Mariano Conti joined the Cloud Ride Wheels team

Cloud Ride Wheels welcome Mariano Conti

The Cloud Ride Wheels team just got a new gun in its arsenal. Mariano Conti, a 17 year old Italian from Rome, recently joined their family of international shredders.

Mariano is currently in his 4th year of high school and lives with his family not far from the beach. Besides going fast and pushing his board sideways, he also spends quite a lot of time in the water catching the waves.

A few weeks ago Mariano Conti teamed up with his friends Mirko Paoloni, Edoardo Barbi, Andrea Pedrotti (the filmer) and Felix Pirker (the photographer). They got on a plane and headed to Tenerife for a week of pure longboarding.

According to Mariano they had 7 days of solid shredding on the black tarmac, leaving behind massive thane lines, cored wheels and coming back home with tons of amazing footage. You can find their trip under the hashtag #putoslocostrip both on Facebook and Instagram.

His favourite choice of wheels and the ones he’s shredding in the video are the Cloud Ride Slide 70mm 80a and 83a, teamed up with a DB Longboards Keystone 37” longboard deck.

Cloud Ride Slide wheels

According to Mariano, the Slide wheels are really fun to slide. He described the slides as nice and powdery, meaning they leave lots of thane lines.

This was also the goal at Cloud Ride when they were developing their ‘’Cloud Thane’’ formula, to enable a buttery and smooth slide, leaving behind thane. I guess, they are a freeride wheel worthy of their name … ‘’Slide’’.

Cloud Ride Wheels - Slide 70mm, 83a
Cloud Ride Wheels – Slide 70mm, 83a

The Cloud Ride Slide wheels are available in 4 different durometers: 77a (Indigo), 80a (Green), 83a (Blue), 86a (Purple), all featuring a diameter of 70 mm. With a contact patch of 45 mm, these offset freeride wheels also give a dash of grip which you need when skating.

When new, the Slide wheels have a 45 degree edge which provides a super easy slide even with the first sideslip.

With a perfect union of grip and slip, the Slide wheels by Cloud Ride can handle any crack, debris or and everything else your slide trajectory takes you over, giving the feeling of a comfortable slide to the rider.

As they wear down, the contact patch increases and allows the rider to impart the same amount of force on the slide, as when they were new.

The Slide wheels are merely amazing! When you’re riding them you feel the comfort under your feet. Seriously, I have tried many freeride wheels and in my experience these perform very well considering factors like quality, performance and value. Every time you slide, you feel the wheels smearing thane around. And that’s awesome! They roll fast and give you some grip even at higher speeds. But if you want to have a solid downhill sesh, where you need more grip, you should go for the Cloud Ride Storm Chasers instead. They roll fast and give you some solid extra grip even at high speed. ~ Mariano Conti

We’re sure we’re going to see a lot more action from Mariano and we’ll keep you posted, but you’re also welcome to follow him on Facebook or Instagram.

To learn more about the Cloud Ride and their wheels offering, check out their website at www.cloudridewheels.com.

The Guardian – a new deck by King Lui Boards

King Lui Boards - the 2017 Guardian longboard deck

So far we’ve seen some hints regarding the new 2017 Guardian aka the Wächter longboard deck by King Lui Boards. We decided to talk to Fabian Anders, one of the three guys behind the brand, to bring you the latest news about their first ever drop through deck.

The Guardian - first drop through longboard model from King Lui Boards
Fabian Anders showing off a prototype of the 2017 Guardian longboard deck

King Lui Boards is a relatively young brand located in Wertach, Allgäu Germany. Currently, they have 7 different board models in their lineup, but also two boards in the making. One of these is the 2017 Guardian.

The new 2017 Guardian board model

The Guardian is the third re-design of their first ever longboard deck, released back in 2015.

The idea for a new drop through model emerged when the crew took a tour around Germany back in 2016. While skating with old and new friends, they got inspired and decided to add a more versatile deck to their existing lineup.

This freeride and big mountain inspired longboard deck is made from ash wood with two layers of fiberglass and a dash of poplar. All together it weighs 1.6 kg.

King Lui Boards - the 2017 Guardian longboard deck
Concave picture of the Guardian 2017 prototype by King Lui Boards

The Guardian features a twin tip shape with a total length of 95 cm and a width of 23.5 cm. The dimensions of the board determine the wheelbase at 65 cm.  In addition, King Lui also spiced it up with a 1.6 cm concave, double kicktails and a double micro drop.

