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  1. #1
    Stoked! ThatCrazyGuitaristDude's Avatar
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    Default Speed wobbles... What did I do wrong?

    So... I'm a newbie at this, just in it for a thrill and to have fun. I always wear my helmet but I've got no other protection gear

    Anyway, I've had my board for a couple months, it's a Dregs downhill division, looks a little like an evo. Randal 180's with stock bushings and Abec 11 Freerides. Mostly just been riding down small hills, if you'd even call them hills But on Sunday I wanted to test my limits and get some speed up. I went to the biggest hill I can find, it's roughly 300m long and pretty steep (for me). My mate who's right into downhill got up to 70kph on this hill on a previous day, he has a GPS. I had a few cruisy runs down it first where I carved and Airbraked most the way down. It's a pretty straight forward run, there's only one corner and it's not very sharp at all.

    I wanted to go for a run and get some speed up, so I decided to tuck the whole way down. I kicked off and kept kicking till I got too fast to put my foot down then went into an american tuck. I went in a pretty straight line, kept low and tried keeping my legs loose, but when I got down to the bottom of the run (steepest part, just before it levels out) I started getting wobbles. I could feel the wobbles for about 30-50 metres before I came off at top speed, & guess who got wrecked. I'm now wrapped in bandages with severe roadrash on my arms and knees, I also have a class two strained hamstring.

    My board has always felt stable, but just that one time I got wrecked I couldn't control it. I'm sure if someone else was riding my setup they would have made it just fine, but I want to know what I did wrong so I can improve. Yes, I've read the speed wobbles guide on here but it didn't help me too much... Will just getting more ride time & experience make me stop wobbles or is there a clear cut way of not getting them?

    Sorry for the boring read & if I posted this in the wrong place, but I would love to hear from someone who's been skating a while who would have been through something similar.


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  3. #2
    Addicted Cruiser SkateStatim's Avatar
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    Default Re: Speed wobbles... What did I do wrong?

    While practice and ride time does make you get use to your board, speed wobbles is caused by not being confident. Have a look at people giving advice on tucks. Make sure you have it perfect and then build up. Start at maybe the middle of the hill, and if you get tiny wobbles, keep on doing that until your feel completely comfortable. Then slowly move your start up the hill until you get to the top. Make sure you have your tuck right and are comfortable in it. Make sure you keep your ankles loose, because without knowing, you can tense them when you begin to get nervous. Other than that, just keep practising.
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  4. #3
    Addicted Cruiser nuckfumbertheory's Avatar
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    Default

    get gloves and knee pads. it's easy to drop your hands to the ground at high speeds from tuck to ts shutdown. much better then bailing w/ no plastic on.
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    no worries.

  5. #4
    Addicted Cruiser rflak's Avatar
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    Default Re: Speed wobbles... What did I do wrong?

    I'd say it's all in your head. Loosen up when you go down the hill. Make sure your ankles are "loose" and comfortable on the board. Relax.
    Work your way up the hill. When I first started I got wobbles on everything over 10mph.

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    Concrete Kahuna Faustian's Avatar
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    Default Re: Speed wobbles... What did I do wrong?

    gotta be comfortable
    I've only gotten wobbles once. stock randals too.
    After that I tried progressing a little more incrementally (and skated all the time) and I guess it worked.

  7. #6
    Concrete Kahuna Maggot's Avatar
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    Default Re: Speed wobbles... What did I do wrong?

    I find that when your board gets that feeling like it's getting squirrely, it helps to carve a bit, both to reduce your speed and to break up the wobble pattern. There are numerous non-scientific theories about wobbles. My feeling is that wobbling is a feedback loop between you and your trucks, so it helps to do something slightly different if you feel wobbles coming on.

    The part that everyone agrees on is keep your weight on your front foot and stay relaxed.

    Get some pads and slide gloves! If there's even a possiblity that you won't be in extreme pain if you have to bail, it will make you feel more relaxed. I felt like I was riding a different, more stable board the first time I padded up.

  8. #7
    Addicted Cruiser OceanSeven's Avatar
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    Default Re: Speed wobbles... What did I do wrong?

    Definitely get slide gloves at the very least. Knowing you can shutdown at a moments notice is a huge confidence boost.

    Also, not saying this is a magic cure but... treat yourself to some new bushings if you have the funds. Randal stock bushings aren't very fun, imo.
    Too many boards. Still love my Hightailer.

  9. #8
    Concrete Kahuna nineball87's Avatar
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    Default Re: Speed wobbles... What did I do wrong?

    I hav ehad my encounters with wobbles. I got wobbles on a 70kph sweeper. i learned it was not my tuck since I had a good stance but what caused me to avoid bailing was to loosen my body and got lower.

