Downhill longboarding kind of speaks for itself in it’s name. The sport of downhill longboarding has come a long way with all of the innovation in board styles and shapes, wheel urethane and shape, and truck geometry. There are so many options to improve stability when it comes to downhill that most of it will come with experience and personal preference. Downhill longboarding can be an exhilarating experience, keep your personal health in mind and buy the safety gear required for this sport.
Downhill boards are stiff and the length is usually from 35”-44” with wheelbases of 28”-35”. Keeping your center of gravity stable on the board can come from many shapes and truck mount options. Make sure you check out the ‘Choosing a board’ section for more information.
The drop down deck has the truck mount higher than the standing platform, this gives the rider a lower center of gravity and sacrifices leverage over the trucks which decreases turning abilities. Easy to control in drifting and sliding.
Drop-Through decks have the truck baseplate above the deck, the truck is split in half and attached as if it were dropping through the board. Most common method to dropping a longboard. Better traction than drop decks but slightly harder to control during a slide.
Top mount decks are the classic way of mounting trucks to the board. Topmounts have a higher center of gravity which increases leverage on the trucks. Extra leverage gives a super responsive feel to the board, which in turn translates to less stability at high speeds. Topmounts typically have great traction while still maintaining predictability while sliding
When it comes to trucks for downhill, you’ll want to find a truck with a bushing seat that is able to seat a barrel bushing with no problems; a harder barrel bushing is ideal for downhill. Also pay attention to the baseplate’s angle, a lower angle will give more stability by bringing you closer to the ground. A high angle will give you more turn for your lean, but with a lower angle truck you don’t get as much turn from the same power you put into your lean, increasing stability. Find more information about trucks, on the ‘Choosing Trucks’ page.
Wheels are a major part of getting a stable ride and maintaining grip. Downhill wheels are generally 72mm and up. The bigger the wheel the the slower the acceleration but the top speed will be maintained better, it will also have more grip. Look for a durometer of 78-80a for good grip. Again, more information in the ‘Choosing Wheels’ page.