Time for another review. This time I’m going to have a look at the Magneto Mini Cruiser. I took it apart, did a test ride and it’s time to share my findings. I bought it myself to keep this as unbiased as possible.
Since this board is pretty popular for the more budget-oriented cruiser enthusiast, it’s only fair to get a decent breakdown of the abilities of this little board. I shipped it from the US, paid some hefty fees but it only took 3 days to arrive, amazing.
I’ll get right to the point and save you a lengthy read. Here’s the lowdown:
- Smaller at 27.5″, lightweight easy to carry around
- Smooth ride on rough terrain
- Nimble and quick turning
- Versatile due to its double kicktail & medium concave
- Quality deck
- Very affordable
- Decent grip
- Hard to maintain speed, not a fan of the bearings
- Low-quality trucks
- Not suitable for tall or bigger people
- Very soft bushings
- Very narrow
- Not for downhill
- Mediocre wheels
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Magneto Mini Cruiser First Impressions
Nothing to get really excited about but when the UPS guy arrived I noticed how small the package was. Once unboxed I couldn’t help to see the similarities with the Dinghy. Is this a cheap copy or what? The deck has the same shape, the wheels are exactly the same size and even the trucks look the same.
I don’t mind having the Dinghy’s lesser brother added to my collection, not at all. In fact, I got quite excited about this board. I checked for any warping or deformations but it really looks like a solid board. The wheels didn’t spin well at first, but that doesn’t have to be a bad thing.
I got the minimalistic one and love the design. Just a simple graphic and I’m a fan of transparent grip tape. Not that it’s better or worse, it just looks rad.
- Length” 27.5″
- Width: 7.5″
- Wheelbase: 18.5″
- Canadian maple wood (7-ply) deck including wheels wells
- Double kick tails
- Sand grit finish
- Wheels: 63mm, hardness unknown
- 8x Abec 11 | 608 bearings
- 4x metal spacers
- 2x trucks from an unknown brand
- 8x Allen key screws + bolts
- 2x 1/8″ riser pads
Taking a Closer Look
Let’s take this thing apart and see what the parts look like. It doesn’t take long to remove everything and it’s easy to disassemble. Nothing is stuck or needs to be forcefully removed.
It’s hard to judge a board from how it looks, after all, it’s all about how it rides. The first thing I look at are the bearings, ABEC 11 might impress some people but it really doesn’t tell anything about the quality.
The deck seems solid and is probably the best part of this board, I like the shape and the transparent grip looks great. It doesn’t have any flex which is common for mini cruisers. I’m a fan of sand grit grip and my son thought it was salt lol.
The trucks are from an unknown brand so who knows how they will hold up. The bushings seem pretty soft but they might need some time to break in. Not really an issue, it’s a cruiser after all. You won’t get too gnarly and grind curbs. One thing I noticed is that imperfections are scraped off.
Usually, trucks with imperfections from the top brands don’t pass quality control and it looks like they used some tool to scrape it off. Again, this is a really cheap cruiser and sacrifices need to be made, it won’t really impact the riding experience anyway.
I’m not sure about the wheels just yet. No indication of size (my guess is 63mm) or hardness but when I pinch them I would guess they are between 76A and 80A. They seem to have a huge contact patch which is great for stability but I wonder how they will hold up when riding rough surfaces.
One thing I did notice is the lack of air bubbles, so cheaper plastics are being used in the production process. Skateboard and longboards wheels are made of a mix of plastics, also called polyurethane.
The first time I encountered soft wheels I was worried about air bubbles but found out later this means high quality. It has to do with the melting process and the quality of the plastic materials used. Only with softer wheels though, if your hard street wheels have bubbles, you need to return them.
Time to Ride
In order to judge the cruising abilities, I grabbed my Dinghy and Arbor Pilsner. Truth be told, it doesn’t come close to his counterpart. It’s less stable and agile but from a beginner’s perspective, this doesn’t really matter. The lack of speed will only help you to learn how to ride this thing.
Anyway, I jumped on this board and it felt ok, similar to my Dinghy. I quickly noticed how loose the trucks were and I really had to push hard to maintain speed. In fact, I could hardly keep up with my son who was sitting on one knee and pushing my Arbor Pilsner.
I wanted to shoot some film but I had to shout him to slow down because I couldn’t get up to speed. In my defense (and the Magneto’s) I had a camera in one hand and the trucks were so loose that pushing it too hard could cause me to fall.
After riding it for a while I got more used to this board and its limitations. You’ll be able to cruise this board, but it isn’t fast and you just have to push more often. It will improve your pushing abilities I guess, and I don’t think this is really an issue for new riders.
Once you become a better rider and feel comfortable and it might be an issue. You have to push it often to maintain momentum because of the wheels and bearings aren’t that great. You can always upgrade, I swapped some of my own wheels and bearings around and it performed way better.
