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2021 and Season Five

This tumultuous year came to a close with a flurry of activity here at Voxel Boards.

Primary design work at the workshop and at home began to wind down as the primary “Five Classics” completed their design process.

With more time to focus on production and media, we quickly pivoted into these ventures. Check out our latest media release “A Clear Blue Day in LA”!

The Pharaoh


Winter and the Holiday season saw the late arrival of our latest Deck design.

The Pharaoh is a 36″ x 9.5″ Hybrid Micro-Drop deck. Conceived as a directional top-mount, The Pharaoh comes equipped with a variety of features

intended bring you a consistent and reliable Downhill and Freeride Deck. The Pharaoh’s design has been refined over a year’s time to provide with a secret weapon at all your future sessions.

Featuring a fresh and uniquely shaped “Hourglass-Tub” Concave, the standing platform provides leverage where you need it and a comfortable space for your feet right where you need it.

A 16mm Micro-Drop defines this deck, with slides taking less effort whilst you retain more control compared to a typical drop deck.

As a Black-Owned business, I felt it was my responsibility to give a voice to the voiceless with my small platform.

The original Project Name for this design was “Inquisitor” but as the year 2020 moved forward, my inspiration had shifted.

The official name for this design became “The Pharaoh” and I specially commissioned a new graphic from a local artist.

The idea for this Black Panther resurrected is symbolic, and inspired by heroes and martyrs like Malcom X, Harriet Tubman, Huey P. Newton and the countless victims of racism and violence that are remembered in the name of peace and equality for all.

 

The Kraken: Our New 3D Printing Ecosystem


I spent some time revamping and upgrading my entire system to provide more accurate 3D printing and a better service to all of my customers.

Lets start with my vision for customer service.

 

Monitor the progress of your 3D Printed Order live, with a secured Live-Stream of our 3D Printer while your order is being manufactured.

When your order is ready to be printed, we can provide a secure link to this live-stream!

With services provided by The Spaghetti Detective, your print is protected from errors and defects using Artificial Intelligence, while remote access gives us power to manage our machines remotely, securely, and quickly.

Time-lapse data can be made available upon request for fun, troubleshooting, or curiosity!

 

“The Kraken Server”


The software is only possible with hardware! I’ve introduced a webcam into the equation, and a secured server named “Kraken” that will be in charge of managing the Printer Farm here at Voxel Boards.

The Kraken name came from the idea of allowing a tentacle to pop out anywhere I need it, lending me access to my network of machines anywhere in the world I might be, and keeping an eye on things when I am unable to.

Reliability and transparency are my best tools and when it comes to automation, those benefits should pass right on to the customer. Using our Kraken Servers, I hope more customers will recognize our 3D Printed products and services as the best in the community.

 

Upcoming Projects: Xyclops + Visionary


Xyclops and Visionary will be the most innovative “moonshot” project from Voxel Boards to date.

While not many specific details can be given out due to the nature of this new product, I wanted to inform my customers and fans that they are not the names of future Deck designs.

Visionary is intended to be software available for free to all customers and users, and will also provide additional functionality to a related project.

Stay tuned!

 

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Natural Habitat

 

Energy is running high in the concrete jungle. When Ventura, DTLA and Gel Lab natives converge at midnight, we get a glimpse of the race for survival in their natural habitat.

VRSA takes his new custom Jaguar out for a spin, and then a few more for good measure.

@VRSAUNIVERSE
@voxelboardsofficial
@elisaillustrates

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Rising To The Glass Ceiling: Gravos²

“The weight of a sword.”

Gravity is ever-present in our lives. From the moments before we’re born, and especially the moments we’re sliding down hills or edging ahead of our friends in parking-structures. Today, the Gravos² serves as a reliable entryway for beginners, and a cruiser with teeth for advanced skaters. For this reason, Gravos² features a 3/4″ linear micro-drop and spacious wheel cutouts. 6mm’s of mellow radial concave helps to activate your turns, as well as functioning like a canvas for potential concave-implants. I’ve chosen not to include drop-through mounting and as a result, the skater can expect more stability without sacrificing as much grip.

 

“Prototypes Are Like Tech Demos”

 

Innovating on our construction has been a priority from the beginning. Being able to provide the same deck in two very different construction materials is an art-form. Iteration is key, and when you want to go into a new direction, it’s best to test as much as you can and to take steps out of your comfort-zone. Reach as far towards your goals as possible when you’re developing something, and show the world what you can do – then refine the shape until it’s indistinguishable from your vision.

