Electric Skateboarding is quietly having a very good year

When Boosted went down, I was very concerned. I was concerned not to the fact that we lost an eskate option, but to the fact that the electric skateboarding sport has lost its biggest advocate.

Without Boosted continued effort to promote electric skateboarding, fewer and fewer people might get into the sport, or so I feared.

However, time proved that the worry was unfounded.

Boosted went out of business in March 2020, and then the pandemic hit. These should be two huge blows to the niche, but what we see is that the interest in electric skateboarding remains strong.

Take a look at the Google Trend:

The interest in Electric Skateboarding (blue), based on the number of google searches on the term “Electric skateboard”, stayed the same as before the pandemic hits.

Since 2020 and into 2021, we see existing brands continue to expand and release new products, and from where we (ElectricSkateboardHQ) sits, we received even more request for reviews from both existing and new brands that we could barely keep up.

If new boards and new brands are not a good indicator of sales, sales of electric skateboards on Amazon definitely should be. Not sure if anyone noticed, but electric skateboards are selling quite well on Amazon to the point that Meepo V3 once sat on the bestseller list under the board category “Longboards”. Everyone who was looking for a standard longboard on Amazon will be greeted by this thing call electric skateboards. Free promotion for electric skateboarding!

Yeepee! 

I guess I’m just happy that the sport is growing. Hopefully, with more people into the niche, electric skateboarding can be as mainstream as cycling both as a form of commute and as a hobby. Maybe then, legislators will stop asking us to install handlebars on eskate! 

Evolve launches the Hadean Series – How does it fare amongst competitors?

Yesterday (1st July 2021), Evolve Electric Skateboard launched a new line-up of electric skateboards, the Hadean series. Unlike many assumed, the Hadean series will not replace the existing GTR series but lives alongside it, or to put it more accurately, “above it”.

The most unexpected part of it? The price!

Evolve Hadean Bamboo starts at $2,549 USD and the Hadean Carbon at $2,899 USD. This put it amongst boutiques boards such as the Metroboard X ($2,574-$2,699), Kaly board ($2,850-$3,600) and the Lacroix family ($2,500 – $4,000). Heck, you could even get a heavy-duty all-terrain board such as the Propel X4s ($2,650) that has a spec that blew Hadean series out of the water!!

Evolve Hadean Series, the specs:

What’s great about the Evolve Hadean Series

To summarised the points on Evolves’ YouTube marketing video for the Hadean (as compare to Evolve GTR):

  • Big battery with 21700 cells (12s4p)
  • Stronger Motor (3000W x 2, 6368)
  • More durable remote
  • More refined speed control (FOC finally)
  • Smart power on (finally!)
  • Cool Design
    • Forged Carbon Chassis for the Hadean Carbon
    • Board length RGB LED lights
  • Other things that refined the riding experience
    • Less likely to overheat
    • Refined deck: Wider deck, and longer wheelbase for comfort

The best Evolve yet

After laying down all the strengths of the Evolve Hadean, everybody should agree that the Hadean is a significant improvement over the older GTR series. Many in the sport love Evolve for the refined design, polished build, and the feel-good factor that comes from the power of the brand.

The critiques, however, will be quick to point out that the best Evolve, are no better than other boards that we already have, and Hadean is at this point, just playing catch up on spec, while also being massively overpriced.

What Evolve fixed with Hadean, has always been what they are notoriously bad about. Evolve’s speed control has always been lagging behind the popular Hobbywing ESC, which had been using FOC for years; having 2 powerful motors doesn’t justify the price when you can just instead put 4 regular motors and make it an all wheel drive.

Evolve Hadean, will inevitably be compared to the Exway Atlas, which are only shipping now after delays due to battery supply shortage, and I’ll leave you with the charts to compare.

At the end of the day, Evolve’s Hadean Series is a great board for Evolve Rider that wants something more.

At the end of the day, Evolve Hadean is a product designed and made for Evolve fans who wants more. Better control, better power, more range, more refined ride, Hadean is definitely going to deliver on those. If you aren’t an Evolve fan to begin with, Hadean is very unlikely to be the product that makes you fall in love with the brand.

Evolve’s Press Release: Evolve skateboards launches the Hadean Series

Queensland, Australia, July 1, 2021 – Evolve Skateboards, the global leader in electric skateboards, has announced the official launch of the Hadean Series. Haden will offer four times more performance than its predecessor the GTR series which was launched in 2019 and 37% more battery capacity with a top speed of 31mph, making it the most advanced electric skateboard ever produced. 

The Hadean Carbon is the world’s first chassis style frame, a patent-pending design that allowed Evolve to increase performance without compromising on size and the sleek low profile look they are known for. To achieve the strength required in the deck frame construction Evolve came up with another first for electric skateboarding – forged carbon fiber, the likes of which can be found on top-of-the-line high-performance supercars like Lamborghini. The deck also includes another first for the industry, air vents, which help to keep the internal electronics cool. 