King Lui Boards - the 2017 Guardian longboard deck
The final look of the 2017 Guardian longboard deck by King Lui Boards

Although, the King Lui Boards crew is currently on a skate trip, Fabian took the time to send me a pic of their first final Guardian deck made for 2017. With a nice wooden grain finish, the deck will be available on the market in about one to two weeks.

For the latest news about their current lineup visit the King Lui Boards Facebook page or check out to their website.

Cheese Valley Freeride is back!

Cheese Valley Freeride

The two day Cheese Valley Freeride will take place from the 16th – 17th of September, 2017. It will be held in the same small village called Konolfingen, Switzerland, as in 2015.

Cheese Valley Freeride 2017

However, this year Roland Trachsel is not alone. With the help of his wife Anni Trachsel, Danilo Porto, Alex Weijnman, Christoph Batt, Philipp Amann, Marcel Isler, and Dominic Schenk, the event will bring back the same unique experience in the heart of the cheese country.

The track

Eighty riders will skate down a 2 km long track with a top speed of 80 km/h. It is appropriate for both beginners and advanced riders and meant for everyone who loves skateboarding. From the local community, to skaters passing by who want to join the freeride, everyone is welcome.

Here is what Roland had to say about the 2017 Cheese Valley Freeride:

It’s a cool road for beginners and advanced riders. The surrounding beautiful landscape and staying in the middle of a horse farm with tipi tents and a campfire is a great way to meet the local skate family. The longboard community is really important to us.

Although the track is not skateable throughout the year, because it is located between farm lands, the surrounding green pastures offer a pleasant environment during the freeride.

Accommodation

The campsite is located on the top of the track, close to the start, where skaters will be able to find a perfect spot to sleep in their own tent or in a tipi tent located right next to the party tent.

Moreover, the campsite also has horses, pony’s, goats and pigs, some of which you can also pet. This is also a great feature not just for adults, but also families with young children.

The campsite also has a restaurant, a place for camp fires as well as toilettes and showers. In addition, there is also enough room for parking your car or a camper.

The crew will take care of the evening entertainment with a DJ, photo projections and an auction where you can get new skate gear cheaper.

Registration info

The registration is set to start in the beginning of July, 2017 via the Cheese Valley Freeride website. Although, the website is currently offline, you can follow the event on their Facebook event page for all the latest information.

Furthermore, with a registration fee at around 140 Swiss Franks, you not only get a place to skate and relax, but also two meals per day for both days of the freeride.

Finally, check out the video the crew made to help prepare you for the event:

Arico – El Bueno Freeride 2017 Day #2 Report

Arico - El Bueno Freeride 2017 Day #2

Tom Campbell and Ry Swanton are on the Island keeping us posted with the first freeride on Tenerife, Arico – El Bueno 2017 presented by KebbeK Skateboards and organised by BigMountainSkate.

In case you missed the El Bueno Day #1 report, click here to read and watch it.

Here’s how the second day rolled out on the Island…

The track is a black serpent working its way down a terraced mountain side, irrigation ditches cutting it up and cacti lining the sides. The surface is volcanic island tarmac, it slices through layers of wheels like nothing else.

Alex Dehmel live streamed a run with Islander Marcos Costa and lead organiser Felix Rupistch, check it out here…

[facebook url=https://www.facebook.com/longboardmag/videos/1255874161127359/]

Alex Dehmel is a team rider at Olson&Hekmati, Skoa Trucks, Cult Wheels, Longboardshop.eu and Risch Aerohelmets…Marcos Costa is a team rider at Crash Test Dummies Pucks and Fibretec Skateboards.

In between runs, the riders spend the most time together while waiting for the buses at the bottom. However, this provides a rare opportunity for them to catch up and enjoy being a part of a tight knit international community. The events we go to and the runs we share as riders can create the closest of friendships and it is good to catch up whenever possible, even if it’s just at longboard events.

Here’s some of the stoke found on Instagram…
Photos by @paristruckco, @domi_schenk, @radesigns, @nata_zoja_mi_, @kebbekskateboards and @miguelpalau_vc.

Wheels are being worn down at an exceedingly quick rate with riders having to rely on KebbeK Skateboards core a set, get a set offer.

Pete Connolly has worn down a set of Cult Raptures per day and seems to be running out quickly. For him the event is simple…

“Just freeride and enjoy the vibe”.

