If you are a skateboarder who feels behind on the times seeing so many motorized bikes and scooters then this is the article for you. Today I’m going to share with you five of the best electric kits to modernize your skateboard and give it that extra edge.
What Makes DIY Electric Skateboards Worth It
The main reason why DIY kits are in right now is that they offer cheap ways to transform a normal board into a fully functional electric one. People have been doing electric conversions for some time now, particularly on bikes and scooters. Buying an electric or motorized vehicle straight from the shop is usually more expensive, and the fact is that many people already own at least a bike or some other transportation device.
In an age as fast-paced as now, more people want the convenience and the comfort that comes with motors and electrics. Electric kits help save money and save time commuting by improving the speed and performance of their rides.
For many, including myself, it makes better sense to customize and modify the tool you already own than to replace it with something very expensive. And if you’re crafty like I am, then the process itself of transforming your skateboard is fun and exciting. Natural DIYers like myself jump at the opportunity to put something together on their own. And when it ends up saving you money, it’s a no-brainer.
This is even more true for skateboards. For example, braking on a skateboard has always been a challenge. Fortunately, many DIY kits come with a braking system that can be activated by the push of a button on a remote control. That’s simply the magic of owning an electric skateboard conversion kit. It’s not just faster and more fun but it can be safer too than your normal skateboard.
If you already own an electric skateboard conversion kit then you probably already have a good understanding of what comes with a kit and what’s to be expected.
However, if you are a first-timer looking to buy your very first DIY electric kit then this section is definitely for you. There are several things that you want to double-check when buying a kit to make sure it has everything that you need.
In the list below, each section will have pros and cons to summarize what I think each DIY kit excels at.
Take note that all of the following DIY electric skateboard kits do not come with decks. These are tailored for people who already own a skateboard deck and are looking for an electric conversion kit for a pre-owned board. Or, you can easily buy a deck specifically for your DIY project.
Of course, you also have the option to purchase all necessary electric skateboard components individually. But that is a challenge in itself, as you need to ensure that all components play nicely with each other.
Now, let’s jump into the top five best electric skateboard kits.
The first on our list of the best electric skateboard kits comes from WowGo. This is an affordable and reliable kit that is easily one of the best for newcomers looking for their very first electric conversion upgrade.
The WowGo comes in three different options that you can choose from. I opted for the standard “Samsung” model as it is in the same price range as most of the following boards on this DIY electric skateboard list.
For starters, the WowGo weighs about 16 pounds which is a little heavier than average but is overall no big deal. The difference between riding a regular skateboard and a modded one is always noticeable but as long as the kit is well made then it can be very easy to get used to.
Installation took me about half an hour more or less but if this is your first time with an electric longboard kit you can expect it to take about twice as long. The process is simple but it does take concentration and some patience. All of the included components were of decent quality, though I do wish the wires and cables felt a little more robust.
As far as speed is concerned, I doubt many people will be disappointed by what the WowGo has to offer. The Wowgo can achieve a max speed of 24 miles per hour, which is reasonably fast. Unfortunately, it only has a max range of 12 miles. If you want to use this thing at max speed constantly then you’ll only be able to squeeze out a mere half-hour of use.
I’m well aware that the Samsung 4Ah battery option that I chose is the weakest one offered by WowGo but it’s still a bit of a let down considering other options in this price range. This is fine for anyone who doesn’t mind combining motorized control with traditional kick pushing. The problem is it will probably be a mandatory function regardless of whether you like it or not.
As I briefly mentioned earlier, the build quality is decent but it’s nothing spectacular.
The wheels in this electric longboard kit are pretty nice though. Not only do I like the way they look but they spin very smoothly for both electric and manual control. I found that these wheels get scuffed up a little easier than other wheels included in DIY electric conversion kits but it didn’t dampen the riding experience as far as I could tell.
The dual motors are 250w each, which is a very reasonable amount of power for the price and explains the 24mph speed. I noticed that when riding the WowGo kit that it had some issues with acceleration, particularly with medium speeds around the 12mph mark. It’s nothing major by any means but just note that riding this kit at medium speeds won’t provide as smooth a ride at the other end of the spectrum.
As far as safety is concerned, it’s adequate and reasonable. The braking on this kit isn’t the most responsive but it’s more than enough. I tested out the brakes at various speeds and they work consistently. I did notice them functioning more gradually than instantly around the 20mph mark. They still work but it is something to keep in mind.
The best thing about the WowGo DIY electric skateboard, however, is the smooth ride it gives. Acceleration or braking faults aside, this is undoubtedly a great conversion kit. The weight of the motors becomes near impossible to notice when riding on the WowGo.
The great ride provided by the WowGo is also due to the nicely crafted wheels. The wheels and the axles are by far the most sturdy and tough components included in the entire DIY kit. They work much better on roads and sidewalks than other terrains, but I tried them out on dirt roads as well and they still worked very nicely. I do not recommend using them on sand or grass but skateboards are rarely used on these surfaces anyway.
Climbing angles were also very impressive. At a roughly 20 degrees incline, I noticed no dip in speed or smoothness. At around 30 degrees it was only a little noticeable but performance was still relatively good.
