For many years skateboarding has been most popular among teenage males. Nowadays, with technological advancements in compact electric motors and batteries, we have an emergence of electric skateboards that appeal to a wider demographic. And yes I mean “wider” and older like myself. Some demographics show that most e-skateboard buyers are males in the 25-55 age bracket who don’t necessarily have a skateboarding background but are purchasing the board for recreation and/or as an alternative form of transport.
- As a form of recreation it’s fun that doesn't require any additional equipment. I still suggest you use a helmet, gloves and knee-pads. This might be a good idea, and more so if you like to push things to the extreme.
- As a short range transport option it is hard to fault. Small, light and easily carried on a train or bus. It could also be hidden easily in a corner at work while it recharges. Alternative transportation made easy.
Battery and range
Some manufacturers offer 12 Ah LiFePO4 packs as an optional upgrade. This results in a lighter and agiler board. The discharge chemistry of a LiFePO4 battery also allows the motor to run at top speed constantly until the battery is exhausted. This compared to the initial high current of the SLA battery. A high quality 12 Ah-rated LiFePO4 pack can deliver 9–10 Ah, compared to a 12 Ah-rated SLA pack which delivers 7–8 Ah due to the high energy demands of the electric motor. The cost fuel ratio is between 1200 and 1500 miles per gallon in a fuel-electricity conversion comparison. It’s good to remember most cities still burn fuel for the grid.
Things to know
It should also be noted that even at top speed, it’s possible to jump off the board and run without getting hurt, but I wouldn't guarantee a successful dismount every time. Of course, the board will usually continue rolling down the street if you jump off, this is not something you want heading into an intersection or a crowed of people. As an advanced or new rider, I suggest you use a helmet, gloves, and knee-pads, especially if you plan on pushing your limits. Safety first always!
I found myself riding in straight lines, only carving when tackling steeper hills. Electric boards will get you up some decent slopes in a straight line, keep in mind performance and battery life will always take a hit.