Longboarding is one of the most fun and enjoyable things you can do on a sunny day. But sometimes, even when it seems like everything is going right, your Longboard will start to speed wobble. This article will provide you with 7 tips that will help you totally stop Longboard Speed Wobbles!
Let’s get started with the question!
What's in it?
- What is speed wobble?
- What causes Longboard Speed Wobbles?
- 7 tips To Totally Stop Longboard Speed Wobbles!
- Tip #01: Stay low in the center of your board:
- Tip #02: Keep your weight centered
- Tip ##03: Push off harder when starting
- Tip #04: Practice carving back and forth
- Tip #05: Use a more flexible deck
- Tip #06: Tighten up loose bolts:
- Tip#07: Ride at your own pace.
- How to Prevent wobbles on an Electric Longboard?
- Can Speed wobble cause an accident?
What is speed wobble?
Speed wobble is when the front wheel of your Longboard starts to shake or move side to side uncontrollably. This usually happens while you are going fast and can cause a rider’s balance to be thrown off, causing them to fall over, slow down quickly, or even stop!
Longboard Speed wobble is a common problem for longboarders. Speed Wobbles are when you start to feel like your board starts shaking from side to side while riding it at high speeds, almost as if the ground below was slinging back and forth beneath you!
It can be hard to stay on your board or even stop without falling off when this happens.
This article will give information about how Longboard speed wobbles happen and what causes them to understand better how to stop Longboard Speed Wobbles.
What causes Longboard Speed Wobbles?
There are three main ways Longboard Speed Wobbles might start: from imbalance at the front/back wheels, uneven surface, or too much traction.
There are three main ways Longboard Speed Wobbles might start: from imbalance at the front/back wheels, uneven surface, or too much traction.
The first way:
The first way of understanding why our boards shake may have something to do with balance. Some people find themselves naturally shifting weight so that they put all their pressure on one foot (either front or back) while coasting, which causes the board to tilt in one direction.
This makes it more difficult for them to balance themselves out and stay on their feet because they are constantly throwing all of their weight off-center.
This shift in weight causes a lot of board-shaking, which can be a nuisance but is not dangerous to the rider. It’s like when someone keeps shaking you while you’re trying to sleep and it drives you crazy.
It can, however, become dangerous if we are not able to balance ourselves back out because there will be one less foot (or two) for us to push off with. This will most likely cause us to fall off the board or get really badly hurt if we hit something hard enough (like the pavement). In this case, wobbles come from loss of control due to imbalance, not loss of traction.
The second way:
The second way that speed wobbles might happen is due to an imbalance between your front and rear trucks/wheels. If there’s a lot of friction or tension happening at the back wheel, but not enough going towards the front wheels’ brakes, this will cause instability as you go faster.
There may also be too much traction from either the left or right foot (based on how you’re steering), causing some portion of your rider weight to shift over time until everything starts getting unstable again.
If you’re doing something weird with the way that you’re riding your board, or if you hit a bump at a bad time, chances are good that the wobbles will result from an imbalance between front and rear wheels.
That’s one of those things where balance is important…but only for certain situations. If you push off a lot, create more traction on the back wheels (or even all four wheels), then this can cause speed wobbles too. Of course , there are also other ways to deal with this problem that aren’t related to longboarding at all .
What causes Longboard Speed Wobbles? The short answer: imbalance due to friction/traction.
The third way:
Thirdly, speed wobbles can happen if you’re on uneven pavement. This is sometimes the case when people are riding in a park where there’s grass and dirt mixed with concrete.
Whenever the wheels are on uneven surfaces, they can get stuck in one position for a short time. And when that happens , it’s like you have no steering control at all.
As you may know, going too fast is not good. But going too slow isn’t good either. Speed wobbles will definitely be your worst nightmare if you’re trying to go as fast as possible without falling down. In fact, most people who got speed wobbles probably went way overboard with their speed and/or took turns too sharply . That’s because many of them (not all) eventually learned how to handle speed wobbles while riding normally and/or slowly enough .
And that brings us to the question: what causes longboard speed wobbles?
Let’s start by saying that Speed Wobbles is caused mostly by the roughness of the road. It can be a thin layer of water, a bumpy patch of tarmac or even just dirt on the asphalt. Anything, really…
You see, riding over an uneven surface will cause your wheelbase (the distance between your trucks) to get stuck in one position for a short time. This means you won’t have any steering control at all.
Then, when you’re trying to steer left, for example , all your wheels will actually turn right . Making it incredibly hard to keep your balance . Or simply impossible if you’re going
There are some other reasons too! Like,
if you’ve got a really loose rear axle, then that’s going to cause speed wobbles. Also, it could mean that your bearings are too tight if they easily spin or make contact in the wrong way when you’re pushing on the trucks with your hands.
