Lectric Longboards

Lectric Longboards

While Concrete Wave was at the Freestyle Roundup Contest in Vancouver we had a chance to meet up with Levi Conlow. His company, Lectric Longboards is starting to gain quite a following.Their new Lectric LS, has a top speed of 26 mph and a range of 15 miles. The top speed makes it the fastest manufactured board in the market. Levi has also kept the price extra-ordinary low. Lectric started in a college dorm room and sold boards right from the comfort of their confined space. The company brought in over $130,000 in revenue in their first 7 weeks of selling and quickly realized they had something special. Their school in Phoenix took notice and sponsored a facility to build their boards on campus. In the electric skateboard market, the majority of the boards come from China.  Lectric are producing and making their boards at the same place they began – Phoenix. They are now hiring fellow college students to help with production, design, and service – allowing them to gain the same great knowledge and experience the founders have gained through working on Lectric Longboards.  Here are few more points about Lectric:o  the board has regenerative braking (charging the battery when the brakes are engaged)o  there are two motors, both being placed inside the wheels thus eliminating user maintenance. o  on the controller you can switch between two riding modes; eco mode and ludicrous mode. Also on the controller you can choose to go forward or reverse.o Lightweight (13 lbs) As the electric skateboard explodes, Concrete Wave will be here to showcase a wide variety of product that is hitting the market.     

Longboard Jesus

Longboard Jesus

What would Jesus do? It seems Jesus would ride a longboard. And it seems Joe Gerin has found his groove. My guess it’s a pretty slow news day over there in Akron Come to think of it, if we’re featuring this story, it must be because we’re going out skating! Joe Gerin, a student at the University of Akron decided to take his $9 costume and get out there and ride  Joe rides a Neversummer longboard. He’s taking time off from his studies in mechanical engineering to skate.    

Questioning Authority

Questioning Authority

A lot of people seem to be questioning authority these days. The left wingers, the right wingers….the Alt Right…Alex Jones…Bill Maher…Michael Moore. Fox vs CNN…choose your poison. I’d say a fair number of skaters have been questioning authority since the 1920’s. But it wasn’t until the 1960’s when gangs of skaters took over the streets! Oh the horror!As skater’s we’ve had to deal with disruption for quite some time. Take a look at 1965’s Skater Dater. Here’s a screen shot of “authority” trying to clamp down on fun by sabotaging the ride with pebbles.Then again, maybe it’s time for this?  

Freebord – Blazing New Trails

Freebord – Blazing New Trails

As I was scrolling through Facebook one day, I caught a glimpse of a pleasant surprise amidst the barrage of cat videos, politically-charged upheavals and “New Year, New Me” status updates. In the depths of all the other virtual noise, I found a rider blazing downhill with a different stance and with more control than any other downhill footage I have seen.Evolution of the product.Call it effective social media marketing or call it fate but I knew I had to reach out to President and CEO of Freebord Mfg. Steven Bianco to find out more about their San Francisco roots, their worldwide expansion and the individualistic niche they have quite literally carved out of the board sports world.Freebord is about “snowboarding the streets.”As mentioned, the movement started in creator Steen Strand’s SF garage under mountains of credit card debt and prototypes. Introducing Freebord to the world was, “the hardest thing I’ve ever done” Strand summed up bluntly.Steen Strand (circa 1997) sweated blood and tears making Freebord a reality. With the production help from some friends and the same humanizing word of mouth promotion, the Freebord community began to grow. Then, by aligning themselves with the snowboarding community, the brand thrived in Summer months as wholesalers sought out new products to sell.In demand and out the door! Bianco notes that this early success came at the point where digital video production was improving in quality and encouraging riders to go out and document their runs. By connecting through online forums, dedicated Freebord riders turned 8 hour trips to meet up and ride into a casual routine. The influx of footage that derived from these trips culminated in a series of Best User Submitted Video contests in 2005. To date, hundreds of amateur and professional film makes have took to the streets and shown the world what Freebord riders are capable of. To this end, riders like Caleb Casey have taken on snowboard-inspired pillow lines, while riders like Jordi Puig keep their sights on conquering mind-numbing lines down the Alps and stomping perfect frontside 360s for enders. Meanwhile, on the other side of the world, those like Mike Hoppe, stick to the San Fransisco terrain where he helped Freebord rise to fruition in its early days. Here in street skateboarding’s capital of hill bombs, Hoppe makes snaking down “the most crooked street in the world” look trivial with effortless frontside to backside transitions. Also here in the Bay Area, the the many members of the prominent local community have transformed the city into their own personal resort. As Bianco puts it, “Freebording has created it’s own irreverent sub-culture that resembles other board sports but is also not like other board sports.”Skyhooks meet Freebords and this allows Caleb Casey to take flight.The difference between the Freebords and cruisers, downhill boards or any fusion of the two is in the fundamental design and performance. From the bottom up, the Freebord was designed to simulate snowboarding on pavement, not to take the skill out of the longboarding or skateboarding. By designing the center castor wheels to act as a similar base to snow, the wide trucks were subsequently designed to keep riders flowing from heelside to toeside edge, like snowboarders would on the slopes. From there, the bindings allow riders more torque as would snowboard bindings, only they allow riders to easily hook in and out to add the ability to push and to step out. This completely reimagined way of taking the sensation of bringing snowboarding to the streets influences riding styles in a way that allows Freebord riders to size up a hill unlike the way any other boarder would approach one.  Visit freeboard here. 

Tribute vs homage vs rip off

Tribute vs homage vs rip off

 BEHOLD THE MIGHTY THRASHER T- SHIRT! By now you have probably seen this on a t shirt. It’s from fast fashion behemoth H & M.Here’s the story behind it. What is astounding is H & M’s response to Thrasher’s request to cease and desist. No wonder people detest lawyers.  Just read that last paragraph once again. “While both words start with the letter “T”….” Talk about a stretch.  So what is this story about? Here’s what this Tippin logo is NOT.This logo is not about a tribute to Thrasher. A tribute to Thrasher would have meant acknowledging the 36 years this logo has been around. Lawyers from H & M would have contacted the lawyers of Thrasher and they would have figured out a deal…or not. My sense is that Thrasher would not have agreed to a tribute to their logo from H & M. Note: Tribute bands are something else entirely. While I am not one to judge a book by its cover, I’d say neither of these tribute bands would be mistaken for the real thing.                This is not a story about an homage to Thrasher.Homage is respect paid to a person or idea. The word comes from feudal times. Suffice to say, I don’t see any respect being paid to Thrasher. So if it’s not a tribute or an homage what exactly would you call what H & M has done? Perhaps the best way to answer this is to highlight a comment from Thrasher’s Instagram account. While I can’t verify sladerobinson, it does seem rather telling that there is a pattern here.   And here.So, for what I can tell, H & M  borrows,  in the heaviest of ways, other people’s ideas and images. To put it another way, the pattern is ripping off other people’s images and ideas. It’s not like this doesn’t happen all the time – it does. Check out logothief.    But there is something truly egregious about ripping off Thrasher that just makes my blood boil. I’ve looked at that logo longer than I’ve known my wife! If you’re as pissed off as I am, why not contact H & M and tell them?