Revive Skateboards Review

In the beginning (2009) was the word, and the word was Revenge. Revenge was the name behind the little team posting multiple promotional clips for an upcoming, full-length skating film, and the medium of their majesty was YouTube. They won themselves followers, their followers became legion, and the legion hollered not just for merchandise but the boards being showcased in these awesome clips.

And then there was a brief but exciting legal scuffle over the singularity of their brand name and Revenge was revived as, well… ReVive.

The name suits their spirit to a Tee. Their YouTube presence is vivacious, their designs vital and vivid. Their infectious energy taps right into the heart of people who love to skate. 

Have fun, be seen, be seen to be having fun. That’s the heart and soul behind ReVive’s range of boards.

It’s not about achieving the most extreme or technically accomplished pop in the universe, or about trying to out-design the laws of physics with hyper-engineered components. It’s about writing personal notes on the packing slips, tossing a bunch of stickers in with the boxes, and creating a community in which people upload their unboxing ceremonies for all to see. 

Most of all, it’s about creating and selling boards which help skaters build their skills while feeling happy every time they look at them. So, that’s ReVive’s vibe. But what’s it like to buy their boards and ride them?

How Revive Works

You can get all that you need through their peppy website, The Shred Quarters. We love that name. ReVive’s appearance on Amazon is, as of August 2020, limited to their earliest and most famous deck, ReVive’s Red Lifeline. You’ll notice that it’s less expensive if you buy it from source.

Their business model is attractively simple. You can buy a standalone deck for between $30 and $40 dollars, or hit the buy button for the $110.99 starter pack, which includes:

  • Silver Raw Trucks
  • FORCE Wheels
  • Revive Super Awesome T Tool
  • Force OG Hardware
  • FKD Swiss Bearings

The wheels on offer vary with the balance you want for your board. ReVive recommend coordinating your hardware with the size of the board, but the choice to go narrower is yours. Some prefer the stability of wider trucks and the gentler turning circle. Others prefer the responsiveness that comes from a little deck overhang and would prefer to get through a day with more kickflips and fewer wheelbite incidents. 

The decks are a fairly uniform 31.5 inches long, made of 7ply Canadian Maple. Each come in a choice of six widths: 7.5”; 7.75”; 8.00”; 8.12”; 8.25” or 8.5”. You can opt for the free sheet of Jessup tape or upgrade your bespoke surface traction power and durability by choosing from a selection of 7 products from their own Amgrip range. They also sell their own FORCE wheels, hardware, and other accessories. 

Now, as we remind you of the deck price range of around $30-$40, we’re very aware that this price point would have many an experience skater raising a skeptical brow. But these guys actually paddle in the in the shallow end of the get-what-you-pay-for pool. 

After all, if you built yourself a custom skateboard from the bearings upward, you could be looking at dropping between $145-$225 on your investment. This puts the price of the deck and starter kit bundle into better perspective; it’s an attractive and affordable middle-market deal, designed and constructed by a team of skaters who live to skate. 

If you’re still wary of the deck price when taken in isolation, then let’s not forget that ReVive they’ve made a successful income through their social media presence. They’ve also crowdsourced their aesthetic, engineering, purchasing and design backgrounds. It’s largely the effective sharing of intellectual capital which has allowed them to avoid passing high overhead costs onto young customers.

So, What else is great about the ReVive Board Experience?

Your initial shopping experience won’t blind you with a wide array of wheel types, sizes, or rebound varieties. It’s not all about wrapping your head around the intricacies of the Durometer A scale while bushings fill up your screen for as long as you can scroll. They’re not custom kings with a bottomless warehouse, which a lot of beginners find both tiring and intimidating. They have a durable design with both impressive robustness and athletic levels of pop. They know what works and they sell their winning formula with pride. It’s down to you to tweak and refine as you see fit. 

Four factors distinguish ReVive boards as a joy to possess. First, the solid feel and strength in it. When assembled, you’re left with that super-satisfying feeling that you’ve just done an amazing job because it feels so safe and tough, yet light enough to offer a seductive array of new trick possibilities.

