Videos: Yokesgiving

The Yoke Crew out of Maryland is at it again, teaming up with Tom Leary to produce some gnarly east coast downhill videos on some of the most legendary roads. This is a raw run and parts one and two of what we’ve heard to be a three part series, so more gnar is expected to come. These guys don’t need much more of an introduction so just sit tight and watch them rip. Skaters include Ed Garner, Colin Martin, Dan Fontz, probably more we missed.

– Mike and Connor

Loaded Chubby Unicorn Review

If you haven’t done so already head over and take a look at our first thoughts on the Chubby Unicorn. Instead of doing what I usually do in reviews, this post is going to compliment what was already said in our first thoughts, as well as what we talk about in the video review.

Side view of the Chubby Unicorn and its urethane rails.

As we said in the first post as well as the video review, the Chubby Unicorn is SUPER comfortable. The fat W concave mixed with integrated wheel wells create comfortable well formed pockets to lock your feet in during slides, and encourage good form while tucking. The thing I really like about the concave on the Chubby Unicorn is that I don’t need to move my back foot at all. At 9.75″ wide I’m able to keep my toes on the front rail and heels hanging off the back, making both the W accessible for toeside slides and rails accessible for heeslide slides without you having to shuffle your feet at all. The thing I can’t stress enough, however, is that despite the W being so aggressive, it doesn’t diminish the feeling of the rails like we’ve seen on other boards. This means you really do feel locked in no matter what you’re doing on it. I’m a big fan of rocker when it’s done well. The Chubby Unicorn’s rocker is subtle enough that you’ll forget it’s there, but functional enough to add to that stable, locked in feeling. One thing that I was pumped to learn was that the recessed wheel wells are angled so that the rocker doesn’t affect the angle of your trucks, meaning your 50* trucks stay 50*. Another big thing we liked was that the concave runs through the kicktails. This allows you to know where you are on the kicks without looking and keep your feet where you want them.

Jake gets steezy on the Chubby Unicorn in this still from our video review

Downhill on the Chubby Unicorn feels great. I expected it to feel a little too long to go fast on, but quickly adjusted my tuck and soon found myself more comfortable on the Chubby Unicorn than any other board in my downhill quiver. As I mentioned above, the pockets created by the wheel wells and W encourage good posture when tucking. As Henry mentioned in the video, the pocket created in the front allows you to angle your foot slightly forward, and the fat W concave gives your back foot a pocket to fit securely into, between the rail and W. The board is still agile and easily controlled despite it’s length, thanks to the 28.25″ wheelbase. While there is some dampening to remove some of the road vibrations, I wouldn’t say the board really has any “flex,” like you’ve come to expect from Loaded Boards. The thing really is quite stiff, even when standing in the middle, which helps make it feel even more stable at speed. Jake was able to rip down straightaways and still throw technical enough slides to get around a set of hairpins at one of the gnarlier downhill spots here in Connecticut, putting it through it’s downhill paces where it performed with flying colors.

The construction quality on the Chubby Unicorn is unparalleled to any board we’ve seen yet. Despite the complex design and new construction techniques, the board feels more sturdy than any “classic” board I’ve ever used. So far it’s holding up much better than I expected, as well. To be honest, I figured that with ollies, high-speed curbbing accidents, and collateral damage from failed putt tricks there would quickly be problems with the UHMWPE and urethane rails: I was wrong. The urethane that Loaded developed along with Orangatang is HARD. I mean really hard. I’ve been able to scuff it and scratch it a little, but it’s not chipping, peeling, or delaminating at all. I’m super stoked. It’s still too early to really tell how the UHMWPE bottom will hold up and when it will show signs of wear, but so far it’s just as we’d expect and have seen minimal wear and tear from ollies. Another thing to be noted is that the urethane runs about 1/2 inch from the edge of the board on the sides and about a full inch or more on the tails to ensure that you won’t run into delam issues and ensure that your pop stays fresh for a long time, even if you start to wear through the first parts of the UHMWPE.

UHMWPU bottom with a fresh Skate the East sticker on it.

One thing I’m super keen on is the fact that between the UHMWPE bottom and urethane rails this board is sealed to be waterproof. That means you won’t have to worry about it getting waterlogged if happen to be skating through the wet. I’m very impressed with how well Loaded did in putting this board together. It feels sturdy and really shows the attention to detail that Loaded paid to the small things, it really did beat my expectations. I think it’d be super cool if you could send the board back to be re-coated with the UHMWPE or urethane if something did eventually happen to them, to extend the life of the board. You can get your skis and snowboard resurfaced and re-railed, why not your longboard too? I think it’ll be interesting to see if Loaded ever offers anything of the sort since these boards are definitely meant to last a long, long time.