The remote control included in this electric skateboard kit is solid. It feels a little hollow and light so I don’t expect it can survive many drops onto hard surfaces. Luckily, WowGo included a wrist strap with the remote so dropping it seems to be pretty difficult to do.
Overall, this is a great budget kit and will easily accomplish basic riding needs for anyone looking for a no-hassle ride. It offers great value overall for the asking price which is why I call it one of the best electric skateboard kits.
The Free Ship model produced by Ownboard is actually very similar to the WowGo model. It’s in the same price range and the specifications are similar too. Yet for whatever reason, it hasn’t become nearly as popular as the WowGo or other models later to be seen on my list.
Let’s begin with the basics. The entire Free Ship DIY conversion kit weighs in at about 17 pounds, a similar weight to the WowGo. It also has dual 250w motors and as far as I can tell the wheels and axles are nearly identical.
It has a top speed of 24 miles per hour but part of what makes me really like this more than the WowGo is the superior battery. The Free Ship electric skateboard has a 6.4Ah battery. This gives it a maximum range of about 18 miles instead of 12. This is a pretty big increase in distance and will be a huge benefit in the long run for people who plan on using their electric skateboard on a daily basis.
I’ll talk more about my time riding the Free Ship in a bit since that isn’t the only thing I liked more with the Free Ship Ownboard. The build quality is nicer, which is something I noticed during the installation.
I think the total installation time was actually shorter than with the WowGo, but not because the process was any different. The cables and the components inside of this kit are just nicer and sturdier. It’s a lot easier to manage and organize the cables since I wasn’t concerned about stretching them too far. The lid of the motor and battery also felt more solid so the insides are probably better protected with the Free Ship Ownboard. As another bonus, the charging cable included in this kit is longer.
While the remote control isn’t as ergonomic and doesn’t feature any finger grips, it doesn’t feel too light or flimsy. Plus the buttons are closer to the top of the remote so they more naturally fit where your thumb will be.
You might expect that a longer battery life means a longer charge time, and you’d be totally correct. However two hours total isn’t much longer than 90 minutes, and it is obviously worth the extra half an hour of charge time for an extra half dozen miles out on the road.
Something that I wish more electric skateboard kits would include came with the Free Ship board kit – a tail light. This means that riding out at night is much safer as cars or any other passerby will notice you much more easily. It isn’t super bright but it’s still definitely noticeable from a reasonable distance. It offers a much better level of nighttime safety than not having one equipped, and luckily it barely dents the battery life.
As far as I can tell, the wheels in the Free Ship function just like the wheels in the WowGo. They work great on regular surfaces like asphalt and dirt, but performance will suffer on grass.
I understand that the WowGo is reliable and very popular but I have to be perfectly honest – despite being very similar on the surface, I like the Free Ship more. The build quality and battery life make it the same kind of experience, but better. And since they’re in the same price range, if you can find a Free Ship and you’re in the market for a budget electric skateboard conversion kit, this would be the one I recommend.
Next on our best electric skateboard kit list is the 10S5P Dual Motor from DIYEboard. This is where we start to see DIY electric skateboards that have more extra features.
Let’s begin as usual with the specifications. This is surprisingly a lightweight board. The entire package weighs only 13 pounds overall. Take note of this as that’s going to lead to other benefits that the DIYEboard has.
The DIYEboard has a max speed of about 27 miles per hour, which makes it a little faster than the last two electric longboard kits I discussed. While I always consider higher max speeds a good thing, there’s something I liked even more. The DIYEboard 10S5P has four different speed settings that you can set with the remote control. There’s Slow, Medium, Fast and Very Fast. Each setting has a max speed of 15mph, 19mph, 25mph, and 27mph respectively.
This feature is by far one of my favorite things about this electric skateboard conversion kit. For one thing, it allows more people to enjoy this board. People who like slow speeds can just permanently leave the settings to Slow, and people who like a thrill can only use the faster settings. The other thing that’s great about it is that you can safely alternate between the four options depending on your mood or your environment.
When I used the DIYEboard I experimented with all four settings to help find my comfort zone for casual cruising. I used it as a de facto safety feature when I was in an area with a lot of people or cars so I could have that extra peace of mind.
The biggest problem with the DIYEboard is braking. It isn’t particularly responsive or sensitive at speeds exceeding 20 miles per hour. It still works but it just feels a little flexing, even on asphalt. This is why I prefer to rely on the alternate speed function, and that would absolutely be my recommendation to you if you purchase this kit.
Another thing I loved about the DIYEboard was the battery life. You can get a max range of roughly 30 or 31 miles with the 10Ah battery cells. That means you’ll have over an hour of usage even when going at full speed. The battery pack itself also has an LED display telling you how much life is left. Normally electric skateboard kits don’t have this kind of function so it was a very welcome addition. Sometimes we all lose track of time, so without this, you might have found yourself kick pushing your way back home because you didn’t have an energy counter. It’s something that I think should definitely be included in all kits, but not all have it, unfortunately.
