I’m looking at the best longboards for carving and pumping today. Now carving isn’t necessarily a category of its own, but some boards are better for it than others. Pumping … is a bit more complex. Check out what I have lined up below.
Best longboards for carving
Loaded Icarus – Premium option, good for both styles
From the brand that needs no introduction, the Loaded Icarus is a great option for cruising. It comes complete with high-quality components that will allow you to flow down the hill in style.
The Loaded Icarus comes with high-quality Paris trucks and a variety of wheels – commonly 80mm tall Orangatang Kegels. The bearings are Loaded Jehu v2 bearings. The Paris trucks are some of the best options on the market – both high-quality whilst having a great turn, they’re super turny and make great carving trucks.
What’s special about the Icarus is how flexy it is. It actually comes in two different flex options appropriate for different weights. The flex allows you to bounce on the board and bounce in and out of turns, which really adds to the whole carving experience. The huge 80mm wheels also coast forever which is a bonus.
Landaychtz Ripper – great carving and pumping board
The Landyachtz Ripper is a great cruiser. It has the smallest wheels of all completes on my list, but this just makes it super nimble and reactive to your input.
The Ripper comes complete with high-quality Bear tkp trucks, 63mm tall Fatty Hawgs, and Bear Spaceball bearings. It also has big 1/4inch risers so you can lean super deep without risk of wheelbite.
The Ripper isn’t the turniest, but it can flexes a lot and turns quite deep. And because it is top-mounted (the trucks are mounted under the board unlike on top like the Icarus above), you can turn aggressively and deeply. This allows you to get really deep with the turning and get it to turn as well as other boards. It also makes it super fun to ride.
And because it is nimble, you can get it to pump to a respectable pace. However, the small wheels mean it won’t hold much speed.
The only bad thing is the small wheels. If the wheels were larger at 70mm, it would be a lot better. Check it out here at the Stoked Ride shop.
Comet Cruiser – best longboard for carving and pumping
The Comet Cruiser is the best longboard for carving on this list (and best board overall). It is a special one. Many skaters consider it the best cruiser board in the world. I think it is too.
What makes the Comet Cruiser so special is that it comes with high-quality components, installed after-market parts, and specially tuned/setup trucks. It comes with turny Paris TKP trucks, big 69mm Powell Snakes, aftermarket bushings, Zealous bearings, and Khiro wedge risers.
All this just makes it one of the turniest, but stable cruisers out there. It turns on a dime but does so in a really smooth and controlled way. The back is dewedged which just means it is really stable. This adds to the turning as the back remains planted as you turn aggressively and slalom between obstacles.
This thing is seriously turny and nimble btw. It turns on a dime and has an extremely tight turning circle. This makes it great for pumping and you can pick up speed from a slow speed and pump at a reasonable pace.
The only bad thing is it’s a bit costly. However, you can use the code “downhill254” at the checkout and you’ll get a discount. Find out more about the Comet Cruiser here at the Comet website.
Landaychtz Drop Cat – good for carving, not good for pumping
The Drop Cat is a great board for cruising and carving. It is low to the ground, easy to push, and is stable. Probably one of the best boards in the Landyachtz line up for pushing longer distances.
The Drop Cat comes with high-quality components. Feature Bear RKP trucks, big 72mm Plow King wheels, and Bear Spaceball bearings.
The Drop Cat is a double-drop board, featuring both rocker and a drop-through. However, the place where the trucks are mounted is wedged. This makes the overall board more turny and makes it feel like a snowboard. The trucks are very turny and turn on a dime, but because the standing platform is so low to the ground the turning doesn’t have a lot of turning depth. You can still cruise and carve it fairly well. But it won’t turn as deeply as the other boards.
Check out the Landyachtz Drop Cat here at the Stoked Ride Shop. The 33 inch option is better for riders smaller than 5ft9, and the 38inch option better for riders taller than that.
Magneto cruiser – affordable, OK carver
The most affordable option on my list, the Magneto cruiser has a high-quality deck but features components that leave a lot to be desired.
It comes with a flexible, vertically laminated, lightweight deck. It has knock-off Paris trucks (which aren’t good) and cheap 70mm tall wheels. The bearings aren’t special either – but fortunately, bearings don’t matter.
Whilst the Magneto is affordable and will work ok for carving, it isn’t the best option. The knock-off trucks won’t have the smoothest turn, which makes them not the best for carving.
