Man using Kota Longboard

Whether you're looking for a new board as a returning rider or a novice searching for your perfect set of wheels, we want to help you along the way by providing important information about several of the leading boards on the market. We will first highlight KOTA Longboards and then check out three other longboard companies for comparison. There are so many models, options, designs and qualities to choose from, so let's look at four leading and unique brands that are pushing into new and innovative design, technology, performance, and value. First, we will layout some product specs and highlights from KOTA Longboards.

​Kota Longboards

KOTA Longboards is a revolutionary and creatively minded longboard company out of Denver, CO. This manufacturer produces boards that are all about fun, user experience, and intuitive riding. KOTA is a unique brand offering more than just traditional, analog longboards, as they host electric longboards, as well. The boards are conscientiously designed for any level rider, prioritizing comfort and overall board control. Understanding that awesome design makes riding more accessible and desirable. KOTA focuses on crafting their boards to their highest standard and serving their customers with integrity.

Product Specs

KOTA Longboards are handcrafted out of American hard rock maple, and each board is individually inspected to ensure the highest quality cut becomes a KOTA. The hard rock maple makes for awesome board strength, beauty, and camber, which gives the board its precise control and responsive ride. KOTA Longboards are unique for their homemade KOTAgrip, which is a clear, durable and non-porous liquid grip finish. This liquid and clear grip allows for each side of the board to carry a beautiful design, all the while offering a superior grip performance, even in rain. Dimensions vary amongst models. KOTA Longboards are handmade with highly attuned attention to detail in the United States. The care and craftsmanship produce a board that is truly an extension of its rider. The boards come in many graphic designs, but you'll only have four base styles of KOTA Longboards to choose from. The four base styles are the SPAD XIII, Nieuport 17, Handley Page, and Sopwith Pup. Each board has its niche and specific board specifications that are worth exploring to see which board is best for your desired ride.

Pricing

KOTA Longboards are at a high-end price point, but that is thoroughly backed by the quality construction and craftsmanship you will receive. There is a lot of value in KOTA Longboards, as you are investing in a board that will treat you with years of smooth rides and outlasting durability. You can find KOTA Longboards for around $329 on KOTAlongboards.com. The website hosts a wide variety of unique customization options as well.

How it Compares

We picked a few similar products available on the market to see how they compare.

  • Atom
  • Volador
  • Quest

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QUALITY
PRICE
RATING


$$$

5 of 5 stars

Price

Ease of Use

The KOTA Longboards are very straightforward to ride and even easier to maintain. They arriv fully assembled, and stock wheels perform seamlessly. Riding is intuitive, smooth, and very responsive. Great control is available for novice or pro riders.

Performance

KOTA Longboards are hang crafted in the U.S., and the artwork is applied as oil-based stains. Each board is covered with KOTAgrip, a transparent, grip-tape free, liquid, and weatherproof grip sealant. The KOTAgrip optimizes the rider's experience and keeps the board in excellent condition through all types of weather.

Design Quality

This board is thoughtfully and uniquely designed for a rider who wants to invest in a board that will reward them ride after ride. The handcrafted quality of KOTA Longboards can't be beaten. This board is very well protected by the company's custom liquid grip. The shape of the board will support riders as they control the board with ease, balance, and feedback. Many customizations and unique options are available, and you can also get an electric longboard through KOTA.

Warranty

Contact the manufacturer for warranty information. The 30-day manufacturer's warranty replacement is on the deck only.

Pros

  • Amazing control and responsiveness
  • Diverse and unique customizations
  • Handcrafted in the U.S.
  • Excellent customer service
  • Durable for years of riding

Cons

  • High-end price point
  • Limited warranty

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[amazon box=”B00M3IIGJE”]

QUALITY
PRICE
RATING


$$$

4.4 of 5 stars

Next, we will look at Atom Longboards. The specific model we are comparing is the Atom Drop Through Longboard 40-in. This bamboo and black paint design is constructed from raw and high-quality bamboo composite. Atom Longboards produces quality boards that will fit your budget, yet, provide you with a strong board for downhill sprints, cruising, and commuting. The Atom Drop Through Longboard 40-in. is moderately flexible with dimensions of 40 in. x 10 in.

Price

The Atom Drop Through Longboard is moderately priced. You can purchase this board for around $80 to $120 on atomlongboards.com and amazon.com.

Ease of Use

This board will take you downhill or over small obstacles with ease. The Atom Drop Through Longboard comes assembled and will be ready to ride as you take it out of the box. Our only recommendation with this board is that you check the hardware for loose nuts and bolts. We rate the ease of use a three out of five stars because the board is only moderately flexible, which will challenge a new rider or light rider. Turning radius is wide.

Performance

This Atom longboard is great for a wide variety of terrain and performs well for long trips or commuting routes. Since this board is a drop through style, it is comfortable to ride for extended distances that require a substantial amount of pushing. Although the bushings are quite stiff, the trucks can be adjusted, which will offer the rider some customization for turning and response.

Design Quality

The Drop Through Longboard by Atom is designed with top-shelf gear and sturdy design. Although the bamboo maple composite makes a beautiful board, it is prone to slight wood cracks and paint chips on the tails of the board. Strong materials are included overall with a thoughtful design and aesthetic.

Warranty

Atom Longboards come with a 30-day limited manufacturer's warranty that will basically cover any defects in the board or craftsmanship of the board 30 days from purchase. Contact manufacturer for more information.