Reliable, Versatile, Durable

Gravos² measures in at 34″ x 9″, making it the perfect stow-away during travels and commutes. With comfortable 6mm deep mellow-concave and a decisively short 0.75″ Micro-Drop, Gravos² is perfect for everything from campus cruising, to light downhill. Between our affordable VC-Hybrid Construction for slightly more flex or our premium Higgs Lite Construction if you need more stiffness. Spacious wheel-cutout provide adequate room for large wheels. Peace of mind from wheel bite, combined with predictable grip and easier slides…Gravos² is straight out of the Goldilocks-Zone

“Ice-Cream That Never Melts”

This Graphic was inspired by a local ice-cream parlor – Coastal Cone! This beautiful Taiyaki Cone was digitally drawn by local Artist Elise Tapia and is protected under fiberglass and water-based epoxy.

Consistent Quality

Our decks are handmade and supplemented with 3D printing and CNC technology. Repeatability is no issue with our modern and unique techniques in the shop. We use both 3D printed mould sections or full machined moulds for pressing our decks but the results are the same. Accurate concave, tight lamination and warp-resistant decks.

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Buy, Borrow, Steal: Why You Need a Voxel Board in 2020 and Beyond

Despite an ongoing pandemic in the face of COVID-19, we have hit our stride here at Voxel Boards in 2020. With a flurry of new tools, materials and techniques, we’re excited to bring the very best we can deliver to the table.

Voxel Boards has had a tough journey getting on our feet, but we haven’t let any obstacle stop us – throwing our faith into new technology and calculated design philosophy, we have stayed true to our origins while reaching boldly towards the future. In this post, we’re going to go over all the latest strides we’ve taken, talk about the vision of Voxel Boards, and finally answering a burning question for lots of our readers – Why you need a new Voxel Board for your next skateboard deck.

Our “Higgs” Construction. A History.

 

Skateboard construction is an integral part of any design. Simply put, skateboard construction is the sum of materials from which a deck is formed. These materials and their properties have a wide range of benefits and consequences. It is up to the engineer behind a design to make wise and informed material selections that lend to functionality.

However like many things in life, compromises between weight, flexibility, cost and many other variables are inevitable. In early 2017, I made the decision to research and develop our first premium skateboard construction. My venture was twofold – eliminate waste from warped product, and to get decks lighter than our 8-9 ply maple decks. With tons of work in a garage, a stack of Bamboo, Maple and Birch veneers; Higgs Tech Construction was born.

Original Higgs Tech
Original Higgs Tech

 

While chasing a better product I had stumbled upon many different techniques I could apply to my work, including fiberglass and our modernized graphic application! Developing our Higgs Tech Construction was largely helpful to my endeavors at Voxel Boards yet it was largely a failure due to cost and a poor birch harvest the following winter. As a result, I made the decision to stop producing decks made from Higgs Tech. Instead I continued to produce decks in a more affordable and standardized construction – VC Hybrid. Years passed, and with my initial woes behind me, I continued to design and produce decks from VC- Hybrid. However, it is a new decade and after learning many new things I have decided to revise Higgs Tech.

Introducing – Higgs Lite

By sourcing thicker material for our decks, we are able to reduce the number of ply’s and glue seams between them. This contributes to a more efficient structure that cures faster, while maintaining an excellent strength to weight ratio.

By incorporating 1/8″ thick bamboo veneer face sheets, we are able to increase relative stiffness while maintaining unique elastic properties. Our maple cross-grain sheets provide adequate torsional resistance. Finally our decks are laminated with fiberglass on both sides, protecting our unique and original artwork and dramatically increasing tensile strength.

The 805²

The 805² is a culmination of 5 years of research and development. With tons of rider feedback as well as manufacturing experience, the 805 is one of our most produced and iconic designs. While having seen many iterations, The 805² will remain a compact and agile single-kicked missile.

Very little stands in your way with this deck underfoot – dense urban sprawl with tall, busted curbs or high elevation forest runs are conquered with a simple “form follows function” design.

Spacious wheel wells provide adequate clearance for your favorite race wheels, while pressed in flares provide tactile feedback and points of contact in the concave. Push your limits on your favorite freeride runs with mellow and comfortable 6mm deep, radial concave.

Finally, we have our signature kicktail featuring a 5° Pre-Kick that leads a transition into a full sized 15° Kicktail. This technique allows us to adjust the position of the “sweet-spot” contributing to responsive and effortless pop.

