Monday, April 29, 2013

Hey Mate, A Skate Update

The weather warmed up a bit over the weekend so I headed out on Saturday afternoon to longboard.  I started off by "surfing" around on my hamboard for about an hour.  I wanted to try out some barefoot hamboarding as it's closer to the surf vibe.  But concrete does not equate water when it comes to skin.  So after the hour, I developed a huge regular blister (left in pic) and a comparable blood blister (right in pic)!

When I limped back to my VW Beetle and headed home, I was still in the mood to longboard some more.  But how can you skate when you have giant blisters on a foot?  Well, not to worry!  I fell back on a trick I learned in basic training that ALWAYS works...  duct tape!  Yes, believe it or not, duct tape is great for blisters.  What you do is add several layers directly on top of the blisters.  The end result may not look pretty but, rest assured, you can move around on the blisters with little pain.  And so I headed back out and longboarded for another hour and a half or so. 

Duct tape, put on your socks & shoes, and you can move on no problems...

Now longboarding seems to be the "in" thing.  Ads are popping up in print and tv with longboarders in the plot line.  So what what is a longboard?  Well, basically it's a really long skateboard that you cruise around on instead of doing tricks with (except that some folks do some crazy slides with longboards and technically those are tricks... but anyhow...).

Here is my classic hamboard:

This beast is six and a half feet and weighs about 45 pounds.  The wheels are massive.  However, the board is very sensitive and will spit you over super fast if you step off the center line.  Also, the board turns on a dime and within a VERY short radius.  A truly amazing board.

And here are my two other boards:

The longer of the two boards is a Koastal WaveDancer (custom deck shape) with the company's Revenge trucks.  Great trucks!  Very carvy and surfy feel to the way they ride.  And the black & blue board is a Kahuna Creations Haka Moko Cruiser Pintail.  You can also see a Kahuna Big Stick which you can use to push around on so you never have to use your feet (ok to use but a PAIN when going uphill!!!).  The KC board has Bear Grizzly trucks and they are very sweet.

All three boards ride differently and it depends on what my mood is like for that day of riding or what the terrain is like (more flatland cruising vs. declines, etc).

When I go out, I always wear a helmet and slide gloves.  Slide gloves can be pretty pricey if you buy them but many longboarders just make their own.  Here's my pair made from some hardware gloves and cut up & shoo-gooed cutting board:

They work exceptionally well.  See all those deep scrapes in the cutting board material (and you know how tough cutting boards are)... well, can you imagine what my hands would look like if I didn't wear the gloves?!?!...

Anyhow, it's turning colder mid-week so I'll take a breather until the upcoming weekend or slightly beyond.  Then it's back onto the street.

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