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On 17 July 2016 at 07:07 | updated on 05 August 2016 at 08:02

Testing the Swell 110 Fitness Skates by Powerslide

Testing the Swell 110 Fitness Skates by Powerslide

Following the logic of their 3-Wheeler concept, Powerslide launches the Swell range, with skate models designed for intensive fitness skating, available in 3x100, 3x110 and 3x125 mm. We have tested the middle model, the Swell 110. Feedbacks...

By  Alexandre CHARTIER

Test Bench

Test Powerslide Swell 110

A swell is an undulating movement of the surface of the open sea, it's the best waves for surfing. Powerslide dedicates the Swell range to intensive fitness skating with three set-ups: 100, 110 and 125 mm. Powerslide's sales argument on their website is mainly based on energy expenditure and the benefits of skating. In a few words, the Swell is presented as a comfortable, innovating, sophisticated and minimalist model.

Test Powerslide Swell 110

Design

Test Powerslide Swell 110The design of the Swell follows the current trend invading the market of running shoes, with its wide black and white stitches. The liner is integrated to the composite softboot. With less components and a boot made out of one piece, you gain in skating precision, lightness and comfort.

The boot is completed by a discreet black cuff and mounted on a white embossed frame with a 3x110 mm (black and white) wheel set-up.

Finishing

Powerslide presents a clean model. The seams of the liner are perfect. The insole has holes in it, as well as the upper part of the boot, for better ventilation. The tongue is glued and sewn to the composite structure.

Test protocole

We used the Swells for our daily commutation in the city for a month: 5 weekly sessions of 8 km, i.e. 40 km/week on varied grounds, plus one longer session of 20 km.

Comfort

The boot is made of composite (nylon and glass fiber) and fits closely the shape of the foot. The liner integrated to the boot is also of ergonomic shape. The foam is thick, especially around the ankle and at the tongue.
A little time of adaptation is needed to feel totally comfortable in the Swells: in the first hours of skating, you can feel a little friction around the ankles. Take your time to tighten the skates, but not too much (find the right balance!) Past this -quite short- period, the liner progressively takes the shape of your foot, and you feel as if the boot were wrapped around your foot. You gain in precision. Be careful not to tighten too much the laces or the velcro strap for better comfort.

Support

On the whole, and compared to other models dedicated to fitness skating, the support provided by the Swell is satisfying. The boot, enveloping and made of nylong/glass fiber, does its job. Speed lovers will like a more rigid boot better but it's totally suitable for most leisure skaters.

Tightening

The tightening system is made of:
• laces at the instep
• a velcro strap on top of the instep
• a micrometric buckle at the lower shin.

The lacing is well designed and efficiently holds the foot. The micrometric buckle offers more tightening precision, even if it's not easy to tighten it to the max. We had doubts as for the efficiency of the velcro strap, but in the end, it works. Be careful not to tighten too much the velcro strap, to avoid pins and needles in your feet.

Frame

The frame of the Swell measures 255 mm and weighs 209 grams, a middle size providing good handling, for a 3x110 mm wheel set-up. The frame is embossed and in one piece, made of 6061 aluminum, without support bridges. The convex shape of the sides provides a bit more rigidity. An extruded frame would have been welcome, more rigid and more precise with use, and as a consequence better for speed-ups. However, the reactivity of the Swell frame is satisfying.
The frame has double axles (the axle and the screw), and you will need two allen keys to tighten them up.

Wheels

The wheels supplied by Powerslide for the standard model, the Infinity 110 mm 85A, are of good quality. A few complementary figures: 158 grams, 24.25 mm wide, with a 72 mm hub. You can easily insert your bearings by hand, no tool needed.
The wheels have a good rolling, good grip, good comfort and a slow wear. The German brand opted for a wider footprint than average, for a better grip despite having three wheels instead of four.

Bearings

For the 2016 collections, all the PS models are equipped with Wicked bearings, with an ABEC 9 model for the Swells. No degradation of the bearings throughout the test phase. They remained quiet and with a smooth rolling. A few sessions in the rain would be an interesting addition to complete the test.

With Use

Test Powerslide Swell 110The first sensation you get once you've put on the Swells 110 is a slight tilt forward, as if you had a hi-lo set-up or as if the skate had a heel piece. It's a pro for starts and speed-ups, because it gives more reactivity to the skate. It's a con on damaged grounds because your body weight shifts to the front and you should think about putting more weight on your heels to pass obstacles.

The 3x110 set-up on a short frame provides good general handling. Turning is easy. At average cruising speed, the Swells are enjoyable to skate with. They may prove to be a bit slow to speed up, especially because of the embossed frame, which partly absorbs the energy of the push. However the performances are more than satisfying for a leisure fitness skate.

Quality/Price Ratio

The Powerslide Swell costs 279€ (public price). There is not much competition on the 3-wheel market yet, so that there aren't that many models to compare it to. One of the closest models is the Fila Ghibli Verso, mounted on an extruded frame, available for 249€, a lower price, and with similar technical characteristics.

Conclusion

The main asset of the Swell 110 is the close fit of the built-in liner and the boot: you significantly gain in comfort and precision. However be careful not to tighten your skates too much. The Swell 110 is specifically designed for skaters looking for a comfortable skate for popular skates, a good compromise between confort, rolling and handiness.

Test Powerslide Swell 110

Strong points and points to be improved

+ finishing and precision of the boot
+ general design and fit
+ quality of the standard wheels

- embossed frame
- tightening adjustments

Test Powerslide Swell 110

Technical Facts

Brand: Powerslide
Model: Swell 110
Boot: Composite nylon and glassfiber
Liner: Powerknit fit - integrated
Tightening: Micrometric buckles, laces and velcro straps
Sizes: 36-42 EU / 4-10 US
Frame: 3x110 Aluminum 6063 T6 Unity
Axles: Double 8 mm axles with Allen socket
Interaxial spacing: 165 mm
Wheels: Powerslide Infinity 110 mm 85A (Shores)
Max Diameter: 110 mm
Bearings: Wicked Freespin ABEC 9 (7 balls)
Spacers: Metal
Brakes: Habs
Weight: 1583 grams
Public Prics: 279€
Recommended Use: Fitness skating

Test Powerslide Swell 110

Presentation Video

Released  on 17 July 2016 - Read 8642 times

Text and photos: :
Fondateur et webmaster de rollerenligne.com. Alexandre est un passionné de roller en général et sous tous ses aspects : histoire, économie, sociologie, évolution technologique... Ne le branchez pas sur ces sujets sans avoir une aspirine à portée de main !

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Translated by :
Chloé Seyrès aka Kozmic Bruise #8612. Hardcore skater since forever. Former inline freestyle slalom champion, has switched to the quad side with derby and dance and more. Also international judge in freestyle and certified agility coach. PS: Translator and linguistics consultant in parallel life.
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