Will Edgecombe is there as well, taking photos for Skate[Slate]…

“I am glad to poach some runs on the beautiful track and skate alongside old friends”.

Overall having 5 days of riding gives riders the time to skate different. Juergen Gritzer has been spotted carving down the track on a KebbeK Shortcut while Pete Connolly has been seen throwing a super rare stand up slide.

El Bueno 🙂

First impressions from Arico – El Bueno Freeride 2017, Day 1

Arico - El Bueno Freeride - Day #1

The Marshalling was controlled by the Sliders Skate House crew while the guys from BigMountainSkate took care of the start and oversaw the operation. With the chilled atmosphere surrounding the event riders carved and slid their way down the mountain, taking their time to find their perfect line through the hill.

The Homies from KebbeK Skateboards have put on an exclusive epic deal for riders at the event: The riders can buy a set of slidey KebbeK wheels for 30 Euros and as soon as they core them, they get a new set for free, all week long.

Riders are already handing in their cored sets and redeeming fresh sets to ride…

With such a thane heavy hill we wanted to take away the worry from riders about how many sets of wheels they use ~ Joey Bidner, Kebbek Skateboards

Live run with Emily Pross

We were excited to watch a live stream of a run via Longboard Magazine Facebook page thanks to Emily Pross. She sent it down with a camera rig and streamed a run with Robbert van Haaften.

[facebook url=https://www.facebook.com/longboardmag/videos/1254764051238370/]

Emily Pross is a team rider at G-Form, RAD Wheels, Ronin Trucks, IXO BoardsDaddies Board Shop and Berkeley College.

What are the riders saying

We also spoke to a few of the riders from the community about their first day at the event. Here’s what they shared with us…

German skater Sebastian Gschaider said:

My day begun pretty early at 6:30 at the Sliders Skate House and then onto the track to enjoy skating with my friends. The track is pretty sick with some funny corners and good hamburgers and nice pack runs with my Homies.

Dutch Skater Bart RiemVis said:

Although the hotel was crammed with the Dutch crew we made it out of bed just in time for the uplift buses. The first ride up the hill on the uplift buses was long but definitely worth it for the epic hill we got to skate. I would recommend BigMountainSkate freerides to anyone, they are the best events to attend from beginner to pro.

British Skater Mark Short describes the day as relaxed, fun with a hint of danger on the side. It’s gentle enough that a beginner can jump onto a board and get down with big carves and big smiles.

No crew has ever succeeded in pulling off a freeride in Tenerife and BigMountainSkate really had their work cut out for them. However they have succeeded in pulling off a lovely, efficient event despite the challenges they have faced.

Tune in via Longboard Magazine Facebook page for further coverage and another live raw run on the track.

Photos by Brianne Collective.
Reports from the event are provided by Tom Campbell and Ry Swanton. Thank you!

The Power of Sharing – Building a bowl in Lombok, Indonesia

Bowl under construction in Lombok, Indonesia.

Wherever you go, there´s always somebody with a dream. However, sometimes there are only a few chances to turn someone’s dream into reality. “Sharing is the best way to make the chance bigger” said some friend to me while we were chilling in a small bar.

This is his experience with his dream of supporting skateboarders building a bowl in his home country Indonesia while living in Germany.

Bowl under construction in Lombok, Indonesia.
Bowl under construction in Lombok, Indonesia.

He collected old stuff from his German friends and tried to sell it to make money for the bowl´s construction and send the rest that couldn’t be sold to Indonesia.

He tried, but failed. Bureaucracy and distance made it impossible. He tried again, but the results was still not satisfying.

He was sad, but with every trial and tribulation, he started to become aware that he is not alone out there, and that there would always be someone to help realise his dream. Someone he just had to find.

Eventually he met this person. Her name is Dina.

It all started with a jam session in a small park. Then they became friends, spending every session on the hill together, talking during the breaks in which he told her about his country, until he finally revealed his dream.

After he’d shared the project and she got involved in the workflow, everything went well.

She did anything possible to raise funds. She sold her BMX, skateboard, longboard stuff & spare car parts and collected donations from local longboard businesses, like quinboards and Concrete Wave Cologne skate shop.

She collected anything from friends and her family that she could sell and of course she was asking for donations in several events like ISPO, Insul Race, etc.

Heavy rain filled up the bowl with muddy water.
Heavy rain filled up the bowl with muddy water.

