Many skaters all over the world recognize the quality inherent in Kryptonics skateboards, longboards, and wheels. Since the 1960s the company brought the magic of West Coast skating to the remotest of locations. But does the company still offer the same quality that it did during its inception?
Or has mass production and marketing cheapened the brand? In this Kryptonics longboard review, we will take a close look at some of the most popular products available by the company online. Any longboard is an investment — especially models that cost over one hundred dollars.
As such, we will provide you with all the information you need to decide whether the product you get is worth the initial cost. But before we dive into the details of our Kryptonics longboard review, let us go over some of the basics attributes of the brand and specifications offered by the product.
What Is a Kryptonics Longboard?
The first thing is first: what is a longboard? A longboard is a piece of sporting equipment that looks similar to a skateboard. However, it is essential to remember that the two products are inherently different for one another.
Longboard come in a variety of different shapes and sizes, but they usually feature a lengthy design and wide wheels. These wide wheels allow them to go much faster than skateboards and the improved hardware keeps them more stable at these high speeds.
While skaters usually use skateboards for tricks or similar stunts, longboards instead put the speed at the forefront of their design. As such, skaters typically use them for transportation, racing, or cruising.
Kryptonics is a California-based company that started in 1965. Since then they became world famous when they introduced polyurethane wheels into their longboard design. Compared to previous material like wood, clay, or iron, polyurethane offers a much smoother ride.
Today the company continues to participate in the skating culture by offering a continual lineup of tropical and California-style sports equipment. Here is the current list of the product offered by the Kryptonics company:
As you can see, there are plenty of longboard styles you can choose from when shopping the Kryptonics — more than we can review in one article. So, for simplicity’s sake, we will stick to one kind so we can give a comprehensive review of it.
For this Kryptonics longboard review we will focus on the Kryptonics 36" Blocktail Longboard — Authentic 1965 since it offers a right blend of the classic features, provides an affordable price and remains popular amongst longboard skaters. Now let us take a look at this board’s specs.
Kryptonics Longboard Specs
As the name suggests, the Kryptonics 36" Blocktail Longboard — Authentic 1965 is thirty-six inches long and features a block tail design.
This design means that it features a tail coming off the back of the board that ends in a straight line cutoff. In terms of material, the company uses maple wood on the board deck.
When making the ABEC-5 bearings, they use carbon steel, while the six-inch trucks take on an aluminum material. The wheels measure out to be sixty-two millimeters by fifty-one millimeters and come in a polyurethane material.
Price — sixty-four dollars
Length — thirty-six inches
Board deck material — maple wood
Style — blocktail
Wheel Material — Polyurethane
Wheel size — sixty-two millimeters by fifty-one millimeters
Bearing material — ABEC-5 carbon steel
Truck material — aluminum
Truck size — Six inches
Kryptonics Longboard Price
The Kryptonics 36" Blocktail Longboard — Authentic 1965 costs sixty-four dollars when you purchase it on Amazon using a Prime membership. However, at the retail value, it usually costs around ninety dollars.
How the Kryptonics Longboard Compares With Other Brands
In this section, we compare the Kryptonic product with two other popular brands available online. Specifically, we compare it with the Volador Forty-two Inch Freeride Longboard Complete Cruiser and the White Wave Bamboo Longboard.
We chose these two brands because they represent good alternatives to the Kryptonic brand, both in price and performance. They also help us determine some of the strengths and weaknesses associated with the Kryptonic longboards.
Volador Forty-two Inch Freeride Longboard Complete Cruiser
- Ease of Use
- Build Quality
If you prefer a loose board while riding and turning, then you will love the Volador Forty-two Inch Freeride Longboard. Unfortunately, for some people, it was a little too loose. Even tightening the bearings did little to help, so if you prefer a tight setting, then you should look elsewhere.
Despite being cheaper than the Kryptonics 36" Blocktail Longboard — Authentic 1965, the Volador Forty-two Inch Freeride Longboard does come with a durable board that can withstand a lot of abuse.
It is also a reasonably light board, which makes it ideal for transportation. Similarly, the grip stays on the board for a far longer time than it ought to.
