Speed wobble is real, and terrible. I experienced it for the first time a few weeks ago. I was enjoying a ride on my new build, casually coasting around and carving at about 12 MPH. I was in an empty parking lot and thought to myself “let’s see how she handles at a higher speed.” Three seconds later I’m in a heap on the ground, scuffed, scratched, and thankfully not seriously injured, but I could have been!
I experienced speed wobble, shown in the image below from this page
In my case, I had left my trucks on the loose side so that I could turn easily; too loose for the crazy acceleration my build is capable of. The board piked underneath me, this video demonstrates the phenomena well.
@onloop shared this post a while back about a dampened truck, which seems perfect for esk8. We’re in a weird category where sometimes we want to ride in highly trafficked areas and need to turn “on a dime,” but then other times we need the stability of a rigid truck\bushing config to stay stable at high speeds and faster-than-typical-for-skateboarding acceleration.
After lots of reading, I’m not convinced that it is purely rider ability that causes it in our application; the acceleration we achieve is faster than what downhill riders experience, so the “warnings” of speed wobble aren’t as evident, and come too late in my experience. A system that identifies high acceleration and automatically stiffens the bushings would be an ideal solution.
Until then, how do you all minimize speed wobble? I’ve got a completely new bushing setup now, but I don’t think it totally solved the problem.