Even her grandmother chipped in with some cash. Grandmas are the best. We know, it is not easy, it takes time, effort, patience and loyalty, things that I experienced, though not comparable to what she did.

One time she complained to me, “This sucks! I’m trying to sell a set of used wheels for 5 Euros, but prospective buyers still try to bargain the price by asking me : Does the price include postage?” Though life.

But, she kept doing it!

So, finally,  with the help from a local skateboard pioneer, Ozzie Anwar, who gave his land for the bowl location, the constructs started in the end of 2016.

Stoked kid shredding the half finished bowl in Lombok, Indonesia.
Stoked kid shredding the half finished bowl in Lombok, Indonesia.

Amazing.

Since then, he named the project “Project Love”. Just because she has done and still does everything based on love. This will be her third time to visit his country. Still with the same mission. To show her love for Indonesia and the local Skateboard scene. She´s on a special mission to finish this Project.

After hours of talks & glasses of beer, he ends our conversation with wonderful words, “Dreaming & sharing are two things with which everybody in this world can accomplish any task, no exceptions. So keep dreaming ‘n sharing it”.

So, I share this friends story to you all, to inspiring all of us. Share it, if you’re inspired 🙂

For traveller who’s gonna visit Indonesia, the bowl location is in Lombok, anyway, come over feel the warm people on the hot island!

Dina with Indonesian kids.
Dina with the Indonesian kids excited about skateboarding.

Update: Dina’s last post before flying

“I’m packing my bags for the trip to Indonesia and taking 1630 EUR with me! Folks, you’re awesome! Thank you so much for any donation, each wheel, anything you bought from me! For one year I’ve been selling any kind of stuff and all together collected 2494 EUR and had the pleasure to deal with kind-hearted and some pretty dimwitted buyers as well. Now the bowl not only is getting done, some money will be left over and a roof or something else supportive can be built as well.

One question I don’t want to hear anytime soon Did you send the package already? I definitely need a break from selling. 16th March is starting time, pictures will follow. Last but not least, THANKS!”

The island vibes at Arico – El Bueno freeride are setting in

Raphaël Therrien inside the ruins at Arico - El Bueno 2017. Photo by Brianne Collective.

As planes are landing on Tenerife, the island vibes at Arico – El Bueno freeride presented by KebbeK Skateboards are setting in at the Ecovillaclub with “bellboy” Felix Rupitsch welcoming the guests.

Sleepy riders awoke this morning to a mini ramp overlooking the sea.

Arico - El Bueno 2017 mini ramp overlooking the sea.
Arico – El Bueno 2017 mini ramp overlooking the sea.

Everyone is excited as setups are readied and wheels are packed.

With good forecasts predicted all week the pool is going to come in handy. The Dutch contingent are camped out beside the pool, this is the first sunshine they have seen in a long time.

Close to the hotel is an abandoned Leper colony. Riders today explored, filming lines through the buildings and warming their legs up for the week.

Joey Bidner skateboarding on the ruins at Arico - El Bueno. Photo Brianne Collective.
Joey Bidner skateboarding on the ruins at Arico – El Bueno.

With bars and cafes just ten minutes away from the hotel happy riders can be found scattered across the cafes in search of food and wi-fi.

Arico - El Bueno 2017, relaxing at the beach. Photo by Brianne Collective.
Arico – El Bueno 2017, relaxing at the beach.

BigMountainSkate‘s reputation for creating a pop up paradise has been upkept at El Bueno. Sure the hotel is smaller than expected but the rest is perfect.

Tune into Longboard Magazine this week for daily updates and live stream via Facebook page.

Photos by Brianne Collective.
Reports from the event are provided by Tom Campbell and Ry Swanton. Thank you!

Women’s Longboard Camp – Bonfire 2017 news

Women's Longboard Camp - Group photo by Maria Arndt

We always knew that 2016 was going to be a hard one to top – three events, three concepts, three locations. It all culminated in the epic adventure that was our freeride camp last August in the most magnificent of settings, a collaboration with the brilliant Woodwings crew.

Photo of the crew at last year’s WLC by Maria Arndt

A lot of blood, sweat and also some tears went into last year’s Womens’ Longboard Camp series and for some time it looked as though that may have been it, at least for the time being. To be honest, it would have been a great high on which to end the last five years.

Life is changing, as is the crew, priorities are shifting and gravitating towards other commitments and new ventures, as the saying goes one door closes, another one opens and life begins outside of your comfort zone.

