Boosted Boards review and teardown

Update – This was originally publish in 2012 so some of the tech and whatnot has changed

UPDATE: Since the protoype they’ve made a number of improvements on the designs, reworking the speed controller,  the motor mount and the controller. They’ve put a lot of time and effort in to R&D, so while I’ve put in some indicative costs of parts their is obviously all the trial and error, expertise, marketing and profit you pay for. Another update here.

Boosted board 2 update here

So I’ve been looking over these electric boards for a while and saw the Boosted board on kickerstarter which looks like a nice set-up.

While I haven’t seen one in the flesh or had the chance to ride one I thought I would do a bit of a tear down of what goes into it for anyone interested in maybe making their own. So looking over the video and kickstarter page I’ve got the following:

So lets look at the basic components of the longboard setup.

  • Loaded Vanguard deck – $175
  • Bear Grizzly 852s – $49
  • Otang 80A In Heats $55
  • Jehu bearings $20 (or you could get Bones Reds)
  • Bolts $10
  • Total$309

Or you can get one from loaded boards complete for amazon for $281. Loaded Vanguard Flex 2 42″ Complete Longboard With Paris Trucks, Orangatang Wheels

Image from the loaded boards website
Image from the loaded boards website

A nice setup. However I’m a little unsure about the wheel choice but I’ll get to that later.

Now we get into the electronics which are are RC car/plane parts.

  • Brushless motor x 2 – $40. Now its hard to see what type of motors they have on this thing but we’re looking at relatively small brushless outrunner motors designed for RC planes. From Hobbyking  you’re look at about $20 each for a 35mm motor
  • To control the motors you’re going to need an electronic speed control – $40 Something that can handle a decent amount of current that will be drawing from the batteries on startup. If you look at Hobbyking your looking at the $35 mark.
  • Wireless receiver – $20. Now in the promo video they make a big deal about the custom designed controller but in essences its a simple controller with forward and break (speed controller handles the breaking aspect with brushless motors). If you look at Hobbyking again they sell a RC car controller for $15 and that includes a  channel for steering not just accelerate and break. Also a link to another electric skateboard project where the guy tears one of these apart to make it smaller.

See pretty controller

Image from boosted boards website
Image from boosted boards website

Finally the battery – $50. LiPo batteries are pretty cheap and given the specs they’ve given on the range they’re not planning on putting in many.

Now the hardest part of the design. Mounting the engines and the drive train. Now in the video gives a few hints. Basically its rivetted into the middle of the back truck. Out of the end of the motors looks like a pretty standard RC airplane extension with a custom cog. And a custom cog on the wheel. And a dual belt drive.

Screen grab from boosted boards video
Screen grab from boosted boards video

So estimating the custom motor mount $40

Custom cogs x 4 (motors and wheels)- $30

Two belts – $20

For someone looking to create their own electric skateboard this is going to be the hardest part. Mounting those motors to the trucks and cogs for the wheels. You not going to find anything off the shelf to fit or if you do you’re going to need to modify quite a bit. So we’re talking metal lath and/or welding. A pair of tin snips and soldering iron isn’t going to cut it.

Finally you have bolts and plates that go through the wheels into the cog. $20

Now this is This is where I question the wheel choice.

Screen grab from boosted boards video
Screen grab from boosted boards video

“Orangatang in heat” wheels are a solid wheel. Hence all those screws that hold the drive cog to the side of the wheel are drilled straight through the plastic of the wheels and bolted the other side. What does this mean? You’re not going to be able to rotate the wheels for uneven wear.

Now if you went for something like the Abec11 Flywheel.

Boosted Boards review and teardown 1

Boom! Holes for fixing the cog already.

Check out the peeps at Evolution boards for their Abec 11 setup. (not rolling with Abec 11 I see:( )

So what is the components dammage for such a set-up. About $571. Now this doesn’t take into consideration postage, packaging, labour, customer plastic covers and all the work behind the customer parts and electronics.

Is it a good buy at the price of $1200? I don’t know. But it looks awesome to ride and it is by far one of the nicest electric skateboard set-ups I’ve seen.


47 thoughts on “Boosted Boards review and teardown”

  1. Try again. You seem to have missed the two 1000 W motors in your calculations, I’ve found 500W motors for $300, so please let me know if you find these 1000W motors at retail for under $300. I would like some. Also, LiPo batteries to run the 2000 W motors for 30 min, I can’t find for under $250

    1. How about turnigy L3040 brushless outrunner. 1000W $18.33
      To battery. max power of the motor is 52A so any battery that is going to supply that much juice eg turnigy 3000mAh 30C $50 that’s 90A x 22.2V = 1998W
      that sounds good enough for me. Once again your going to need a speed controller to handle that.

      1. I see that the Thrust is 2100g so that’s 2.1Kgram
        and when a person is standing on his board the weight is more than 2.1kg
        Can the motor take that??

