When choosing the best longboard, the first thought should be about your riding style.
Are you a cruiser? Or maybe you have a lot of hills in your area and want some smooth, grippy downhill riding?
Or maybe you want to try something new with freeriding? Or a universal longboard will be just fine?
Think well, because every element of your board can improve your riding or make it hell. No downhill riding will be safe with the wheels that aren’t grippy enough or a deck that has a high gravity center and is too responsive.
Your choice should be wise, and we’re here to help you with it. The following TOP-5 will guide you through the best options on the market.
Then, a buyer’s guide full of useful information will show you how to choose every element of your longboard to complete the best unit for downhill riding.
- Full Maple Laminate Deck
- RKP Longboard Trucks
- ABEC-9 Bearings
Downhill Longboards Comparison Chart
|Atom Longboards 91047||Size: 41" x 9.6"|
ABEC Rating: 9
Deck: 9-Ply Maple Laminate
|MINORITY Downhill Maple Longboard||Size: 40" x 10"|
ABEC Rating: 9
Deck: 8-Ply Cold Pressed Maple
|Loaded Boards Tesseract||Size: 39" x 9.5"|
Deck: Bamboo & Fiberglass
|Sector 9 DHS124||Size: 40" x 10"|
Wheelbase: 25.25" - 30.5"
Deck: 8-Ply Cold Pressed Maple
|ENKEEO Drop-Through Longboard||Size: 40" x 9"|
ABEC Rating: 11
Deck: 9-Ply Flex Maple
5 Best Downhill Longboards (as of May, 2021):
1. Atom Longboards 91047 Downhill Longboard Review
An ultra-low longboard will provide a very down-to-Earth ride, which is what beginners should opt for.
Downhill riding is difficult since you need to react fast and stand strong and stable at a very high speed.
When the gravity center is low, there’s more confidence. A drop-through mount improves the situation even more.
Here are the key features you get with this Atom Longboards 91047:
- Low-riding construction for the most stable ride at any speed;
- Affordability that is quite important both for beginners and professionals;
- 9.6” inches of space for your shoes, allowing for smooth turns and overall confidence on the board;
- Maple and bamboo deck with high-quality lamination that provides sufficient strength and flexibility to avoid damage;
- Reverse kingpin 180mm trucks with 245mm axles for increased stability;
- ABEC-9 bearings of adequate quality;
- 1-year warranty by the manufacturer.
Not the best option for rapid turns, but for the price, it’s an amazing deal. This is an extremely friendly board for beginners. It will protect you from bumps and provide confidence to handle rapid acceleration even on difficult hills.
The bearings might need to be changed after some time since their quality isn’t the best, but it’s still a solid setup for the first downhill board. Even if you’re a pro but have never tried downhill riding, this board can become your best ally.
- Size: 41″ Long x 9.6″ Wide
- 9-Ply Maple Laminate Deck
- Photo Heat Transfer Graphic
- Reverse King Pin Longboard Trucks
- 50 Degree Base & 245-millimeter Axles
- Wide-Lip 70mm x 51mm
- 78A Super High Rebound Wheels
- ABEC-9 Bearings With High-Speed Lubricant
- Durable 80 Grit Silicon Carbide Grip
- Fully Assembled
- High-quality grip tape
- Maple deck with great lamination
- Convenient for long-distance commuting and downhill riding
- Not the best option for speedy turns
- No kicktails
2. MINORITY Downhill Maple Longboard Review
MINORITY Downhill Maple Longboard combines high functionality suitable for downhill riding, adjustable elements for you to figure out what fits best to your wishes, and a design range to fight for.
40 inches are enough for a newcomer to feel their first board and for professionals to feel confident on dangerous hills.
Here’s what you get with this option:
- 8 plies of 100% maple to create a deck with enough strength and a bit of flex;
- Classic downhill drop longboard with low gravity center, which provides a more stable ride at high speeds;
- 7” reverse kingpin trucks made from genuine aluminum for a high-quality connection between the deck and the wheels. It can be adjusted between 45 and 50 degrees to offer the most functionality;
- 70mm, 78a wheels made from polyurethane with 51mm contact patch for a tight grip no matter the speed;
- ABEC-9 precision bearings for those who want to carve like gods.
