You may not have had the pleasure of jetting on a hoverboard, but we are sure you have seen them in movies or at least heard about them. This style of personal transportation was invented for the movie series ‘Back to the Future’ where the protagonist travels to the future and sees teenagers riding on skateboard styled levitating platforms with wheels.
Even though the self-balancing scooters of this kind don’t hover, the name hoverboard was coined to refer to these vehicles because it sounds much cooler. Let’s do a breakdown of a hoverboard to find out what these self-balancing scooters are made up of. So, the hoverboards are mainly composed of
- Gyroscope, which is used to determine the balance or pitch of the machine
- Motors that help to keep the board well-balanced and moving forward at the same time
- Microprocessors are used to control the power output to the motors
- Large batteries help to fuel the device
For a self-balancing scooter to perform well, it is important that it stays upright. The microprocessors in the device are designed to control the direction towards which the rider is leaning. The gyroscope that is linked to the microprocessors assist in collecting more information regarding the tilt of the hoverboard.
To maintain the balance of the rider, the motors inside the board change the power output. It is interesting to note that each hoverboard is unique in its way and each one utilizes a different set of batteries, motors, and microprocessors.
To a novice, these little devices appear like skateboards with the only difference that they have wheels to enable you to stand on them and propel yourself forward. So, it wouldn’t be wrong to call it a powered skateboard. Most of them are battery operated, and the motor gives them the ability to move around with ease. You can move the hoverboard in any direction you want by putting your body weight in that particular direction.
What Is A Hoverboard and What makes them popular?
We know that movies formed the cradle for these little movable devices. They became popular in 1967 after making an appearance in the Back to the Future film franchise. Since then, the hoverboards have made their presence felt in several Hollywood movies.
Recently, this stylish mode of personal transportation was made popular by celebrities like Wiz Khalifa, Justin Bieber, Kendall Jenner, Skrillex and Nick Jonas.
Is it legal to ride on hoverboards?
Although hoverboards are quite popular these days, these are not considered as a legal ride in all cities. In the New York City, for example, the hoverboards are considered illegal, and the police department has warned that public that they would be fined if caught riding on these self-balancing scooters on the streets or public places.
You are also not allowed to ride hoverboards in the United Kingdom. Some of the airlines such as the American, United, and Delta Airlines have banned these scooters on flights, and the luggage is checked to ensure that passengers don’t carry these devices. The reason behind this is that the high-watt batteries used in these hoverboards may trigger a fire in the luggage section of the airplane.
Are there any risks associated with riding hoverboards?
We have heard several incidents of hoverboards exploding and causing a fire, however, this happens only when the hoverboard is equipped with a defective battery. If you look online, you will see that there’s a huge price difference between the different models of hoverboards available. Some of the manufacturers compromise with the quality of parts used in making these boards to keep the price low and this result in accidents. We highly recommend that you do not purchase any hoverboards that don’t have a safety certification, UL 2272. This certification is to assure you that the hoverboard did not have a defective battery and went through vigorous battery tests.
Riding hoverboards are a lot of fun! If you are looking to buy one then we would suggest that you do a thorough market study to find the one that’s best in quality. Like any other electronic device, you need to learn to operate them well and use them responsibly. Learn about the laws of your state to ensure that there are no rules against riding hoverboards on the street.
Unless you are completely in control of your ride, we would recommend that you avoid riding a hoverboard on the streets. If you take care of the risk factors, buy wisely and use responsibly, there’s no reason why you cannot ride a hoverboard.