        1. Torque is a difficult calculation as it relates to this project and falls outside of my high school maths/physics abilities. The force of the motor is going in a different plain then the weight of the rider (I.e. The motors thrust/torque is being used to turn a wheel to propel you forward at 90 degrees to the weight of the rider. The motor isn’t trying to lift you in the air in the direct opposite direction of your weight. Hence, the motor only has to overcome the friction that the rider is placing on the wheels (and the bearings themselves)

          Another commenter Petra on this page raised some questions about torque:

          Basically its beyond my abilities to actually calculate the torque but there are numerous examples of projects with even smaller motors providing the necessary torque.

    2. I agree. Motors are around 100 Euro…plus your miscalculating the cost for the drivetrain: U need different cog/belt setups to find an acceptable amount of torque. With speed and laws the trouble starts…Then U have to build a speed limiter unit which releases more power/torque uphill. This resulting in a lot more DIY costs + developement costs.
      I think round about a 1000 bucks, a board that does all this is quite a deal and a neet thing to have. Even more when U compare it with a 500-750 dollar board, which aint worth a penny to anyone who knows how to ride a board. Sorry, but i disliked your review^^

      1. The price of the motors is accurate. I would recommend that you do a little more research. Check out they have a warehouse in Europe. Boosted boards is using standard brushless RC plane motors (as they said in their TED talk). You can find them in any number of hobby stores for much cheaper than 100 euro. (See other post on my website for details)

        Now boosted have used smaller motors than I’ve seen in many other projects. a small two motor configuration that of 2000W total (I’ve seen one admittedly over power project using 2x 3000W motors. Personally for my test board I’ve gone for a single larger motor which will generate 2665W

        Your right speed limits and laws surrounding electric vehicles change country by country. In Australia we can only use a skateboard on bike paths and electric vehicles are limited to 200W (so that takes out most electric skateboards). The boosted boards team is saying they’re limiting the top speed that its able to product but they say nothing about a speed limiter that releases more power as it goes up hill or slows you to the speed limit coming down hill (see there own videos at how fast they’re bombing down the hills). “Top speed – around 20mph” Your right speed limiting is outside of what a standard RC ESC does. You would have to look at ESC with computer interfaces that you can tweak the top speed on if this is a feature you’re really keen on.

        Re cog belt setups. You may need to play around with the cog belt setup to find something that works best with the motor. Most other projects I’ve seen this hasn’t been a big problems and there are plenty of Chinese cheap electric skateboards out there with this all sorted out so its not a problem. To be honest its not as big a consideration as you think. Alternatively with many ESC you can alter the power that it provides to the motor for a smooth takeoff. The Evolve boards even have a fast and slow take setting.

        I’m glad you’re happy with the Boosted Boards pricing ($1199) I think its a fantastic project. I like how they’re using good quality longboard components which should make this a pleasure to ride. You’re right the Chinese cheap nasty electric skateboards don’t look like that much fun to ride.

        The purpose of my review was to highlight the cost of building something like it (which you might have guessed from the blog name;). Whether you found my review helpful or not is for your own consideration. Least you found it interesting enough to comment. The simple fact is that the cost outline above are pretty much the retail cost of the parts involved in the Boosted Boards project.

        As with any other business there are lots of other costs. e.g. R&D of getting this all right, machinery used to prototype, the new office space they just moved into (check out their blog for that one) staffing cost (people got to eat) marketing costs (by the way fantastic job on this front). This all adds up pretty quickly from a parts cost $600 to retail $1199.

        You can make an electric longboard that is cheaper (check out nasty protoype board which is coming in at about $300 in parts) and your can make one more expensive.
        Alternative your can save yourself the trouble and buy a Boosted ($1199) or a Evolve board ($1050) both are really nice.

        Matt, if you do decide to purchase a Boosted Board I would encourage you to do your own review. Can I recommend two great forums for this:
        Endless Sphere – a blog about all types of electric vehicles, great place to start if you want to do some more research on making your own board:

        Silverfish Longboarding – a longboarding blog/forum

        or if you decide to make your own electric longboard let me know how you go 😉

    3. yo dude i have been looking in to making an electric longbord and i think i found the best stuff for the board and my wallet.

      Max Power: 2400W
      Max current: 90A
      Kv: 270rpm/v

      190-200A ESC
      Cells: 2-7S Li Po

      Rechargeable 9000mAh Li-ion battery
      Output voltage: 12V
      Capacity: 9000mAh

      i think that this will work good.

      1. Interesting choice on the battery. its 12v and not a standard RC part so i don’t know if thats going to work with the motor and speed controller. Let me know how you go.

  2. Any info on where to get the cogs that fit the abec11 wheels? They should only cost a few bucks. They need to sell a kit like the Lagrange guys are doing. Anyone that wants one of these already has a board they could use. Most could find a motor they want for their weight and needs. Same with the power supply. Most of these electric skate companies are doubling prices on these parts from actual retail. A kit also makes everything upgradeable later.

