Electric skateboards are a relatively new development in the skateboarding world with the big names today such as the Yuneec E-Go and Boosted Board’s popular products only gaining prominence in late 2013 and all throughout 2014.
A lesser known aspect of this revolution is the maker movement which has always been experimenting with ways to power skateboards and reduce pushing. With the electric longboards rise in popularity, this maker movement has drastically grown recently and now companies are forming that sell kits to make your own do it yourself (DIY) electric skateboard.
One of the most popular companies in this field is Enertion Boards which lives by the motto: “life’s too short to push”, a reference to riders having to push on their skateboards to achieve more speed or tackle uphill sections of road.
Enertion Boards offers custom high quality parts to riders interested in designing their own custom electric longboard. Talking to the company founder he stated,
“[it’s] no different than what a traditional skateboard rider would do when they want a skate deck. If you’re a serious skateboard rider you don’t buy off the shelf prebuilt. You go and buy the best trucks, bearings, wheels and your favourite deck. You build it to suit your taste.”
To this end, Enertion Boards offers custom trucks, motors, motor mounting kits, and battery packs to help riders customize their own boards. For riders who aren’t interested in a deep level of customization, Enertion Boards also offers standard kits which are an easy way to transform a typical longboard deck into a powerful electric longboard.
For this review, the crew at Review Longboards decided to compare some of the existing electric longboard offerings out there to the performance specifications offered by Enertion Board’s standard kits.
Enertion Boards currently offers complete mechanical kits and all the electrical parts individually to make your electric longboard.
The mechanical kits include all of the components need to actually make your longboard electric while the electrical components are needed to control it.
The overall concept of turning a regular longboard electric involves mounting a gear to one or both of the wheels then running a pulley to the center of the board where a motor is mounted.
Using the kits Enertion provides, the gear is attached to the wheel using simple hex screws while the motor is mounted a distance away from the trucks using a specially designed motor mount from Enertion. Enertion offers both single and dual motor kits for specific rider needs.
The electronic parts are then used to power and connect the motors to a controller. These parts consist of a battery to power everything, a fast charger for the battery, and an electric speed control to allow riders to vary the speed of the motors with a remote control.
While Enertion is currently working on a unique controller design, any controller with a 2.4 Ghz range will work with their kits. One controller that seemed to be popular with electric skateboards was the Fly Sky 2.4Ghz 3 Channel transmitter for its cheap price and ease of use.
To find the total cost of making a custom electric skateboard, Review Longboards tallied up the cost of each of the items necessary to make a custom electric skateboard given an ordinary longboard deck.
As can be seen, it is quite a big investment but performance wise, what do riders get?
When compared to existing longboards such as the Yuneec E-Go and the Boosted Dual 2000W electric skateboards, the components Enertion Boards offers exceeds both in top speed and range. It’s also worth noting that with lighter riders, an Enertion Boards setup will have an even greater range.
With the addition of the fast charger, Enertion Board’s battery, while slightly slower, keeps up with the charging time of the similar Boosted Board for less money.
The real beauty of the DIY electric longboard movement and Enertion Boards is in its specialization. If customers want to use their own longboard deck they can. If they want to buy a different motor for more power they can.
Enertion Boards simply provides high performance and high-quality parts to help connect different components together. In the words of the founder,
“[I am] to invent an entire new industry by building a range of quality, custom made for eboards only parts. So that skaters can do what they have always done. Go and build a board that is perfect for them.”