When we designed 4X, we had two goals in mind:
- Minimise torsional flex – better tracking in sweepers, more predictable slides, and increased straight-line stability
- Extra stiffness lengthways, but with just enough flex to absorb bumps and keep a smooth ride. Controlled, directional flex is key.
Goal #1 – Minimise Torsional Flex.
On the right you can see what we mean by torsional flex in a longboard. As you turn side to side, your toes and heels “twist” the board along it’s length. Whilst this can be desirable in a cruiser deck, in a speedboard it gives sloppy cornering and unpredictable sliding. Not cool!!
You can see that the lines of force run diagonally across the deck, from shoulder to shoulder, or heel to toe.
With 4X, there is a layer of glass in the deck that runs diagonally, so that the fibres act to prevent the deck twisting and you corner and lean.
Goal #2 – Controlled, directional flex
However, we don’t just want torsional stiffness, we also want a degree of lengthways stiffening too, as speedboards need to be stiff to a predictable ride. In short, we need to control the flex according to it’s direction within the deck – we want zero twist, but a tiny bit of give along the length to absorb any bumps and shocks.
On the right you can see down the length of the board rather than the side. Here, things are reversed to the X-Flex diagram above – it’s actually the top layer of glass that’s under the most stress (in Extension), and the bottom layer is in Compression.
We’ve kept the bottom layer vertical (with the fibres running along the length of the deck) to give us extra stiffness lengthways, and we’re using the top diagonal layer to minimise torsional flex.
So what this means is – you get your torsional stiffness from the top layer of Fibreglass, and your lengthways stiffness from the bottom layer of Fibreglass.
We’re using the same Outer Maple Veneers as X-Flex to damp things down and give a controlled ride with minimal bounce. We generally use a thicker Wood Core for 4X, matching plies with wheelbase to keep the balance between stiffness and weight down.
We use 4X in the Steezestoker, Sequel, Antuna, Vandella and Shocker. It is proven in race and freeride conditions all over the globe. Our riders can attest that it is one of the strongest and most effective speedboard constructions available, anywhere.