You’ll feel much more confident, no matter the experience, when riding a board with almost custom design. These guys make anything from futuristic artwork to old-school vintage patterns.
The deck holds up to 220 lbs, and symmetrical shape will leave both beginners and professionals satisfied.
- Low Gravity Construction
- Size: 40″ Long x 10″ Wide
- 8-Ply Cold Pressed Hardrock Maple
- Alluminium 7-Inch Reverse Kingpin Trucks
- 37” Adjustable Base 45 or 50 degrees
- Durable 70 mm x51 mm 78A PU Wheels
- ABEC-9 Bearings
- Withstands Up to 220 lbs
- 100% maple used for the deck
- 8 plies
- ABEC-9 precision bearings
- Perfect wheels for downhill riding
- Adjustable trucks
- Soft wheels may have a short lifespan
3. Loaded Boards Tesseract Downhill Longboard Review
It’s symmetrical, which is a good thing for beginners who have never stood on a board before.
The wheelbase offers a lot of opportunities for adjustments once you get the taste of what you need in a longboard.
This longboard offers the following:
- Functional design with symmetrical kicktails to get the most use out of both sides;
- A rocker to make it easier to lock your feet when sliding;
- W-shaped concave that won’t make it difficult to ride downhill yet will give sufficient support when turning or sliding;
- Wheel wells so that you can use larger wheels without concerns about wheel-bite;
- Lightweight bamboo and fiberglass for easy carrying and sufficient flexibility;
- Lower cork layer for vibration absorption to get the smoothest downhill ride possible;
- 180mm, 50-degree Paris trucks provide a lot of response for speedy turns;
- 70mm, 86a Orangatang wheels for proper balance and long life. They might be a bit hard for beginner riders, but it takes several lessons to get used to them.
This is a great board for beginners to start their downhill way and for professionals who are interested in switch riding and other longboard-friendly tricks.
39” and 9.5” board is perfect for downhill riding as far as the sizing is concerned. 24.5”-26” wheelbase adds to the flexibility of the unit.
- Functional Design
- Lightweight Construction
- Size: 39″ Long x 9.5″ Wide
- Symmetrical Shape & Kicktails
- Dual Bamboo Cores & Fiberglass
- Paris 180mm, 50° Matte Black Trucks
- Smooth & Controlled Turning Response
- Orangatang 70mm, 86a Stimulus Wheels
- Wheelbase 24.5″-26″
- Jehu V2 Bearings
- Proper size for downhill riding
- Sufficient responsiveness
- Symmetrical construction
- A rocker and wheel wells for comfort
- Gorgeous design
- The wheels might be too hard for beginners
4. Sector 9 DHS124 Review
This Sector 9 DHS124 longboard is highly adjustable, which is great news for beginners.
Initially a downhill longboard, you can make it suitable for cruising and freeride as well.
The secret is different options for truck mounting.
Another good thing to hear is that this board is ready to go downhill right out of the box – no additional maintenance needed.
The most prominent qualities of the board are:
- 8 plies of cold-pressed maple offer premium durability with just enough flex for downhill riding;
- Effective grip tape included in the package for better feet stability;
- Gorgeous design with a Downhill Division logo so that everyone knows you have a high-quality, specialized board;
- Relatively small tail (for a 40” board) and a sharp nose provide suitable aerodynamics and add class to the unit;
- 10” width that gives a lot of space for beginners to feel the board and the hill;
- Mild concave that will take some time to get used to but eventually will make it comfortable for turning, sliding, and carving;
- 25” to 30” wheelbase for increased flexibility of use;
- 10” Gullwing trucks that are specially made for downhill riders;
- ¼” riser for you to adjust the trucks anyway you want as even a portion of an inch can make a huge difference;
- Elegant wheel wells that help avoid wheel-bite;
- 72mm 78a wheels, large and soft enough for nice traction and stability that are so important at high speeds.
You feel free when riding this longboard, ready to take any turn or stop completely when necessary without a struggle. It’s totally beginner-friendly and will enhance your skills and talent, inspiring to take more difficult hills.
