ASRA - Australian Skateboard Racing Association

Im a Junior slalom skater and i wanted to get into DH. I was wondering what type of board do i need and gear i need to use. also how much it costs. cheers.

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Downhill requires a stiff board with a 31 to 35 inch wheelbase.
A helmet and slide-gloves are an absolute must.

There's a massive list of boards to pick from and I'd do your best to get your feet on a few before you drop cash, as they're a very personal thing.

As a general rule though...
lower boards are more stable, grip less, but slide more predictably.
Higher boards are more agile, grip more, tend to be harder to control drifting.

Boards should fit the rider's stance. you can adjust turn with the trucks instead.
Shorter boards can be run with lower axis trucks, longer with higher. etc.

Things like leathers aren't 100% necessary, but they are good when things go wrong.

Read this.
it's just about everything I know about trucks.

where are you? Maybe try to hookup with some DH'ers in your area and try some of their boards, etc.

As Steve said you MUST have a good helmet and hand protection, you should also have some good knee pads if you aren't wearing leathers. Are you riding slalom in the CHC? If so there will be a heap of guys competing there who can show you some good DH gear. Talk to Steve Daddow, Jacko, Robbo, Haggy, Bugs, etc, etc.

Main thing. GET A HELMET!!!!!!!!!!!!!


Get a helmet. Full face. And if you are thinking of doing any sanctioned racing - then a visor. Get a visor - wind burn sux. Best to pick a helmet that has good visibility. There are suggestions here in the threads. People starting out use motorbike helmet. This is the one place you do not want to be cheap. It is your head. And it dont recover well from injuries.
Leathers. Ok maybe you can get away with not having leathers, but only for a month or so. Leathers are essential if you want to keep off the injured list, and spend unnecessary time picking gravel out of your arse....or side, arms, knees, hands blah blah blah. Leathers just makes a fall or slide interesting. Without leathers it is an injury or major damage. Also if you want to sanction race, two piece leathers have to be able to zip together to form one piece.
Get to know your local motorbike shops, check em out for cheap leathers. Look on ebay. Loose is best and not to get something too tight in the leathers. You dont bend too well in tight motorcycle leathers. When you want to go pro, or look pro, or your dad wants to spend some $ see kelsey at NJK.
Gloves. Leather gloves with slide pucks. You can make your own with roper gloves, velcro, pucks. Most top guys are using the Landyachtz ones. You can use Loaded slide gloves, but there is not much finger protection and you will get holes in the gloves around the fingers.
Shoes. Skate shoes, flat soles with thick rubber on the bottom. Go Qld crew method of ripping tyres apart - remove steel, and sticking on your soles. Or go clarke rubber and find some heavy rubber or ring adrian at cr8tive and get his imported rubber soles. Thick soles are for footbraking. Stick em on using qikgrip. Put qikgrip on shoe and sole, wait until nearly dry and put em together, stick some weight on them until dry.
Skins. Get a set of skins to go under your leathers. Makes putting them on and off a lot easier.
Board. Skaters getting into down hill, and young skaters like the drop boards. Seems to makes footbraking easier on the mind. A higher board is like stepping off a gutter to footbrake. It is all preference. Try until you buy. There are so many race boards. Landyachts have a good range. Rayne have a good range. Rayne have some nice smaller decks, like nemesis and hustler. Landyachtz have the evo, which seems to be a requirement to own these days. I think young skaters like the so called gas pedal at the back, the drop is like a foot wedge. Easy to do that lazy arse squat at the back of the board, hand on the ground to get around corners. Makes it easier for top mount racers like k-rimes to speed past taking the corner in a big power arc. Buy anywhere. Overseas is cheap but you not getting the support you get locally. And remember your first sponsor on the way to stardom is your local skate supplier. So locally see me at Hopkin Racing, Call Adrian at cr8tive Sk8 in FNQ , and seems to have cheap boards. Race friendly shops in Sydney are Crab Shack - see Jamie, Skater HQ - Manly see raphael.
Trucks. It is all about the wedging or pivot angle. Boards like the evo has wedging built in, probably why people like it. Or use the randal race baseplates to create the wedging/angles. Standard Randal R2 is 42 degrees. Downhill baseplates were usually 50 degrees. There are more options these days. 28 and 35 degrees for a rear angle. Use 42, 50 or 60 on the front. Also depending on the board. So you can use these baseplates on a drop board, to recreate the race board you want. Stable. Turny front, turny back. Use minimum 180 hangers. Hangers for the baseplates use Randal R2 hangers. Other trucks are the bear grizzleys.
Cheap starter option. Tracker Fastrack or Gullwings or Paris with venom bushings. You want a entry level truck with lots of urethane in the bushing, so you can crank it down a bit to make it stable. Use those on the rear. On teh front you can wedge (if board allows) or use a randal with turnier baseplate.
Precision trucks. Most start at a 190 hanger. Baseplate (usually custom) degrees are around the 42 mark. Most common is Bear Smokies. They are 10mm axel, so you'll need special 10mm bearings. Other trucks are kookies from NZ (200 hanger), Radikal Talons (hanger varies with inter-changeable axels), Kalahanis (very low for top mount boards), Maguns (shhhwing bling maximing) and monkeys (coming soon). Or Jimz hanger and baseplates - sold separate and for big bucks.
Bearings. Save your money start with steels. You going to riding in the rain, thashing your bearings. Buy cheap and clean regularly. And buy fast ones for race day.
Wheels. Green Big Zigs. That is what is fast. Orange Orangatangs - because they are cool, the current it wheel, and a bit stickie. Seismic Speed Vents 77mm blue - to step it up - maybe purples 83a. If you want a slower softer wheel that will roll over big stones and marsupials then 75a - like pink speed vent 77mm or clear orange. Or be different - if you are on a smaller board then use 66mm or 70mm zig zags. Pink is soft and green is fast. Or 69mm hot spots.
Bushings. It is a dark art. khiro, jimz, venom, karrot, rads, bones, tracker, stims and cork from your dad's wine bottle.
Set it up and practise.
The natural enemy of the longboard is cars and 4WDs depending on your area. Be careful. Dont skate beyond your means. Wear a helmet. Practcise small stuff. Wear a helmet.
New housing developments are good. New tar. Quiet roads. If it is undeveloped you can see approaching traffic. Practice footbraking. Wear a helmet. Practice sliding. Watch downhill videos - see what the top guys do and copy.
Session with the fastest guys you know. At racers, talk to the fast guys, bomb the hill with the fast guys, see what they do, and do it better. Also watch the fast guys, sometimes they just have better tactics, at the end of teh day it is racing - the fastest do not always win.
Tuck. Practice your tuck. You should be able to hold it for 10 minutes. So do it for 20.
Silverfish is a great resource. Search for answers there or to do research. Find a solution. Then post up here all about it.
Remember, this is a community. And it has a no dickhead policy. The guy you offended could be, one day, the only one who can give you a lift or who has accomodation at a race.
Respect and be part of and contribute to the community and you will make friends around the world for life.
Dont ruin it for everyone else
Have fun.
Wear a helmet.


