Do you long for cruising on the open pavement, gliding down hills at top speed, or slowly carving your way down a decline? If your search has led you here, you’re in the right place. Longboarding is not only great exercise; it’s also a perfect means of transportation and a unique hobby that will have you ready to cruise Venice Beach in no time.
Whether you’ve been skating since you were a mere grommet or you are new to the sport, there’s a lot to learn about skateboarding, and about longboards in particular.
Today, we’re delving deep into the world of longtime skateboarding pioneer, Z-Flex and their unique line of Longboards which are not only great looking but have a history of unparalleled innovation. So is it all hype? Or does Z-Flex outclass its competitors? We tested the Z-Flex longboard against several other trusted names in skateboarding to bring you our results. Keep reading to see how they stood up.
What Is a ZFlex Longboard?
Z-Flex Longboards are skateboards. It’s as simple as that. What makes a skateboard a longboard is its length. A typical “shortboard” or regular skateboard is about 28” - 33” while an average longboard is anywhere from 34”- 47”.
Z-Flex is the name of a longtime skateboarding company that grew from the legendary Zephyr Skateboarding team of Santa Monica, CA. They’re world-renowned for their technical innovation and creative board designs, which have kept this brand at the forefront of skateboarding culture since 1976.
Z-Flex longboards come in several different designs, including the pintail, which comes to a point on both the front and back of the board. The roundtail board has more of a rounded point in front than the pintail and offers a kicktail in the back for added functionality. Finally, Zflex offers the drop through, which has a cutout for the trucks, dropping the platform and giving greater control for downhill speeds.
Z-Flex Longboard Product Specifications
Now that we know some basics of longboarding and are a little more familiar with who Z-flex is, we can take a closer look at the board itself.
Z-Flex boards are made with 9-Ply 100% Canadian Hardwood Maple, built strong to last you mile after mile of cruising. You can fully customize to your heart's content and buy everything separately, or as a complete package, ready to ride straight from the box. Today we’re going to talk about two different models that can be found straight from the Z-Flex website.
The Moving Sidewalk Black Pintail board, available on their site, zflex.com, is 38 inches long by 9 inches wide, making it a perfect board for anyone looking to make a smooth transition into skateboarding as a means of transportation. 69 MM, 83A Z-Flex Longboard Wheels and the fishtail or pintail shape cut down significantly on wheel bite (when your deck touches the wheel, causing your board to come to an abrupt stop.)
The Prawn Cocktail Roundtail board, also available on zflex.com is 39.5” long and 9.5” wide featuring 69 MM, 83A Z-Flex Longboard Wheels and Z-Flex 45° 180MM Reverse Powder-coated Trucks. The Roundtail, while preferred by many for its kickboard, may have some issues with wheel bite so added risers may be in order. Make sure you test your board before “take off,” this will help you avoid serious injury!
Moving Sidewalk Black Pintail by Z-Flex
Zirconia Roundtail by Z-Flex
Zed Bamboo Longboard by Retrospec (Amazon’s #1 best selling longboard)
How Much Does a Z-Flex Longboard Cost?
A complete Z-Flex longboard is going to cost you anywhere from $80 - $160 depending on what type of style you want and which graphics appeal to you most. The pintail, which we prefer, is running about $90 - $129 on zflex.com.
Pros and Cons of a Z-Flex Longboard
Z-flex Longboards are flexy, fun, easy to use and look cool. They’re solidly built, easy to customize and an excellent means of transportation. All in all, they’re an excellent buy if you’re new to Longboarding, or a master.
There are some obvious pros to think of. First, they’re one of the oldest longboarding companies around, they are known for being innovative and having a super high quality board.
The pintail by Z-Flex tends to be on the shorter side of the longboard scale, coming in at 38 inches. The benefit here is that it’s easier to control than say, the 44-inch board by Retrospec. The Zflex also comes with a 1-year warranty, giving you some peace of mind when purchasing.
The wheels, trucks, and bearings are all of the highest quality and don’t need much tweaking.
On the other hand, the price of the Z-Flex is higher than other boards you might find on Amazon or at your local sporting/skateboard store. Some may be disappointed by the length of the board, as it’s on the short side for a longboard.
There isn’t much diversity in designs or colors so this may be one you’ll have to customize on your own. Although, many see the benefits in starting with a basic board, and adding to it as they go. It’s a personal preference.
Here are the concise pros and cons we found in our ZFlex Longboard review.
Our Final Rating: Z-Flex Longboard
All in all, the Zflex Longboard is built to cruise. It’s an excellent skateboard with some cool features and is backed up by being a long-time pioneer of the sport. We love its laid back, unassuming look and enjoy the shorter length of the board. It genuinely looks like a surfboard, which gets us stoked, but isn’t cumbersome.
Unfortunately, the Retrospec, being a longer board, doesn’t do it for us the way a ZFlex does. We want to have that surf feeling, the cruise feeling. Being that the Z-flex is more mobile, we can’t help but want to use it as our daily commuter board. It’s much easier to carry, and its wheels are far and away some of the best in the world.
The Z-flex, of course, has its drawbacks. It lacks a lot of variety in design. Meaning, there isn’t much to choose from as far as personal style goes. However, that’s not to say you can’t upgrade and switch things around on your own; we wish there were more options as a complete.
Some may also not like that it’s a shorter longboard. Some may enjoy the weight and feel of being on a truly long surf-type board. And while that’s good for those people, we love the size and feel of the 38” pintail.
There was a lot to think about in our ZFlex longboard review. Ultimately it came down to, would we repurchase this product? The answer? YES! The price, the look, the feel, we love this board.
Five out of five stars.
Featured Image via Pixabay