- Gorgeous Design
- Size: 40″ Long x 10″ Wide
- 8-Ply Cold Pressed Maple
- 10″ Gullwing Trucks
- 72mm, 78a Race Formula Wheels
- PDP ABEC-5 Bearings
- Jessup Grip Tape
- 1/4″ Recycled Plastic Risers
- Varying Wheelbase: 25.25″ – 30.5″
- Fully Assembled
- Coarse griptape
- High-quality urethane for wheels
- 8 plies of maple cold-pressed together
- Excellent construction for downhill riding
- Large, soft wheels
- Wheels might wear out quickly with everyday use
5. ENKEEO Drop-Through Longboard Review
This ENKEEO Drop-Through Longboard is a large, fully assembled board that will hold you well even if it’s your first time riding.
It’s a great choice for beginners who aren’t ready for sudden turns and professionals who value stability and loads of space.
You won’t slip and will feel full support from the deck.
With this powerful longboard, you’re getting:
- Great design.
This deck can become a strong highlight of your image with its rich design. The manufacturer offers different options that will match your desired tone and vibe.
- Strong construction.
The deck consists of 9 plies of laminated maple. The surface is brushed to avoid slipping. Such a deck is sturdy enough for any surface, and the overall construction of the board will provide extra stability on uneven surfaces.
- High ABEC rating.
ABEC-11 rating corresponds to high-tolerance bearings that are a part of this full board. It allows faster longboarding, becoming an amazing addition to this deck. A smooth and fast ride is guaranteed with such a combination.
Use it for cruising, carving, downhill riding, or trick mastering. It will withstand 100 kg without a problem.
It’s very easy to control since there’s a lot of space on the deck. It is a great choice for those who only start mastering longboarding. Due to its design, you won’t get sudden, fast turns, since the turning circle is wider in this 40” board.
If you’re a professional rider, this board might seem too easy and even slow. But for calm, light longboarders, this is a nice pick.
- Unique Design & Strong Construction
- Size: 40″ Long x 9″ Wide
- Extra Stability On Uneven Surfaces
- 9-Ply Flex Maple
- Brushed Black Surface For Antislip
- Highly Responsive 7″ Aluminum Trucks
- 70mm x 51mm PU Wheels
- ABEC-11 Bearings
- Withstands Up to 100 kg
- Fully Assembled
- Fully assembled board
- Lots of space on the deck
- Anti-slip topcoat
- 9-ply maple of high quality
- Mild flex for comfort
- Might be too easy to control for pros
Best Downhill Longboard Buyer’s Guide: What to Look for in One
We’ve cleared up that for a perfect downhill longboard, you need all details to be suitable. For the best ride, there’s a full complex of elements, both for the board and for you, that should match.
Here we’ll talk about the choice of every tiny bit, starting with the deck.
Choosing the Proper Deck for Your Level
Any deck can be adjusted and combined with other elements to get a downhill riding fit. However, if this is your main style, it’s better to buy a stiff deck, specifically drop-through or top-mount ones.
You’ll reach the best speed with a top-mount deck – there’s nothing that will slow it down. But a lot of pros consider drop-throughs the best, especially if you’re only getting into the downhill scene. So, which one to choose?
If you lack experience of going fast on a longboard or it’s your first time even on one, you’ll very much appreciate a drop-through deck. It provides the most stability and the “down-to-Earth” feeling we all need as beginners.
You get a lower center of gravity and less fear for your life, considering the speed downhill riding implies.
Intermediate Level: Top-Mount
Top-mount decks have trucks attached to the bottom, providing a lot of grip, more than a drop-through deck. It’s also quite stable at high speeds, and the speed-limit for them is higher as well.
But you have to tune it and feel at which point there is the most stability. So, this is a great choice overall that is more suitable for intermediate and professional longboarders.
When you have tight corners to conquer, this is a better option since you get enough sliding to slow down a bit before that turn. But there are a lot of technicalities to know, so if you are a newcomer, practice a bit before getting a top-mount deck.
What About Drop-Platform Decks?
These will work just fine, but you won’t get sufficient grip when turning, and they usually have different concaves, which are a personal choice.
A lot here depends on the preference of a professional rider who knows exactly what kind of curve they need. Drop-platform decks are great for freeriding, though.
Choosing Deck Size
Longboard decks for downhill riding should be 37” to 43″. The shorter one you choose, the less stability and confidence you’ll have at high speeds. However, longer ones offer fewer options for maneuvers.
