A cheap longboard with all your needs: a fashionable deck with suitable length and width, a pair of firm and stable wheels, and a tool full of excitement. Is there any longboard like this in the market? Yes, there is.
People believe that the expensive things are better than the cheaper ones, but this thought is not true with all cases, especially in longboarding.
Now I will show you some of the inexpensive longboards which are excellent and suitable for most players in this community. This article also features the standards to choose a longboard for those who don’t want to spend a lot of money at the beginning.
What do We Mean By a “Cheap” Longboard? Is the Cheap Longboard Good or Bad?
Let me clarify a little bit about this issue. “Cheap” here doesn’t mean the stuff as people often think such as “toy”, “plastic”, “only-for-children thing”, “disposable tool”, etc. There is no such a longboard under $25 in the market now.
As a longboarder, I never recommend to my friends any kind of longboards above because their parts are mostly made from plastic. They can never have the same quality and bring the experience like the real longboards do.
Thus, I am talking about the “inexpensive” boards, the “regular” ones whose price ranges from $50 – $70. Compared to the professional longboards, they are much cheaper and also reasonable to use.
Especially, it is mostly suitable for those who are new to the longboarding and haven’t got a tool to practice yet. This kind of boards is economic, affordable, and convenient. Don’t think that expensive boards are the best of all. If you are fully aware of this issue, you can still buy an inexpensive qualified longboard.
In brief, a cheap longboard is not a low-qualified board. It is just cheaper than the professional ones, and good enough for beginners to practice. Now, let’s see how many standards to choose a cheap longboard which is good enough for beginners.
Standard to Choose a Cheap Longboard
There are many parts assembled in a longboard. To know if a board is good or not, we must investigate the quality of each part. Below are the main parts we are considering:
- The deck
- The trucks
- The wheels
- The bearings
- The grip tape
As you may know, a deck should be made by wood, even hardwood, to endure the weight of the whole body. It must be sustainable when the player makes a jump or rides at the high speed. Therefore, the material of the deck is significant.
In common, manufacturer makes the deck by maple wood and sometimes by bamboo. They assemble two vertical pieces of wood and press them together with another material called “carbon fiber”. Maple wood is better than bamboo as it allows the deck to bear the heavier weight above.
The deck is firm, durable, and flexible at the same time thanks to its material. A longboard made by maple wood is also cheap (under $60). A longboard is not only made by two pieces of wood, but also three or four pieces depending on the purposes of users.
For flexibility, you should choose a board with few layers. For durability, the board with more layers is your best choice. Therefore, knowing your purpose and riding style will help you determine which one is better.
Shape and Size
Choosing the shape and size of a longboard is essential for the beginners. Why? If you don’t choose the right one, you will find some difficulties when riding.
If your board has too small width, you get trouble in balancing and standing on the deck. On the other hand, when you have too-big board, you will have to use your power more and more to make the push.
Which shape of the deck should you choose in longboarding?
When you ride a longboard, you tend to race downhill, which requires a firm deck with symmetrical shape. There are also cutouts and wheel wells that allow you to lower your body when riding at high speed.
In short, longboarding requires a deck with symmetrical shape, fit size, and cutouts to keep you safe when racing downhill or on the road.
What is a truck? It is a T-shaped piece of metal that is assembled under the deck to keep the wheels and bearings firmly. This part determines the stability and rotation ability of the board.
Trucks made by aluminum are excellent as it increases the durability and reduces the total weight above the board. Meanwhile, other trucks with less metal material are often easy to be abraded.
When it comes to the trucks, you have to consider the width and height of this part as it may cause the wheel bite. Wheel bite happens when you don’t have cutouts, your deck rubs against the wheels and leads to sudden stop, abrasion, or even accident.
To get rid of this problem in longboarding, make sure that the trucks have suitable size. The ideal truck goes with large wheels.
The distance between the hanger and the bottom of the board is high enough to fit with the 56mm wheels. The trucks should also have the same width as the deck for stability and balance.
If the deck is like a body of the longboard, then the wheels are arms and legs to make the board move. As they contact directly to the surface of the road, its material affects the quality of riding.
Wheels of longboards are made of polyurethane to increase the durability and flexibility. Often, the less plastic the wheels have, the better performance and quality the board has. A cheap longboard also has wheels made from good material.
Size of Wheels
The diameter of the wheel indicates how fast you can ride and how tightly you can rotate. The higher the number, the larger the wheel.
As small wheels are lower to the ground, it’s easy to control, turn, and rotate the board with these wheels. If you do tricks or show techniques, the 50mm wheels will fit you most. However, if you are a beginner, the longboard with large wheels is your best choice since it’s easy to keep balanced.
As mentioned in above parts, longboarding requires large wheels for safety and stability of the board. You need a couple of wheels with 70mm diameter and 40-65mm width. These wheels should also fit the trucks attached to the deck.
Can you use a cheap longboard with low truck and small wheels?
