Three Boards:
Loaded Dervish, Bhangra and Landyachtz Switch

Dervish, Bhangra, Switch

Loaded Bhangra, Loaded Dervish and Landyachtz Switch longboards

My first longboard was the Loaded Dervish. I love this board. So far I have travelled the best part of 800 miles on it both here in the UK and down under in New Zealand. I brought it off-the-shelf from a shop in Brighton. It is a very solid built, stable and reliable 'work horse'. It would be as good on a mountain road as it is running along the sea front. Long trecks on longboards can testify to former, I to the later. The Dervish is however just a bit too long to go directly on the back of a back pack (as I found when I took it to New Zealand). The clear sand grip that comes with the board looks lovely, letting you see the groovy design on the top of the board but it eventually comes off. I tried a decent sounding 'spray-on' sand grip but it did last long. I eventually took off the old sand and glue, cleaned up the board and applyed some decent black 'Jessops' grip tape. It lost some of its good looks but it much easier to use and safer now.

The Bhangra is a long longboard (20cm longer than the Dervish, see below) and in contrast to the Dervish, feels more like a giant skateboard than a 'mountain' board (it doesn't however claim to be a downhill board). I brought this via e-bay directly from the USA (be aware that customs charges can add costs). It is great fun but doesn't feel as secure and stable as the Dervish. It feels lighter than the Dervish but it must be an illusion due to it length. It has kick tails, front and back, which make it much easier than the Dervish to do tricks. The Bhangra feels like it is a later production board the quality of the finish is superb (although the Dervish is not at all bad).

As is so often the case longboards may have their trade make on them (e.g. Loaded or Landyachtz) but they don't usually have their specific board name details. I know what both my Loaded boards are because Loaded has a relatively small range of great boards and its easy to see which board is which. Its not so straight forward with the Landyachtz but I am fairly sure that my board is the Landyachtz Switch (two horned goats on the underside art work).

The Switch is smaller than both the Dervish or the Bhangra but heavier than the Dervish. It's a dropdown board. The deck sides are flat rather than sanded into a curve which makes the board seem thicker and chunky. Because of the dropdown it might even sensibly go around the back of a large traveller style back pack if you wanted to travel around with the board. The Dervish (Paris) trucks go through slots in the deck and are effectively fixed to the top of board, in the Bhangra and Switch the trucks fit under the board. As a result despite the Switch being a dropdown, its not quite as close to the ground as I thought it would / could be.

The Switch is really very responsive, the truck rubbers (bushings) must be much softer than on the Dervish and Bhangra. The board handles well and feels safe yet speedy and very quick to turn and manoeuvre. It's a dropdown board with quite a steep rise up to the trucks which makes the board 'interesting' to ride (I guess great for power slides). The board and wheels tackle all the usual bumps and promenade paving stones and its nice and quiet too.

The engineering quality of all three boards is great - the decks, trucks and wheels will last and last. The Dervish is the old faithful, go anywhere do anything board, the Bhangra is a board to use for a change and good for tricks while the Switch gives all this but also a rather interesting ride.

Loaded Dervish (105 x 22 cm, 84cm truck to truck, 12mm thick deck, 3.7 kg)
Flex 1 deck, Paris Truck, ABEC11 Gumballs (green) 76mm, 78a wheels
top of deck is 12cm above the ground (although the deck has a slight upward curve)

Loaded Bhangra (123 x 24cm, 88cm truck to truck, 15mm thick deck, 4.3 kg)
Flex 2 deck, Paris Trucks, Orangatang Stimulus (purple) 70mm, 83a wheels
top of deck is 11cm above the ground

Landyachtz Switch (94 x 24cm, 83cm truck to truck, 15mm thick dropdown, 4.1 kg)
Bear trucks, Zombie (white) 76mm, 80a wheels
top of deck is 11cm above the ground

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Dr Jonathan Hare University of Sussex, Brighton.

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