Get to Know The Huntington Spoon Nose Freestyle Skateboard
michael osterman |
When I was 16 years old I would day dream about the boards my heroes rode. I remember clicking through grainy photos of Kevin Harris and Pierre Andre in my high school computer lab, squinting at the chopped plastic rail and dirty RipGrip glued beneath Pierre's nose. It felt like there was something magical about his board, as if his extra thick, jury rigged deck wasn't twice the weight of mine. What a silly teenager I was.
We spend hours rolling, hopping, spinning, falling off of our boards. We talk to them. we yell at them. Sometimes we throw them into the air or lock them in the trunk for a while. We each grow a unique, intimate relationship with this toy, and it shows in the ways that we wear it out. The next time you skate with another freestyler (lol, can you imagine!?), compare your boards. Even if you both own the same complete, I bet they look wildly different after a month of skating.
Freestyle skateboard decks didn't change much between 1986 and 2012-ish. That's not to say people weren't making cool stuff in those years. The boards just didn’t keep pace. While the modern street skateboard was being broken down, picked apart, and optimized by some of the best and brightest in the world, freestyle decks were stuck in the dark ages of heavy, sub-7.3" widths and miniature wheel bases. Tricks progressed at a steady click but the tech did not.
Since the early 2000s, a handful of people have attempted to improve the modern freestyle skateboard deck. Boards have grown wider and longer to suit rolling tricks. Symmetrical shapes have emerged to encourage quicker sequences with less shuffling. Still, one area where we've seen little change is concave.
Concave refers to the 3-dimensional curves of a skateboard. The angle of a tail and the way a board curves under your foot are all the result of the mold it was pressed in. Almost every freestyle skateboard until the mid-2010s had been pressed in a mold that was either intended for street skateboarding or oldschool vert skateboarding. The latter is like putting a Model-T engine in your 2022 [insert fast car here. I don't know cars]. Bleh.
In mid-2019, Beau Trifiro and I started tossing around ideas for a more modern freestyle concave. I wanted to take all of the cool aesthetic features of those 1980s single kick decks and modernize them for the tricks my friends and I are doing. We came up with the Huntington Spoon Nose. Here’s what we packed into this tiny tank of a board.
rail-to-rail concave is important. If you're making a 7-ply maple skateboard deck with traditional glues and a contemporary layup, pressing a deck without concave will result in a board that feels soggy and flexy over time. Concave gives your board rigidity and keeps tricks feeling snappy and responsive. Get this, It also provides your feet with spatial awareness. Google the word "kinesthesia" when you have a chance. We often refer to it as "board feel". When you feel the edges of your board poking the underside of your toes and heel, you can tell that your foot is in the center of the deck. When your feet are in the "pockets", you can feel the concave and kicks hugging your soles. For street and vert skaters, this is really helpful. You almost always want your feet in the pockets for stability and control. Us freestylers are less interested in the pockets.
The Huntington Spoon Nose takes advantage of tub concave. Instead of a constant arch of concave across the entire length of the board, this deck has a flat section, or pan, running down its center line. This 4-inch pan allows you to shuffle your foot around easily for walk the dogs and other footwork tricks. Linear concave on either side of the pan gives the board some rigidity without feeling cumbersome.
I love single kick skateboards. They just feel so damn good to pogo and casper on. And that feeling when you pop a rail flip! Ugh. Come on! Have you ever seen a single kick deck with concave though? When you combine a flat, tapered nose with rail-to-rail concave, you get a nose that looks like it's bending downward towards the ground. We call it a "gravy boat nose". It looks interesting, but it can make rail flips and caspers very uncomfortable. To avoid this, we gave the Huntington Spoon Nose a... a spoon nose. Tub concave continues into a slightly upturned nose for added - say it with me - kinesthesia without losing any of that sweet sweet pogoability. See, we can make up words too.
The best board is the one that makes you excited to skate every time you look down at it. That’s why we gave the Huntington Spoon Nose a classic freestyle silhouette with rail cuts inspired by Hazze Lindgren. These rail cuts aren’t just for the looks though. They also help with freestyle kickflips and primo slides.
At the end of the day, a skateboard is just a toy. Some people will skate on a 2x4 with steel wheels and have the best ride of their lives. Others will spend a decade tinkering with kick angles and taper points, searching for that feeling. No one is doing it right or wrong, It's all part of the game. I was thrilled to have my first session on the Huntington Spoon Nose. You can ask Maria Mendoza about how I burst into laughter in the middle of a G-turn. Part of it was the euphoria of finally getting to share this board with you all. But mostly, this board just makes me feel like Pierre Andre doing foot grabs under Huntington Beach pier. We all deserve to feel like that.
Pre-orders for the Huntington decks and completes begin February 11th, 2022 at 5pm Pacific. Expected ship date for all orders is March 11th. See our international dealers page for more info about international orders.