Sunday, August 20, 2017

Wiped Out

Even with full pads and shit, I wiped out and got a minor rash on my knee. I was cruising a bit too close to a curb and the board stopped dead, but I kept going ahead... landed like sack of potatoes on my left side...nothing too bad, just a scratched hand, and a scuff on my left leg.

Good thing I have my tetanus shot from the bad wipeout I had about 5 months ago.

Friday, August 18, 2017

6 Months No Cannbis

[On another note, Calgary police busted a drug operation in the city worth 700,000 CAD. ]

Has it been six months? Really? I remember back on Feb 28th, I stopped vaping  Cannabis. A month later I gave away my grinder and vaporizer. I remember a few things that bugged me when I was using Cannabis. First, I was in a mental fog sometimes. My anger would rise quickly over the smallest things. While it helped me get to sleep at night, I found myself using increasingly more amounts to get "high". I never tried shatter or wax, but I stuck mainly to hash and bud.

Will I smoke again? I don't know. I certainly don't crave it. While I can see this plant being very beneficial in moderation, it doesn't fit my current lifestyle. If you remember, I gave up Cannabis to buy a boosted board. I think it was worth the "sacrifice" of not using weed.

Now don't get me wrong. I don't judge people who use and certainly wouldn't think negatively about it if any of my family used it. You have to watch how much you use, otherwise the habit can creep up on you before you know it.

Thursday, August 17, 2017

You just don't give a fuck

 Electric Skateboarding Rules:

1. Pass all cyclists. Always at maximum throttle and only when safe to do so.

2. Don't skateboard in the rain. The board will not work and it will be ruined.

 3. Pay attention to the weather and carry an unbrella and garbage bag in case it rains.

4. Use flashing lights to attract attention from cyclists, cars, and pedestrians. When they see you, you are safer.

5. Never pass fast close to pedestrians. Always be mindful of your surroundings and openings - especially driveways and hidden alleys. Surprises can hurt or kill you.

 6. Use a bike bell to chime when people are hogging lanes. It's very effective and always thank them when you pass by.

7. When exploring new paths be careful about the road and resist the temptation to speed unless it's absolutely clear of hazards and people.

8. Always wear your protective gear. Always.

Wednesday, August 2, 2017

Boosted Board 1,160 km review


The boosted board came into being via Kickstarter back in 2012 - and you can view it here:

The original board had almost the same specs as the V2 dual+ board, except the bluetooth is much, much better. V1 had terrible disconnect issues if there was interference. In 2016 Boosted announced the availability of the V2 board. So I decided to pre-order the board in March and it arrived in early April. The shot below is before I desecrated it with nail polish and colored the letters with horrible higlights. Yeah, I trashed my board. It's only grip tape.

Because the board is bamboo and a bit of maple, it rides extremely well. You can jump up and down on the board and never worry about breaking it. I know, I've tried.

And while it's true, you could throw the board down like Casey Neistat does and it'll likely work. But I paid a hell of alot of money for this thing ($1,500 USD) so there is no way in hell I'm doing that. I gave up babying the appearance after 400 km. It's useless to keep cleaning the wheels, they'll get black. Your grip tape will get scratches and shit. The sooner you accept this the better.

The best point about this board is the power and control. I can literally start at zero and race to 32km/hour in a few seconds. Very few (if any) cyclists can keep up at this pace. Many are astonished at being taken by a measly skateboard.

Dual 1,000 watt motors make a huge difference. I'm glad I went for the Dual + model, it gives you 22 mph at 24 % incline.

Over the course of 1,150 kilometers, I went through 6 belts, and a completely new set of electronics. It died at 850 km and wouldn't move anymore. They replaced the belts, motors, controller, motor controllers, and battery. It rides quieter and a little slower (and safer I believe).

Value for money. Is it worth buying? No. You would be better off buying a small scooter or maybe a bicycle if you want decent range. The battery just isn't big enough for my commute. Eventually boosted will send me the double capacity battery - in friggin December.

Do I regret buying it? Never. Yes, it's a very expensive toy. But its' sure cheaper than a mid-life porsche. Forget about motorcycles for now. I'm going to spend a couple of years clearing debt and then think about what to do. I bet boosted will have a V3 by then and will have more speed and power.

Safety is a big concern when riding these gadgets. You have to ensure you have the proper gear - helmet, pads, wrist gaurds, knee guards... otherwise you're going to have a real bad time if you fall. I installed lights and a bike bell on my backpack. It's helped tremendously.  You really have to watch where you are riding. Any new areas I go, I always go slow until I've gone over it at least once to know my route. Keep your eyes and ears peeled for pedestrians, cyclists, and cars. Always assume people do not see you. Use your hands to stop traffic or people. Use your voice and bell. Be cautious and always expect people to do the unexpected.