    1. No idea where to get the cogs for the Abec 11 flywheels. It looks like Chris Chaput (Mr Abec 11) was working on this with Altered electric boards back in 2010
      here but the current progress on Altered Boards is pending
      So might be a dead project. Was going to make my own similar to the boosted boards. Bolted through the flywheels

    2. when using abec 11s flywheel or similar, mounting of the cogs is ver difficult. U only have as much material to support the screws as it does…so if the bolts are mounted to strong or the engines torque/braking is to strong-the wheel will break apart. Using Otang or other “full” wheels increases stability of the cog mounting etc. Besides 70/75mm is enough. On a larger wheel like 90mm diagonal force is higher than on a smaller one. With diagonal twist during a slide, the wheel could break the cog or otherway around…when it is to big and soft. Always remember the power of moving masses^^

      1. Hi Matt, thanks for taking the time to comment.
        Here are two very successful projects using the Abec 11 wheels without the need to drill through the cog.

        Both of these projects are getting big men up to and braking from fast speeds. You’ll be glad to know the the Abec 11 flywheels don’t break apart under the forces.

        PS Abec 11 founder Chris was actually working on his making a drive cob for the Abec 11 flywheels with Hamboards. Never saw it go anywhere unfortunately but they made prototypes: However you can purchase kits for this purpose on the second link above.

  3. I was looking around and i found a cheap motor
    Stroom max 28A, duurstroom 23A, Kv 1880, as 4mm, trekkracht 1.3Kg prop 10×6 2~3 lipos
    do you think this is also useable voor a longboard, maybe 2

  4. Pingback: Boosted Boards.....motorized longboard technology - Page 4

    1. Hi Boris, check out the blog post about speed calculations. Both of those motors have to high rpm (kv). You want to aim for a low top speed to ensure smooth acceleration.

  5. thank you, on second thoughts, the looks better, but will this provide the 20mph and torque of the boosted board? and if i used this with this esc would this provide the smooth acceleration and stopping and 6 mile range? sorry for the amount of questions. thanks in advance. boris

  6. however i forgot to add; any suggestions where to get a cog to fit onto the motor iteslf?

  7. Hi guys, I would like to use two motors, but I don’t know if ESC can drive them together. Do you think that’s possible? Another doubt I have is that when carving wheels’ speed will be a little different. Do you think that will be neglectable with 2 motors pushing the two front wheels?

    1. Look at the esc from alien power systems and the endless sphere blog post on this website. Or google for their website. They sell esc that handle two motors.

      1. Ok, thanks. Another doubt I have is about trucks and wheels: do you think it’s possible to mount abec11 flywheels on the Paris 180 truck?

  8. hey new here, so im trying to do this relatively cheaper than 300 and i think its possible but well see, so I was wondering where to get the “gears” to attach to the wheels, i kinda wanna make mine chain drivin so where can i get a set of cogs or gears that attach to a chain that will work for this?

  9. Thanks for answering my question! haha sorry im not trying to bug you with all my dumb questions but Where is everyone buying the cogs that drive the chain do you know??

    1. For the large cog that connects to the wheels. If you’re using abec 11 wheels then : Alien drive systems
      or you just but the cogs and belts as normal and use long screws. This is a good place online to purchase belts and cogs. Most people are using HTD belts 5mm however I recently saw that boosted boards has decided to use 3mm but I’m not so sure this is a great idea for the home build due to the small size of the teeth you need to make sure that the build is rather precise:

  10. Thanks! hey so looking at the speed calculations page you got I know you said that its better to have a motor with Low kv/rpm and a high number of Watts, and you said you found a motor like that with over 3000w? what exact motor was that and do you know of any other specific motors that would work good?

  11. it seems that most of the high kv low watt motors that I see are pretty cheap 15 bucks or less is that how it is with the high watt low kv ones? i cant seem to find those on hobby king

  12. haha ok so I got the motor it looks kinda small but hopefully it works. now I was just wondering about the ESC and reciever? what is the ESC for? does it act as a reciever for a radio control or as a variable speed controller? if thats the case im gunna need a ESC and commect a reciever for it? then get a radio control and that should be able to control the power that the motor is getting from the batteries? did Zackrall ever figure out if those camcorder batteries he was gunna get would work?

  13. So I got a board and the motor and I think I have everything else decided I just need to know a good ESC the red brick one you have in one of your other posts doesnt have a brake? brakes are probrably good to have so im gunna stick in the RC ESC department, is there anything youve found thats manageable price wise?

  14. also there is a Zippy flight max batter rated at 2200 mAh for only 8 bucks if I strung three of these together in a series would I get as much power and life as getting a 5000mAh battery? sorry Im still a little confused after reading all the posts about batteries, Sorry for all my questions im looking to get this board done within the next couple months

  15. ok I have been looking at ESC’s for hours and I do not understand them, do you have a section on ESC’s in here? I have a Prop Drive 50-60 270kv Motor

  16. Hey!

    Can you make a list with all the links to all the parts you need to have to build the lonboard??


  17. I know you are busy but do you think you upload a schematic on how to connect the electronic components

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