Author Archives: Mike

Skateboarding History Compared to Today, Mike D’s Perspective

Take a look at skateboarding history. NO WORRIES!  We did your homework for you.  Basically, some young MacGyvers in the 1940’s attached random metal wheels to some janky trucks and nailed them into a wood plank.  This happened in California, Paris, Hawaii – nobody I know really knows.  But it happened.  There are lots of details here, I don’t really know, so I’ll summarize what I find relative to our scene report today.

1950’s – a California shop started selling complete skateboards.  The fire started.

1963-1965 – $10 million worth of board sales

1965 – Pattti McGee made the cover of Life magazine.  Pretty major for a young sport.

1966 – Shops started getting scared, shit was dangerous. That made parents scared. Sales dropped significantly and Skateboarder Magazine stopped publication. The popularity of skateboarding dropped and remained low until the early 1970s.

1970 – FRANKY NAS!!!  Homie was pumping out home-made Urethane Wheels!  Respect.

1970s- Skaters were digging Frank’s urethane wheels!  Skateparks hadn’t been invented yet, so skaters started skating everything.

1976- (probably happened earlier, I don’t really know) Truck companies started casting trucks, and skateboarding became awesome.  The banana board was also introduced, and it was for the cool kids because it came in assorted colors!  Relate that to today – Precision trucks and Penny Boards….skateboarding skipped a beat in 1976.  So, lets back up to 1975.

1975- Del Mar National Championships, which is said to have had up to 500 competitors!  What?  A skateboarding competition where all the cool kids could show off their colored boards?  RAD!

Competitions continued into the…80’S!

1980s- BIRTH OF THE MILLENNIAL  This period was fueled by skateboard companies that were run by skateboarders. The focus was initially on vert and cheap transition. This is a special period, because most of the skateboard and longboard companies today are owned/operated by skaters born in this decade.  Do the math.  We were raised on the same shit, in different homes.  SHIT WAS RAD IN THE 1980s!  Subconsciously, the 1980’s kind of run this industry we call home.

1990’s – STREET.  POPSICLE SHAPE BOARD.  TWIN TIP.  FUNCTIONAL.  Need I say more?  Competitions and skateboarding in the mainstream caused the industry to become very competitive, and skateboards became very minimalistic. but the only competitions that you heard of were X-games, and whatever other big namers.  Independent events happened at skate parks, skate shop parking lots, etc – but hosting an event was not easy, 1,2,3.   Teeny-tiny wheels for higher ollies.  Hanging your board out of your front pocket, hanging on by the wheel, the side shaved head with the comb over, wide-leg jeans – 55″!  Walkmans, Bart Simpson…MAYNESTREAM!

THE INTERNET.  tHE INTERNET.  tHE iNTERNET. The Internet.

(The Internet had a pretty major role in all of this……….)

2000-2005- By the turn of the century, skateboarding was officially no longer a fad, but a serious sport with immense international growth and local bans.  Most cities were pretty harsh on skaters – no matter the size of the board.  This was also the period when most of today’s longboard companies started becoming successful.  A re-birth of shapes and extended wheelbases attracted new participants – and new genres of skateboarding/longboarding emerged.  DH skateboarding was growing fast!  Distance Skateboarding was growing fast!  Examples:  Maryhill Festival of Speed & Broadway Bomb NYC.

2006-2010- Longboard companies continued to grow.  Traditional skateboarding went full mainstream, acquired by the big Corporate brands, re-branded and marketed to specific age demographics.  Longboarding continued to be skater-owned/skater-operated until 2008 when Sector Nine Longboards was acquired by Billabong.  Pretty major move for both companies, and I think it was a solid move.  That definitely makes it more difficult to distribute boards for smaller manufacturers, but whatever. #Respect

OK – You want the truth?

I skated in the 80’s, but I was a kid just fucking around in the neighborhood, not like I got good at it or anything.  No matter what, it’s my roots and it was sweet.  I didn’t really skate much until 1999 when a buddy offered me an Envy Classic 159 from California on 10″ standard king trucks and 70mm side-set, vented aluminum core wheels, abec 5 bearings.  I remember that shit like it was yesterday.

After that, I skated most of what Sector9 offered in their catalog 2001-2005.  I was hooked.  My local dealer Wind Waves and Wheels would special order anything for me that they didn’t have in stock.  I made that a habit.  Moved to Daytona Beach and converted to Loaded38, then left Daytona Beach riding a Gravity38 & Santa Cruz31.  Landed in New York City with my girl, and skated Friday Night Rip with the Earthwing crew.  Note Setup: Gravity Posiedon38, 72mm centerset S9 wheels on Randal150 front 62mm centerset wheels on a gullwing 9″ truck on the rear.  You know, for sliding.