And, if you’ve got too much toe-in (when your wheels are facing each other or pointing inwards), then it’ll be a little harder to stay balanced. That’s especially the case if you’re trying to do something like grind, because things will start getting shaky quickly.
But I think the big one is uneven pavement. It can happen in a variety of ways. But basically, when you get up enough speed, you lose some control over how the board reacts to each wheel interacting with the ground.
This has two root causes:
1) You’re leaning too far into your turn:
In order to turn, you have to lean into the turn. But if you’re leaning so much into it that one of your wheels actually goes up on the gutter or curb, the wheel angle will change and you’ll lose a ton of control over steering.
I’ve noticed this mostly with people wearing shoes other than sneakers (like boots). The extra material at the heel makes it way easier for them to lean too far into their turns. Even without heels though, just using your toe-stops to control your board can also cause this problem.
If you’re trying a trick like manualing down some stairs while turning, it’s easy to screw things up in pretty much any manner imaginable . You can get really close to a stair and still not realize it. You can lean too far forward at the stairs and end up dropping your nose onto the edge. You can also launch off a step or curb without realizing that there’s more ahead of you (gasp!).
It turns out that one of the trickiest spots for learning how to land on your board is trying to learn how to manual down stairs . It seems like such a simple thing, but it’s actually pretty tricky to get right in most circumstances. Once you do master it though, hitting all the other gaps in the street won’t be too hard!
It’s easy to practice on either a set of small raised platforms or steps built into some cardboard. Pick whichever feels easier for you!
2) The pavement isn’t level for both wheels at all times:
Sometimes the surface of the street may be more level in some areas than others. If you’re used to skating on flat surfaces, it’s easy to forget that as long as your wheels are touching down, they will roll forward no matter what angle you’re moving at!
The first time I realized this happening was while going down a hill way too fast and watching helplessly as my rear wheel started ‘skipping’ over cracks in the road. I had been so busy focusing on how fast I was going, that I didn’t realize just how uneven parts of the road were! In this case having better bearings definitely helped me spin faster and not slow down whenever my back wheel hit one of those cracks.
The same goes for skateparks. If you’re cornering super fast at top speed and come to an uneven part of the transition, your wheels will react to this by searching for a ‘smoother’ surface – which can be anything from a crack in the wood, or a small gap between two paver stones!
You’ll notice this if you push down on the tops of your wheels – they should ‘squash’ and then spring back up again when you let go. That’s because skateboard wheels are made from urethane with negative bends in them, and natural springs! (more about that here ) So when a wheel hits a crack or bump in the park, it turns into a compression zone which allows for more grip-force (which we definitely want).
If it’s really bad bumps we’re talking about though, it can put so much pressure through your trucks that they get turned the other way around !
These two factors cause everything to go out of whack until there
No matter the reason, you should be aware that Longboard speed wobbles are a common problem for all.
7 tips To Totally Stop Longboard Speed Wobbles!
Now here goes our 7 tips To Totally Stop Longboard Speed Wobbles!
Tip #01: Stay low in the center of your board:
Stay low in the center of your board. This lowers your center of gravity and helps keep you stable.
When you’re riding staying in the center, you’re closer to the ground, and your weight is more evenly distributed. This makes you less likely to take off too quickly or catch air on a turn, leading to speed wobbles. Moreover, it’s easier to lean when you’re on the lower end of your board, which helps with turning.
you see, gravity is a bit*h and it’ll turn you down every time! Therefore, you should always try to be on the lower end of your board.
When you ride in the center of your board, you also make yourself more responsive for riding curbs and obstacles. Moreover, when too close to the tail or nose of a longboard, any small movements will cause big changes in your balance. For example, if you’re trying to hit something while speeding down the street and shift slightly forward towards the nose (for better balance), but then accidentally knock into something causing you to lean back (now off balance). This may lead to speed wobbles or even just falling over entirely.
How low is low enough? Well it’s different for everyone. But generally if your feet are hitting the ground while standing centered on your deck then you should be good — but test it out and see what feels best for you! Another way to check if this is right is if you grab hold of both decks near their nose while rolling at medium speed, and then try to kick off each respective wheel while trying to roll straight. If you can do this without the decks moving around or falling down (when held evenly at their noses) then you should be fine too.
Tip #02: Keep your weight centered
Keep your weight centered over the trucks at all times; this keeps you stable by balancing out your weight distribution.
When you lean too far forward, your weight is shifted toward the front and makes it hard for you to recover from a mistake.
