Junior year of high school I may have been a bit of an adrenaline junkie. One frosty February morning, just outside of Boston, where ice covered half the roads and paths, I was hanging out with my friend Abby. Abby longboarded and on this day I found a board in her car and asked if I could give it a go. As I flew down a curving path down a hill, wind rushing past me, the path twisted and there was a patch of ice at the edge. The wheels hit the ice and I went soaring before landing chest first into the pavement. Abby ran over in horror. I got myself up and gave her a huge smile saying I had found a new hobby.
A couple of months later I bought my first board, a Sector 9 with double king pin trucks. I rode with Abby for years and I learned how to slide on the board. I started thinking about the physics of boards, their flex, their strength, their trucks and wheels. Boards come in different shapes, sizes and designs. People customize everything from the bearings and wheels to the trucks and decks.
The inspiration for this project came from two places, the mind and the heart. I am fascinated with boards and building one will include woodworking and possibly machining (if I build the trucks). I want to make a gift for Abby, to show how much our friendship means to me. This personalized board is the perfect opportunity to enhance my skills and create a piece of functional art tailored to my best friend.
The thing I can bring to this board is the personal artwork on the deck. I have several ideas that I think Abby will love (representations of inside jokes so to speak).
The hardest part will be the trucks if I pursue building them. I have been told by multiple knowledgeable longboard salesmen that I am probably in over my head. Casting would cost thousands of dollars, so that’s out of the question. Using a CNC seems to be my best bet, but the materials might still be out of my price range in addition to never previously machining anything. If I don’t build the trucks correctly and they break during riding, that could be detrimental and unsafe. The most important and personal piece is the deck, so that is where I will start. If I can manage the trucks, cool, if not, I can always buy a pair and the soulful aspect and aesthetic does not alter.