As stability is more important for beginners, it’s recommended that they choose longer decks (40”-41”). The speed won’t be a problem since you’ll feel a lot of space under your shoes.
The width, in this case, isn’t that important because it’s tied to the length of your downhill deck. But if you want to get into technicalities, the 9” to 10.5″ range works best for downhill riding.
The choice depends mostly on the amount of space you need to stay stable on the board.
Choosing Suitable Trucks
In a wide variety of skateboard and longboard trucks, there’s one type that works best down the hill – a reverse kingpin truck with a turning mechanism and a bushing suspension. You can find such models made by Caliber, Bear, or Randal.
Such trucks are highly predictable in their movements, which is a precious quality when you’re riding at high speeds. They are suitable for both drop-through and top-mount decks.
A lot of professionals use the so-called precision trucks for their boards. They are made custom, cut from a whole piece of metal, with every tiny detail made perfect.
You also have to pay much more for them, and it’s not necessary for a beginner’s setup. Of course, if someone just wants to give you a pair, take it. But regular cast trucks will also work well for a downhill setup.
50-degree baseplate will make the board very responsive and less stable, but the possibility of a wheel-bite (friction of a wheel with the bottom of the deck) will also be minimal.
This is the recommended option for beginners since the stability will be compensated with other elements, but not the wheel-bite.
40 to 44-degree angle will provide more stability by making the setup lower.
Choosing Truck Size
The best sizing option is to choose the trucks that are close to the deck width. Usually, 10” (180mm) trucks are the best.
Choosing Longboard Wheels
There are 5 main things to consider when choosing longboard wheels for downhill riding:
- Lip profile.
The best pick for riding the hills are sharp-lip wheels. This profile will increase the gripping capabilities of a wheel without losses in sliding ability;
An ideal diameter for downhill riding is 70mm-75mm, given you have a medium to a large board; otherwise the wheels will bite. Smaller wheels might wear out too quickly since the lower durometer will provide more grip, but at high speeds, it will start wearing out quite soon. Larger wheels will most definitely bite, and you don’t need sudden stops down the hill at considerable speed;
This is a measure of softness the urethane used in certain wheels have. Softer wheels provide a better grip with the surface, which is important when going downhill. On the downside, they wear out quickly. 78a-80a wheels are the middle point where you get sufficient grip and a relatively long life. Try 80a first and then decide whether you need more traction and can sacrifice a bit of lifespan for it. Tip: if you’re over 180 lbs, consider 83a durometer and more since soft urethane may slow you down;
- Core set.
There are three types of core positioning: centerset, sideset, and offset. All of them provide different qualities as to grip and how the wheel breaks into a slide. Centerset core provides just enough sliding for downhill, so if you’re a “slider” when doing down the road, this is a nice pick. Sideset wheels give you a smoother slide break-in but wear prematurely. Offset wheels provide something in between the two first options and are considered the best variant. If you’re a beginner, buy these, and you won’t make a mistake;
- Wheel width.
The wider the contact patch is, the more grip you will get from the wheel. Try 50mm wheels first and go narrower or wider from there, depending on your skills and goals. Narrower wheels will give you a lot of slide, sometimes even when you don’t need it. 60mm+ wheels will provide massive grip, but you won’t be able to slide at all.
The choice of bearings depends on how smooth you want the ride to be. Generally, it’s best to opt for ABEC-7 bearings and over. These provide the best qualities as to the speed and feel of your wheels.
Make sure you also buy some spacers if you don’t want the bearings to wear out quickly. These tiny elements fit between the bearings and help reduce potential damage when you’re sliding, etc.
There’s a lot of maintenance connected to keeping your bearings intact, especially when going down the hill. You want them to be pre-lubricated upon arrival, but don’t forget a good lubricant for the next cleaning session.
One Element Can Make a Difference
A lot of longboarders opt for universal boards if they aren’t interested in one particular riding style. But if you want to complete the best board for downhill riding, every element counts.
The wheels should be of a certain softness; the deck should increase speed and provide stability, etc. Pay attention to every tiny detail when choosing the best longboard.
You can always rebuild it to adjust to another style or enhance downhill performance. But it’s always great to have a nice base anyway.