SKATE OR DIE, I choose skate. My ESK8 Journey

Inspired by @rafaelinmissouri Ive decided to start my own thread documenting my journey with ESK8, and really my journey through PEVs in general. This way I’ll have one thread to document as much as possible.

All the boards, the upgrades, the crashes, the YouTube videos, the rides and the moments in between.


Where it started. Everything before I road an eskate.

While working for bike magazine I was able to ride all sorts of demo bikes that came in. I road fixed gear bikes back then, charging through traffic and loved the intensity of it all. One day they got an electric bike. I had heard about them but never ridden one. I took it for a spin inside a big empty warehouse that was next to our office that had a super slick floor. Riding as fast as I could I was blown away with pedal assist… until I slid it out around a corner. This was my first time on any PEV.

I took a trip to Portland. While there I saw guys on these crazy things riding around that self balanced on onewheel. I snapped a photo from far away and then went and spoke with them. They were called “solo wheels” they said. I asked if I could try it and they declined since I was just some stranger asking to ride their stuff. I was again amazed at the thought of riding an electric device like this. I got home, started researching them and quickly realized I couldn’t afford the (I think) $800 price tag for one.

Time went by, I road regular skateboards and bikes like a caveman for years.

I saw a onewheel and was sold. THIS is incredible. I have to have one… $1500 ish? Guess Ill keep skating.

I began researching electric skateboards since they were cheaper than one wheels. I poured over the typical meepo, wowgo and other offerings and just ended up for one reason or another not jumping in. I debated the meepo 1.5 vs a wowgo 2. I learned about an esc and how different ones produced different riding characteristics. I had big plans with no money.

December 6th 2019
I FINALLY pulled the trigger on a used onewheel pint for $700. The guy wouldn’t even let me ride it to test it out until buying it. I said fine, I’ll take it. It was ugly with its brown fender and camouflage grip tape. But it was MINE. I owned a onewheel! The addiction took hold.

First day riding

I began riding this thing everywhere! I went on my first PEV group ride with it. I even started taking it with me on my long commute to Los Angeles everyday. Before this I would take a train to the Norwalk station, then jump on a bus to get me to the light rail station and then take the light rail to work. 3 hours to get to work a lot of times. Brutal. The pint let me skip the bus and do that 5 mile stretch on my own. It really helped break up the commute.

Here was my review on the onewheel pint.

Meanwhile during this time my wife Aimee and I had a YouTube channel we had stared all about travel. We loved to travel and on a whim I started filming one day on the beach in Laguna after getting a new iPhone. Ive always been one to document things, make videos and had a history of editing. So the channel, One Chance Travel was born.

We had a BIG trip planned. We were both going to quit our jobs, buy a mini van and travel the country for 6 months. Taking our two dogs with us along the way we would stay in airbnbs for a week or a month at a time. I was bringing the pint but wanted something for Aimee too. Space was limited and she’s not one to ride boards so we ended up picking up a used Jetson “bike”.

We quit our jobs in February of 2020 to travel, not knowing the world was going to grind to a halt so soon.

This thing was hilarious. We brought it on the trip and she road it all over. Including on one of the coolest places Ive ridden to date, COTA outside of Austin Texas.

I contacted the F1 track about their cycling day and asked if the local onewheel group would be allowed. They said sure and we ended up there, riding on the track for what ended up being the last time they’ll ever let one wheels on the track during the cycling event. Something about them not liking us carving in front of the cyclists lol.

Heres a couple shots from that ride.

While staying in the airbnb in Austin the world began to slow down, this was early march of 2020. So of course I decided why not range extend my onewheel pint. I had almost no tools to speak of so I did the best I could with what I had. Buying and returning things to Home Depot as needed. In the end I added a external pack to the pint and my range anxiety was over!

Here is how I range extended it.

And here is a range test I did with it. I road it all the way to 1% left… and slammed hard lol.

COVID HIT HARD while we were in New Orleans. We decided to stay a month in Florida and then headed back to San Clemente, California since pretty much everything was shut down. That drive home was amazing, no traffic, just zooming across the country in a few days.

I got home, kept riding the Pint and then knew it was time for an upgrade. I could hit 24mph on the pint but the pushback was killing me.I had done a 1000 miles on the pint. I knew I loved riding, it was time.