“Since the successful launch of our Carbon GTR series in 2019, we have looked to advance our product into a board that produces greater performance while maintaining the sleek, integrated electrical design the GTR is famous for,” said Jeff Anning, Founder of Evolve Skatebaords. “Improved performance required increased size of the battery and motors and this innovation overcame a size constraint that could improve the users’ control and riding experience.”

A NEW LEVEL OF CONTROL
Evolve has teamed up with an Australian company that excels in motor controller design to create an entirely new proprietary motor controller for the brand, the E-FOC. With experience in military drones and other high-end products, the teams collaborated on everything from schematics to the highest quality bill of materials to ensure the E-FOC is the most advanced motor controller Evolve has ever created, revolutionising how smoothly a rider can harness the intense power produced by the Hadean’s dual 3000w motors and 12S battery structure. 

FORGED CARBON CHASSIS
The Hadean Carbon is the world’s first “chassis” skateboard deck, composed of forged carbon fiber, a material found in aircraft and race cars. The seamless integration of technology and ride performance is achieved through a forged carbon composite frame. The high fiber content and variation in strand orientation creates the strength needed to support a next-generation electric system without adding unnecessary bulk. With this board, the rider will experience better performance, including speed and range, without compromising the best riding feeling.

SUSTAINABILITY
The Hadean Series uses 21700 lithium-Ion battery cells and 2 x 3000-watt electric motors to power itself. It produces zero carbon emissions and can travel up to 43 miles on a single charge. Due to its portable nature, it is an ideal, environmentally friendly urban form of transportation. Sustainable and active commuting is here to stay.

NEW INNOVATIONS

Remote: The Phaze remote has a new design for hardcore conditions. It is built to last, housed in a machined alloy frame with rubber sides. It also hosts an array of smart features such as speed control, light adjustments, and board diagnostics.

Smart lighting system: The Bluetooth connection between the Phaze remote and deck provides real-time hazard lights when the brake is applied, enhancing both the rider and surrounding individual’s safety when travelling. The lights also serve as an indicator for low-battery, board updates and various other scenarios.

App: The Explore by Evolve App opens even greater levels of customization, with the introduction of power, acceleration and brake curves and a user may also dial in their inbuilt lights with dual colors and full RGB color selection. The app can also be used to view board diagnostics and track their rides using GPS to compete on a global leader board.

Perfect Stance: We have refined the contours and widths of our decks to provide the optimal stance for all riders, creating space for a wider foot stance without expanding the wheelbase of the board.

Versatility: The 2-in-1 version, which includes the all-terrain and street set up, are available for both decks. 

To learn more about Evolve Skateboards visit www.evolveskateboardsusa.com/
and follow along on Facebook and Instagram.

About Evolve Skateboards 
Evolve Skateboards is the leading company in the electric skateboard industry. We spent ten years meticulously designing, testing and optimising every part of our boards so riders can experience the best electric skateboards in the world. With more than 15 awards and service centres and distributors now servicing over 40 countries, Evolve Skateboards has a growing number of loyal customers worldwide.

The company was born on the Gold Coast, Australia, through sheer passion and obsession for finding the link between snowboarding, surfing and all things carving on land. Evolve’s electric skateboards are made by riders for riders. Since 2008, Evolve has been developing aesthetically refined, quality electric skateboards focused on the best feeling ride possible. In 2011, Evolve designed the world’s first carbon fiber electric skateboard and the world’s first 2 in 1 electric skateboard and in 2021, the world’s first “chassis” skateboard deck.

Shredlights SL-1000: A super bright flashlight for skateboards and any PEV.

On 24th November 2020, Shredlights releases a new product – the SL-2000.

If you don’t already know, Shredlights has always been the gold standard when it comes to lighting solutions for electric skateboard (and also all PEV). Their staple product SL-200 is famous for their durability, brightness, easy and versatile mounting system, and Shredlights the brand itself are known to give outstanding after-sale service.

The only complaints that anyone ever had on Shredlights is the high price. So of course they responded by releasing the SL-1000, an upgraded version of the SL-200 that’s brighter and more premium! /s

SL-1000 at a glance:

It’s $79.99 for a SINGLE PACK and will only start shipping early January.

  • 1000 lumen bright that promise 100 feet (30 meters) of visibility
  • Modular Lens to allow adding in a diffuser to adjust the beam angle
  • 5 brightness setting
    • 50 Lumens
    • 250 Lumens
    • 500 Lumens
    • 750 Lumens
    • 1000 Lumens
  • 4 Flash modes
  • Controlled by 2 buttons
  • A lockout mode to prevent it from being switched on accidentally
  • Charged via USB-C
  • Waterproof IP X7
  • LED indicator for battery level
  • 3.5AH battery (Samsung 18650)
  • Same S-lock mounting system as the SL-200. meaning, mounts for Eskate, Scooter, Onewheels, Bikes, Helmet are all readily available.

