There’s no feeling as good as longboarding a hot day away. The sun above you, friends by your side, and a cold drink waiting for you when your ride is done. No pavement is free of judgment from a longboarder — every road is no longer just a path for your car, but a road to ride your longboard down when car traffic ceases.
Longboarding is a full time activity for many people. It’s a sport they dedicate themselves to, and a lifestyle that they live and love. These die-hards longboard all the time they can, and watch the longboarding videos that inspired them to buy a board in the first place when they can no longer ride.
Other people enjoy hopping on their boards from time to time. It’s a relaxing activity after a long day and a nice way to feel relaxed while getting some exercise. Some longboarders love bombing hills, some love learning new tricks and dancing around on their long and flexible board. Others love to carve and cruise their day away.
Carving is a relatively easy and extremely fun longboarding activity. It’s similar to surfing or snowboarding — you carve back and forth down a mellow hill, path, or street. In this post we will look at the 8 best longboards for cruising and carving.
First, we will learn how to choose the best carving longboard, then where to buy the best carving longboard, then I will put the 8 best carving longboards in a comparison table before reviewing each longboard in greater depth.
How To Choose the Best Carving Longboard
So you’ve decided that you want to carve and cruise your day away — what’s next? It’s important to know what to look for in a longboard. Although you can technically carve with any longboard, you will be most comfortable carving with a longboard specific for carving.
Some longboards are sold with just the board itself, others come as a set with trucks, wheels, and bushings already set up. While most standard setups are pretty good, serious longboard riders like switching out pieces like trucks and bushings to get a better ride out of their board. The following details will give you a good idea of what to look for in a complete longboard setup.
Setting Up Your Longboard For Carving
The best carving longboard setups have trucks that can easily turn. You can determine this by the width of a truck. More width means more stability and less wheelbite. To clarify, wheelbite happens when the board turns downward and scrapes the wheels. Less width means better ability to turn, more grip, but a higher chance of wheelbite.
Most longboards have 180mm trucks. If you want a very nimble board, you can buy 150mm trucks, but you’re sacrificing stability for turn ability here. For the casual rider, 180mm trucks are best.
Truck height is another important factor. As a general rule, the higher your trucks are, the better your ability to carve will be and the less likely your board will scrape against the wheels. With that said, high trucks sacrifice stability and pushing is quite a bit harder when you’re higher off the ground.
Longboard bushings are the rubber-like cylinders in trucks. They come in many different shapes and colors, but the most important detail for carvers is making sure that the bushings are pretty soft. Round bushing seats are best for a good carving longboard.
Longboard Carving Decks
Different longboard decks are better for different types of riding. The following details are worth paying attention to when you’re buying a longboard deck. Mount type refers to how trucks are mounted to the longboard deck. With top mount, the longboard trucks are screwed under the deck. The ride is good for carving, but a little less stable. Most riders who like to carve prefer top mount decks.
Drop-through mount means that the trucks go through the deck and the board is usually a little lower to the ground. Drop-through boards are very stable but slightly worse for carving. While top mount is a bit better for carving, drop-through might be a better start for beginners.
The Best Length Longboards for Carving
Carving longboard length is relatively standard. Longer boards turn better, but boards that are too long can feel unstable and not gain speed quickly. Carving longboards are usually between 35-40” long. Some are shorter and some are longer, but 35-40” is the average range of carving longboards.
The Best Carving Deck Shape
Deck concave and camber are details about the shape of the longboard deck. Concave refers to the shape of the longboard by its width. A concave shape is a little like a “U” or half pipe — the middle is lower than the sides. Carving longboards usually have a pretty deep concave.
Camber refers to the shape of a longboard by its length. A cambered shape means that the middle is higher than the front and back. It’s like a reversed “U” or half pipe turned over. Decks with a high camber are better for carving because the camber acts as a spring that quickly pushes you to where you want to go.
Carving boards should have some sort of wheel well. If you’re carving hard, the longboard deck is going to go down towards the wheels. Wheel wells are usually built into carving longboards to prevent that from happening.
The Best Wheels for Carving Longboards
The ideal wheel for carving longboards is wide and soft. The greater the width, the greater the grip your longboard will have; the softer the wheel, the more it will be able to absorb shock. Square-lipped wheels are better than round edged wheels for carving. They provide better feedback and grip when you turn.
