You may have noticed the term “cruiser” is used to designate all sorts of skateboards and longboards these days – sometimes it seems like everything is a cruiser. In reality, a cruiser board is a longboard (or skateboard) primarily designed for relaxed riding and surf-style carving, the kind of riding “cruising” generally refers to.
That being said, there are different ways to cruise on a skateboard, which is why cruiser boards come in different types and shapes. Overall, c
- Cruiser skateboards or “mini-cruisers”
- Pintail longboard cruisers
- Drop-through longboard cruisers
With this in mind, here are 3 of the best cruiser longboards on the market – one for each type:
- Mini-cruiser: Landyachtz Dinghy
- Pintail cruiser: Z-Flex pintail 38″
- Drop-through cruiser: Arbor Dropcruiser
In the rest of this post, I’ll briefly discuss each type of cruiser longboard, then I’ll deep-dive into a few of the best cruiser boards for each type.
1. Cruiser skateboards or “mini” cruisers
Mini-cruisers are small longboard cruisers meant primarily for cruising and carving on campus, city sidewalks, and busy parks or boardwalks. They typically have the following characteristics:
- Length in the 26″ to 34″ range, 7″-8.75″ width
- Surfboard type shape with square or swallow tail
- Kickable tail, small flat nose
- Some amount of concave for carving and slashing
- Topmount truck style
- Big soft wheels in the 60-75mm diameter range
turnyand RKP or TKP trucks carvey
Mini cruiser longboards are quick and nimble turning, smooth riding over uneven ground, portable and easy to stash in a backpack or in a locker. They are perfect for campus commutes, city beer runs, and fun sidewalk cruising. Some can even be used in a bowl or a ditch in between cruising sessions. Next, let’s examine two of my favorite mini cruiser longboards.
Best mini cruiser longboard: Landyachtz Dinghy
The Dinghy is an extremely popular mini-cruiser for campus and urban cruising and slashing. Its 28.5″ length and super-nimble setup make it very suitable for weaving through people and things on busy city streets and sidewalks. The large kicktail relative to size, and the responsive Polar Bear trucks make this cruiser highly reactive and maneuverable.
The Dinghy’s 63mm Hawgs wheels are very fast and smooth rolling, and absorb cracks and bumps quite well. Riders can easily mix in kick turns and ollies for curbing in addition to normal cruising. Check out my full review of the Dinghy here, or check out the reviews and pricing on Amazon.
Best mini cruiser longboard: Dusters California Flashback
Priced similar to the Dinghy, the 31″ Dusters California Flashback is a classic surf cruiser longboard with a street deck size. It offers a nice and
The Flashback has a beautiful design with natural wood shades on top and rainbow-shaped yellow and orange lines on
2. Pintail cruiser longboards
Pintails are cruiser longboards by essence as they are primarily designed to for stylish and comfortable cruising. Their main characteristics are:
- Length typically ranging from 36″ to 44″
- Topmount truck style
- Shaped like a long and narrow surfboard with a “pin” (pointy) tail
- No kicks: flat tail, and flat rounded nose
- Typically some flex in the deck for better carving
- Carvy and
- Big 65-75mm soft wheel for smooth rolling and grip
Pintails are all about relaxed and smooth surf style cruising and gentle boardwalk carving. They have relatively tight wheelbases (24-26″) for their size which makes them responsive and
The following are my two favorite pintail cruiser longboards.
Best pintail cruiser longboard: the Landyachtz Chief
The Landyatchz Chief is my favorable pintail so far. At a length of 36″, it’s incredibly smooth rolling and fast turning. The bamboo version of the deck is surprisingly comfortable for a pintail. This is due to the slightly rockered profile, the noticeable concave that cradles your feet when pushing and carving, and the nice flex which adds energy to your cruising sessions.
As always, the Bear Grizzly trucks on this cruiser longboard are incredibly fluid and responsive. The soft (78A) 70mm Hawgs wheels are fast, quiet and grippy even when rolling over rough surfaces. The Landyachtz Chief is beyond doubt a premium pintail cruiser. For the full details on the Chief, see my dedicated post here, or check it out here on Amazon.
Best pintail cruiser longboard: Z-Flex pintail 38″
This slightly larger (38″) pintail cruiser from the legendary Z-Flex brand offers a comfortable foot platform and a smooth ride for easy cruising. Unlike the Bamboo Chief, the 9-ply deck is relatively stiff, resulting in a snappy feel but a slightly bumpier one – although the soft bearing help
The Z-flex pintail’s 180mm 45º RKP trucks are slightly lower to the ground than usual, making push cruising easier despite the board’s low flex. The 69mm wheels are smooth and absorb imperfections well. The cruiser longboard comes in a choice of several beautiful retro designs – see the designs and price on Amazon.
3. Drop-through longboard cruisers
The third type of
These are the main characteristics of drop-through longboard cruisers:
- Length generally in the 35″ – 43″ range
Largestanding platform, typically 9″ to 9.5″ wide
- Long 27″ to 32″ wheelbase
- Large wheel cutouts with “wingtips” (symmetrical or not)
- Drop-through trucks mounted on the narrow tips
- Bigger wheels thanks to lots of clearance from the shape
Drop-through cruiser longboards are designed for cruising comfortably and securely on longer distances and for longer rides. They are well-suited for sustained pushing due to the deck sitting closer to the ground. They are also more stable and comfortable than other types for faster cruising.
Drop-through longboard cruisers are also good for some carving on mild hills during a cruising session due to the cutout shape which gives a lot of wheel clearance. Be aware that this type of cruiser longboard may not be as responsive as the other types due to their larger wheelbase and to your feet not sitting on top over the trucks.
Best drop-through cruiser longboard: Sector 9 Lookout
The Lookout is a big cruiser longboard 41″ long by 9.6″ wide with a massive 31″ wheelbase. Besides its spacious standing platform, the Lookout’s drop-through design and flexy bamboo deck make this board low to the ground and very stable. Thus it’s a great board for comfortable pushing and cruising on longer paths. The flexy deck also allows for lively and responsive carving.
The Gullwing trucks are very stable at higher speed allowing for fast cruising – although at the expense of some responsiveness. The huge soft 74mm Nineball wheels make for a smooth ride on uneven terrain. All in all, the Lookout is a super comfortable board for the serious cruiser, including if your cruise path go through a few good hills. Check out my full review of the Sector 9 Lookout, or take a look at the reviews on Amazon.
Best drop-through cruiser longboard: Arbor Dropcruiser
The Arbor Dropcruiser is another every popular drop-through cruiser. Slightly shorter and wider than the Lookout at 38″ by 9.75″ but with a comparable wheelbase, it’s a very low riding deck due to its dropped platform (a “double drop”). Besides length, one aspect that differentiates the Dropcruiser from the Lookout is the stiff 9-ply full maple deck (vs the Lookout’s bamboo flex). The Dropcruiser is also fully symmetrical, unlike the Lookout.
The double drop construction makes the Dropcruiser a low and stable board to push and cruise on. The Paris V2 180mm trucks are also well-known for their responsiveness and tight turning. All this, added to the overall quality of Arbor products, make the Dropcruiser a very good option for a drop-through cruiser. See my full review of the Dropcruiser here.
– Featured: “Sidewalk Crusher” by @ChristianRosillo; Rider: @myungjin.c; Permission: Loaded Boards
– “Skater in Venice Beach – Log Angeles, Un” (CC BY 2.0) by Giuseppe Milo (www.pixael.com)
– “DSC03388” (CC BY 2.0) by Rob Cruickshank