 

Our simplistic approach to concave gives the rider a blank canvas to augment with our 3D printed implant ecosystem or on their own. This allows for concave geometry that would otherwise be difficult or impossible to achieve with traditional pressing techniques. These implants can either be included for a steep discount during checkout with a deck in your cart, or can be purchased and placed on any board for a touch of that good ol’ “Voxel Boards Functionality”

Isosceles² and The Jewel

The Isosceles² is a much needed update to our most popular footstop. With it’s iconic and functional screw-slot, we always felt this design best embodied the footstop design philosophy we have developed in the last few years. With this update, we wanted to make sure that familiar and unique shape stayed true! By adding gentle inward sloping angles, I’ve increased the functional surface area of the print while also providing a slight increase in strength. With chamfered edges and fewer harsh angles, this footstop is less susceptible to fatigue failure, while also being slightly more comfortable to press your foot against overall. A successful redesign, all done from scratch!

The Jewel

The Jewel is our new albeit familiar looking footstop and follows a lot of design queues from our original Aecus Footstop our Triangle Series Footstops. With 4 sides, this diamond shape gives offers more than a unique shape. Rotationaly symmetrical with a robust ,yet low-profile design allows you to pivot and set this footstop at any desired angle. Our modern draft angles increase surface area that makes contact with your shoe, providing more grip.

P.S. Voxel Griptape will be available as full rolls sometime next month! 12″ x 32′!

“Why should I buy a new Voxel Board?”

While we may not be the largest, or the most well known skateboard company out there, Voxel Boards exists as an anomaly in the industry.  We have remained steadfast throughout the years, and attempted to grow and learn from our mistakes. One day, I was just 13 years old spray painting donated skateboards and suddenly years later I find myself pouring every hour I can into designing them. When you buy a board from us at Voxel Boards, even though we are a one-man factory, you are supporting the artists, the skaters and the fans that have contributed every step of the way. When you buy a Voxel Board, you are contributing to a story that is still being written. In return, we hope to provide a blank page from that story that will live on with you, or wherever it may land. Each skateboard, footstop or product we produce in-house is designed to display it’s authenticity – I believe quality and function should be self evident. Designed with the rider in mind, these decks are built for reliability, durability, and customization. “Smarter Science, Mixed With An Odd Alliance Of Fairy Tale”

 

 

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2020

As the New Year barrels towards us at breakneck speeds, I have been moving behind the scenes to make sure 2020 is our best year yet. Skateboarding as a whole will be under a new scrutiny with the eyes of the world watching the Olympics. It’s the end of a decade, and by December, I will have been making boards for 5 Years. The focus of Voxel Boards has often shifted under my inexperienced hands. It’s my first real business, and as a fledgling, it has grown a bit and persevered up to this moment. We haven’t had many sales or grown to be as visible as we would like but this year, we aim for things to be different.

 

Throughout the last year, I’ve worked hard to shift our processes and mindset beyond the garage that we started in. We moved into a workshop (twice!), built and acquired new tools for squeezing out every ounce of quality we can muster. I’ve tinkered with new materials, revised old designs and 3D Printed new products and prototypes. My friends and artists have been ever supportive by providing feedback, skating with me and of course, playing Guinea Pig so you don’t have to. I’ve honed and improved my skills as a designer and even picked up some new software which has made my job a lot easier. We’ve managed to fill out our website with more of our products. Some familiar, others new and still plenty left to come! I’ve gotten a nice uptick in traffic and have been recognized in person by total strangers, and relatively distant customers. Every year, things get a little more serious but I continue to have just as much fun if not more than when I started. The people, the places, the skills I’ve learned all accumulated to make 2019 one of the most memorable in my life. Thank you. Thank you for following my journey, supporting my products, designs, and humble business. Thank you for remembering me, my friends, and my little hometown by our art and the things that we produce. We’re not even close to done, we’re just getting started.

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Just Another July In My Endless Summer

Our website went down, and I’ve been working on restoring it, and providing a much needed fresh look and feel. For now, no orders can be placed on our site, but when our store re-opens, orders will be shipped promptly and to the best of our abilities! Contrary to our brief but extended absence, Voxel Boards will up and in full production by September. An appropriate Autumn sale will begin, as we continue to expand and grow as a business, and personally as well.

Shortly before our last page’s demise, I teased a picture on our social media accounts about our latest product and innovation – Slide pucks made using recycled 3D prints and material. The response I got from the community was very positive, and I’m super excited to provide these to our community! After some further testing, these pucks will be available at the affordable price of 15.99, and could possibly see a further reduction in price if significant customer interest allows us to invest in more infrastructure to produce them in higher quantity. Further, we have plans to provide one of our signature “product bundles” which will include a set of puck risers that will help customers get the most use of our products or any other slide-puck. All this, while made in-house with biodegradable waste-materials from our other in-house processes.

How brief is this update? Brief enough for me to type out before I return home from a much needed vacation. I’ve got a 6+ hour drive ahead of me, and tons of new designs and content coming at you when I’m settled back in my city. My work is never done!

 

Oh, and buy some decks for Christmas. I worked hard on the new quiver. <3