These are the components worth paying the most attention to when you’re looking at a longboard deck or a full longboard setup. It’s also important to note that you don’t need every component to be perfect to have a good carving setup. The point of longboarding is to have fun and you can have fun on any board. These are just details to make your ride a little bit better.
Where to Buy The Best Carving Longboard
So where should you get the best carving longboard? Different people have different tastes, and the best idea is to ride a longboard before making a purchase. Your local skate shop will probably have a few longboards that you can ride around the block to see if it is a great fit for you.
The issue is that you will only have a selection of a few longboards. Thousands of longboards exist on the market today and it’s likely that none of the few longboards at your neighborhood shop are right for you. If your neighborhood shop is insufficient, it’s probably a better idea to buy online.
While online retailers cannot provide a virtual test drive of your longboard, they can give you all the statistics that you’ll need to find the longboard that is right for you. Most websites accept returns and have pretty solid warranties, so you’re not taking much of a risk by buying online.
The following sites have a great stock and all the information you will need when it comes to buying a longboard:
Carving Longboard Comparison Table
The following carving longboards are some of the best on the market today. Since I don’t want to make you run around shopping for decks, trucks, bushings, and wheels separately, I’m going to review complete longboard sets with everything included.
The complete longboards will have high quality decks, trucks, bushings, and wheels, so you won’t need to immediately replace any piece. Like cars, you can always upgrade different parts of your longboard setup, but the following longboards come with high quality components that shouldn’t immediately need to be replaced.
Neither the table nor the in depth reviews below are in any particular order. There is no single best carving longboard for everybody because different people have different tastes. These are just 8 of some of the best longboards on the market today.
The comparison chart below will feature the following categories: make and model, longboard length, longboard width, construction material, and price.
|Make and Model||Length||Width||Construction Material||Price|
|Loaded Icarus||38.4”||8.6”||Bamboo and fiberglass||$284.00|
|Atom Drop Through Bamboo Tiki||40”||10”||Bamboo and maple||$117.55|
|Globe Chromantic||33”||9.5”||Bamboo and almond||$159.99|
|Landyachtz Canyon Arrow||37”||9.5”||9-ply Canadian maple||$239.99|
|Sector 9 Cavern Cutback||37.5”||8.36”||Fiberglass and maple||$198.99|
|Arbor Axis 37 Solstice B4BC||37”||8.38”||7-ply hard rock maple||$190.00|
|Hamboards Pescadito||42”||14”||Maple and birch||$215.00|
|Glove Pinner Classic Hurricane Leave||40”||9”||8-ply rock hard maple||$159.99|
The 8 Best Carving Longboards Reviewed
Now that we’ve talked about longboard components, where to buy longboards, and took a glance at each of the 8 boards, I will review each longboard in greater depth. The idea is to give a good description and some specs of each longboard to give you an understanding of the manufacturer, the design and specs of the board, and other notable features.
Loaded constantly releases the best longboards on the market. They cost a pretty penny, but they’re well designed, perform well, and look at the photo – they’re beautiful. Many of the best riders in the game use Loaded longboards, and for good reason.
The Loaded Icarus was specifically designed for cruising and carving. It is at a pretty standard length for longboards at 38.4”. With an 8.6” width, the deck is slightly smaller than the 10” standard deck. This provides a more lightweight feel that is easier to push around town.
The board is fully symmetrical, which is great if you’re into freestyle riding or if you want to learn some tricks. The Loaded Icarus is an excellent carving longboard for carving and pumping. The longboard is built with Loaded’s “bamboo biscuit” technology, a mix of bamboo, fiberglass, and cork. The board is light, comfortable, and designed to pump hard.
The board comes in two different flexes. The first, Flex 1, is stiffer and designed for riders who weigh 170 pounds or more. Flex 2 is a little flexier and looser, but doesn’t provide as much control. The board is drop-through, which isn’t normally as good as top mount for carving longboards. In any case, Loaded designed the Icarus for carving and we are sure that they know exactly what they’re doing.