Thanks to the fact that the kit only weighs 13 pounds the DIYEboard has great acceleration. It takes less than a moment for it to reach whatever top speed you have it set to. The remote control not only has good build quality but the throttle switch for controlling your speed feels very accurate and intuitive. I never felt like it was difficult to get it to the right speed I was looking for.
Overall, the DIYEboard 10S5P is undeniably a great board for the price range. If they had managed to improve the braking system then this could have possibly been a flawless electric skateboard kit.
The Meepo V2 board is one you may have heard about. I wanted to test drive this board for myself to see if it was worth all the hype and buzz.
To start off, the Meepo V2 weighs about 16 pounds and has a max speed of 28 miles per hour. The speeds are great and the acceleration is solid. One of the best things that newcomers to the world of DIY electric skateboards will enjoy is the fast and simple installation process. Some parts of the motor have already been pre-installed which I realized soon after unboxing the Meepo.
Let me get this out of the way right now: the battery is easily the worst thing about the Meepo V2. It has a very limited range that can take you only about 10 to 12 miles. I opted for the standard battery but apparently, the pricier Sanyo battery kit only has a decent improvement of up to 17 miles.
If you’re someone who needs a longer range like the DIYEboard that I talked about previously then I have to tell you that the Meepo may not be the board for you. Charge time doesn’t take much more than an hour but the number of times you’ll be plugging in your Meepo kit into the wall can get annoying.
But despite this big set back, I still found riding the Meepo V2 to be a very rewarding experience. I don’t use this as my commuting electric skateboard. I use this board for when I want to practice tricks and stylish riding, as well as feeling the short but sweet thrill of very fast speeds.
With this board, the brightest candle burns quickest. That essentially summarizes what it is like riding the Meepo V2.
The riding experience is very smooth, but unfortunately, it suffers noticeably when battery life reaches about one-third of its max capacity, I would estimate. But on a full charge, the Meepo V2 can make any board feel well stabilized. The braking and acceleration are both great, even at top speeds. I felt as if I had to do very little prep or bracing as I activated the brakes going at around 25 miles per hour.
If you want an electric skateboard kit that prioritizes short range quality riding then the Meepo V2 is your board. If you know how to use it and take advantage of its top-notch braking and acceleration then you can definitely step up your riding and your tricks to a new level.
The final board on my list of the best electric skateboard kits is just that – the best. Introducing the Onan X3, definitely my favorite DIY electric skateboard on the market. It offers unparalleled performance and specs that will impress even the pickiest of riders.
The most impressive specification about the Onan X3 electric longboard kit is its dual 600w motors for a total of 1200w. Thanks to this impressive installation, it has a max speed of 30 miles per hour. If you’re not sure exactly what it feels like to go that fast standing on a skateboard, it’s definitely thrilling. You will certainly feel some wind resistance.
This speed, however, is only recommended to responsible riders. For the total novice, it might be a little much to be learning on something that goes that fast, so keep that in mind when considering this device’s top speed. You can obviously go slower than that, but if the potential rider is a bit of a daredevil, you might want to supervise until they really get used to it.
To add to this kit’s impressiveness it only weighs about 13 pounds, making it both powerful and lightweight at once. That’s also a nice benefit for if/when you need to carry it compared to some other models that may be closer to 17 lbs.
The standard battery option has a great range of about 28 miles, but I must also point out the option of purchasing a dual battery pack. This extends your time and max distance considerably by simply switching out the battery pack, allowing you to charge one while you ride the other.
A nice little bonus feature that I really appreciated was being able to choose what color wheels you want. There are four different options and none of them come at an extra cost.
The Onan X3’s wheels are some of the best I’ve ever seen and used in an electric skateboard kit. Their website details how they were made with very high-quality inner bearings. To make a long story short, these wheels are tough and smooth. I rode them on some pretty rough roads with cracks and gravel and they handled the obstacles far better than any other wheels on this list. Their ability to adapt to whatever I threw at them was continuously impressive. If you like to ride through rougher terrain then you have to find out for yourself how reliable these tires are.
While the Onan X3 is more expensive than the rest of the electric skateboard conversion kits I’ve discussed, there is a very good reason for that. Onan has equipped several safety features in this kit, all of which are great.
The Onan X3 will automatically reduce your max speed down to only a few miles per hour. This prevents you from riding really fast when the battery is just about to give out, which could otherwise cause an unexpected loss of speed and control as if the skateboard just decided to brake without warning.
The remote control is fitted with its own nifty features as well. LED lights clue you in on the battery life. It also has two max speed settings to better control how fast you want to roll.
To summarize it all, I’ve never had as much fun, control or peace of mind riding the Onan X3 electric skateboard compared to other models. It costs more than other electric longboard kits but it is worth every dollar. You can use this as a casual commuting board or as an intense vehicle for stylish tricks and devilishly high speeds. I believe that newcomers and veterans alike will find something to love about the Onan X3. The safety features, great battery and excellent wheels alone are worth the price.
Thanks for reading my top five best electric skateboard kits list! I hope my time discussing these DIY kits has helped you figure out which electric skateboard is right for you. Every one of them is worth their price, so no matter which one you pick I am sure you will be satisfied.