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Met Ryan, Founder of Bustin in 2007 and helped around the Bustin shop after work every day.  I was a cheese-salesmen for Land-O-Lakes and a Hot Dog Wholesaler for Hebrew National Dogs. (I’m Italian-Irish, but pretended to be Jewish).  Worked for gear until the recession of 2008 hit the USA and I was laid off from the corporate world.  Ryan offered me a job at Bustin same day.  Say word.

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2009 – Ryan asked me to join Bustin as a Partner, I cut out my first Mike D prototype, designed for Traffic Surfing in NYC traffic.  We defined Push Culture was that same week, recognizing out style of skating as different.  We moved Bustin from Hoboken to Brooklyn and opened our first retail location/online fulfillment/shipping dept.  That was rad.  Some say 2009 was also the spike in the skateboard industry that we will always compare to.

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2010-2015- We still here!  And now you have some decent history to compare to.  New products, events, corporations….it’s all going full-circle.  DH Skateboarding & Street League are the biggest segments in skateboarding, so it seems.  Parents seem less in control of the decisions their kids are making on a skateboard, so long as helmets are worn. Longboarding and Skateboarding are commonly dubbed as one, regardless of what the Pure Bloods blab.  Longboarding is a form of expression, an activity, a sub-sport with a bright future.  Kids are playing less soccer and choosing to cruise the neighborhood with their friends on a longboard.  You may not think that’s cool, but I know it means we’re all going to be OK.  1 Love.

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Dublin Longboard Crew & Irish DH Outlaw League -Words, Pearse D’Arcy

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Last year, The Dublin Longboard Crew in Ireland hosted their first ever Irish Downhill Skateboarding Outlaw League. After a few years of hosting Outlaws races, the mates finally decided to put their heads together and created an Outlaw League so us Irishmen (and gals) could get some race practice in before heading out to International events during the summer. Continue reading

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Bustin x Tribe Judge BIG AIR COMP at Cannonsburg Ski Area

Mike Dallas - www.bustinboards.com

State Games of Michigan Winter Games happened this weekend at Cannonsburg Ski Area near Grand Rapids, Michigan.  Of course, the Bustin homies and I were there – because we’re into rad shit.  And let me tell you, Cannonsburg knows how to dose up the Midwest with 100% Pure.  Grade A.  High Quality Shit.

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Cannonsburg boasts the absolute best freestyle terrain in West Michigan, including a skier/rider-only rail jam setup in GR, new and improved 4-pack jumpline, better-than-standard Skier/Boarder X course, and the first-ever banked slalom course. This photo was taken by a local photographer during Opening Ceremones of Winter State Games – a traditional pass-the-torch -which was carried by a skiier on the jump set. Obviously, terrain park personnel must know pyrotechnics, in case of a Michigan Avalanche. Because that happens. Pretty rad.

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OK, Busted. I was going to watch the ceremony with everybody else at the bottom of the Double lift, but instead jumped on the Quad lift to watch the fireworks from the sky. Great decision! Snapped this click when the works exploded then reviewed the photo and noticed the Bustin Tent in the background! The Tribe homies had set up the tent right on the knuckle of the last kicker, so I exited the chairlift all amped about it, did a few whirly-tricks down the hill and skied the line below double chair, left of the jump set. Saw some pretty sweet airs from down there! Ski Patrol was a little confused when I slid up, so I explained myself. Gravy.

Mike Dallas - Bustin Boards

Not all work is play, but when you play do work – Salute your local terrain park shaper. Those few brave few who brave extreme temps to make sure we have smooth jumps, jibs, rails, walls, features, landings. Thank you for your service! Back in the day, we used to build rogue jumps off in the woods – but ski patrol would kick-down your jump and maybe clip your pass.  That never stopped us from making jumps, and doing sweet tricks when nobody was looking. Here you have an old school Iron Cross. Who cares if its not technical, that shit felt good.

Like I said before, jumps are a lot bigger than we used to make them. Mostly because now the resorts have big-ass snow-cat machines that push and pull snow around to make huge snow piles – beyond our old school imaginations – and its great! Here is a cool phone camera snap of a State Games of Michigan competitor launching the final kicker in the triple set at Cannonsburg. Word.

 

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Bustin x Tribe Thursday Terrain Park Session at Cannonsburg Ski Area

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Bustin is taking full advantage of the snow, because we are tired of complaining about too much snow in the streets.  This year, Bustin teamed up with Cannonsburg Ski Area & Tribe Boardwear in Grand Rapids, Michigan to host a Thursday Night Session in Cannonsburg’s terrain park.  We were honored to have the Pure Michigan Antix Board Co crew on site!  Their new Hoffmaster 154 is FRESH!

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We set up a Bustin rainbow Feature & Tribe set up a step-down feature, then we put the Bustin tent between the features and blasted some Tropical Trance music for all to enjoy.

