Do you need the skating lesson to learn skateboarding. Welcome back to another electric skateboard range test. Today we’re going to try the Ownboard W2. This is the final version, not the prototype. Last time I tried out the prototype. A number of changes have been made to the Ownboard W2 and I’m going to go over those. Today’s weather is 32 degrees Celsius. Pretty hot. My weight today is 73 kg. So let’s get to it! When I covered the Ownboard W2 prototype 5 months ago, it was ok but I did come across a few issues. The current iteration of the W2 however is quite different. Ownboard has not only fixed those issues that I pointed out, they’ve made several improvements, and also made the board more affordable.
If you’re in the market for an electric skateboard, this one is definitely worth considering. Let’s go through the different parts of this board. The W2 uses a 38-inch Vanguard style deck that’s made of bamboo and fiberglass. The amount of flex is similar to the Boosted Stealth, but not as springy, if that makes sense. It has less flex than the WowGo 3, and more flex than the Backfire G2T. I like it. I think it’s stiff enough for higher speeds and flexible enough for a little bit of pumping. The grip tape that comes on the board is this foam-like material that’s supposed to help make the ride more comfortable. I’m not sure if I feel a difference, but I also don’t have a problem with it.
The board does come with regular grip tape if you want to use that instead. The W2 now comes with two sets of wheels: 83*52mm in green, and 90*62mm in black. The black wheels have offset cores. Which set of wheels should you use? That depends on your priorities. If you want stronger acceleration and braking, use the smaller wheels. If you want more ride comfort or your roads are really bad, use the bigger wheels. Both sets of wheels come with ceramic bearings already installed. Ceramic bearings tend to cost quite a bit more than steel bearings. Whether or not they perform better is debatable, but they should at least be more water resistant.
Both the front and rear trucks have been changed since the prototype. They now use a design that’s similar to the very popular Paris V2. But Ownboard has also done something that I haven’t seen anywhere else. For both the front and rear trucks, they’ve added this rubber ring that goes in the kingpin hole between the two bushings. In theory, this rubber ring should add more resistance and make the board feel more stable. I’m not sure if they make a noticeable difference, but I guess they don’t hurt either. For me personally, when riding at higher speeds, even with the rubber rings, I had to tighten the rear truck more than I would prefer.
So I’m probably still going to change the rear roadside bushing from a cone to a barrel. But that’s just me. How you set up your bushings depends on your weight, your experience, and how you want to ride. Like all of Ownboard’s electric skateboards, the W2 uses an ESC made by Hobbywing. And as far as I know, the W2 is the first board to use dual belt drive motors with the Hobbywing ESC – and the result has been great.
The acceleration and braking controls are smooth and accurate, as you would expect from any board using Hobbywing’s ESC. The remote is the generic one comes with most boards that use Hobbywing’s ESC. It’s a good remote that’s ergonomic and intuitive to use. The only problem is that similarly priced competitors have more advanced remotes. For example, the remotes for WowGo and Backfire both have displays that show how fast you’re going and how far you’ve traveled. If you don’t care about that stuff and you just want a minimalist remote, then you should be happy with this one. I personally like the telemetry displays though.
The W2 uses a dual belt drive system with 5045 motors. I’ll just put some additional info on the screen in case they mean anything to you. The belts are 3M, which means they have smaller teeth than the 5M belts, but so far I personally haven’t had any problems with the belts slipping. The board comes with two extra belts in case you need them. If needed, you can adjust the belt tension by loosening just two screws on the motor cover, and the springs inside will bring the motors to roughly the correct position. On the prototype, the springs were way too strong, which made adjustments a bit difficult, but now I think they’re just right. If you’re not changing belts, and you just want to make a minor adjustment to the belt tension, this tensioning system is super convenient. You literally just loosen these two screws, adjust the motor position, and tighten the screws again. There are other designs where you have to take things apart and adjust based on trial and error.