June 2020
Time for an XR I thought. So I financed an XR and kept the pint for friends to ride.

Here was my XR. I added quite a bit to it right from the start and really felt like I splurged a bit to make it my own.

A couple months goes by and the upgrade itch starts again. The XR was so much better than a pint. About the same speed but better range without having to run an external battery, much better tire characteristics on the whisper and a lot more fun to ride… but I just wanted more!

August 2020
I thought if a onewheel was fun maybe an EUC would be the ticket. So I snagged a 18XL from a friend I met in Austin while staying there. It was much faster, capable of hitting 31mph and had a ton more range. I quickly learned to ride it.

I kept it for a few months and just as quickly as I learned to ride I became kinda bored with it. Carving is a lot more like a bike than a board and I just didnt fall in love like I thought I would. So I sold it.

All of this leads me up to my first eskate.


October 2020

I finally get an eskate. After looking at a million options I settle on the BKB Duo. I ordered it with red cloudwheels, buying into the hype of their extra comfort, and the fast charger. I can’t explain how excited I was when it arrived. I really enjoyed putting it together, things went smoothly and I was off and running. I made a few videos to earn a small discount on the board.

Putting it together.

Speed and range test

I loved my Duo, even started doing some customization. I did a pour over paint job, ordered custom grip tape from Splattergoat and made it my own.

I tried different wheels eventually giving into the pneumatics. Wow were they a difference in grip and comfort. I was sold. Pneumatics were my favorite for 99% of riding after that moment. But with this my range obviously dropped considerably.

I also wanted more carve out of the board. I ended up adding a surf adapter and was in love with the carve. But the added height along with the 6” tires was a little much.

So…. it was time for an upgrade.

The spruce moose

I snagged a drop down deck from skate shred and a second 10S3P 30Q pack from BKB. I decided that I’d make my own fiberglass enclosure…. This didn’t go that well but was a great first try and I learned a ton.

I decided that I’d run the two batteries separately with the ability to change which pack was active by swapping a loop key between two ports in the deck. This worked and gave me a lot of confidence that while my enclosure might look like spoiled milk, I could accomplish a DIY board.

It took me an insane amount of time to get the 6” tires to clear the surf adapter. But eventually I got it with the right combinations of risers above, below and between the adapter.

So now that I had it working it was time to remake it but try my best at making it look decent. I knew fiberglass wasn’t the right way for me to go at this point. I thought about kydex and other options but eventually settled on something I’ve worked with a bunch of times, wood.

And so the SPRUCE MOOSE was born. I bought a new deck with a nice bamboo inlay, covered it in heavy lucid grip and built the wooden enclosure onto the deck using screw inserts, a first for me at the time. I used a 1/4” piece of plywood as the lid and mounted all of my electronics directly to the deck.

I road the moose for a good while. Taking it on tons of group rides. Riding it to my new top speed at the time of 37mph on a surf adapter and had an insane amount of fun with it.


Around this time our YouTube channel started to pick up steam with brands wanting us to review products. Here are some of the boards and reviews we got to do early on. Ive always strived to keep our review completely honest and have had brands turn me down when Ive told them that. I just make videos for fun, not trying to make a career out of it lol.

Miles Phantom - Cool deck shape in my opinion, direct drives were fun and powerful enough for shorty I think. Didn’t get to keep this, just a loaner for the review.

Possway T2 - Decent entry level board for someone to dip a toe into eskate.

Ended up redecking this into a skate shred shorty that I did a pour over paint job on. Road it for a while like this. Then ended up giving the setup to my brother to ride.

Enskate then hit me up to review the R3 Mini. This was a really fun board. Super light weight, felt almost like regular skateboard. Low range but thats the trade off here for sure. You can see my spruce moose and redecked possway in the background during this review.

Then Miles hit me up again to review their latest board, the sex panther. This one I got to keep. Really fun board on DKPs. I road this for a few hundred miles. It ended up being the board I gave to a good friend to get him off a onewheel and into eskate. He put another 1000 miles on it and its still going now as his backup board.

Possway V4 - This board is a perfect kid board. Lightweight, not super powerful, low price and the trucks are really narrow. It was stupid fun to carve around on honestly. Since the trucks were so narrow it gave a 70’s skateboard vibe while riding it.

