors are ideal for those who appreciate quiet rides, enjoy a bit of traditional skateboarding, and aren't keen on spending a lot of time or energy on maintenance and repairs.
Belt-driven motors are a popular type of external motor drive. These motors utilize brushless motors equipped with a pulley, which connects to a larger pulley on the wheel via a belt. This configuration provides various gear ratio options, as well as high torque and speed, making them an ideal choice for those who reside in hilly areas or want a vehicle capable of mixed-terrain use. Some enthusiasts even opt to switch from belt to chain drives to boost durability further. They can be set up in either single or dual-motor configurations.
One of the primary advantages of belt-driven, and external motors in general, is the vast customization they offer. You have the freedom to choose various wheel characteristics, such as diameter, hardness, and color, enabling a highly personalized electric vehicle or device. Types of external motors include belt, gear, or chain drives, each affecting the motor's performance in different ways, from torque and endurance to top speed.
However, these systems do come with numerous moving parts that may need occasional adjustments and could vibrate out of alignment or loosen over time. Depending on your specific setup and the torque these motors generate, you may have to fine-tune the motor mounts, belts, and motors themselves after intense usage. Once perfectly adjusted, the power output is nothing short of exhilarating.
While belt-driven motors might produce more operational noise compared to hub motors, some users actually appreciate this feature, associating the sound with a sense of power and speed. The tires of external motors often feature thicker polyurethane material, contributing to a more comfortable ride. In terms of raw power, external motors, including belt-driven types, generally outperform both direct drive and hub motors.
The adaptability of belt-driven motors is a key feature. You can install them on almost any skateboard truck and a wide range of wheel types, including all-terrain wheels that can accommodate a pulley. There's also a robust online community focused on belt-driven systems, offering extensive support and welcoming questions of all kinds.
In short, belt-driven motors are best suited for riders who value high performance, torque, and customization. They are a go-to choice for those who traverse mixed terrains, enjoy tinkering with their setups, and don't mind a bit of maintenance for the sake of superior power and adaptability.
Direct Drive Motors
Direct drive motors combine best of both worlds—high torque and speed of belt drives, along with the direct power of hub motors, no need for belts, mounts or pulleys. The power delivery to wheels is fully adjustable, like with belt-driven systems, giving precise control over acceleration. Plus, these motors are good at dissipating heat, so they're ideal for uphill racing for longer times.
These motors offer a balanced mix of ease-of-use, quick acceleration, and power control. You can even use any skateboard wheel that fits an adapter, including all-terrain ones. And if you forgot to charge battery, you can still kick-push the board.
But direct drive motors have some drawbacks too. They're pretty large, so they sit close to ground and are more likely to get damaged from stuff like rocks. They ain't invulnerable; even a small rock could do some damage. If you're into pneumatic wheels for street and off-road, direct drives can be real beneficial. And if you dare to go low and fast on urethane wheels, you'd better start learning how to carve and weave, and quick.
All in all, direct drive motors are a versatile option, delivering high-speed and torque while also offering the convenience of direct power. Their larger size could be a downside, as it leaves them vulnerable to road debris. They're a strong fit for riders looking for a mix of power and efficiency, as long as they're aware of the potential drawbacks.
Gear Drive Motors
Gear drives might look like a newer technology, but DIY enthusiasts—also known as "gearheads"—have been tinkering with this systems for quite a while. These drives are usually compact, close fixed gear systems that bring together best features of other motor types. You get the freedom to swap wheels, the torque akin to belt drives, all in a neat package that lets you tackle both mountain trails and city streets.
Most gear drive systems are super responsive and amazingly compact. Some high-end DIY all-terrain setups even let you switch out gears, although fixed gear systems is more common. There are some downsides though; the gear noise can be loud enough to bother some people (or just plain annoying for the rest). The systems are also complex and can be pretty pricey. They may be an expensive endeavor for DIY builders, but the investment is totally worth it if you can foot the bill. If you're a hardcore off-road racer looking for a high-speed, sealed system, gear drives might just be your ideal motor and drive train combo.