No, you cannot. You can see obviously that riding downhill, on the road, or highway, is like riding a motorcycle. You are at high speed, your wheels should be large and secure, your sitting position should be stable and safe. Finally, you should be comfortable to ride in a long way.
If you consider choosing a cheap longboard, check the wheel’s size carefully.
Bearings are the round pieces made of metal to mount the wheels outside and connect them with the axle. Compared to the wheels, each bearing has the same size which fits every board in the market. The standard size for a bearing is 8mm for the core, 22mm outer diameter, and 7mm width.
So what makes the bearings different from each other? When it comes to the bearings, you should consider these things: material, ball precision, raceway, and the load handling capacity. There are five grades based on the performance of the bearings, which are marked as ABEC rating.
- ABEC 1: the quality is the lowest, the material is rough, and the price is also the cheapest.
- ABEC 3: The bearings perform at average quality with inexpensive price. They don’t roll quickly or flexibly.
- ABEC 5: Affordable cost, regular performance, and popular usage. These bearings at this rate will be suitable for most players
- ABEC 7: this board’s bearings require a little bit of higher cost but bring the excellent ability: fast turning, smooth, and flexible.
- ABEC 9: extremely fast bearings with expensive price. This should be for professionals.
In short, when you are going to choose a cheap longboard but still well qualified, consider the rate for bearings. For me, I would choose the ABEC 5 ones to get started in longboarding.
A grip tape goes with the shape of the deck and is attached to the board as firmly as possible. This part is to prevent you from slipping or falling off the deck as there is a rough and grainy surface on it. The grip tape also helps you stand still on the board and easily make the turns, rotation, or twisting motion.
There is no such a costly grip tape. You can choose a cheap longboard with good tape attached above to maintain balanced easier. You can also apply another one when the old tape is worn out or getting slippery.
Now we have quickly checked some essential standards for choosing a cheap longboard. Below are some of the top inexpensive longboards for your reference.
Top 10 Cheap Longboards With Standard Quality
#1. Retrospec Zed Bamboo Longboard Skateboard Complete Cruiser
- 44 inches deck made of bamboo and Canadian maple
- Aluminum trucks with 7 inches length
- Kicktail, cutouts
- Wheels 70x51mm, ABEC 7 bearings
#2. Quest Rorshack Bamboo Longboard Skateboard (34-Inch)
- 34 inches length of the deck
- Material: hardwood-maple-made plies and bamboo-decorated deck
- Wheels 65mm, aluminum trucks 6 inches length
- Bearings rated at ABEC 7
#3. RIMABLE Pintail Longboard 41 Inch
- 41×9.5 Inch Deck
- Pintail longboard shape
- Full maple laminated deck with 9 plies
- 7-inch aluminum trucks with 180mm hanger
- Wheels 51mm, ABEC 9 bearings
#4. Karnage Drop Through Longboard
- 38×9-inch board made of maple
- 7-inch alloy trucks
- Wheels 70x51mm, ABEC 7 bearings
#5. SANVIEW 42inch Complete Bamboo Longboard Skateboards Cruiser
- Made by 7 plies of maple wood and bamboo
- Drop through mount (when the trucks are assembled through the deck, not attached underside)
- 7-inch trucks, 70x42mm wheels, and ABEC 9 bearings
#6. WiiSHAM Longborads Skateboards 42 inches Complete Drop Down Through Deck Cruise Professional Longboard
- 9 plies of maple wood with 42×9 inches in size
- Twin boards, drop through mount
- Trucks made of super aluminum alloy
- ABEC 9 bearings, 70x52mm wheels
#7. Playshion 39 Inch Drop Through Freestyle Longboard Skateboard Cruiser
- 39×9.1 inch deck made by 8 maple wood plies
- Drop through mount
- 7-inch aluminum, ABEC 9 bearings
- Wheels 70x50mm
#8. YOCAHER Drop Through Complete Longboard Professional Speed Skateboard
- 40×10 inch deck, 9 plies of maple wood
- 9.675-inch trucks made of aluminum alloy
- Wheels 70x52mm, with ABEC 7 bearings
#9. SCSK8 Natural Blank & Stained Assembled Complete Longboard Skateboard
- 40×9 inch deck, with 7-ply maple
- Pintail shape
- 7-inch aluminum trucks
- ABEC 9 bearings
- Wheels 70mm
#10. VOLADOR 42inch Freeride Longboard Complete Cruiser (Drop Through Deck – Camber concave)
- 42×9 inch deck, with 8 plies made by maple wood
- Drop through mount
- 7-inch aluminum trucks, can adjust from 50 to 45 degrees.
- Wheels 51mm, with ABEC 9 bearings
It’s now easy to answer the question: how to choose a cheap longboard but good enough for beginners. Above are all the basic criteria to choose a cheap longboard for most players in the community. Though we often call it “cheap”, the price is not cheap at all. Instead, it is “inexpensive”.
These longboards are excellent even if they are in the low-end price range. The top 10 inexpensive longboards referred above are also the most qualified in the range of price. Take your time and make the choice after considering carefully.
Comment below if you want to know more about the top inexpensive longboards for players.