Golden Dragon Completes - What's the Deal?
However, that system makes these high grade complete skateboards cost over $100 when their done. A "complete" skateboard is the deck, plus trucks, wheels, bearings, hardware, grip tape, and maybe some other extras. Golden Dragon is looking to lower that cost significantly, but without also dropping the quality of their boards the same amount!
Which is hard to pull off - most cheaper skateboards out there are junk. That's it. They will give you or the person you buy them for a terrible skateboarding experience. There are a couple of companies who make skateboards about as well as Golden Dragon, but they usually have kids graphics on them. Golden Dragons are the only one's I've seen so far that I would feel comfortable being seen riding!
Powell Golden Dragon Parts and Construction
The Powell Golden Dragon deck is well built. It's not going to stand up to the rigors of pro skating, and advanced skaters should tear it up fast, but beginner and intermediate skaters should be just fine. I didn't have any problems in testing mine out - I tried four different Golden Dragon completes, and I had no problems.
The trucks are Golden Dragon brand trucks, and they seem to work well!
The wheels are Golden Dragon brand wheels - just as good as any blank skateboard wheels you might pick up at your local skate shop. Nothing special, but definitely real skateboard wheels, good enough to ride on.
The cool part is that Golden Dragon is part of Skate One - who also makes Powell-Peralta skateboards, Bones Bearings and wheels, Angelboy skateboards and Surf One longboards. These guys have been on the skateboarding scene from the start, and they know what is needed for a good quality skateboard. So, when they make a cheaper skateboard like Golden Dragons, it makes sense that they would know where to cut manufacture costs in such a way that the quality isn't dropped too much as well. Their reputation is at stake!
"They don't look like cheap skateboards..."
Plus, when talking about the style of the latest Golden Dragon skateboards, they've added another sweet feature - they all come with a diamond cut out of the top of the grip tape, with a Golden Dragon logo showing through. The logo is set up right ion front of your back foot, and adds a great touch.
I'm impressed with how cool this latest batch of Golden Dragon skateboards look. They don't look like cheap skateboards.
Powell Golden Dragon Riding
I wouldn't go much cheaper than this, if you are considering something else out there - leave it to a company like Powell, who's been in skateboarding from the start, to design cheaper skateboards. Don't go buy a cheap skateboard from your nearest superstore - those boards are horrible!
If you are an experienced skateboarder, I would recommend going for a Golden Dragon complete skateboard if you are strapped for cash. At that skill level, you will start feeling the differences between a Golden Dragon and a pro-grade complete. However, if you start with a Golden Dragon, you can always slowly upgrade parts of it (all the parts are normal skateboard size parts, and can be swapped out anytime. This is true of most skateboards). Powell Golden Dragon completes are perfect starter or earlier skateboards, before you're pulling off the tricks that really need a better board, and the way they look, you won't feel embarrassed for having a cheaper board. Plus, that price is hard to beat!
However, to get another perspective on the true cost of cheap boards like these, read "Just Because it's Cheaper, Does it Really Cost Less?" to get another perspective.