Let's be honest. You'll look a little ridiculous riding a powered skateboard if you're my age (late 40's). But seriously, nobody has given me any flack. I've had thumbs up, people yell 'casey neistat' and even cheer. Cyclists have been pretty decent too, although I did get a nasty look from one a few months ago. Fuck that guy.

Maintenance wise, you're looking at bearings every 3,000 km or so. Wheels will last as long as you want, generally I would change them at 3,000 km unless they're absolutely chewed to shit. The battery should last for 4 thousand charges at least and only cost about $199 to replace. The rubber grommets on the trucks can be changed once you notice the ride getting hard, but in reality they should last the life of the board. Boosted has designed this board to be repaired. Every single component can be remove and replaced.

New grip tape can be purchased online for about $40 in a vast amount of custom designs. I think I'll replace the grip tape first if and when the traction becomes a problem. So far it hasn't proven anything bad. I use grip gum to clean the tape (basically a huge rubber eraser).

Final Thoughts:

* Super fun toy
* Not practical for commutes longer than 6 km UNLESS you have the big extended battery (12km range)
* Dangerous but if you love adrenaline this baby is for you
* Friends, wives, and co-workers will think you're nuts

Saturday, July 29, 2017

Mid Summer Update

 Summer is well in swing, the temps are near 31-32 for about a week. Not going to complain, this weather is great.

The smoke started to dissipate. Caused by fires in BC.

The fixed up board has about 150 or so km's, bringing the total km to 1,000 now. 

Boost on.

Ripping downtown.

Still outrunning cyclists.

Friday, July 21, 2017

Raging Drunken Homeless Asshole

For the money, I'd rather get a Tesla S than a GT-R. They both cost roughly the same, but the Tesla S wins on acceleration and power. You can't beat fully electric drivetrains for instant torque and power.

I was in the back alley with some colleagues to let them try the boosted board. It was going fine until some drunken asshole comes up and asks us to punch him in the face. We're like, "No, dude.... no thanks".  Dude starts getting aggressive and reaches into his back pocket.

At this moment I'm like "This asshole is going to pull a knife on us". My boosted board is far away with another colleague riding it. I try to calm the guy down by saying "Hey, dude, chill out.". And then he's like "NO! You guys think you're better than me because I"m homeless". And at this point I'm not scared at all. I look at my colleagues who have frozen expressions on their faces. They do nothing. I'm like "Man, I have homeless people for friends... it's not like that at all... chill."  (a lie but it works). He calms down and goes away for a bit.

Finally my board comes back and it's time to get the fuck out of dodge. I grab the board and remote, switch to pro mode, and blast outta there.

Fuck drunken asshole wanna be tough guys. I was tempted to smash my board over his head but I didn't want to have blood on the grip tape.

Wednesday, July 19, 2017

My Boosted Board is Back !!

Perfect symmetry in the bike racks in downtown Calgary. I love the shot.

The red morning sun lights downtown, you can't see blue sky anymore, it's all gray now from the forest fire smoke.

Mirrored reflection off a newly setup downtown art structure (curved mirror). I pulled the building into it and I think it worked out well.

I think it's a replica Shelby, but it does look like one, doesn't it?

And she's back! My boosted board V2 Dual + is back - they replaced the motors, motor controller, battery, remote, and even the belts!! I found the wheels were too tight, so I loosened them. They tightened the trucks too, I have to loosen it up. I did ride it and it is VERY quiet compared to my original boosted board. I don't think it's as fast either, but maybe that's a good thing - these things are crazy dangerous and fun.

My odometer is set back to 7.5 km, so any mileage I put on, I'll just add 850 KM to it anyway.

Thursday, July 13, 2017

2017 Calgary Stampede and Boosted Board Update

+32 on the grounds and crowded. The rodeo show was neat but I didn't stick around too long, it was too hot for me, even in shorts. 

The show essentially is the same as it was every year. Same announcers, music, and a slightly different theme. When we walked in there was Native American dancing which was nice.

Didn't go up to the stands, wanted to stay near the front and take some pictures. I used the Ricoh GR and bumped into a photographer who had a Nikon D4 and a massive 400 mm lense. I showed him the ninja camera and he said "That is a very nice camera!". Indeed. But his gear cost at least $10K. This old Ricoh was 700 new. 

Fairground food is very expensive. I had already eaten a hamburger and potatoes whic was fine. 

A deep fried onion sounds like a stomach nightmare. I passed on that.

The boosted board was fixed today. The parts that were replaced?

* Battery - mainly due to the connection/cover that was broken (due to use)
* Both 1,000 watt motors
* Both motor controllers
* Boosted remote control (it didn't hold a charge anymore)

Should get the board next week.