So, if you're an off-road enthusiast in search of a high-speed, sealed system or a DIY builder willing to invest in premium performance, gear drives could be the perfect fit. Their complexity and cost may be a barrier for some, but for those craving compactness, responsiveness, and the freedom to customize, it's often money well spent.
Battery life is an essential factor to consider, as it determines how long you can ride on a single charge. Look for a board with a battery that can provide sufficient range for your riding needs.
At WowGo Board, we conduct battery life tests by riding for more than 200km with a rider weighing 75kg. We strive to gather the most objective data possible to ensure that our customers achieve the ideal range they desire.
Deck size and shape
Deck size and shape can affect the stability, maneuverability, and comfort of your ride. Consider your body size, riding style, and terrain to choose the right deck.
Wheels and trucks
KEY CHARACTERISTICS OF SKATEBOARD TRUCKS
Skateboard trucks come with ten essential characteristics that shape their overall performance. These features can be either selected at the time of purchase or adjusted later for enhanced performance. For detailed information on each category, feel free to click on the respective titles.
|In electric skateboarding, there are three main types of trucks: Reverse Kingpin Truck (RKP), known for high-speed stability; Traditional Kingpin Truck (TKP), favored for maneuverability in street skating; and for electric skateboards, the Double Kingpin Truck (DKP), which offers exceptional carving ability and a tighter turning radius.
|The width of each truck hanger (in inches or millimeters, typically ranging from 90mm to 215mm). This determines how wide the wheels track. The most common on longboards is 150mm - 180mm.
|The angle the hanger makes with the pivot cup. This is measured in degrees, usually ranging from 20° - 70° with 40° - 50° being the most common.
|The area in the truck hanger where the bushing sits. The amount of room allowed for the bushings to compress varies from seat to seat. This plays a large role in the feel of the truck.
|How high the truck stands the deck off the ground. This is measured from the center of the axle to the bottom of the baseplate. Most common for is around 2.3". Lower means more stability. Higher means more carve potential.
|There are three main types: cast, forged, and precision. Cast is the most inexpensive, but the most imprecise and weakest. Precision is stronger than cast and offers extremely exact tolerances on bushing seats and bearing facings. Forged is the strongest of all three and offers a moderate level of precision.
|The type of pivot used in the truck hanger. There are three types: standard, cylinder, and ball. This determines how easily the hanger rotates during a turn, all else equal.
|The amount of axle offset from the center of hanger rotation, measured in millimeters (+ / -).
|The hole mounting pattern in the baseplate of the truck. The deck holes needs to match the truck holes in order to mount the trucks to the board. There are two kinds: Old School and New School.
|Thickness of the axle, either 8mm or 10mm. 10mm is stronger, but heavier and with much fewer bearing choices. 8mm is much more common and widely considered the "best" option for almost every application.
Electric skateboards can vary greatly in price. It is suggesting that when looking for an electric skateboard, you should determine your budget first and then look for a board in that price range. This will help you to find the board that offers the best value for your money, without getting overwhelmed by the wide range of options available in the market.
How Much Should Electric Skateboards Cost You?
Nate at Eskate Hub offers a reference that supports this question:
The price of an electric skateboard depends on several aspects, and as a new product in the market, it’s hard to put all the options available within a solid price range.
For instance, there are some ultra budget electric skateboards that may cost you anywhere between $150 to $300.
On the other hand, there are super high end models that can cost you around $4,000 to a whopping $6,500!
However, the vast majority of electric skateboard models on the market exist within a price range of $400 to $2,200.
For that reason, the best way to estimate the cost of a skateboard is by classifying them according to price ranges like the following:
Ultra budget electric skateboards: $150 to $299
Standard beginner electric skateboards: $300 to $799
Intermediate level (mid-tier) electric skateboards: $800 to $1499
High end electric skateboards: $1500 to $2,000
Premium skateboards: over $2,000
Read reviews from other users to learn about their experiences with the electric skateboard. Look for feedback on the board's performance, reliability, and customer support.
Additionally, you can research review articles from the ESK8 community (like ElectricSkateboardHQ, EskateHub, and so on) to get a more complete picture of the electric skateboard market. This can include information on brands that have a good reputation, are well-known for their quality or value, and so on.