Amazing post for people new to dh. Props
very nice hop.. thats some heaps good info there ay..

that is the best answer to this question I have seen anywhere. The Admins should put this up as a sticky somewhere so it doesn't ever get lost.

Cheers mate

Gee Whizz
That's good
lol, moral of the story.. "wear a helmet", i learnt that the hard way. first year of riding, tried a slide.. ended up in hospital with concussion and a very sore head...
Bowditch said:
lol, moral of the story.. "wear a helmet", i learnt that the hard way. first year of riding, tried a slide.. ended up in hospital with concussion and a very sore head...

and u lost ur sense of smell and taste for almost a year.
Gday Crando,I just started dh I reckon that you check the Hopkins site for decks and hardware keep ya money at home ! Tha guys at Hopkins are fast and they skate,so saftey gear !!!cant say too much about it ya have to bite the bullett asnd get the best ya can good gear= more skateing The learning curve for dh is brutal so expect falls and trust ya plastics Its best if ya can find like minded dudes to skate with saftey in numbers,watch an y footage from the net and go hard,Its not cheap to set up but once you have then its skate heavan,so let us know how ya go,and skate on dude!!!!!!
HAHA yeah forgot about that, it was very gay!

leighgriffiths said:
Bowditch said:
lol, moral of the story.. "wear a helmet", i learnt that the hard way. first year of riding, tried a slide.. ended up in hospital with concussion and a very sore head...

and u lost ur sense of smell and taste for almost a year.
Cus my best mates uncle was just in a comba for 2 weeks cus he didnt wear a helmet.

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