Skateboarding Product Reviews

Santa Cruz Henning Braaten

For me, Santa Cruz Skateboards have a pretty good track record: 30 years plus in the business, top grade wood and construction techniques, no flair.

Even when other companies were riding the wave of Chinese wood manufacturers, or dabbling with slim ply techniques, Santa Cruz went alone and produced one of the strongest boards to date – the Powerply. Needless to say, the innovation doesn’t stop there and it wasn’t long before the bulkier Powerply got replaced by the lighter and (believe it or not!) stronger Powerlyte boards. The secret to the strength is the layer of Teflon material applied to the top layer of the board – a technique that has since been copied by other companies.

I am always interested in trying a company’s product that tries something new with shape and build of a deck. It doesn’t always work, but judging by my past experience of riding SCS I couldn’t turn up a chance to ride a Powerlyte.

Off the bat, these boards have got pop and flex. They are also damn light so leaping over bins and things is no longer a problem. However, if you like lot of concave on your board, SCS might not be your best bet. Despite this Henning Braaten model having a B-52 of a nose, the tail is pretty shallow and short. This isn’t a worldly crisis or anything, but keep it in mind if you like a lot of space to move your feet about on the tailend of things.

Now, after an unfortunate failure at making a super dope ass trick (Hype!), my tail went skywards then downwards resulting in a heavy delam on the tail. Game over..? Nope. SCS boards have strong construction so a brisk knock back into place and that delam has yet to worry me again. Stoked.

Finally, the only weird thing with these Powerlyte boards is the Teflon material getting frayed at the edges when you scrape your board gripside. Just so you know, Teflon is a super tough and light material used in bullet proof jackets, frying pans etc so when your board has a little yellow fuzz around the rails, don’t fret.

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Ralph Lloyd-Davis