So, is there anything we didn’t like about the Chubby Unicorn? To be honest, not much. While I’ve gotten used to the length of the board, I wouldn’t mind seeing a shorter version with an even shorter wheelbase to allow you to ride over the trucks, instead of behind them — something I’ve heard from a few other people, as well. I also don’t think this board shines as a commuter. While the kicktails make it a bit more practical, the length of the board makes it a bit cumbersome to carry around in and out of stores, buildings, crowds, etc. I also had trouble finding the perfect foot position when pushing because of how big and aggressive the W concave was. That being said, the board was meant to go down hills and get sideways, so it’s understandable, although a bit out of character for Loaded.

Overall, though, Loaded really took their time in thinking the board out and creating one of the best constructed, highest quality pieces of longboarding gear we’ve seen yet. The Chubby Unicorn will surely be a game changer and will force a lot of the competition to think further outside the box and push board design even further. I also think we’ll see some of the innovative features found on the Chubby Unicorn find their way into new shapes and sizes both from Loaded and the competition as time goes on. Things like urethane rails and UHMWPE will become standard features for many boards in the near future due to their functionality and value added.

Check out the video review below and make sure you watch it all the way through to see Henry Lancaster-Goguen and Jake Wade put the Chubby Unicorn through a much needed workout.

Stats:
Name: Chubby Unicorn
Length: 42.25”
Width: 9.75”
Wheelbase: 28.25”
Kick length: 7” (tip to inner bolt)
Weight: 4.9 lbs

Head over to their website to read the full story of the development and naming of the board, and all the specs and features. Make sure you’re our fan on Facebook, follow us on Twitter and Instagram, and subscribe on YouTube to stay current with everything that doesn’t make it to the blog, too!

Video: Connor’s Skatesgiving

When I started writing for SkateTheEast, I told myself I wouldn’t post any of my own videos, make it strictly homies from up and down the east coast, but today I’m going against what I promised myself. I’ve been wanting to use this song in an edit for a while and when I finally got some half-decent footy to go with it, I couldn’t resist posting here for all you skate blog followers. Thanksgiving is a rad holiday because all your homies are home from school and already narrow streets become more narrow and fun because all of the extra vehicles parked on the street. I skated for a while, had fun dodging the extra obstacles on the road and decided to break out the GoPro to film a couple corners and some selfie shots. Check it out..

– Connor

skatesgiving from Connor Bewighouse on Vimeo.

Bustin’ Boards Announces Boombox Pro & Sportster Pro

This week just kept getting better and better for longboarders, with yet another major release announced  and this time from a fellow east coaster! Bustin’ Boards has been stepping their game up over the last year or so, with the EQ, Boombox, Rat Mobile, Mekanik, Yo Face and Sportster, allowing them to offer a complete line of boards for any riding style from downhill, to freeride, and pushing. So, the question became, where do you go next? Enter the Boombox Pro and Sportster Pro.

These two decks weren’t supposed to make their way to the market until 2013, but for one reason or another Santa did some serious negotiating with Bustin’ and got them to release a limited quantity of each board in time for the holidays. The presale is going on now, and boards will start actually shipping on December 1st.

So what’s so different about these already well known boards? What makes them “Pro” you ask? Bustin’ has gone ahead and added to layers of triaxial fiberglass, sandwiching the rock hard Canadian maple they’re using as a core. The result is a much stiffer ride and a much more durable, waterproof board. This is the same stuff you see Original using in their Apex 40 and Apex 37 and is becoming more and more common throughout the industry as people realize its benefits. Another cool part about these boards are that they’re constructed here in the United States (on the east coast as well, in North Carolina) by skaters for skaters. I dig that.

The Boombox Pro will come in two flavors: Freestyle and Freeride. The Freestyle version, as you might guess, is a little more flexible than the Freeride version, due to its 6 ply maple core versus the Freeride’s 7 ply core. The Freestyle also ends up being a little lighter because of this, but if you’re looking to go fast or are a little bit heavier — the Freeride would be my pick.

The Sportster Pro only has one version as it was designed by Jeff Vyain to be an LDP board that can also hit speed when needed. Designed around riders that are around 180 lbs or less, the board has some mild flex but benefits from the dampening effects of the triaxial fiberglass and also gets the durability and water proof perks as well.