White Wave Bamboo Longboard
- Ease of Use
- Build Quality
One great thing about the White Wave Bamboo Longboard is it is incredibly easy to ride. It fits all riding styles (as long as you own a wrench for adjusting the wheel bearing) and handles large hills with ease.
We highly recommend this board for a beginner who might be nervous about riding a cheap longboard. The White Wave Bamboo Longboard is exceptionally forgiving when you use it, even on rough services, and it allows lots of leeways when you take sharp turns.
The White Wave Bamboo Longboard comes with a clear improved quality difference when compared with the other two longboards we look at on this list. The better quality comes from the mix of bamboo and Canadien maple that the board uses.
However, just because it is more durable than the other two boards does not mean it is the best out there. More experienced riders will probably want a more durable board they can work with while riding.
But, for most skater’s purposes, we think this product will work out just fine as long as you treat it with respect when you ride.
Kryptonics Longboard Pros and Cons
In this section, we talk about some of the things we like about riding Kryptonic boards, and some things that make it unpleasant. We include reviews that various users reported so we can remain as objective as possible during the listing process.
First and foremost, the thing we love about Kryptonic boards is their affordability. While the product offered today may be a little more mass produced and impersonal, it comes with the benefit of usually remaining under one hundred dollars in price.
As such, they make great beginner boards since they offer a recognizable name brand and pretty decent performance. Another benefit of mass production is that the boards themselves are widely available.
In addition to online retailers like Amazon, you can also find them at places like Walmart and Dick’s Sporting Goods. Also, if your wheels or bearings break while you skate, then you can easily find replacement parts online.
Alternatively, if you get tired of the parts you have, you can also upgrade them quickly. We also love a lot of the artwork comes on the back of Kryptonic boards. They still stay true to their California/island roots in terms of design.
The decks themselves are flexible, which means they can bend a little without snapping (however we do not recommend frequently jumping on them — the material is still cheap). Like all longboards, the Kryptonic longtail board goes fast down hills.
However, it still impressed us how smooth the turning conditions felt on the hills (as long as the mountain is soft material).
Unfortunately, the Kryptonic brand is not as perfect as it used to be. While the transition to a mass production certainly makes some things better (like the more full availability and more spare parts) its also makes an inherently weaker product.
In the Kryptonics 36" Blocktail Longboard — Authentic 1965 this flaw appears in the deck material. The layer of maple wood might offer appealing flexibility that seems permanent, but do not be deceived. One lousy fall or too many jumps on the board will snap it right in half.
Another quality flaw that comes with almost all general Kryptonic longboards is terrible wheels. While these wheels ride high at first, they fail at the first sign of wear, and they degrade quickly. Luckily replacing them is not too big of a deal.
You can get a great pair online for an affordable price, and they will likely fit your board since Kyptonic is such a famous brand. Similarly, you can expect the wheel bearings to break or malfunction after frequent usage, though they are also replaceable.
Finally the most significant issue we found with the Kryptonics 36" Blocktail Longboard — Authentic 1965 is a shaky, bumpy ride on anything that is not smooth pavement or concrete.
Any minor hole, rocks or gravel in the road can potentially send you crashing of the board. As such, we recommend sticking to clear hills with little debris if you ride the longboard.
As you can see, there is a lot to like about the Kryptonics brand, and there is also a lot to dislike. If you want to purchase a longboard to own it for the rest of your life, then you should probably not get the Kryptonics 36" Blocktail Longboard — Authentic 1965.
One of the flaws on most longboards under one hundred dollars is that they do not offer the amount of durability that allows them to be passed down from generation to generation. Cheap board material, inferior wheel bearings, and similar problems will likely end the product life after a few years.
However, this does not mean that we do not think that the Kryptonics 36" Blocktail Longboard — Authentic 1965 is a bad board for everyone. Indeed, the brand is famous for a reason — right of the box it handles well and can speed down hills.
Also, minor repairs and upgrades can extend the overall life of the product. As such, we think the Kryptonics 36" Blocktail Longboard — Authentic 1965 works as an excellent choice for new skaters who might upgrade to a better product if they feel they enjoy the hobby.
Get it as a starter longboard, but do not expect it to last a lifetime. As such, we give it a rating of three in half out of five stars. We hope this Kryptonics longboard review provided you with all the information you need about the product. Good luck and be safe when you skate!