Stair tricking skateboard

This skateboard concept lets you travel down stairs almost as smoothly as gliding down a hill. This seems to be the eighth iteration in [PoChih Lai's] attempts to add functionality to a board which will make it the ultimate ride for an urban outing. Check out the video after the break to see just how well he did.

We’ve seen hand carts that use six wheels to make stairs a breeze using a triad of wheels as a single-wheel replacement. This was actually the main concept early on in the design. But the drawback to this method is that the design takes up a lot of room and [PoChih] also made the deck much bulkier to keep you from getting a foot caught in the mechanism. The final design does away with the end-over-end concept and adopts a rocking mechanism. The board hangs from a bar which serves as the pivot between the two wheels. This way the wheels can absorb the brunt of the motions, and the base of the deck can slide across the fronts of the steps if needs be.

We were talking about this here at the Hackaday office and the point was made that this is like YT’s skateboard from Neal Stephenson’s Snow Crash. Did you hear that it’s headed to a theater near you?

Comments

  1. afex says:

    while the board is pretty awesome, for me the best part of this post was the quality of the video – the cinematography is amazing!

    • Leif says:

      Yes, artistically the video was very well done. If you want to see the thing actually handle stairs though it requires a lot of patience. It’s mostly guys riding the thing on flat ground!

      • RDProgrammer says:

        OMFG this couldn’t be more true. You aren’t a grand cinematographer just because daddy bought you a mac and some software. I’d also like to point out they never show the thing transitioning from flat ground to stairs, just from stairs to ground. It’s obvious that that board would bottom out during the transition, likely hurling the rider down the stairs face first.

      • khani3s says:

        Maybe they showed the only scene that the skate does it right. All the others the skater lands on his head

    • Felipe says:

      Maybe they showed the only scene that the skate does it right. All the others, the skater lands on his head

  2. Brad says:

    The upside-down trucks look pretty sick.

  3. Frank Cohen says:

    @afex I was thinking the same thing. Really nice shots here.

    Nice engineering and beautiful video!

  4. diddlman says:

    The video was “cool,” but it did a very poor job of showing the board itself and how it works. We only get two fleeting glances of the board in operation, and the rest of the video is just cool cinematography. The purpose of the video is therefore unclear. :P

    It must have taken them a while to get the rocking design to work, I imagine that it takes a lot of good dimensions so that the wheels touch and rock at specific times. So kudos to them on that part.

  5. Matt says:

    new fancy tool for hipsters =)
    longboards are enough for me

  6. relet says:

    Looks like it will depend a bit on good fortune whether you’ll make the stairs smoothly, or whether you bail… it seems to me that if the steps have the wrong distance, you’ll hit the same “phase” with both wheels.

    Also, if the stairs begin too steep, the lowered board will hit the top edge.

  7. dcj2 says:

    ok, props for the design, very clever, yadda-yadda-yadda. but c’mon, two-and-a-half minutes of video showing about 12 seconds of what we actually wanna see?!?!?. the frickin *credits* have more screen time fercripesake!!

  8. It seems as if the board picks up no momentum going down the stairs. Perhaps the scenes shown were brief excursions down a couple steps. Perhaps the energy is dissipated as heat from the wheels striking the surface?

  9. svofski says:

    Never tried a skateboard. But even on those rather flat stairs it looked as if this thing could use a bit of clearance, no? Of course, if it was a simple but useful youtube video instead of an artsy fartsy vimeo video, we’d be able to actually see if it really works well or not.

  10. Xeracy says:

    are the tubes on either side just acting as a spring?

    • Dgent says:

      thats what i wanna know… what are the tubes for?

    • tony says:

      They must be part of a damping system, right?

    • Matt says:

      Looking closely at the design, and CAD prototype picture, im sure that the tubes are only there as springs to keep the trucks level when the board is picked up. They wouldnt provide enough force to act as springs or dampers when the board is being ridden, and probably arent needed for the stair riding stunts.

      I wouldn’t mind seeing if a set of larger wheels make any difference to the ride. I’d also been interested to see how the board compares to riding a regular long board on the flat.

      Great project and really neatly executed. Shame about all that time spent on the tri-wheel design!

  11. Chuckt says:

    Pretty cool if you know what you are doing but I fell straight on my back when trying a skateboard and I saw a teen break his arm for his third time at a skateboard park and he was holding his arm in an “S” pattern.

  12. n0lkk says:

    Ricking the appearance of beige snarky. Yes a great video production, but not a single decent slow motion shot of the trucks in action on the stairs. Nice build, but nothing I’ll ever use. My skateboard riding years( not there was ever much of it) are years behind me, and I live in an environment devoid of stairs on public walkways.

  13. chris says:

    Most kids who know how to ollie would probably learn how to ollie downstairs. This custom “longboard” is cool (thumbs up for the idea and effort) but most folks who longboard would probably prefer to slide down a hill then go down a set of stairs.

  14. macegr says:

    The skateboard is great etc. Now let’s talk about Snow Crash.

  15. Alan says:

    I call BS. The board can’t even start on a flight of stairs without bottoming out. In fact, I think it simply slides down the stairs on the black skid pad. The trick wheels simply kick out of the way to allow the board to stay on the stair edge the whole way down. This also explains why the rider does not appear to speed up despite a rapid 15′ drop.

  16. bzroom says:

    So the wheels are not designed to somehow ride the stairs, they’re designed to get out of the way and let the board slide down the stairs like a surf board. Reaching the bottom, the trucks would hopefully level and give you a smooth exit from the stairs.

    Try this on a regular skateboard, you will likely be ejected at the first stair. Even jumping down the stairs can be disastrous if the front truck lands wrong.

  17. deceptivesoftware says:

    I see plenty of perfectly good hand rails in this video, and a skateboard that is far too large and heavy to use a single one. It’s a cool looking design, but I tend to lean towards believing that simple is better.

  18. tehnoo says:

    Wouldn’t that only work for stairs that are a specific size? Like it wouldn’t work the same if the stair was taller or wider (or narrower and shorter)…

    It looks cool though.

  19. Threeck says:

    seriously, if this board was made for stairs, they should more of it riding down the stairs. all I see is them riding on flat ground and like 2 scenes of what the board was actually designed for.

  20. Threeck says:

    *Also, why ride down the stairs when you can do a rail slide? Much more fun than riding down the stairs.

  21. patman2700 says:

    Actually, I could see this as a really neat thing to carry around (the “wheels”, that is). Whenever I’ve gone out longboarding I’ve often found myself riding different types of environments – city pushing to get to where I want to go; sliding during a get-together or slide jam; and that with stairs, slopes, and ramps that would be found in a city park. Since these wheel add-ons can be swapped out for any standard pair of urethane wheels, it wouldn’t take long to transition from a sliding setup to this which can handle stairs.

    I agree – the wheel sets are FAR too short – bottoming out down stairs does HELL on your board.

  22. Anon says:

    It rolls down stairs and over your neighbor’s dog…

  23. Jim says:

    OMG!
    I totally need this 4 my daughter.

    • Alan says:

      I guess you missed the part where it was pointed out that it doesn’t actually work? Or, put another way, it works just as well as a plank of polyurethane would, since that is the only part that actually goes down the stairs.

  24. Andre says:

    Does anyone know who produced the video for them?

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