The price is right on these two puppies, as well. Both the Boombox and Sportster Pro will set you back $175 for the deck, however the Sportster Pro Complete is a full DOLLAR cheaper than the Boombox Pro Complete at $287 and $288 respectively. I’m sure there’s a reason for the $1 difference — I just can’t put my finger on what it is. These boards should prove to be tanks, and will allow you to get your moneys worth for sure.

I have yet to get a chance to ride either of these boards, but the Boombox and EQ are siblings so I can only imagine how comfortable the Boombox Pro is. I’ll be keeping an eye out for these suckers to try for sure.

Will you be asking for one of these decks this holiday season? Let us know in the comments, on Facebook, or on Twitter! You can also find us on YouTube and Instagram.

Caliber Announces 44* Precision Trucks & Volante Shows Liam Morgan Wheels

Talk about a big week in terms of product launches. First we had the big Loaded Boards announcements on Tuesday, when they announced their almost mythical and eagerly awaited downhill/freeride board, the Chubby Unicorn, and a new hybrid deck, the Kanthaka. As to not let the week get TOO dull, Caliber rocked everyone today when Wheelbase leaked a photo showing off the absolutely stunning 44* Caliber Precision Trucks. While we had seen some pictures of various skaters on their team riding prototype versions, and I had heard them rumored from various sources since the summer, I wasn’t expecting such a quick release date.

No word on when exactly you’ll be able to get your hands on them other than “before the holidays,” also no mention of price. We’ll let you know both of these things when we hear ’em. One thing we do know, thanks to their statement to Wheelbase (below) is that they’re even going to include an extra set of Blood Orange bushings in each durometer. That means you can buy the trucks and dial in exactly what you like without having to spend extra change finding the perfect bushing setup.

From Caliber’s Facebook release:

The wait is over Caliber Crew!! We are proud to announce the newest product in our lineup: Caliber Precision. Designed and manufactured in Santa Cruz Cali, these bad boys are ready to go just in time for the Holidays! Try them out on your setup and you will soon find that they will shred everything in their path…

From the Wheelbase article:

“Each set of Caliber Precision trucks will include precision hangers, baseplates, axels, speedrings and spacers; Limited Edition black URH Blood Orange Bushings, Riot precision pivot cups, as well as an extra set of Blood Orange bushing in each durometer (80a-92a).” –The Caliber Crew

To make for an even bigger day with the Caliber crew, their joint venture with Comet Skateboards, Volante Wheels, posted a picture of their new Liam Morgan wheels to their Instagram — expected for the very near future Holiday Season. The caption says they’re hot off the press, and MAN do these things look fresh. I cannot wait to learn more about ’em and see how they perform. The Greasy Young Man has some great taste, so I’m excited to see what they’ll have to offer.

UPDATE: Beyond confirming that they will indeed be available for the Holiday Season, Skate[Slate] gave us a nice idea of what they’re like, describing them as a “nice freeride wheel with a beefy lip that should be good for all around riding.”

That’s it for now — we’ll update you with anything more as we learn it.

Video: Schuyler Stylin’

East Coast homie Schuyler True skating his local terrain with steez. Schuyler’s got mad style and skates sideways like a boss. Stoked to skate with this kid real soon. Check out his video..

While you’re here peep another edit of Schuyler’s, this one with a celebrity appearance of my boy Noah Davis. Keep shredding dudes, y’all er killin’ it.

-Connor

A Chubby Unicorn in the Wild: First Look

With Loaded’s announcement that finally unveiled their long awaited downhill/freeride board, the Chubby Unicorn, Henry and I knew we’d have to find a way to get you guys a first look at the board before anyone else, and before our full video review comes out, so that you can have a little sense of what to expect. Plus we took some pretty juicy photos and needed an excuse to post them.

When you first pick up the Chubby Unicorn or stand next to it, one of the first things you think is: this thing looks long. Coming in at 42.25″ long, this thing isn’t short by any means (especially since I’ve been riding Bustin’s 36″ EQ for months). In fact, I had to reposition a few other boards in my trunk to get it to fit in without sticking out too much, a first for sure. What’s so deceiving about the length, however, is the fact that the wheelbase is actually only 28.25″ long — meaning that extra board is found in the fatty and super comfortable kick tails.

 

The kicks are fat, fun, and super functional. Big enough for most of the pad of your foot to stand on, the concave also runs through the kicks making for the meanest pocket I’ve ever felt on a longboard kicktail. It feels like your foot actually belongs on the kicks and makes you want to use them more and more.