General event information

This year’s edition of the Women’s Longboard Camp will take place from the 2nd – 6th of June 2017. The place to be this year is between the hills and valleys of Löwenstein, a small town situated between Heilbronn and Stuttgart in the south-west of Germany.

Women's Longboard Camp- photo by Maria Arndt
The girls practicing their tuck

Bonfire will be limited to 30 participants to ensure everyone attending gets enough attention from our crew and can enjoy a relaxed and friendly environment. The registration is already open, so check out our shiny new website to get the deets and to sign up.

What’s new for the 2017 Women’s Longboard Camp?

We thought about how we could make it better and our good friend and longtime WLC supporter Alex Dietrich, the man behind Root Longboards himself, will be at the helm of this event; we are both stoked and super grateful for all his hard work.

We’ll be returning to good ol’ Germany once more, to the greater Stuttgart area to be precise, which has been host to several WLC events over the past years.

For the 2017 edition, we’ve chosen a proper special spot – you may have heard of Großerlach before, home of the annual Pimp Mai Ride. No need for shuttles, riders get back up the hill in a skilift, how rad is that?! Skate all day, err day, just how it should be.

We cannot wait to get this party started, it’s going down this June and once again we’ll bring you everything you love, including a residential miniramp, hells to the yeah!

See ya on the hill!

The 2017 Samba X-Flex carving longboard by Lush Longboards

The original version of the Samba by Lush Longboards got tweaked to become their new so called ”ultimate freestyle carving machine”, the Samba X-Flex.

Samba X-Flex 2017 complete by Lush Longboards

The Samba is 90 cm long and 23.5 cm wide and has a 72.4 cm wheelbase. The design includes an Angled Drop Down profile with a Flushmount. In addition, it also features the Lush X-Flex Composite construction, with which they were able to tweak the board’s flex pattern to just the right amount for carving.

Further improvements include a little more concave, a shorter overall length and a tweaked platform, to eliminate wheel bite at maximum lean.

The board is designed to alter the truck geometry which in essence creates a very turny ride, similar to snowboarding and surfing.

Although the board is not really made for speed, freeride or tricks, it is a great cruising & carving deck for the every day commuter.

Learn more about Samba X-Flex here.

Happy cruising & carving!

Team Heckmeck – Winter Gathering

Here we are, only few days until the last day of winter and the first day of spring. Six days later, on March 26th, something even better will happen…

We will switch to “standard time” and move our clocks one hour forward. Actually, our digital devices will most probably take care of it on its own, we’re covered 🙂 What matters the most is that we will get in that extra hour for skating in the afternoons, life will be good again.

Team Heckmeck dudes from Germany are ready to move on as well and wave the cold times goodby, at least for the next 6 months or so…

I caught up with Daniel Lenz via Skype the other day…Him and Moritz Dolainsky live near Munich, while the other two Heckmeck guys, Nils Bodenheimer and Jan Brebeck live near Mainz.

That’s like 400 km apart and 3 to 4 hours drive, but the guys get together to skate, film and have fun as often as possible, mostly on weekends.

Heckmeck’s latests videos, including “Winter Gathering”, prove it; As soon as there was a dry spot on their favorite runs, they went out and sent it…

Related: See more videos from Team Heckmeck

When it was the worst, they packed the stuff and travelled to Italy, down to Lake Garda and even Tuscany, to meet their new friends whom they’ve met at KnK Longboard Camp last year.

They spent time, were hosted by and shared the runs with Andrea Pedrotti, Degenerous Crew and Sborello Team.

As Daniel said; Italy is a big thing right now…Near the Adriatic sea, it offers nice winter downhill skateboarding conditions, especially down in Tuscany and around Genoa.

In case you get inspired to do a similar trip yourself, make sure to get in touch with the local crews and find out where it’s OK and safe to skate. Hopefully you can meet them and skate together, or even get a place to crash for a night or two…

Community spirit lives on…So good.

When I asked about Team Heckmeck’s plans for this season beside the usual shenanigans, Daniel explained that the crew wants to produce more videos that will show their skateboarding lifestyle as well as to expand the variety of action shot angles.

For the travelling part…Daniel and Moritz plan to hit the KnK Week #2 and then probably do “a small tour” through Italy, Switzerland and France, while Nils plans to skate at Alpenrauschen and race the Red Bull No Paws Down during the first week of KnK.

Fun times ahead, for sure. Stay tuned!