The board comes with Caliber II 50 degree trucks, Dano Downhill 70mm 78a wheels, and CCS Blue Steel Abec 7 bearings.
The Atom Drop Through Bamboo Tiki longboard isn’t the prettiest longboard on this list, nor is it the most cutting-edge, but it is one of the most affordable longboards on the market.
If you pay too little for a product, you’re risking quality and often times you end up paying more in the end for a new product, but the Bamboo Tiki longboard is one of the highest quality longboards for an affordable price.
The 40” deck is made of 7-ply maple and 2-ply bamboo laminate. It’s a pretty long deck that is perfect for relaxed riding and long carves down a steady hill. The board is 10” wide, which is standard for longboards.
The Atom Drop Through Bamboo Tiki longboard comes with Atom AREA 51 70mm 90A wheels which provide high rebound and can ride at high speeds. The board comes with Navigator high performance 40 degree trucks and Rubber shielded Abec 9s with high speed lubricant.
The board is laid with a course 46 grit grip for ultimate traction, which is also pretty fun if you want to try a few tricks. While the Atom Drop Through Bamboo Tiki longboard isn’t the most feature-filled carving longboard on the list, it’s a pretty solid bargain for beginner longboarders or riders who don’t want to spend too much.
To be fair, this isn’t strictly a carving and cruising longboard. This longboard likes speed, but it’s not strictly a downhill board either. The Globe Chromantic is excellent for some mix of carving, bombing hills, and just hanging around your neighborhood with your longboard friends.
It’s a pretty affordable board for everything you’re getting out of it. It’s also the first top mount deck on this list. The 33” deck with kicktail has a mellow concave. The deck is pressed with epoxy resin for a light, strong, and long-lasting feel. The deck is 9.5” wide, just a little less than standard.
The board comes with a clear broadcast grip, keeping you safe and secure on your longboard. The Globe Chromantic has wheel wells to prevent you from wheel bite when you’re carving down hills or making a tight turn.
The board comes with Tensor alloy standard trucks, Abec 7 bearings to provide a quick and effortless ride, and Globe’s high-rebound 92a durometer bushings to match the functionality of the board. The board comes with high-rebound urethane wheels which are abrasion resistant, smooth, fast, and provide excellent grip in all conditions.
The Landyachtz Canyon Arrow Bird is an excellent longboard. Landyachtz is one of the more reputable longboard manufacturers in the game. Their longboards are designed with input from some of the best longboarders on the planet, so you will know you’re riding a great piece of work with the Canyon Arrow Bird under your feet.
With a rocker shape, the board is slightly different than standard carving longboards. Truth be told, the Canyon Arrow Bird is really an all around longboard. You will be equally comfortable bombing hills, learning slides, and pumping through busy crowds.
The 37” longboard is built with 9-ply Canadian maple. The deck has a 9.5” width, giving you a stable yet responsive ride. The trucks are top mounted, meaning that your board will be slightly higher from the ground compared to drop-through mounts. That means more sensitivity and dance, but slightly less control.
The Landyachtz Canyon Arrow Bird comes with Grizzly Polar Bear 845 trucks, 70mm 82a Zombie Hawg wheels, and Abec 7 bearings. The deck features printed black grip tape, providing a secure ride on all sorts of terrain.
This is an excellent longboard especially if you’re the type of rider that wants to do a little bit of everything. The board comes pre-assembled, so no worries about having to figure out where each component goes yourself.
Sector 9 has been in the longboarding business for a long time. Their products are usually slightly more affordable and thus not quite as innovative as the best longboard manufacturers, but their products are nonetheless very solid and well designed.
The Cavern Cutback is an excellent longboard specifically designed for carving and commuting. Whether you want to speed through a slalom course or go from class to class on your college campus, the Cavern Cutback is an excellent board.
The board is designed with a fiberglass and maple “sandwich,” providing the rider with maximum flex and control. The 37.5” long deck is designed to allow for quick, stylish turns and easy maneuverability. The board is 8.63” wide with a 24.3” wheelbase.
The board features a camber mold and kicktail. There are no wheel wells, but the board is probably thin enough at the wheels that you won’t be risking too much wheel bite. The Cavern Cutback comes with 8.375” Gullwing Mission trucks, 61mm 78a Nineballs wheels, Abec 5 Greaseball bearings, 0.25” plastic risers, and ERG grip tape.