The W concave is super fat and does match the arch of your foot very well, keeping it aggressive where you want it and mellow enough to stand on for a while. The closest thing to the Chubby Unicorn W I’ve felt is on the Lifelong Seeker, however the rails on the Chubby Unicorn really set it apart and make the W stand out. Despite the aggressive and fat W concave, there is still ample room for the rail to rise back up, making for a super locked-in feel and pocket when you turn your feet at an angle when tucking. The W is also super useful for toesides, comparable only with Rayne’s Pleasure Dome in terms of functionality. Despite being a notorious monkey-toer, I was able to keep my back foot still and still throw checks and 180s.

All and all Henry and I were super stoked on the board and came off the hill saying that Loaded did not waste one second while prototyping this board (in one form or another since 2004). Keep in mind this is all based off of our first, initial session with the board. As we ride it more we’ll learn more about it and figure out exactly what we do, and dont like and be sure to update you in the full review. We’ll try to keep it relatively quite about the Chubby Unicorn until we do our full review, when we’ll take it through Freeride, Downhill, and Freestyle to see how it shines in each category and of course put together one of the dankest edits you’ve seen yet.

Check out the full gallery below and some of the earliest shots of the Chubby Unicorn after it’s full release into the wild!

Loaded Announces Long Awaited Downhill/Freeride Deck and Double Kick Surprise

Loaded Boards has finally announced their long awaited, downhill/freeride offering, dubbed the Chubby Unicorn, along with another surprise, a short wheelbase dual kick board dubbed the Kanthaka. Both boards will be available in select shops (and online) worldwide on December 4th and let me tell you — it’s been worth the wait from what I can tell and from what I’ve heard. The Chubby Unicorn will hit the market for $360, and the Kanthaka for $188 (decks only).

We won’t get into too much detail, that’s what our review and videos will be for in the coming weeks, but we figured we had to post some pictures and specs for y’all, right?

Chubby Unicorn:

The Chubby Unicorn (a hilarious name), formerly the “DH Proto,” brings a while slew of new features that have never been seen on a board before, which helps explain why it’s been nearly half a decade in the making. The two biggest standouts are the fact that it rocks a UHMW sheet on the bottom of the board, similar to what you’ll find in slide pucks, to help protect against abrasion and dampen road vibrations and also features urethane-coated rails, again to help reduce abrasion, keep pop longer and help lock out even more water. The board is also unbelievably comfortable, with a fat W, pocketed tails and so much more. Like I said — we’ll save the good details for the review that’s coming soon.

Length: 42.25”
Width: 9.75”
Wheelbase: 28.25”
Kick length: 7” (tip to inner bolt)
Weight: 4.9 lbs

Head over to their website to read the full story of the development and naming of the board, and all the specs and features.

Kanthaka:

Unlike the Chubby Unicorn, which everyone knew was coming one day, I had never even remotely had the Kanthaka on my radar. Whether Loaded did a great job of keeping a secret, or whether I was oblivious is still unclear but one thing is — this board is impressive in my first look. The wheel wells create a very interesting pocket near each kick, which positions your feet right over the bolts and should lock you in really well for slides. It’s got some unique features you won’t find on your typical popsicle-stick street deck and shows that Loaded thought outside of the box when designing it. It’s got a super comfortable platform to push from and should end up being a super sweet city slasher/tech board.

 

Length: 36”
Width Available In: 8.625” and 8.875”
Wheelbase: 17.5”
Kick length: 7.5” (tip to outer bolt)
Weight: 3.70 lbs / 1.68 kg (8.625”),
3.75 lbs / 1.72 kg (8.875”)

Head over to their website to read the full story of the development of the board, and all the specs and features.

 

Update: I figured I’d add some more pictures into the mix for everyone.

Videos: Billy Wilson Proves That Long Isn’t Wrong

I’ve called Billy Wilson the Putt King because of his ability to do freestyle tricks with longboards that make almost everyone’s jaws drop. This weekend we decided to get gnarly in a couple of area skate parks and show people that just because it’s a longboard, it’s not a wrongboard. On his prototype Original Apex 37 Billy SHREDS and had everyone watching whenever he was taking lines. These were a ton of fun to film and we’ll have plenty more in the near future, just you wait.

-Mike

Video: Ed Garner Gets Raw

Ed Garner, who we’ve posted a few times before, set his car cam up and got down on a mountain run, presumably somewhere out in PA where he’s currently attending college. Ed is an all around east coast ripper who has been ripping it in Maryland/Washington D.C. and steadily making a name for himself up and down the coast. Make sure you remember where you started seeing him first, because this kid is bound to be real big real soon!

– Mike