When we say longboard versus cruiser, we are comparing the standard longboard versus the cruiser longboard. And yes, the cruiser is a specific type of longboard, just to clear up any confusion. With that being said, these are two very different types of longboards, and they are used for different purposes. So let’s compare the standard longboard versus the cruiser to see what they’re all about.
Longboard vs. Cruiser: Side by Side
Longboards are generally bigger than skateboards; they have bigger wheels, trucks, and decks. This makes longboards more comfortable and stable to ride than standard skateboards. But what about specific types of longboards, such as the cruiser?
As the name implies, the cruiser is optimized for fairly leisurely riding. It is often a bit shorter than the longboard and a bit smaller in general. In terms of size, a cruiser looks like a standard skateboard.
Style of Riding
First off, let’s look at what riding styles these longboards are ideal for. The full-size longboard tends to be quite large, bulky, and heavy. But, on the other hand, these are ideal for riding with speed and smoothness over pretty long distances.
They can even handle country roads reasonably well and allow for greater efficiency with not much pushing required. Due to their size and weight, they generally go pretty fast and retain a good deal of momentum.
With that being said, these large boards are not ideal for congested city streets and sidewalks. They aren’t as nimble, nor are they the best for turning either.
The longer the board, the harder it is to turn. This is where a cruiser shines; it is a smaller and nimbler version of the longboard, thus making it ideal for city traveling on congested streets and sidewalks and making tight turns. A standard longboard is best for wide-open areas, whereas a cruiser can be used in tighter spaces.
Size of the Deck
As previously mentioned, full-size longboards are bigger and wider than cruisers. This is perhaps one of the biggest differences between the two – the size of the deck. A typical longboard will measure between 36 and 42 inches in length, and 8.5 inches and 10 inches wide. This is quite large and ideal for moving at high speeds with excellent stability.
On the other hand, the cruiser is generally a lot smaller than a typical longboard. The deck of a cruiser is generally no longer than 34 inches, with some being as short as 28 inches. Thus, the deck of a cruiser is always less than 8.5 inches wide. The short and relatively narrow deck allows for more maneuverability and turning ability. With that said, a cruiser is also a bit less stable than a longboard.
Shape of the Deck
Another differentiating factor between these two types of longboards is the shape. Your average longboard can come in various shapes, but most of them are either pintail or symmetrically cut out.
Most people would associate the pintail design with a typical longboard – that surfboard shape. But, of course, these are very long and wide, with the main point being speed and stability while also providing plenty of room for your feet.
Now, a cruiser may have that same surfboard shape, although it is generally less pronounced. We mentioned that a cruiser is a mix between a standard skateboard and a longboard, which is also true in shape.
When it comes to longboard shapes, the cruiser most closely resembles a standard skateboard. Cruisers also often have a kicktail at the rear, although longboards may also have this.
Although this is not always the case, as it depends on the specific type of longboard or cruiser, longboards generally tend to be a bit more flexible than cruisers. A bit of flexibility is ideal when traveling long distances because it provides more comfort.
Flexibility also enables longboards to be better at carving and also makes things easier on the joints. In addition, it’s easier to ride on rough and bumpy terrain when a board has a bit of flex.
On the other hand, cruisers generally tend to be stiffer than typical longboards because they aren’t designed for off-road riding or rough terrain.
Cruisers are generally used for city riding, so they don’t need much shock or impact absorption. Moreover, cruisers are more often used for tricks than longboards are, and being stiff means that you get a bigger pop out of them.
Another difference between longboards and cruisers is that longboards generally have bigger wheels. Cruisers have wheels usually around 50 millimeters in diameter, whereas longboards have wheels up to 85 millimeters; the bigger the wheel, the faster the movement.
Cruisers generally have somewhat soft wheels, but longboards may have soft or hard wheels. Whether the wheels on a longboard are hard or soft depends on the specific purpose it is being used for.
The Truck Mount
Cruisers usually always have a top mount truck, which means that the trucks are bolted underneath the deck. As a result, cruisers are relatively high off the ground, making them a bit less stable. On the other hand, longboards may also be top mount, but many are also drop-through or even drop-in, which means they are lower to the ground and more stable at high speeds.
These are the significant differences between longboards and cruisers. Now that you know, you can make an informed decision between the two.