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Original Skateboards

About.com Rating 4.5 Star Rating

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Damn! I miss riding skateboards all summer with my bros. The surf was flat, but that didn't mean we couldn't get some surf stoke on land, grinding and sliding, freaking the old folks, and barelling down bridges and overpasses all over town.

But as boards got smaller and I grew older, skating just didn't feel the same. Halfpipes looked more like death traps and kickflips will surely snap my ankles. How can an "older" surfer get that concrete carving stoke without looking overtly "teenile"?

In searching out surf products to review, it was this thinking that led my mouse to click on a certain brand of skateboard that seemed to drip with the particular brand of stoke I craved and could serve as a surf/skate hybrid when the waves were unridable. I wasn't looking for a trick board but rather a board that could carve fast, long turns; a board that could give me some solo thrills and still have enough room for my 5 year-old son on the front.

This probably wasn't the image that founders Scott and Brad Imbrie had when they began the company in the spring of 2002. According to the Original Skateboards website, Brad and Scott used the money set aside for their college educations to develop "the worlds finest carving system."

I dig that committment, and based on my trial of a Custom 35 from Original Skateboards, those fellas spent their college cash wisely.

I first had to pick the right board. Once Scott determined my surfboard and wave preference, he customizrd a skate deck and truck combo that would work best with my style. That, in itself, was impressive.

The Custom 35

When I first put this baby to pavement, I was blown away by the truck response. The 200 MM truck width allows the rider to dig hard on the turn without rubbing the wheels, and the trucks themselves turn slightly to the left and right (the way a car's front wheels steer), delivering a tighter and more secure turning radius. It actually took me a few skate sessions to get used to it.

Another apparent innovation to the common skateboard lies in the Custom 35 deck. While I found the pintail a bit awkward when I instinctively tried to throw down a quick street trick, the concave design gave the board a float and flow with each carving turn that is unique. This upward bend in the deck bows a bit and adds a little flex that ricochets the rider into each turn.

The Bottom Line

Original Skateboards' Custom 35 model is not for kick flips, grinds, or ollies. It is, however, perfect for surfers who crave that carving sensation, want to keep fit when the surf is flat, and love speed.

Priced competively and built solidly,Original Skateboards customize boards for each rider, or you can build your own model.

Thinking back, maybe I wasted my college money on that English Lit. degree. I'd rather be selling skateboards.

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