    The main culprit of wobble is infact the rider. but make sure your trucks have minimal slop.

    run bushings that suit your weight. I weigh 135lbs and I run 84a and 86a barrel/cone. i took the slop out of my trucks and I can say i comfortably do standies at 55kph.

    but practice makes perfect and knee pads and gloves are a huge help. Also learn to bail off so nothing gets ruined (other than the tops of your shoes maybe)
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    Quote Originally Posted by TIME2SMASH View Post
    Tom Wilson who rides for Kebbek (awesome dude) told me, if you want to downhill skateboard, ride Randals, if you want to race, ride precisions.

  10. #9
    Concrete Kahuna lazereyes93's Avatar
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    Default Re: Speed wobbles... What did I do wrong?

    Quote Originally Posted by ThatCrazyGuitaristDude View Post
    I wanted to go for a run and get some speed up, so I decided to tuck the whole way down. I kicked off and kept kicking till I got too fast to put my foot down then went into an american tuck. I went in a pretty straight line, kept low and tried keeping my legs loose, but when I got down to the bottom of the run (steepest part, just before it levels out) I started getting wobbles. I could feel the wobbles for about 30-50 metres before I came off at top speed, & guess who got wrecked. I'm now wrapped in bandages with severe roadrash on my arms and knees, I also have a class two strained hamstring.

    My board has always felt stable, but just that one time I got wrecked I couldn't control it. I'm sure if someone else was riding my setup they would have made it just fine, but I want to know what I did wrong so I can improve. Yes, I've read the speed wobbles guide on here but it didn't help me too much... Will just getting more ride time & experience make me stop wobbles or is there a clear cut way of not getting them?

    Sorry for the boring read & if I posted this in the wrong place, but I would love to hear from someone who's been skating a while who would have been through something similar.
    Some things to note in your scenario:
    till I got too fast to put my foot down - Before anything you should be able to footbrake at any speed. If you can't perform this fundamental skill, then you are increasing your risk of being injured. It's a calculated risk, things happen and footbraking can save you from potential injury. Spend some extra cash on shoes and save some cash at the hospital.
    board has always felt stable, - Stability is in the rider. You can overcompensate with gear, but in the end all its all compensation, not real skill.
    I couldn't control it. - Letting yourself get out of control starts a landslide of events that will get you hurt. This loops back to footbraking, learn the techniques to ensure that you are safe and in control at all times. Footbraking, shutdown slides, and predrifts will help this.
    is there a clear cut way of not getting them - Nope, you have to pay for your skill with your time and flesh. Take some time to start off small, build up your skill set and then start to go bigger.
    Go play skateboards

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  11. #10
    Capo di Tutti Posto 8ftbed's Avatar
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    Default Re: Speed wobbles... What did I do wrong?

    Bushings will make a difference and let you taste some faster speed until you reach the zenith of gnarhood the others possess. By that time, you'll be able to bomb the baddest, hairpinned hill in the country on a worn out Dervish with Holeys and Slide A's.

    They all do it, so can you. They're my uber skilled heroes.

  12. #11
    Addicted Cruiser captain bacon's Avatar
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    Default Re: Speed wobbles... What did I do wrong?

    Like others have said, GET SLIDE GLOVES. Or make some. They're just as important as a helmet, because even though your hands don't have your brain in them, you need them for everything, and you're a lot more likely to land on them when you fall, so you need to protect them. And also when you're wearing slide gloves you can throw shutdown slides, of course.

    Just skate skate skate. Get experienced and get comfortable with your board. There's no substitute for riding time. And now that you've eaten sh*t you'll most likely be more careful about bombing runs you're not used to, which is good. It's a learning experience. Now you have a better idea of where your limits are, and you can work up to them.

  13. #12
    Concrete Kahuna EverythingAE's Avatar
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    Default Re: Speed wobbles... What did I do wrong?

    If your Dregs board is an Evo copy, buy some 42* plates for those Randals. The front is probably at 60*+ if you're running on 50* trucks.
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  14. #13
    Longskateaholic jpsypek's Avatar
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    Default Re: Speed wobbles... What did I do wrong?

    after a bail like that most starters would leave longboarding, at least for a while. props for wanting to get right back on the board

  15. #14
    Concrete Kahuna lacesoutvic's Avatar
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    Default Re: Speed wobbles... What did I do wrong?

    Quote Originally Posted by EverythingAE View Post
    If your Dregs board is an Evo copy, buy some 42* plates for those Randals. The front is probably at 60*+ if you're running on 50* trucks.
    might be one of the new boards they have in the microdrop mold dave price helped design. anyway, i successfully bombed my first 30mph+ hill on incorrectly setup 42* trucks, but i also had kneepads and gloves for every attempt.

