Ride with confidence

Skateboards in the 1984 Montgomery Wards xmas catalog

I swear there are less than five pictures of the Long Rider skateboard on the internet. Thanks to a tip from House of Neil I found this one tucked away on page 471 of the 1984 Montgomery Wards Christmas Catalog. It wasn’t as easy as doing a search in Google Images. You know how I’m going through the tedious process of scanning old skate zines page by page? Well, someone else over at Wishbookweb.com with a less narrow obsessive compulsive disorder is scanning and posting entire Christmas catalogs. So far there are about 20 catalogs up there, with dates ranging from 1933 to 1988. I’ve gone through a bunch of likely suspects, and there are a few skateboards in there.

New, exciting Long Rider skateboard has a security grip handle for easy steering and riding. Perform stunts, spins and jumps. Ride with confidence. Self-adjusts to size of the rider. Flexible, unbreakable one piece platform made of molded “space age” plastic. Solid die-cast trucks with quality rubber brushings [sic] for control and shock absorption. Top-quality replaceable high-speed wheels have precision sealed bearings. Molded foot pad helps prevent slipping.

Longrider - Wards catalog

Christmas catalogs were essential to kids when I was growing up. You could almost spend more time pouring through the catalogs than actually playing with the toys. Sears was always the best catalog, and after that it was JC Penneys. I can’t remember if I ever had a Montgomery Wards catalog, but apparently they had them. Leave it to one of the second rate catalogs to feature the Long Rider. These guys are still hawking skateboards with open bearings ( see product D ) in the year 1984! Also interesting is the wooden board with sealed bearings see product C ). I wouldn’t have guessed any wooden boards of that construction type would have been sold with sealed bearings. When did sealed bearings become the norm anyway? My first skateboard actually came form Sears, but I’ve told that story already.

Longrider ,old skateboards - Wards catalog

Wishbookweb.com has other skateboard examples, and I’m going to dole them out over time. Even if you can wait, you should check it out. There’s a wealth of great eye candy ranging from bad fashions to cool toys. Definitely worth the click if you’ve got the time.

13 Comments

  1. Are you kidding me?! 1984? Any kid that got one of those boards for Christmas in 1984 was seriously disappointed…and confused. “But sweetie, it’s got hardened race nuts and bearing cups!” “Die cast zinc base plates.” Wow. They must have been sitting in the warehouse since around 1976. The roller skates are pretty cool, though… And what the hell was that police flash light doing on the same page?

  2. Scooter Libby on January 30, 2009 - Reply

    no shit. the kid that got that board in ’84 is pissed. pretty wheels tho.

  3. have you already covered that “wheelie board” that had three trucks (and 6 wheels) ?

  4. now hat I checked your link to a previous post about the “long rider”, I see that you are still waiting for some wheelie board info.
    I just remember the ads, and the confusion they gave me. I always wanted to know how the wheelie board worked, cos one truck had to be mounted backwards.

  5. “economics 101 etc.” are you trying to say something? I clicked on your name and it took me to some website that was too boring (for me) to read. I did not see anything about skateboarding.
    oooooh gosh …. I am so affraid that americans might lose some of that “liberty”…
    be a individual and you will never lose your liberty, regardless of who is in office…
    sorry to feed the troll, if there is one thing skate and annoy has taught me…. if you feed the troll, you become the troll.

  6. GODAMNIT.

  7. Long Rider? More like Dong Rider. I feel sorry for any kid that got one of those back then. The Saftey Handel?…, would come in handy if you wanted to pull back on it and slap someone in the groin though.
    Has anyone ever seen a Zeke Skateboard?
    They had 2 trucks in the back, and 1 in the front and were put together by a shop called Sun California around 1977. I can’t find anything on the internet. Thanx

  8. Zed-word on February 2, 2009 - Reply

    D looks like a classic. I want one. Badly.

  9. skaterhusseindave on February 2, 2009 - Reply

    D looks like a Free-Former that was my first urethane wheeled set up, and C bears a strong resemblance to a Makaha I stole from the mall in ’78

  10. I just aquired one of these Long-boards. It’s red. The wheels still turn. Anyone want to give me a million dollars for this thing? Email me. kylelastname@yahoo.com

  11. I just got a red one for $20 from craigslist , its a strange on for sure

  12. I have a blue one with yellow lettering. if anyone is interested let me know. raems@hotmail.com

  13. mark nino on October 13, 2011 - Reply

    I know where one is at if someone is looking send me a e-mail mninomiya@suburbancollection.com

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