Shoutout to Jan Stein for filming with the car, Olson&Hekmati and ::asphaltinstrumente::.

Keeping It High – Seaside 2017 WQS IDF in Philippines

Keeping It High - Seaside 2017 IDF WQS

A new race track will be hosting the Philippines leg of the 2017 World Tour of the International Downhill Federation (IDF) at Keeping It High World Qualifying Series. The Philippines staple chill tropical island vibes will be surrounding the fastest race track in Asia.

Keeping It High – Seaside 2017 WQS IDF in Philippines
Keeping It High – Seaside 2017 WQS IDF in Philippines

The 1st section has a grade of 13.77% and steepest is 23.23%. Riders are surrounded by a mountain range on both sides and when they reach the fastest section of the track, the view switches from mountains to a breathtaking seascape.

The "Ohmega" hairpin is where the view switches and is also the fastest section.
The “Ohmega” hairpin is where the view switches and is also the fastest section.

The beauty of the view may be a distraction for riders but a bunch of turns will try to keep them focused on the way down. As you reach the bottom you can choose to take a walk towards the coast where you can take a dip in the ocean as the hot summer Sun charges you with some “vitamin sea”.

UNITED and Zero Gravity team rider Caloy Sambrano approaching the last turn of Seaside.
UNITED and Zero Gravity team rider Caloy Sambrano approaching the last turn of Seaside.

It will be the third time the race track would be raced on but the first ever time during the hot Philippines summer.

Freeride will be on the April 14th, Qualifying on the 15th and Race day on the 16th.

Keeping It High - Seaside 2017 flyer

Current World #1, Mauritz Armfelt from Sweden as well as a Spanish rider Javier Tato and a German rider Jenny Schauerte are confirmed to race.

I’m super stoked to come to the Philippines! I have heard so much good things. I don’t know what it will be like and I don’t really know what to expect but i always enjoy going to new places! I think I will like the Philippines ~ Mauritz Armfelt, Sweden

Check out the track

If you haven’t made plans yet or if you have never felt some Asian stoke register via IDF or stay updated via the Facebook Event page.

In case you think there’s not enough time to plan your trip overseas, you’ll be happy to know that the Philippines has a 30 days visa waiver policy for EU travellers.

Philippines has a 30 days visa waiver policy for EU travellers

I hope this inspires you to come over to Asia or maybe see you next year.

Photo: Owen Licop, Ally Hemmady and Carl Sambrano
Poster: Abigail Viloria

Trippy new wheels by AHMYO will make your brain dizzy

AHMYIO Vibez longboard wheels

Their crew of international team riders are on a mission to steeze all year long and hype downhill skateboarding. Moreover, one can also not ignore action filled clips of riders ripping AHMYO wheels that make you forget you’re stuck behind the computer.

This brings me to their latest wheel announcement which stands out print-wise and got me confused for a sec. Here is the video so you know why:

Trippy right?!

The Vibez

The video above got me to visit visit their website. I found a quote about the Vibez wheels featured on the video:

The ancient Vedic Masters spoke of NADA BRAHMA, “the world is sound, the world is vibration”.

Modern physics confirm that matter is made up of subatomic particles vibrating at a certain speed. Even our thoughts are emitted into the universe in the form of vibration with its higher or lower frequency, attracting equal vibrations.

The different frequencies in which each object or being vibrates allows our brain to differentiate them. Yet the principle of vibration tells us that nothing is immobile, and in that constant movement, everything is connected.

A great quote, I must say, and their products and work really embodie that. Their latest model, the Vibez longboard wheels, are made with a new formula, that is sure to leave some thane lines once you push them sideways.

Furthermore, Vibez feature a sideset 64 mm, 84a freeride design with a smooth grounded surface, rounded outer edges and minimal bevelled inner lips.

Here is a video of their team rider Tristan Degen, putting the wheels to the test at his local skate spot:

Aera K5 longboard trucks review by Ben Stainer

Aera K5 Longboard Trucks review by Ben Stainer

Longboard trucks have come a fair distance. From resembling great large hunks of metal, looking as if Thor had a drunken rage, to metallic pieces of artwork and enough precision to make a Swiss watchmaker cry.

Related: Aera Trucks RF-1 longboard trucks

Having said this, it’s essential to note that the longboard industry, especially for truck manufactures, has seen a decline in recent years. The reasons why could in themselves create another article altogether and when the conversation does spark, creates a debate more heated then the question of does pineapple belong on pizza.