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Bustin & Tribe brought hella swag and we had fun getting creative with the giveaways.  From 6-8pm, 100+ skiiers & snowboarders lapped the park and had a blast.  Bustin hooked it up with some Cannonsburg Custom decks which were awarded to the heavy hitters at the end of the event.

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We came up with a pretty fun game, which was more dangerous as the night went on.  We would stand next to a feature and wave a shirt in the air, like in a bull fight.  Riders would come maching in, jib the rail, and try to grab the shirt.  Between Tribe & Bustin – we gave away at least 30 shirts!  We saw some great grabs and epic slams.  The riders couldn’t get enough!  It was rad.  Another moment of badness was when we handed out a sticker to 100+ shredders at the beginning of the event, and when we asked everyone to take off their gloves and apply the stick, everybody did it! its never that easy!  i blame the cold!  #success

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After awhile, we wanted to see riders jump, and clear the entire feature.  We saw some BIG AIRS!  Sketchy, and AWESOME!

blog5Eventually, I got a little antsy and decided to do some shredding.  Founders All Day IPA may, or may not have influenced my involvement.  I’m old school, not used to terrain parks, rails, jibs, features.  i’m down with the old skool JUMPS!  Sorry for the crappy photo!  I swear I landed it.

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Growing up, we used to make jumps wherever Ski Patrol was not.  because, if you were caught making jumps – you’d have your pass clipped.  F that noise.  These days, there is more park riding than alpine skiing, especially in the midwest where vertical is not our friend.  We’re dealing with about 900ft of vertical at #MyCannonsburg, and we slay it.  But, Michigan has 4 seasons – 3 warm, 1 freezing.  That’s why we’re so into longboarding!  We can shred all year long!  1 Love.

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Which Longboard or Skateboard Should I Buy My Kid?

Customer Question of the Year:  “Do You make longboards for kids?”

GOOD QUESTION!  YES, Bustin designs boards for all styles of riding, skaters young and old.  Not all kids are the same, so we have a few recommendations. Bustin recommends you skate with your kids now, before it is too late.  They grow up fast…

1. Bustin Maestro34 (Maestro Mini)

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The MaestroMini is 34 inches in length, and is one of the smaller decks Bustin offers.  The board was designed for smaller riders, with drop-thru truck design and shorter wheelbase than most other Bustin Boards decks.  Maestro34 is kin of Maestro38, Bustin’s #1 selling longboard, M34 was shortened for younger riders.Drop-Thru design means your trucks are fastened to the top of the deck, rather than the bottom like a traditional skateboard.  Most trucks are universal and will be compatible with a drop-thru deck made by Bustin.   Drop-Thru allows the deck to be lower to the ground making it easier for a smaller skater to push their longboard, since kids have short legs.  Kids have a much easier time pushing drop-thru style decks because their legs do not have to stretch as far to touch the ground while pushing.  We also design Drop-Thru decks for LDP, Long Distance Pushing – in 38″, 40″, 42″ length.  Longer deck platform = Greater EFP (Effective Foot Platform).  Deck length preference is different among all Skaters, there is no perfect formula. Top skathletes prefer the lowest possible deck platform for distance skateboarding and races.

2. Bustin Sportster33 (Sportster Mini)

 My next recommendation is Sportster33, the little brother of Sportster36, Bustin’s Top freeride deck.  The Sportster series has deep concave & dropped platform making it the lowest riding deck in Bustin’s lineup.  Deep concave keeps feet locked in while going fast and freeriding, which is all the rage these days.  I recommend the Sportster33 for the kid who is age 10 going on 18.  The kid who drools over longboard photos and wants a deck to grow with over the years.  Sportster & Maestro series are designed for all-around, which is why we make a smaller version for kids.  My wife is 5’2 and prefers Sportster33 for all-around cruising.  My 4 yr old daughter also loves the Bustin Sportster 33.

3. Bustin Modela26 & Bustin Modela33

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Some kids are drawn to the single kick-tail board series, we call ours Bustin Modela.  We make 2 length options, Modela26 & Modela33.  You may assume Modela26 is the best for your kid because it is the shortest deck.  That’s not necessarily true.  Modela26 was designed for skateboarders who want tail function on a cruiser deck.  The single kick-tail design allows for the same style of skating as a regular popsicle shape skate deck, with bigger wheels.  The 26 may be one of the more difficult shapes to learn, but also one of the most rewarding boards to learn to skate well.  I recommend Modela33, it is a super fun shape that can be enjoyed by kids and parents for cruising and tricks.

Please note:  You can teach your kid to skate on ANY style of skateboard, it really does not matter that much.  The best recommendation we have is to get your kids on board as early an age as possible to initiate muscle memory.  Skateboarding is good for kids, it promotes brain and muscle growth and is a super fun activity.  Do it.

 

 

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