You should keep your head up and look where you want to go, not at the ground in front of the wheels.
As soon as you put your head down, it can mess with your balance because now all of your attention will be focused on what’s going on under the wheels, making it harder for you to make quick corrections if something goes wrong.
Remember that when leaning back or kicking off a wheel while rolling straight at slow speeds, there is no need to lean backwards very much! It’s best to just lean slightly over the rear truck so that if any sudden deceleration happens due to hitting a crack or braking too hard, the rear end of your board will be supported as it goes over.
When you are moving at faster speeds, 20mph+ for example, more weight needs to be put over the nose wheels of you longboard because this is when things start to happen much quicker and any sudden changes in speed can make you lose control if they aren’t planned ahead of time. A lot of people have had their first experience with speed wobbles while going fast down hills on their longboards in an effort to cool down from skateboarding.
If you’re having problems maintaining balance while carving at high speeds, especially downhill, there are some things that can help! Most people don’t realize that by simply standing straighter and pushing can make the difference!
When you ride with your weight centered between the two trucks, it keeps your center of gravity low and balanced.
This will make it much easier to stay stable when turning or stopping quickly. Additionally, if you have too much weight on one side of your board, that can cause wobbles because the truck is pushed off balance by all the extra pressure from one direction.
Tip ##03: Push off harder when starting
Push off harder when starting from a stop or slowing down to avoid catching air, leading to speed wobbles.
The harder you push off, the more your weight will get distributed over both trucks rather than just one. So instead of just one truck absorbing the whole impact, more weight is distributed to both trucks reducing the chance that you will catch air and your board will wobble.
This is especially important when riding with a more extended deck and larger wheels because of their increased sensitivity to speed wobbles.
Tip #04: Practice carving back and forth
Practice carving back and forth on flat pavement. This will give you more control over how much grip is needed for each turn and smooths out the ride since it’s not going up hills or anything like that. It will also help you get a feel for what too much speed feels like, which is important for being able to control your speed. It’s kind of like training wheels on a bike!
So just remember that the smoother you can make all of your turns, the more stability you’ll have.
Practicing carving back and forth is a good way to do this.
Carve back and forth until you’re comfortable with controlling stability without speed wobbles. Moreover, Practice will make it more comfortable and easier to balance if you start catching air or wobble and will eventually make it second nature.
Tip #05: Use a more flexible deck
Use a more flexible deck if it’s too stiff. This is important because the stiffness of your board affects how much speed you can carry before catching air.
Thus the chance for speed wobbles increases when going over bumps or dips in a pavement that would otherwise keep you stable with less speed. Deck flexibility will give you more stability and control over your board.
When using a less flexible deck, make sure to take your time when going over bumps and dips in the pavement. This will help you maintain speed and stability.
A board that is less flexible will be more suited for high speeds because it can hold its form, while a very flexible deck loses its shape at higher speeds.
If the deck is too flexible to allow (it tends to bend under your feet), then it’s probably better not to force the flex and start looking for another deck.
The stiffness of a board should depend on your weight, riding style and how much experience you have as a longboarder. Look closely at the deck design if it’s not obvious. It will tell you what type of rider this specific board has been designed for: Lightweight riders – Most decks are aimed towards lightweight riders, also called freeriders .
Longboarders who do a lot of commuting will benefit from having an extra stiff deck with lots of grips to keep them stable on the slick pavement and avoid speed wobbles when catching air over uneven bumps in the road.
Tip #06: Tighten up loose bolts:
Tighten up loose bolts at least once every two weeks to avoid loosening due to vibrations from riding; this will also help prevent any screws from coming out.
This could lead to dangerous situations like having one foot on each side of your Longboard and not stopping without falling off!
Loose bolts can be fatal sometimes as well, so you’ll want to keep an eye on this. Regular maintenance will help you avoid this problem and keep your Longboard in top shape and condition.
Tip#07: Ride at your own pace.
Ride at your own pace. Speed wobbles are more likely to happen when you’re going too fast for the conditions, so take it easy and don’t push yourself beyond what feels comfortable.
It may sound obvious, but you will be less likely to speed wobble if you are in control of your board and not going too fast. Following friends or racing chasing may seem like a good idea, but it’s not. The board will be hard to control, and there is the risk that you’ll speed wobble or fall off entirely because of how fast you are going.
The slower you go for the conditions, the better control you’ll have of your board.
The same is true when you’re riding on a slope- going too fast will take away your ability to control your board properly and can even cause you to fall off altogether. Make sure that you know how fast looks right for each situation so that it’s comfortable to ride at this speed- if not, then slow down!
