September 16, 2014

Skateboard Acquisition Disorder

Although I recently bought a new skateboard deck, I'm still on the lookout for an ideal new shape to ride. Soon after I published my last post, my local skate shop let me know that they stocked a slightly smaller version of my new deck. That quickly led to the acquisition of my second new deck: the medium version of the Creature Heathen series.

This deck is 8.375 inches wide, 32 inches long, and (importantly) it has a wheelbase of 14.5 inches. That hits the sweet spot for me. To be honest, the actual real world shape and size of this deck is almost identical to the large version that was the subject of my last post. I guess I'll just keep this one as a backup in case the other one breaks.

So . . . I was at the skate shop today killing time and some decks from Welcome Skateboards caught my eye due to their atypical shapes. Most of them were a little too wide for me, but a few looked right on target. I borrowed the shop's tape measure and found one that should do the trick: the Fate Owl graphic on the Wormtail shape.

Some quick online research provided some detailed specs. The board is 8.4 inches wide, 32.5 inches long, and it has the perfect 14.5 inch wheelbase. I really like the "rounded square" nose and tail of this deck, which is a departure from the traditional popsicle stick shape that I usually ride. It looks cool, and I hope it rides well.

The line of Welcome Skateboards is refreshing because they have a lot of different and unusual shapes. I like how the company names the different shapes so that picky anal retentive OCD skaters can easily identify their favorite shape. The graphics are sick, too, and you can find the same (or similar) graphics on different shapes. Thus, Welcome Skateboards are offered as a combo of shape + graphic, e.g., Fate Owl on Wormtail. The shop also had the Wolfgod graphic on the Wormtail shape, but my son wanted me to pick the Fate Owl, and he's the boss. If I'm honest, I prefer the graphic on the top of the deck. I also like the shade of the green stain on the top. Too bad all of it will be covered by grip tape.

Although the pictures don't reveal it, the deck has a nice concave to it. I suspect that the deck began life as a standard rectangular blank that was simply cut into the Wormtail shape. It doesn't really matter as long as the end product works. In this case, the deck was made by a well known and reputable manufacturer that has been around for decades. I have no doubt that this is a high quality deck.

Mark of Approval
With this latest acquisition of wood, I am now riding a relatively new Creature Heathen (Large) deck while foaming at the mouth because I really want to set up my new Welcome deck. Moreover, I am guilt tripping myself because I have a brand new Creature Heathen (Medium) deck waiting in the wings. There are two or three other shapes by Welcome Skateboards that have also piqued my interest. They might be the subject of a future post!

September 2, 2014

Creature Skateboard Deck

It's always great to acquire and set up a new skateboard deck. I'm talking about a deck that will actually be ridden, not some hand-painted work of art. This is actually my THIRD deck I've ridden in the last week, because I'm pretty much a poster boy for OCD when it comes to the dimensions and specifications of my skate decks. Before I get to that, let me share a couple of pictures of this new deck by Creature Skateboards.


The deck is part of Creature's "Heathen" series, and I got the large size (8.5 inches wide, 32.25 inches long). 8.5 inches is usually too wide for me, but this particular deck actually measures in at around 8.25 inches wide, which is my preference. The all-important wheelbase dimension (close to 14.5 inches), however, is nearly perfect for me. The wheelbase of my last deck, which I rode for only a couple of days, was too short and caused numerous issues involving gravity, momentum, inertia, and centripetal force. Now, this deck isn't really ideal, but it's the closest thing that I could find in my local skate shop. Besides, the graphics are sick!

The bright green colorway seems to be a trademark of Creature Skateboards. The deck appears to be dipped in green paint, which covers both the top (see above picture on the left) and the bottom (see above picture on the right). The artwork is by Brandon Holt. The Internet tells me that Mr. Holt is a tattoo artist, and that the skateboard graphics you see here are indicative of his style.

Here is a closeup picture of the "Creature" graphic that appears on the top of the deck. I plan to keep this graphic exposed rather than cover it up with griptape.

And here is a closeup picture of some badass four-legged dragon-winged lizard-tailed buzzard creature perched atop a mountain of human skulls. The dripping saliva/blood is a nice touch that really punctuates the image. Too bad it will be completely obliterated after a few days of skateboarding.

This beauty should keep me occupied for a while. That said, I'm thinking of pushing the envelope beyond my comfort zone and trying a deck that measures a true 8.5 inches wide with a true 15.0 inch wheelbase. Unfortunately (fortunately?) that might require the acquisition of new trucks and wheels, too. Stay tuned.