Pros

  • Durable and smooth ride across many terrains
  • Reliable and fluid high speed/downhill travel
  • Moderately priced - great for beginners

Cons

  • Bamboo composite is quite soft and susceptible to abuse
  • Slow turning radius and poor response accuracy
  • Stubborn bushings, adjustments likely to fit rider's desired comfort

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[amazon box=”B072R1YXYN”]

QUALITY
PRICE
RATING


$$$


4.5 of 5 stars

Moving on to our next comparison, we are checking out Volador longboards, specifically their 42-in. complete cruiser. This board is a remarkable value for its quality. The VOLADOR complete cruiser is crafted of 9-ply hard maple with a camber/concave board deck. This longboard is very flexible, easy to maneuver, and durable. A bit about the specifications of this board: Volador offers long-lasting materials such as aluminum alloy reverse kingpin trucks and chrome steel bearings. Specifications for this board are 38 in. x 9 in. Additional features include 78A PU wheels and unique artwork. The idea is to offer their riders an extremely accessible board that will perform and deliver for many days of cruising fun.

Price

Volador's boards are offered at a low price point, making them great for beginners. This board offers great value and can be purchased on amazon.com for around $46.

Ease of Use

This board is intuitive to use with an excellent turning radius, making it easy to control, which is another reason this board is great for novice riders. The board comes assembled and ready to ride with supreme quality grip tape. The general assembly is solid although the wheels may arrive either too tight or too loose. Check all hardware before riding, which should be standard safety protocol.

Performance

Overall, the performance and accessibility of this board are impressive for its price point. The board is quick and agile fresh out of the box. Perhaps the one element of this board we would modify or replace is the bearings. Slow bearings will affect the glide of your board and how easy it is to ride. This board is solid at high speeds and durable even under abuse.

Design Quality

This Volador complete cruiser offers its rider supreme comfort and maneuverability through its thoughtful camber/concave deck. Its flexibility and precision makes cutting corners a breeze and commuting fun. We find this board to supply high-quality design where it matters most, making riding easier with intuitive board response.

Warranty

Warranty information is unavailable for this product. Contact the manufacturer for more information.

Pros

  • Very affordable
  • Quality and thoughtful design where it matters most
  • Excellent customer service
  • Comfortable board with precision responsiveness
  • Accessible by beginners

Cons

  • Stock bearings are slow
  • Soft truck bushings
  • Large and bulky board

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[amazon box=”B008EZNXHA”]

QUALITY
PRICE
RATING


$$$

4.1 of 5 stars

Our last longboard comparison comes from Quest Longboards in the form of their Super Cruiser Longboard Skateboard. A bit about the specifications of this board: it is a 44-in. cruiser is comprised of hardwood maple and bamboo composite. Quest Longboards is a Southern California traditional longboard shop that aims to offer its riders an authentic longboard riding experience. With the intention of this board becoming a daily rider, the quality and build of this board will fit a variety of riders from beginner to pro.

Price

This Quest Super Cruiser is designed for riders of all different levels and is at an accessible low price point. You can purchase this Quest longboard for around $60 on both questboards.com and amazon.com. Various designs will fluctuate the overall price. This board is great for offering superior, professional quality at a low-end price point. This is possible because of Quest's long-term presence in the surf and board industry.

Ease of Use

This Quest longboard comes assembled with grip tape and all of its hardware. The board is awesome for beginner riders and easy strolling or cruiser types. With a top mount truck setup, the board is lifted higher off the ground than a drop through deck. This top mount truck setup gives the rider a smooth and gliding experience with very precise maneuverability. It is ready to ride out of the box and easy to learn how to operate for beginners.

Performance

The Quest Super Cruiser Longboard can be challenging for some riders due to its stiffness and rough stock bearings. The flexibility of this board is rather unforgiving, depending on the rider's size and preferred riding conditions. This board is intuitive and easy to ride out of the box but does even better with upgrades to stock bearings and wheels.

Design Quality

We like the overall quality that Quest Longboards provides, but we feel that the craftsmanship and attention to detail are lacking. Of course, however, its low price point reflects that there is some design sacrifice. We find the weak aspects of this model's design are the wheels, bearings, and the board's overall durability. Beginners may not be able to decipher the shortcomings of this board, but with only a few sessions, the rider will notice rough bearings and room for improvement in the board's overall maneuverability.

Warranty

Specific warranty information is unavailable for this Quest Super Cruiser. Contact the manufacturer directly for product warranty details.

Pros

  • Affordable and low price point
  • Ready to ride out of the box
  • Great as a daily rider and for casual cruising
  • Friendly for beginners

Cons

  • Needs wheel and bearing upgrades for better performance
  • Very stiff board for beginners or comfortable riding
  • Medium speeds due to rough stock wheels and bearings

Conclusion

Considering a new longboard, whether you're just starting off or looking to invest in a solid board, it is important to weigh several options to get a feel for what is available and what your riding preferences are. After looking closely at several of the leading and wide-ranging professional quality longboards on the market today, we are confident in highly recommending a KOTA Longboard to any rider who is looking for superior quality, comfort, and reliability. We feel that KOTA Longboards is a company that is pioneering craftsmanship and hand-detailed boards, and for that, we rate their boards five out of five stars.

Though there are many low and moderately priced longboards on the market, it is important to consider the level of detail and craftsmanship that the KOTA Longboards brand is built on. With incredibly smooth, intuitive, custom and responsive design, KOTA Longboards offer their riders a truly blissful experience that nearly equates to riding fresh powder on a mountain or catching mild, smooth waves on a calm day. Although a KOTA Longboard requires more of a financial investment, the return is undeniable and incredibly long-lasting, giving you a truly custom fit board that will be an absolute joy to ride, no matter the skill level, weather, or terrain.

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