By considering these factors, you can find an electric skateboard that suits your needs and preferences.
Which WowGo board is for your?
In case you prefer to skip our marketing content and select a board based on your budget and voyage needs, we have created a comparison table for your convenience.
WowGo is a renowned manufacturer of electric skateboards, celebrated for crafting economical, yet superior quality boards. Our goal is to offer enhanced products and services to the ESK8 community.
Before choosing a WowGo electric skateboard, it's essential to take into account the elements highlighted in the previous article to guarantee the selection of the most suitable board for your requirements. Such factors include your unique riding style, the power of the motor, battery longevity, the dimensions and form of the deck, the wheels and trucks, the price, and feedback from other users. Indeed, we encourage a comprehensive evaluation of WowGo electric skateboards.
In this article, we'll compare the features and specifications of four different WowGo electric skateboards: the WowGo 3E, WowGo 2S MAX, WowGo MINI 2, MINI 2S, WowGo AT2 PLUS,
A Belt-driven longboard that offers a balanced riding experience suitable for both beginners and intermediate riders.
Its deck, made from a combination of Canadian maple, bamboo, and fiberglass, provides a comfortable and flexible platform. The deck's design includes a slight concave shape with raised edges for improved turning and reduced foot fatigue.
Equipped with 90mm polyurethane street wheels, the WowGo 3E delivers a smooth and stable ride, even during sharp turns, thanks to its excellent grip. For those seeking off-road adventures, there is also the option of 105mm urban terrain wheels.
The board features dual 650W belt-drive motors, capable of reaching a top speed of 28mph and handling hills with gradients of 25-30%. Its acceleration is smooth and controlled, while the braking system effectively brings the board to a stop without being abrupt.
The remote control includes an OLED screen that displays essential ride metrics and offers convenient features like auto on/off and cruise control. Overall, the WowGo 3E provides a comfortable, controlled, and performance-oriented riding experience, making it a suitable choice for electric skateboard enthusiasts.
The best entry-level longboard.
WowGo 2S Max
We designed this board with the aim of providing users with excellent performance without any compromises.
People might be surprised to hear that our entry-level board boasts a 216Wh battery pack, 12S2P set-up, 550W Dual motor, and Hobbywing ESC. But we're proud to offer such high-quality components.
The WowGo 2S Max is the ultimate electric skateboard for young people and college students who are looking for an entry-level electric longboard that delivers high performance and quality. With its sleek design and 12S2P 216Wh battery pack, the WowGo 2S Max is a great choice for those who want to experience the thrill of electric skateboarding without breaking the bank. Upon its launch, it quickly made a name for itself, being named one of the best electric longboards under $500 by Electric Skateboard HQ.
This board boasts a powerful motor that can propel you up to 28 mph and a long-range battery that allows you to ride for up to 19 miles on a single charge. The board's deck is made from premium materials, ensuring that it's both durable and lightweight.
The WowGo 2S Max also features a wireless remote control that allows you to easily adjust your speed and braking, giving you full control over your ride. And with its customizable settings, you can tailor your ride to your specific preferences and needs.
Overall, the WowGo 2S Max is an excellent choice for young people and college students who want a reliable, high-performance electric skateboard at an affordable price. With its impressive specs and sleek design, this board is sure to provide hours of fun and excitement for riders of all skill levels.
"I'm the flash."
The WowGo Mini 2 is an electric skateboard designed for riders of all levels. It has a compact and lightweight design that makes it easy to carry around. The skateboard is powered by a 5.0Ah battery that can provide up to 15 miles of range on a single charge, and can deliver a top speed of 25 mph.
The deck of the board is crafted with 8 layers of premium Canadian maple wood, ensuring durability and resilience. The U-shaped concave design provides a secure and snug fit for your feet, allowing for precise control and responsiveness to your every turning intention. Moreover, skilled riders can experiment with the tail of the board, unlocking endless possibilities for creative and thrilling skating experiences.
This board, like the Wowgo All-Terrain series, has a single integrated shell that houses the motherboard and batteries. We prefer having one full item rather than two large boxes on a tiny skateboard deck. As a result, a deck shell is developed to improve deck area usage and aesthetic appeal.