Varla then contacted us to review their eagle one dual motor scooter. This thing was insanity lol. Ended up being what Aimee (my wife) road primarily for over a year. Crazy power.

I had been talking to Joe for over a year about reviewing the new Trotter T3. I was excited to see a competitor to onewheel. In my opinion its just not refined enough. Trotter Magwheel T3 Full Review | OneWheel Alternative? - YouTube

Varla contacted us again to review their newest scooter, the pegasus. More of a city riding scooter. It had some cool features but overall I still preferred the eagle one.

BKB launched the TYPE R. I was pumped. I had a great experience with BKB in the past so decided Id buy this. They offered a discount in exchange for the review. This thing answered a ton of the issues with the original Duo. Great board.

Possway T3 - Cool hub motor board. Much easier on your feet with the larger wheels. Ended up as my brother’s daily driver to work. He’s put I believe around 700 miles on it.

I got to go to ESK8CON 2022 and had a ridiculously fun time. Here’s a lap on the track.

And here is my full breakdown of the event


At this point I was getting burned out on doing reviews to be honest. I turned down a few more hub motor boards that just didnt excite me at all.

Then Acedeck contacts me out of nowhere and shares their new 4WD X1 with me. Between the specs and the CNC work Im for sure into this one. So they send it… and wow. Its a beast of a board.

Ive loved riding 8” tires for a long time now on my Flux but BKB hit me up again to review their new tires. For sure these are my favorite 6” now.

I get a lot of people asking me about my protective gear so I made a video all about that stuff too.


Between all of the reviews I also made a couple DIY builds.

First one was the spruce moose up above.

Second was I call GREENIE.
Hummie Deck
Boardnamics mounts
Started as DKP, then ended up as a boardnamics RKP with adjustable base plates in the end
Type R 12S5P
BKB motors
Poast Toast Puck
Splattergoat tape
Custom charge port/power button on top

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I loved this board so much… until I got my STARFLUX. I ended up selling GREENIE to a friend. Who rides it everyday.

My STARFLUX is amazing. Love the power, range and comfort of this build.


You are going to be spending a lot of time here!!!
So much history to cover.

Stoked to see it here.


Seriously! Im going to try and cover, or at least mention, every board Ive owned and reviewed etc.

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Can’t wait to follow your builds. Excited things to come mah dude.


So where are we at now?

My STARFLUX is my daily ride.

Im in the process of building a 3LINK board that will hopefully be done in about a month or so. Im now running the Arizona chapter of Intro2Speed having hosted a couple track days and cant wait to have a 3LINK board to rip around on! Heres video of our very first go at it here in AZ.

Ive got two new boards from Acedeck here at the house to review. The NYX Z1 and the STELLA S1. I broke my foot about a week ago so Im just waiting to heal before I ride them and review them but on first impression… wow they’re nice.



Time on your hands and some boards to review that you can’t ride?
Take them apart, show us what they’re made of.


Not a bad idea. I’ll try and find some time to make that happen. Been a stupid busy week at work unfortunately. Maybe this weekend. Kami has a pretty good video on the NYX showing internals… #158 Acedeck NYX Z1 Full review - Surprised and impressive in many ways - YouTube

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Internals? Nah, gut it like a pig!
Really keen to see the battery construction. Not just a photo of a cell that looks like a p42a with some of the shot blurred out.
Genuinely surprised about what I’ve seen so far, for the good, but also very surprised about the shocker of a crown of thorns spike fest for the battery mount on the “off-road” board.

Oh man, I used to enjoy reading Bike magazine. The photographs in that magazine were the best.

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I really loved working there. Got to work on stuff for like 9 different action sports mags… Bike had great photo editors for sure.

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You need to get a Pint X.

Just to have.
Throw back.


Yeah. Someday for sure I’ll have a pint or x again. They’re really fun as a neighborhood board to me.


So fucking glad you had a onewheel and gave esk8 a shot Dallas. Most onewheels dont even touch esk8! Great story bro!


I never imagined that I would end up (for now) with esk8s, when you all you have is a onewheel, you see things through the lens of a onewheel, riding on golf courses or trails is so fun on a onewheel that its hard to imagine not being able to do, the whole "the world is your playground’ thing that they market feels really true when riding one. But I got forced out of onewheels and I cant imagine going back, you just shift the lens you look through when you change boards, now I just go really fast instead of riding on trails