Electric skateboards are slowly but surely reaching mainstream popularity. This is because a lot of people are trying it out as a means of transportation since public options are a little bit risky for now because of the pandemic. While there are many budget-friendly and expensive options out there, did you know that you can build your own electric skateboards?
Instead of buying one, people opt to refurbish old skateboards to turn them into the electric variant. It’s a complicated task, but it can be done easily if you know exactly what you need to do.
Find the Perfect Base
First off, you need a base. While classic skateboards are a viable option for an electric skateboard, we highly suggest using a longboard instead. Longboards provide better stability and a larger space for the extra components needed later on. Preferably, the wheels need to be top mounted to give more way to the electronic components as well.
What Kind of Batteries and Motors Should You Get?
As for the motor, you have the option of going either dual or single. Dual motors perform better in terms of speed and the ability to go up inclines. However, they are more expensive than single motors. We suggest getting high-end single motors as these are powerful enough already but are relatively cheaper as well.
For the batteries, the commonly used type is lithium-polymer batteries as they provide great running power while being lighter than most types. One disadvantage of using lithium polymer batteries is that they can be volatile and fragile at times.
You need to be careful during the building process as you could end up destroying the batteries. You could also leave the batteries undercharged for extended periods.
Moreover, you need to be careful when charging these as well. Make sure you have a good quality charger and do not overcharge the batteries. Being careful with it makes the batteries last much longer.
Make It Run with Transmitter/Receiver
Last but not least is the transmitter/receiver system, which allows you to control the skateboard. The most commonly used transmitters/receivers are those that come with RC cars. Also, keep in mind that you’ll need an enclosure for the electronics so that it doesn’t get damaged easily. Enclosures are usually made from steel for extra protection.
On to Building Your Electric Skateboard
Before you begin building your electric skateboard, you might want to check out some samples for inspiration first. There are electric skateboard kits you can check out and guides you can read now before beginning the building process. These are great alternatives to buying or building your own electric skateboard.
Power tools such as drills are also necessary for this project. So are adhesives like heavy-duty glue. Of course, you’d want to work in a safe and isolated area. Keep in mind that you’re working with some powerful tools, so it’s best to stay safe. Don’t forget to wear protective equipment such as heavy-duty gloves as well.
All of these items are commonly bought in hardware or hobby shops, and they are easy to get. Piecing the pieces together is more complicated, so we’ll leave it up to you to search on how to get the wiring together.
Just to give you an idea though, building an electric skateboard is pretty much like building an RC car. If you are experienced in doing this, then you can easily create an electronic skateboard without instruction manuals.
Before Taking It Out for a Spin…
Once you’ve built your electric skateboard, we highly suggest taking it out on a test run first. Don’t hop on the board immediately just try to control it around and see how it performs. You must do the test run without cutting corners as you could be putting yourself and others at risk by riding an electric skateboard that isn’t tested.
Keep in mind that you could be spending more when building an electric skateboard instead of buying one that’s already made. What’s great about building your own, though, is that you’ll at least be able to customize the board to your liking. If you become more experienced in making an electric skateboard, you’ll be able to create better ones in the future.
If this seems too much for you, you can also choose to buy premade electric skateboards instead. It’s hassle-free, and you might even get a few freebies, depending on what type you buy.