The second feature for which ReVive earns mass praise is the durability. It stands up particularly well to the rougher treatment of street skating. It can take up to six weeks for the inevitable razortail to creep along the dark underside of the deck edges, and those trucks and bearings can take a lot of punishment. This is so much more than an identikit board churned out across a broad spectrum of decorations. 

The third thumbs-up element is the shape. The concave is gentle, more often than not described as “mellow.” The curvature is substantial enough that the ReVive is easy to flip and steer—no problems with perfecting that Varial Heelflip here. That said, there’s enough stability in your landing to keep momentum with zip as well as with dignity. If you’re a fan of the steep concave that you get with the Zoo York decks, then this concave may be too shallow for you.

And finally, of course, there’s the look. With so many big-name skaters on the ReVive team, you’re going to get a broad spectrum of ideas of what looks good as you admire the ground whipping past beneath your feet. Between them, Andy Schrock, Doug Des Autels, Aaron Kyro, Maxx Mayberry, Sam Vestal, and Thomas Alvarez have spread a smorgasbord of upbeat designs across the purchasing table. We just want to share three of our favorites before we balance the picture just a little. As much as we love the boards, not every shopping experience is all joy.

Our Favorite Decks

OUR TOP PICK

If we had snack-loving octuplets, we’d buy them all one of these. It’s cute without being twee or girly. It’s lively and fun. It’ll bring out the light-hearted warrior in you.

EDITORS CHOICE

This has a charming rebelliousness about it which will make you feel that no door is closed to you, no step too high. Hell, if there’s a place where skating is to be done, you’ll do it. And you’ll do so with energy and pride.

BEST VALUE

Well, this shows your commitment, doesn’t it? A little more space between “skate” and “die” might be welcome for those of us a little uncomfortable with those words in such close proximity, but the look is pleasingly stark and might get you in a businesslike frame of mind. If, like Harrison Ford, you’re grimly determined to look grimly determined, this is the coolest board possible for you.

Just some things to be aware of…

First off, the shipping costs can really rack up the price, and even though they have an awesomely fast response system to incoming orders, your board is still not going to arrive at the lightning speed you take for granted in a world where Amazon sets the delivery pace. It’s just as well that skating teaches patience, isn’t it?

Second, the website could be a little more intuitive to navigate. For example, it would be helpful to have a big and obvious item on the left-hand menu under ‘ALL SKATEBOARDS’ from which you can select your starter pack. When we went menu-hunting, the starter pack was hidden in the fourth row of the ‘DECKS’ page, which isn’t the first place you’d look. Sure, you can find it in seconds by using the search function, but why should you have to? 

Additionally, selecting subcategories from the home page doesn’t seem to narrow the search filter significantly. Look for wheels and you’ll see clothes mixed in. It’s an unnecessary and distracting combination. It’s not a big deal in that it doesn’t detract from the experience of constructing and riding the board, but given that the website is a key gateway to their community then a little more attention to a user-friendly layout would be welcome to beginners.

Finally, and this is a very subjective matter, but one raised by a few vlog reviewers. The board can feel a little heavy initially. By all accounts not so heavy that you feel like you’re going to succumb to gravity the moment you bend your knees wrong, but it’s noticeable to start with. It’s also acknowledged that this is an acceptable balance to the payoff of the board’s robust build and durability.

Conclusion

We love ReVive for their approachability, onscreen vigor and for the way that their sheer enthusiasm is seen in every detail of their boards’ design. We love the sense of community that comes with having a ReVive board, and the pride that these boards inspire in their owners. We love that they built to take reasonable punishment, yet responsive enough to give you the stamina to keep going until you’re ready to execute a the joy and stamina to keep going until you’re prepared to perform that Backside Bigspin like the whole world’s watching.

Just that little bit more attention to the commercial access points to their products would make the purchasing experience as joyful as the riding experience.

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