The Sector 9 Cavern Cutback isn’t necessarily the best carving longboard on the list, but it’s one of your better options if you’re looking for a more affordable longboard.
When it comes to making longboards with a flowy feel, Arbor knows what they’re doing. Arbor makes excellent snowboards and they design their longboards to provide a similar feel. The Axis 37 Solstice B4BC is a great longboard for the price.
Arbor should have your attention if you consider yourself a tree hugger. Since Arbor’s inception, its focus has been to create high quality boards with sustainable materials. They use recycled and low-impact wood and have inspired other manufacturers in the industry to do the same.
The Arbor Axis 37 Solstice B4BC is a great longboard for carving and sidewalk surfing. It is a drop-through board, so it will be slightly less maneuverable than top mounted longboards. With that said, it’ll still give you the carving feel that you’re looking for in a longboard.
The longboard is 37” long and 8.38” wide, which is pretty standard for a carving longboard. It is constructed with 7-ply hard rock maple, responsibly sourced as with all Arbor products. The board uses Arbor’s Momentum Core technology to dampen bumpy rides.
The Axis 37 Solstice B4BC comes with Arbor Outlook 69mm 78a wheels that are designed specifically for cruising. Paris 50-degree 180mm trucks create fluid and energetic turns. The board also comes with Abec 7 bearings with risers.
Hamboards is to surfboards what Arbor longboards are to their snowboards. The expertise of Hamboards is to incorporate the surf feel into a longboard. Their product lineup is one of the more interesting lineups of any longboarding manufacturer, and certainly less traditional. Their boards are up to 6’ long and are extremely maneuverable to provide a similar feel to surfing.
The Hamboards Pescadito is, by the manufacturer’s own words, “our most pumpable longboard.” That means long and intense carves that will propel you forward without you having to push as much as with other longboards. The board is built for all experience levels unlike many of their other products that carry a larger learning curve (and a longer deck).
The 42” 8-ply maple and birch deck is designed to take a beating. Longboarding can be intense, and Hamboards had that in mind when they designed the Pescadito. The board is designed to give you wide, flowing turns and a smooth ride.
The Hamboards Pescadito comes with Hamboards Milk Chocolate Cast PU 66mm/80A wheels, Hamboards HST carving trucks, birch risers, and Hamboards SAN-O turning bearings.
The Pescadito might not turn on as tight of a radius as other longboards, but its strength is providing a flowy feel that’s perfect for long hills, sidewalks with very few people, and neighborhoods for late afternoon rides.
Globe is a dedicated skateboard and longboard brand. Their shoes, clothing, hats, and boards are all dedicated to the boarding lifestyle. They know what they’re doing and they know how to design a longboard that riders will want to call their own.
The Globe Pinner Classic is an excellent pintail board. The 40” long and 9” wide deck is made of resin-8 hard rock maple with a mellow concave and kick tail. Epoxy resin is used to press the board together, providing a light and strong board.
The Globe Pinner comes with colored die-cut griptape and mother of pearl design accents. Wheel wells are located under the front and back wheels to reduce wheel bite, so you can turn as deep as you wish without risking a wipe-out.
The Globe longboard comes with Slant Reverse Kingpin trucks, Abec 7 bearings designed for longer roll and less pushing, super high-rebound bushings to match the functionality of the board, and high-rebound urethane wheels that are abrasion resistant, smooth, fast, and have excellent grip.
The 8 longboards reviewed here are some of the best carving longboards on the market today. Some boards like the Loaded Icarus are designed to be the most advanced and best designed boards on the market with less concern for affordability.
Other manufacturers take into account that not every longboarder wants to spend nearly $300 on a longboard, and they design their boards to be more affordable if a little less cutting-edge.
Longboarding is an extraordinarily fun sport. You can ride around neighborhoods, bomb hills, or even travel across large areas if you don’t mind doing too much pushing. Carving is a longboarding activity we all love, and an activity that reminds snowboarders and surfers of how it feels to be on the snow or in the water.
I hope the post here helps you choose the best carving longboard for you. Happy riding!