One of the latest companies to catch our eye here at LEV Revolution is Mellow electric skateboards. They are a crowdfunded electric skateboard company who received funding via Kickstarter. All Mellow products are set to ship starting March 2017.
Mellow has received a lot of buzz for their plan to sell stand-alone drives, as well as complete setups. Their drives are aesthetically sharp, designed with royal blue wheels and black battery casing.
The drive’s battery has a 15 km range. The drive also comes with a sleek black remote and mobile app functionality. The battery can be removed and used to charge your phone via USB.
Aside from the Mellow products, what most impressed us is their warranty policy. The drive and remote both include a 2-year warranty. Not only is this one of the longest warranties in the industry, but the warranty covers water damage as well (within IP65 conditions). The battery also includes a one-year warranty.
Needless to say, the innovative design and structure of Mellow’s catalog prompted us to reach out to their team and learn more. They were gracious enough to correspond with us and provide insight into what makes Mellow tick.
A Chat with Mellow Electric Skateboards
LEV Rev: While Mellow does offer a complete electric skateboard setup, your company is unique in that you also sell the Mellow Drive system that can be used on any skateboard deck. What led to the decision to make this available to your customers?
Mellow: We developed the Mellow Drive before we decided to offer completes. The original Mellow idea was to electrify a skate or longboard without losing any of the qualities that make real skateboarding fun, only a mount-anywhere solution let the rider choose almost any deck for its high performance or simple good-looks.
The ability to replace a deck easily meant our electric skateboard would have a longer life and be able to handle rain and puddles. Selling a complete setup meant that we could offer added features in the decks themselves, while promoting shapers now and in the future.
LEV Rev: If I purchased two Mellow Drives for a dual drive board, how would I go about synching the two drives? Is there a dual braking system?
Mellow: Since “dual drive” is used in the sector to refer to the number of motors – a setup with two Mellow Drives would have a total of four motors and be called “quad drive” or just “4WD”. The 4WD setup involves simply replacing both trucks with two Mellow Drives and then using the Mellow smartphone app to sync.
“Dual braking” system refers to the availability of two braking systems in each Mellow Drive: standard regenerative braking together with a secondary dynamic thermal brake that can be used when the battery is full, preventing safe “regen” braking.
In a 4WD setup, braking power is indeed doubled, but we don’t refer to this as a “quad braking” because it would be confusing.
LEV Rev: Is the Mellow Drive water resistant?
Mellow: Protection of critical elements of the Drive is done against automotive industry standards. Motors, battery and control electronics are sealed completely against dust and volumes of water projected when riding, up to IP65 conditions. This means you will be able to ride in the worst weather, hitting puddles without any problems.
The connection to the battery, when clicked-in, is rated IP67, but since the rest of the system is not, it should not be immersed.
Water damage within IP65 conditions (not immersion) is covered by Mellow’s two-year warranty.
LEV Rev: What kind of battery powers the Mellow Drive?
Mellow: The long answer to that question is best described in detail in our blog here:
Spotlight on the Battery Pack that Powers Our Electric Skateboard Drive
For the short answer, here’s a snippet from the above article:
Mellow deliberately avoided super-thin and immature battery formats, selecting the dependable 18650-sized cell as used by Tesla and other electric vehicles. The model Samsung INR18650-20R used in our packs has a rock-solid reputation since 2013 and is easily capable of delivering high constant current for awesome torque while keeping cool.
LEV Rev: What kind of motor powers the Mellow Drive?
Mellow: Mellow uses dual hub motors.
For detailed information on the technology, I recommend you check out this lengthy post: Spotlight on the Mellow Motor.
This video also covers some FAQ’s about the Mellow motors.
LEV Rev: What makes Mellow’s products special compared to your competitors?
Mellow: We are the only IP65 waterproof certified and guaranteed electric skateboard on the market; others claim water resistance/proofing but exclude coverage in the warranty.
All components are original designs and our boards are manufactured in Germany, with all parts sourced from high-quality European suppliers.
LEV Rev: What can we expect from Mellow in the future?
Mellow: Mellow will sell two different types of wheels at a later date for higher speeds and off-road capabilities, perfect for the 4WD setup.
Since the Mellow is essentially a self-contained attach-anywhere drive, we welcome alternative and innovative uses for it other than it’s typical uses for racing, carving, commuting, and all-around fun!
And we’ll definitely establish more partnerships with other shapers in the future!
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