Impression:

Jokes aside, it is really great to see Shredlights not resting on its laurels and continues to improve on an already great product. While I’ve never heard anyone complain about SL-200 for its brightness (it’s always the price), brighter is always better, isn’t it?

Being the brightest light out there is itself alluring, and when you combine that with the new sophisticated features that the SL-1000 now has, then you can’t really fault Shredlights for boasting about SL-1000 being the new standard for skateboard lights. Because it really is.

$79.99 though.

If you are interested in buying a Shredligths, be sure to check out our affiliate discount link here and uses code: “ESKATEHQ” during check out.
It will help you get $10 off and helps us out too. On top of that, you’ll be tagged as an Electric Skateboard HQ customer and probably be treated better. Cheers!

Backfire Zealot Preview – Troubling or promising?

Backfire decided to start their 2020 conquest with a belt drive release: the Backfire Zealot. I guess we all sense that belt-drive is coming back to fashion and now every major Chinese brand has a belt board, well every brand except Meepo, which I bet will soon join the movement too. By the way, I think Zealot is a pretty appropriate name for a belt board seeing those who like belts are often very fanatical about it. =P

The board is now pre-selling at $699 and is due to ship on 30th April 2020. Its official retail price will be $899 but seeing that competition is pretty tough in this product segment (Exway Flex & Wowgo 3x), I seriously doubt that it will ever be sold at full price.

So what about the board?

First things first, here are the specs:

Backfire Zealot specs infographic

Looking at the product photo it is very easy to see that Backfire Zealot is practically a “belt-driven Backfire G3” so much of what Zealot will be can be known by referring to Backfire G3 (click to read review) .

Breaking it down:

Backfire Zealot has the usual good things going for it. A good top speed (28.5mph/ 46kmh), a flexible bamboo deck with an aggressive concave that has proven to be very comfortable.

Backfire longboard deck flex test
Same deck as the Backfire G3

Then, there is the Caliber II Front truck. The back truck that mounts the motor is unfortunately not from Caliber but is Backfire’s proprietary truck. No worry though, Backfire’s proprietary trucks are usually pretty good.

(Edited at 22th May 2021: The motor has been updated)
Backfire Zealot is using 2 x 5255 5250 motors. These are slightly smaller than 5255 that are pretty standard in production boards and are seen in the likes of Exway or Wowgo 3x. They are rated as 650W 750W each and are from Hobbywing., so I assume they are the same set as the pair on Wowgo 3X, which had proven to perform well.

Going with belt-drive also means we can be very flexible with wheel choice. The stock wheels are 96mm 78A with ABEC core. And soon they will be 105mm Cloudwheels option available. (It will be the updated Discovery core, for those who are following the latest eskate news.)

(Eskate historian here: Did you know, despite Backfire’s focus on hub motor all these years, their first board was a belt-drive?)

The original Backfire!

Things that I’m not optimistic about:

The things that I’m really worried about will be the range. Backfire Zealot has a marketed range of 22miles (30km). This is very likely inflated to some extent seeing that the Backfire G3 Plus with a more efficient hub setup and a bigger battery was only making 15 miles (24km) in our range test – That was only 60% of the marketed range. I’m pretty pessimistic about the range for Zealot.

Backfire Zealot, Battery

Even trying to get a theoretical estimate of the range is difficult as the disclosed battery specs are pretty confusing. For instance, I really like to know what cells Zealot is using as the numbers don’t quite add up.

  • 21700 cells
  • 12s2p
  • 4000mah per cell

This should bring us to a 346wh pack and not 311wh given by Backfire. Oh well, maybe just a typo somewhere. I wish I know what cell they use though.

For reference, Backfire G3 Plus is using 12s2p setting with 4000mah 21700 cells (Samsung 40T) and gives a 346wh pack.

So would it beat the current top choices?

Regardless of the nitpicks, Backfire Zealot is pretty promising. All the parts should come together to give a great riding experience and the promised new smartphone app is just the icing on the cake.

In short, I’m pretty excited for the Zealot and would like to see if it can snatch away the throne of the “Best mid-tier belt board” from Exway Flex.

You can check out Backfire Zealot product page by clicking here.

Yecoo Boards gets updated

Yecooboards

New kid on the skating block: Yecooboard tries its best to improve continuously in line with customer preferences, Yecoo’s original four skateboards have become five, and each of its skateboards has its strengths. Three of its boards have been upgraded to match for skaters’ tastes.