So yeah, it’s not the best, but might be ok if you’re on a tight budget. Check it out here on Amazon.com.
Sector 9 cruiser – great carver, good pumper
The Sector 9 Aina Striker cruiser is a good option for carving and pumping. It features the Gullwing Sidewinder trucks which have a double-kingpin system. This just makes them ultra-turny … double the turn of a normal TKP truck if you will. So yeah, this board would be good at carving, and it could probably pump ok too.
Apart from the trucks, it features 69mm tall wheels and a vertically laminated bamboo deck. The vert-lam deck just means this board will be quite light altogether. This will help make it nimbler and it will be able to change directions quicker.
The Sector 9 cruiser isn’t bad if you mainly want to do carving. It would also make a fairly decent cruiser too … just don’t try go fast with it, its very turny truck wobble very easily. Check it out here on Amazon.com.
Other great boards for this style of riding
- Landyachtz Battle Axe
- Zenit Catnip
- Landyachtz Surf skate
- Sector 9 sidewinder series
- Carver boards
- Rocket Rambler
- Bossa boards
- Pantheon Ember
- Etc. …
Best longboards for carving buying guide
What is carving?
Carving isn’t necessarily its own distinct style. It is characterized by just turning … carving is just turning on your board. That’s it …
That said, some boards are gonna turn more, turn smoother and turn better than others. But most can get it done.
You want something turny
The best boards for carving are going to turn a lot. So you want a board that is going to turn a lot.
The way this is achieved is often by high-angle (50*) trucks. However, most companies won’t disclose this … most of the time, but most trucks on most boards are gonna be turny enough.
Some trucks like the Gullwing Sidewinders on the Sector 9 board are gonna be extra turny. Most surf skates too. However, you do want your truck to be turny, but controllable. You don’t want it to suddenly dive in and out of the turns in an uncontrollable way.
Yes turny, but controllable
You want your truck to turn in a smooth, controlled way. If not, it’s gonna twitch and turn suddenly. It’s not going to give you a very good riding experience.
Most high-quality trucks will turn in a smooth controlled way. They will come with high-quality parts (bushings and pivots), which will allow the truck to lean smoothly and controllably.
Most low-quality trucks (mostly found on cheap longboards), will not turn very controllably. They come with cheap bushings and pivots that have no rebound and don’t support the truck through the turn.
What is pumping?
Pumping is aggressively turning your board left to right. This generates some forward momentum, and you can use it to keep going forward instead of pushing.
The boards on my list can pump ok, but if you want a proper pumping board, you’re going to have to get a more specialised setup with the right trucks and the right board for it. But yeah, unless you want something built specifically for it in mind, the boards on my list will do ok. The Comet Cruiser is the best one on my list for it.
You want something nimble for pumping
You’re going to want a board that can go from the left to the right quickly and that can also change direction very quickly. A sluggish board won’t be able to change direction quickly enough for it to gain momentum.
So yeah, you want something that changes direction quickly …
Good wheels that roll fast and hold speed
Next, you’re going to want good wheels that roll fast and can hold their speed well.
Wheels from cheap brands are gonna be gummy and won’t cost for long. Wheels that come in high-quality completes from high-quality brands are a safe bet.
A wheel that can keep its speed won’t be too narrow. Wheels from about 70-80mm in size are good.
P.s Your wheel choice matters more than your choice of bearings.
A comfortable deck
A comfortable deck will be more enjoyable to ride and will allow you to ride for longer. Otherwise, the type of deck you have doesn’t matter too much. I will say, flexible decks are more comfortable and funner to cruise and carve on. I’d always say go for a flexy deck if you want to maximize how fun and enjoyable your riding and carving experience can be.
Do bearings matter?
Not as much as you think. After having skated over half a dozen bearings from different brands, I can say that bearings don’t matter that much. As long as you have something well maintained and the necessary accessories (speed rings, and bearing spacers), you’ll have something that works well.
There is also no discernable difference in performance between ceramic and steel bearings. Freespin doesn’t matter either, and ceramics do rust in the rain (because the races are made from metal).
What do you think? Which board is your choice?
If I had to settle on one board it would be the Comet Cruiser. The Sector 9 Cruiser would be a good section choice – it won’t pumpas well but it would cruise like a beast.
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