With this in mind, the quality of longboard trucks has been rising significantly, with many new players entering the game and some old faces closing up shop. These new truck manufacturers such as Skoa and Rouge have been giving the old crew on the scene (Rey, Paris, Bear, Aera and Randall to name but a few) a better reason to come up with more ideas then the creative team at Disney on Adderall. Sadly, Rey are no longer around, but from their demise, a great deal of research and development has shone through.

Aera Longboard trucks baseplates

Aera K5 longboard trucks

Aera’s new K5 truck has been making the rounds on Longboard Porn 2.0 ever since a photo of Byron Essert’s front truck with Matt Kenzie directly behind him in a race heat touched down in 2016. The Clinching of the IDF No.1 by Carlos Paixão on the new trucks has also had many both excited, but also dreading how many limbs/years of savings would be needed to afford the K5, with a flurry of selling of old skate gear and prized possessions in order to leap onto the Skate one website faster than a cheetah in the Serengeti.

Which brings us neatly onto the beginning of the review! Having K5s shipped across the Atlantic to England terrified my frilly arse for two reasons. Firstly, will I be made bankrupt by the Taxman slipping the customs duty under the door like a silent assassin and secondly, will FedEx ‘Lose’ the parcel the second it leaves the warehouse?

The ordering process and setting them up

Ordering them, I had a general sense of bewilderment, but also elation.

I can feel my wallet getting smaller than the surface area of a dice adding the sums, but I feel stoked that I’m getting them.

It’s a feeling so bizarre that I ended up looking at the mirror after clicking the PayPal button and wondering why I had done it. Nonetheless, after just three days, the FedEx man did arrive with the trucks, with my inner child proceeding to run inside and rip the box open with delight.

Aera K5 Longboard trucks

Set-up was super easy, the kingpin sitting super far into the baseplate meant that at first I thought that I was sent the wrong length of axle, but after gentle persuasion with a skate allen key and the tool, the two kingpins rested super well, the new pivot cup design, after a bit of squeak, snuggled the hangers pivot pin like a sleeping bag.

Aera K5 Longboard trucks

The trucks do come with 88a hard core bushings, with a soft side and a hard side, in other words witchcraft dual duros. I decided to try them out, despite usually riding 95a/92a owing to weighting 95kg.

Longboard dance test

Dancing on the K5s is incredibly stable and one of the great surprises of the review, going along the pathways, I thought that I would be struggling at lot with a 164mm hanger, but it was not to be.

Aera K5 Longboard trucks - testing for dance and freestyle tricks

The extra-large pivot cup and the reaction to pop shuvits, Peter pans and cross steps was predictable and flowed through the truck more fluently then the notes out of a grand piano.

Aera K5 Longboard trucks

I would say that if you are going to use the K5s for partially this purpose or to carve a lot, 168/174 mm would be better suited, since the 164 mm hangers do not have the turning radius to perform the tight circles that a great deal of longboard dance demands. Nonetheless, a brilliant truck for this purpose, even if it’s not a discipline from which you first assume Aera trucks.

Freeride / Downhill test

Initially, I was worried about doing freeride on such narrow hangers, I thought that the trucks were going to jolt me more aggressively than a Taser. However, the trucks, even on their narrowest width, perform much the same as an Aera K3, but with the stability and precise slide expected from the K4.

Aera K5 Longboard trucks - DH and freeride testing

Even at slow speed, the trucks didn’t feel like they wanted to jerk back and throw me away and in tight cornering, the truck can be aimed like a laser, taking the racing line and holding you onto it like a limpet.

The 46 degree baseplate is as stable as a bridge foundation and provides a good mixture of downhill and freeride capability, although two lower baseplate options (42 and 30 degree) and a higher option (50 degree) are there for you to decide upon.

Conclusion / Customer Service

Overall, the Aera K5 has had a lot of expectations and demands. The years of debate and speculation have finally been answered and, in my own eyes, the K5 has lived up to those expectations.

A design more sexy then the contents of playboy magazine and an all-round truck that delivers in freeride, downhill and, most surprisingly, dance. Years of research, development and incessant questions have come through with a design that will keep Aera in the game for a very long time.

Worth the hundreds of dollars? That’s entirely your discretion, but fuck yeah in my personal opinion!

Also 5 Star service to Aera for making sure that I had everything on my trucks and for tolerating my incessant emails.

For more about Aera Trucks see their official website at http://aeratrucks.com/.