    Quote Originally Posted by lazereyes93 View Post
    till I got too fast to put my foot down - Before anything you should be able to footbrake at any speed. If you can't perform this fundamental skill, then you are increasing your risk of being injured. It's a calculated risk, things happen and footbraking can save you from potential injury. Spend some extra cash on shoes and save some cash at the hospital.
    board has always felt stable, - Stability is in the rider. You can overcompensate with gear, but in the end all its all compensation, not real skill.
    I couldn't control it. - Letting yourself get out of control starts a landslide of events that will get you hurt. This loops back to footbraking, learn the techniques to ensure that you are safe and in control at all times. Footbraking, shutdown slides, and predrifts will help this.
    is there a clear cut way of not getting them - Nope, you have to pay for your skill with your time and flesh. Take some time to start off small, build up your skill set and then start to go bigger.
    i agree with most of this. but the "too fast to put my foot down" part probably means he was going faster than pushing speed, and not necessarily that he can't footbrake.

    that being said, make sure you're comfortable with footbraking at any speed you intend to ride at. also, learn to slide and be comfortable doing that. being able to throw a coleman or toeside shutdown in a split second can save your life (cars pulling out in front of you - it HAS happened to me).

    also, learning to slide sucks. some people probably just "get it" and learn quickly, but it took me probably over a month to be able to do my safety slide and do it well. practice.

    if you want to coleman, and be safer in general, GET OR MAKE GLOVES. i don't know about you, but i like skin on my hands.

    always keep skating and practicing. i haven't skated for a week because of work, school, etc. and i pulled a coleman last night at the end of the run and got pitched at 20mph. i was able to run it out, and there was no traffic, but that situation could have been much worse. i was mainly mad that i failed the slide that i rely on, but anyway - keep at it to make sure your skills are up to speed.

    most boards feel stable enough when you're going slow. if you bomb a 70kph hill and you don't even have gloves, that's just stupid - or you can do standup slides like no one's business. it took me a year of skating to get that fast - some people will progress faster, some will progress slower. go at your own pace.
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  16. #15
    Stoked! Mr Sims's Avatar
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    Default Re: Speed wobbles... What did I do wrong?

    One thing that has always helped me if I ever start to feel wobbles, is I just focus, tell myself to stop freaking out and that I'll be okay, and take a deep breath.

  17. #16
    Stoked! ThatCrazyGuitaristDude's Avatar
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    Default Re: Speed wobbles... What did I do wrong?

    Yeah, I meant pushing speed aha. Although I don't know if I would have been game to footbrake when I was at top speed anyway. Ordering some gloves and knee pads this afternoon though c: Too bad I can't skate for a while! D:

  18. #17
    Concrete Kahuna cabbageboy's Avatar
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    Default Re: Speed wobbles... What did I do wrong?

    Yoy should always have the possibility to break; either footbreak or slide. Riding at speeds that are higher than you feel comfortable breaking at is a recipe for disaster. (since you didn´t have gloves, you had no possibility to stop at all). . Sound to me that you only need some more time and practice.

    Good luck
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  19. #18
    Longskateaholic fasterdar's Avatar
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    Default Re: Speed wobbles... What did I do wrong?

    Whats an American Tuck? Sounds Kinky!

  20. #19
    Addicted Cruiser ITaube's Avatar
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    Default Re: Speed wobbles... What did I do wrong?

    Quote Originally Posted by cabbageboy View Post
    Yoy should always have the possibility to break; either footbreak or slide. Riding at speeds that are higher than you feel comfortable breaking at is a recipe for disaster. (since you didn´t have gloves, you had no possibility to stop at all). . Sound to me that you only need some more time and practice.

    Good luck
    I agree always when I am bombing a hill and starts to get a little uncomfortable I just footbrake to reduce the speed.
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  21. #20
    Concrete Kahuna lazereyes93's Avatar
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    Default Re: Speed wobbles... What did I do wrong?

    Quote Originally Posted by lacesoutvic View Post
    i successfully bombed my first 30mph+ hill on incorrectly setup 42* trucks, but i also had kneepads and gloves for every attempt.
    Just curious, how were they setup incorrectly?

    Quote Originally Posted by lacesoutvic View Post
    i agree with most of this. but the "too fast to put my foot down" part probably means he was going faster than pushing speed, and not necessarily that he can't footbrake.
    That could be a possibility. I was looking at it from the angle that he was to scared to drop a foot at speed. Or that he is a stomper, one of those guys that tries to stomp the ground when they footbrake.
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