Just keep in mind that this is a beginner cruiser and you get what you pay for. I think this is a solid board for the price. Corners need to be cut to make it affordable. Sometimes they are on sale and you pay like 60 bucks. That’s a steal!
I’ll update this part once I had some more time to ride this board. It’s been raining for weeks but I expect to ride it again soon.
I think this is probably the best part of this board, it feels pretty solid but a bit light. The transparent grip feels comfortable and has enough grip to stay in place and move your feet around. The medium concave makes it easy to control the board and your foot placement.
Like any cruiser, this board comes with wheel wells to prevent wheel bite and the deck itself consists of 7-ply maple wood. Pretty neat little deck but a bit on the small side. At 7.5″ this isn’t a deck for taller people.
Trucks & Bushings
Like I previously mentioned these are really cheap trucks. You can see that the mixture of materials to mold the trucks are of low quality. Lots of imperfections and scraped off edges to remove sharp residue.
Bushings feel really soft and I might need more time to break them in. You can adjust the tightness which helps a bit but I’m always careful to do this right away. Bushings usually need some time to function properly.
The bearings are horrible, it’s funny because on the side of the bearings you can see that they are ABEC 11, but that doesn’t mean anything. They could be ABEC 1000 for all I know they just don’t perform well. I just kept pushing like a madman to maintain speed. Once you stop pushing this board slows down rather quickly compared to more expensive cruisers.
Bearings can be replaced but that would sort of defeat the purpose of buying a budget board. Slap some Bones Reds in there and you spend another 20-30 bucks. Now you’re really close to a proper cruiser.
The wheels (I guess 63mm) are okay but nothing impressive, the fact that that aren’t any bubbles in them means that low quality plastics are used to manufacture them. They hold up fine though, I am able to ride through gravel and cracks without any problems but they don’t compare to my other wheels.
You don’t get a buttery smooth ride but still, nothing really to complain about considering the price of this cruiser. I don’t think these wheels will do well when you attempt to slide them and I suspect they will wear a bit quicker compared to the top wheel brands.
When Should You Buy
My kid had a great time riding the Magneto and thinks it’s awesome. This board is perfect for kids and beginners that want to explore cruising. It’s cheap, not too fast and gives you a taste of what cruising is like. You can always upgrade the parts and the first thing you want to replace are the bearings and wheels.
If your budget is tight or when you don’t want to spend 150-200 bucks on a cruiser this is a good starter. After all, it’s a decent board when considering its price. Once you get hooked you can start looking for your next cruiser.
If you are unsure if you even like riding a cruiser or are completely new to skateboarding/cruising you might want to consider this board. Keep in mind that a quality cruiser is a lot more fun to ride.
It’s up to you, overall I think the Magento Mini Cruiser is ok, you don’t get top-quality parts but you will enjoy riding it. It will take some time to get used to this board because of its small size. Once you know how to ride properly you’ll have a ton of fun.
When Not to Buy
If you already know how to ride a skateboard I advise you to skip this one. Go for a decent cruiser from brands like Arbor, Landyachtz or Sector 9.
Heavy and tall riders should avoid this cruiser because you will have issues with keeping your balance. It’s rather narrow profile makes it hard to balance and the soft bushings result in really loose trucks. Sure you can adjust that, but experienced riders should look for something of better quality.
The Magneto Cruiser is one of the top rated boards on Amazon, I’m not sure why that is but I guess beginners really like this board. If you already know how to ride, stay away.
Compared to Other Cruisers
I own a couple of cruisers (and more are on their way) and the Magneto isn’t exactly my favorite. I had the urge to switch to my Arbor Pilsner but needed to keep riding the Magneto to see how it performs.
That doesn’t mean it’s a bad cruiser, I just have a few great boards that I rather ride instead. It’s like you have two cars, one old rusty shaky car, and a brand new BMW. Which one would you pick if you have the choice?
Truth be told, top cruisers cost a lot more than the Magneto Mini Cruiser and not everybody can afford a $160 board.
I tested this board with other bearings and wheels and the difference was night and day. These parts (OJ Super Juice, Bones Swiss 6) are pricy and if you sum it up, more expensive than a decent complete cruiser (Magneto + better parts). No cruiser is perfect and parts need to be replaced at some point.
I think the wheels will wear fast and the bearings can’t take much of a beating. The deck is fine though but still, there are these trucks that aren’t too impressive. Upgrading would also be expensive and you would be better off with a different cruiser. Check out the other mini cruisers I tested.
I would only recommend this board to beginners on a budget and kids. You get a decent starter board but might soon look for an upgrade once you learn how to ride. The wheels and bearings will limit your speed but you also don’t want a super-fast board when starting out.
Kids aren’t that picky and I’m sure mine will have a lot of fun with this board. Money well spent I say, just make sure they at least wear a helmet.
Experienced riders should look for a different board, the lack of speed and constant pushing will start to annoy you, especially if you know how well quality boards perform. I tested two boards at the same time and I just wanted to ride my new Arbor. There is a huge difference between a quality cruiser and a cheaper one.