Let’s have a look at what remains the same and what has changed:

Yecoo GT

Upgraded Battery

Working on the customers’ feedback on original Yecoo GT’s substandard battery performance. Yecoo has updated its battery from the originals Samsung 6s4p 8.8ah 25.2v to Samsung 10s5p 11Ah 36V and Samsung 10s5p 15Ah 36V.

Now, the marketed top speed goes up to 25 miles with the extended range battery (the actual range may be affected by road conditions, the rider weight, temperature, etc.)

Climbing proficiency of the board has increased from 20% to 30%.

The new battery will reduce voltage sag, allowing the rider to maintain high speeds, even as the battery runs low.

What is more, N5055 motor sees an upgrade to the high speed N5065 motor. 

With a change in the battery, the battery box also changes to occupy its upgraded tenant. Of course, the weight of the board also increases relatively; the current board weighs about 10kg.

Upgraded ESC

Yecoo has also refined the ESC algorithm to make acceleration and braking very smooth and optimized the efficiency with which electrical energy is converted into mechanical energy at high speeds.

The brake has four gears to facilitate the setting of brake flexibility.

The most prominent feature of the ESC is the smart boot, which powers on automatically when rolling more than 3 feet/ 1 meter, so you don’t have to bend down to press the power switch.

Price

Yecoo GT is priced at $719. Yecoo is doing a lot of promotions recently, and thus you can get 10% on your purchase. 

Deck theme

In the pre GT deck pattern, it was black grip tape with lines and spiders. Some skaters quite liked the old design as is resisted dirt. The new, improved pattern is yellow color-block covered by black lines, which still has a spider pattern in the middle.

Yecoo GTS

Upgraded Battery

The Yecoo GTS battery capacity has been increased from 6.6Ah to 9.0Ah and 10.5Ah. A significantly improved battery helps maintain high speed even when the battery is low. So the range of the board increases from 25km to 33km.

Upgraded Motor

Yecoo GTS upgraded the N5055 to N5065 high-speed motor, making the belt motor more flexible and torque more powerful.

Upgraded ESC

They have deeply optimized the ESC algorithm and made the acceleration and brakes very smooth; they also tuned the conversion efficiency of electrical energy to mechanical energy when it’s at high speed.

The brake has four gear positions, and these settings make it convenient for the rider to set the braking flexibility.

The most outstanding feature for this ESC is the intelligent boot which automatically powers on when rolling for more than 3 feet / 1 meter so that you don’t have to bend down to press the power switch.

Price

Yecoo GT is priced at $699. Yecoo is doing a lot of promotions recently, and thus you can get 10% on your purchase. 

Yecoo XJ

 Upgraded Battery

The Yecoo XJ battery capacity has been increased from Samsung 10s3p 6.6Ah 36V to LG 10s3p 7.8Ah 36V and LG 10s3p 10.5Ah 36V. So the range has increased from 25km to 34km (actual range will be affected by road conditions, the rider weight, temperature, etc.)

Upgraded Remote Control

The existing remote control has been replaced with a new model, from Hobbywing. From the original thumb ring structure into the shape of a more proper handgrip, making it more comfortable. 

Upgraded ESC

Now they use Hobbywing ESC to replace the old one, as we all know that Hobbywing is famous for the smooth acceleration & braking system.

Price

Now, the pricing of GT is $429.00. The actual price is subject to the website.

Deck theme

They have two choices of the deck themes, the beige pattern and the black classic.

Yecoo X2

The X2 is a basic model from Yecoo and features a high cost/performance ratio, with a price tag of just $399, this board’s a real bargain. All PCB electronic components of the upgraded Yecoo X2 are covered and protected by special solid glue to prevent damage caused by water, dust, or shock. 

Concave is similar to Yecoo 2S, and it is convex, black deck covered by shallow honeycomb texture, with hornet pattern in the middle. The deck is two layers’ bamboo+6 layers of maple with a size of 38*8.85 inches.

X2 wheels are available in two colors, black, and orange. It’s 90 mm diameter high elastic PU wheels are comfortable, anti-vibration, wear-resistant, and silent. X2’s wheels have 7mm larger diameter than ordinary wheels.

Look at its other specs:

  • Range Goes up to 12~19 miles(19.3~30km) with the extended range battery (actual range will be affected by road conditions, the rider weight, temperature, etc.).
  • Speed  Top speed of 23 mph(38km).
  • Hill Climbing 20%~30%.
  • Ride Modes 3 ride modes, from Beginner to Expert.
  • Battery Yecoo X2 provided battery is LG 4.4Ah, Samsung 6.0Ah, and Sanyo 8.5Ah. Aluminum alloy battery housing.
  • Remote The new remote has a display that measures speed, battery life, and mileage.
  • ESC Uses Hobbywing ESC which is famous for the smooth acceleration & braking system.

Checkout Yecooboard by clicking here.

This post is sponsored by Yecoo