Likewise, speed wobbles are more likely if there is an object or obstacle in front of you and also make sure that all of your friends are following behind by at least five feet. This gives everyone enough room to breathe without being bunched up or unnecessarily speeding up.
How to Prevent wobbles on an Electric Longboard?
Electric Longboard is often much more reliable as their weight makes them less prone to speed wobbles.
Besides, the power-dropping characteristics of hub motors gives them superior acceleration and climbing abilities.
What cause wobbles on electric longboards? Despite these advantages, like all other longboards, they can suffer from speed wobbles while going downhill at high speeds. The reasons are numerous:
· You may be riding a new board that does not have much mass and thus is more sensitive to movement in the ground.
· Your wheels may be out of round, which can be caused by hitting something or just wear and tear (you can usually see this with uneven wearing of your wheels). Most stores will replace your wheels if you have this concern.
· You may have not adjusted the kingpin to be in a lower position, which is often done by people who ride longboards to feel more stable and have less wobbles.
· Your batteries might be getting old or are low on juice because you’ve been riding your electric longboard all day and so they’re dying out quickly. This can make them less powerful as well as cause the motor/controllers to overheat quicker which can also lead to instability of your board. By simply tuning up your battery packs, it’s likely that these issues will go away.
· Lastly, your wheels could be dirty or full of debris (e.g., sand) that could worsen accidents during downhill rides when you speed down hills. All you need to do is clean your wheels with some soap and water by using a rag or toothbrush and it’ll make your wheel roll better over any terrain as well as prevent any unnecessary accidents during downhill rides.
· Another way to prevent these wobbles are to use trucks that can handle the weight of your electric longboard . If you’re riding on lighter setups like 7-ply Maple Longboards or Bamboo Longboards, there’s a chance that the wood in these decks aren’t strong enough to support itself while being pushed through rough terrains which can cause wobbles so it’s best not to ride such boards if you want stability for more safety precautions.
Many people report that it is much easier to prevent an electric longboard from getting a speed wobble than non-electric. This is because the weight distribution and center of gravity are not disrupted as they can be with other models.
The reason some electric longboarders get a speed wobble is because the batteries are too close to the wheel wells. When you push off from an object on your left, and right legs, it can cause tension in the board which may potentially wobbles. You need to ensure that there’s adequate space between batteries and wheels for proper weight distribution so that it balances out when you lean into turns.
One way to avoid all your worries about preventing these irritating and potentially dangerous speed wobbles on your next ride is by investing in the best electric Longboard skateboard! We all know how hard it is to find the best electric skateboard nowadays. That’s why we created this article in which I’d reviewed some of the most popular and best electric longboards available on Amazon and compare them side by side.
But if you have a wobble on your current ride, and it’s an electric Longboard. The main idea would be the same as the regular Longboard, stay low in the center of your board and keep your weight centered over the trucks. Most of all, don’t panic! If you are comfortable on your board and have practiced balance, this will be easy.
I’ve personally never wobbled at high speeds, other than in my first few seconds of learning how to ride a Longboard. So if you can get a solid grip on your Longboard tricks and maintain speed while getting air off jumps or ramps then it should be quite easy for you to feel the vibrations in your feet which indicate an instability in the trucks.
Taking good care of your ride is essential on an electric one, especially as there is more component to look after! Try to keep water off the battery and motor. I know this can be hard to do but I find that wrapping my deck up while riding in the rain is a great way of doing this. I also always waterproof any exposed wires and connectors with electrical tape. I spray them down with an electric contact cleaner once every few months as well, just to make sure everything is working smoothly!
Screws, nuts and bolts should all be tightened regularly when you notice they aren’t as tight as before. Most places sell Loctite Threadlocker which will provide extra security against vibrations loosening screws over time.
It’s important to clean your bearings regularly so that dirt doesn’t build up . It’s especially important to do this while the board is new, as not cleaning them can lead to damage of the bearings or motor.
Lastly, but most importantly, make sure you are riding within your limits!
Steps: 1) Remove wheels 2) Remove motors from their mounts 3) Put a drop or two of bike chain lube in each side 4) Install motors back into mounts 5) Scrape excess lube off 6) Enjoy smoother rides
Can Speed wobble cause an accident?
Yes, It can!
“speed wobbles” contributed to 37% of all fatal longboard accidents between 2003 and 2013. The NTSB is an independent U.S. federal agency responsible for investigating transportation accidents, especially civil aviation crashes with significant life or property damage loss.
There are many ways to prevent them, and they can lead to accidents if not handled correctly. So, if you’re having trouble with speed wobble on your Longboard (whether it’s electric or not), take a look at the tips provided in this article. I hope it won’t be a problem anymore.