Electric Skateboard Becoming More Popular
The electric skateboard is becoming a recognized form of transportation, entertainment and sport. Some of the cheaper models can be purchased for under $100 while the popular, ‘fully equipped’ models can easily run into the thousands of dollars. Although the electric skateboard is becoming more and more popular, it is not something new. During the 1990’s Loui Finkle invented the first true electric skateboard. It featured a wireless remote control but the board proved to expensive for the target market. As a result it did not sell well. A few years later, in 2004, brothers Dan and Matt Quinn met with Finkle and added battery-powered motors to the board.
Electric Skateboard Has Caused Some Legal Issues
The use of electric skateboards has actually caused controversy. The use of the boards in public places has caused a debate among legislators. In Modesto, CA they were made street legal if they did not run on gasoline. A couple of years ago Governor Jerry Brown signed a bill making electric skateboards legal in any places where bicycles can go while allowing communities to set their own local laws.
Your typical electric skateboard is similar to a standard skateboard. It has a board, four wheels and lets the user steer by shifting their weight. Instead of using ‘leg-power’ the new skateboard is powered by an electric motor and often comes equipped with a remote control. This allows the user to determine the speed and the use of brakes. Other skateboards use batteries for power. They can operate for as much as 100 uninterrupted minutes. Most electric skateboards can travel between 15 and 25 miles per hour. Some can go faster.
People buying their first board, or parents buying for their child need to consider several options. You should look for one that sits low to the ground. This offers more stability to the rider. It also offers a lower center of gravity. You should consider polyurethane wheels. These offer the smoothest ride. They are also quiet. If you, or your child will be riding at night then you should add lights to your board. You can choose from LED light stickers or strips. Riders should also wear reflective clothing after dark. Grip tape also makes for a safer ride. The tape acts as sand paper causing friction between the feet and the board resulting in less of a chance to fall off. Electric skateboards should have small bumpers. These bumpers are called ‘nose guards.’ They are actually small pieces of rubber that fit onto the ends of a board. If the board will be stored for hours, or longer periods of a time, riders should consider buying a skate backpack. Aside from storing the board there is room for books, phones and so forth. Finally, if you plan to do tricks you should add rails to the board. They attach to the underside of a board. They protect the graphics when the rider grinds and performs skate tricks.
While it takes some investment in time to learn how to properly use an electric skateboard, the learning curve is nothing compared to ‘leg-power’ used in riding a regular skateboard.