"Mini in size, mighty in power."
The WowGo Mini2s is is a lightweight and powerful mini cruiser with a fantastic deck design and comfortable grip, featuring a unique speckled design and integrated wheel flares.
The ESC allows for customization of speed limits, acceleration, and braking through a generic app, providing a cool feature for adjusting the board's features, and it pairs with 2 new 700 watt hobbywing motors.
With a belt drive system that offers comfort, power, and the ability to swap wheels, reaching speeds of up to 28 miles per hour with torquey motors and stable performance.
The WowGo Mini2s electric skateboard has a range of 18 miles with speeds up to 28 mph using Samsung's 30 batteries.
The WowGo AT2 Plus is an electric skateboard designed to provide an off-road riding experience. It is equipped with a dual-motor system that can reach speeds of up to 25 mph and handle steep hills with ease. The board's large 7-inch pneumatic tires can tackle any terrain, and the bamboo and fiberglass deck provides a comfortable and shock-absorbing ride.
The AT2 Plus has a range of up to 22 miles on a single charge and features a fast-charging system that can fully charge the battery in just 3.5 hours. Its wireless remote control allows for smooth acceleration and braking, and the board has LED lights on both the front and back for improved visibility and safety when riding at night.
In summary, the WowGo AT2 Plus is a powerful and versatile electric skateboard that is built to withstand off-road conditions. Its sturdy construction, long-range, fast charging, and wireless remote make it a great choice for adventurous riders who want a thrilling experience on any terrain. With its flexible and shock-absorbing design and LED lights, the AT2 Plus provides a smooth and safe ride in any environment.
The WowGo Pioneer 4 is an electric skateboard designed for riders of all levels. It features a powerful 504Wh Samsung battery that allows for a maximum range of 25 miles and a top speed of 25 mph. The skateboard also comes equipped with 2 x 600W hub motors that provide excellent acceleration and hill-climbing abilities.
The board itself is made of 8 layers of Canadian maple and 1 layer of bamboo, making it durable and sturdy. It has a flexible deck that helps absorb shocks and vibrations for a smoother ride. The Pioneer 4 also comes with a wireless remote that allows for easy speed and braking control, as well as a reverse function for backing up.
Other features of the WowGo Pioneer 4 include LED lights for improved visibility and a USB port for charging your phone or other devices while riding. The board weighs 17.6 lbs and has a weight capacity of up to 264 lbs.
In conclusion, the WowGo Pioneer 4 is a powerful and reliable electric skateboard that is perfect for commuting, cruising, or just having fun.
The WowGo Pioneer X4 is a cutting-edge electric skateboard that will take your riding experience to the next level. With its advanced features and high-quality components, the Pioneer X4 is the ultimate ride for any serious skater.
The board features a powerful dual motor system that delivers an impressive top speed of 24 mph, making it one of the fastest electric skateboards on the market. The board's high-quality battery provides up to 12 miles of riding on a single charge, ensuring that you can cruise around town all day without worrying about running out of juice.
The WowGo Pioneer X4 is also built with durability in mind. The board's deck is made from high-quality Canadian maple wood, providing a sturdy and reliable ride. The board's trucks are made from aluminum alloy, ensuring that they can withstand the rigors of daily use.
One of the most impressive features of the Pioneer X4 is its advanced braking system. The board features regenerative braking, which not only slows the board down smoothly but also recharges the battery while doing so. This ensures that you can ride longer and more efficiently, while also reducing your environmental impact.
Overall, the WowGo Pioneer X4 is an exceptional electric skateboard that is sure to impress even the most experienced riders. With its advanced features and high-quality components, this board is the perfect choice for anyone who wants to take their skating to the next level.
A comprehensive video of how to choose an electric skateboard, by Daniel Kwan
There are options available for riders of all skill levels and preferences, from shortboards to longboards and from budget-friendly models to high-performance options. With proper safety precautions and maintenance, an electric skateboard can be a great investment for anyone looking to upgrade their daily commute or add some excitement to their leisure time.