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I just tested this electric skateboard — and it’s an urban commuter’s dream

The Base Camp F11 is an affordable electric skateboard well-suited for beginners

Base Camp F11 electric skateboard review
(Image: © Future)

Tom's Guide Verdict

The Base Camp F11 is an affordable electric skateboard well-suited to both experienced skateboarders and beginners alike. It’s lightweight, compact and the included skateboard backpack makes it easy to bring with you anywhere. With a top speed of 10 mph and a range of 9 miles, the Base Camp F11 is ideal for short commutes though it can also handle longer trips on a single charge.

Pros

  • +

    Large, soft wheels

  • +

    Lightweight and compact design

  • +

    Skateboard tool and bag included

  • +

    Replaceable battery and motor

Cons

  • -

    Can only climb gentle hills (<10°)

Base Camp F11 Specs

Board Size: 29.1” (74cm) long, 9.3” (23.5cm) wide

Wheel Size: 3.5” (90mm) x 2.0” (51mm), 85A

Weight: 11 pounds (5.5 kg)

Max Speed: 10 mph (16 km/h)

Range: 9 miles (14.5km)

Max Rider Weight: 220 pounds (100 kg)

Motor: 300W Brushless Single Hub Motor

Battery: 4000 mAh (UL 2272, CE Certified)

Battery Cycles: 500

Charging time: 2-4 hours

The Base Camp F11 is an affordable entry point for those interested in picking up an electric skateboard. As someone who grew up skateboarding myself and then started longboarding as an adult, I was interested in trying out an electric skateboard to see what it would be like going for a long cruise without having to take a single push.

While the first electric skateboard was invented and later patented by Louie Finkle in 1997, it took several more years for electric motors and batteries with enough torque to power a skateboard effectively to become available.

With a 300-watt motor, a 4,000 mAh battery and a wireless remote control, the Base Camp F11 can reach a top speed of 10 miles per hour and has a 9 mile range. Is this electric skateboard ideal for short to medium-range trips or would you be better off with one of the best electric scooters instead?

Base Camp F11: Price and availability 

Base Camp makes just one electric skateboard, the F11, which can be purchased on its own or in a combo package that also includes a helmet. At the time of writing, the Base Camp F11 (opens in new tab) is currently on sale for $439 on the company’s website. However, it can be had for even less on Amazon where it sells for $299 (opens in new tab). (We do recommend checking out our picks for the best bike helmets to protect your noggin.)

Base Camp F11: Design

Base Camp F11 electric skateboard side view

(Image credit: Future)

The Base Camp F11 features a mini-cruiser style design and at 29.1 inches long and 9.3-inches wide, it’s compact enough to bring with you almost anywhere. In fact, due to its size and 96 Wh battery, you can even bring this electric skateboard with you on a plane.

The 8-ply maple deck can support people who weigh up to 220 pounds (100kg) and the black paint on its underside wraps around the sides of the Base Camp F11. On the top side of the board, the black and gray grip tape features an arrow indicating which side is the front along with the Base Camp logo at the tail.

Base Camp F11 electric skateboard with accessories

(Image credit: Future)

Even if you don’t opt for the combo package which includes a helmet, Base Camp throws in plenty of accessories including a T-style skateboard tool, a skateboard deck guard and a skateboard backpack along with the charger, remote control and a USB micro cable. The backpack makes it easy to take the F11 with you and you can store the charger, remote and other accessories in its back pocket.

Close up of the Base Camp F11 electric skateboard's wheels

(Image credit: Future)

The 3.5-inch wheels have a hardness rating of 85A (on a scale of 75 to 104; a higher number indicates a harder wheel while a lower number is reserved for softer wheels). The Base Camp F11’s wheels are soft, which gives you a more comfortable ride, and also makes it easier to go over bumps and cracks. 

The Base Camp F11 also has black, reverse kingpin trucks as well as black riser pads underneath them to create more space between the wheels and the deck. While the risers help prevent wheel bite where the skateboard’s wheels come into contact with the deck and suddenly stop moving, the reverse kingpin trucks sit lower and more stable than standard skateboard trucks. 

Base Camp F11: Performance

The underside of the Base Camp F11 electric skateboard

(Image credit: Future)

I’ve been testing out the Base Camp F11 for the past two months and it’s been a real joy to use. Even though the battery pack has its own power switch, this electric skateboard can turn on by itself once you begin rolling. From here, you need to power on the remote separately to control the skateboard’s speed and rate of acceleration. 

While the Base Camp F11 is great for cruising on flat ground or going downhill, this electric skateboard lacks the power to climb hills with more than a 10-degree incline. For most people this won’t be a problem but it’s something to consider if you live in a hilly city like San Francisco.

A person riding the Base Camp F11 electric skateboard

(Image credit: Future)

I wear a U.S. size 10 shoe and the Base Camp F11’s wide width made it very comfortable to ride. The skateboard itself has four speeds; the lower levels are great for cruising at a steady pace, but you can certainly feel the wind in your hair when going full speed. Even at top speed though, the F11 is easy to control. I never felt like I was going dangerously fast or was in danger of losing control of the board.

The Base Camp F11's remote control

(Image credit: Future)

In addition to accelerating, the remote’s dial can be turned toward you to brake and there’s a button to put the skateboard in reverse. This can be particularly handy if the board starts rolling away from you when taking a break from riding. While the red LEDs indicate how fast the skateboard is going, the green LED lets you know that there is a strong wireless connection between the remote and the skateboard.

Base Camp F11: Battery life

The charging port on the Base Camp F11's battery

(Image credit: Future)

The Base Camp F11 features a reasonably sized 4,000 mAh battery just above its back wheels. The battery connects to the back truck via a short cable and only the left rear wheel is powered. In my time spent testing the F11, I only had to charge the skateboard a few times by connecting its power adapter to the barrel shaped hole on the right side of the battery.

The Base Camp F11 charging from a wall outlet with the power adapter on top of the board

(Image credit: Future)

The Base Camp F11 can be fully charged in two to four hours when plugged into an AC outlet. Unfortunately, you will need to bring the proprietary charger with you on long rides over 9 miles. Since the F11 can’t charge over USB you won’t be able to use one of the best portable chargers if you run out of power. Instead, you’ll need to use a portable power station like the Jackery Explorer 1500 or the Bluetti AC200MAX.

If your battery happens to die and will no longer charge, you can order a replacement from Base Camp. This is also true for the F11’s motor. However, it should be good for 4,500 miles as the F11’s battery can last 500 cycles according to an FAQ (opens in new tab) on the company’s site.

Base Camp F11: Verdict

At $300, the Base Camp F11 is actually quite affordable for an electric skateboard. Some electric skateboards start at $500 with premium models going for as high as $2,000. Even if you upgrade later, the F11 is an excellent electric skateboard for beginners as well as for seasoned skateboarders looking to try one for the first time.

The board has a classic design and will be wide as well as long enough for most people. The same goes for the 220-pound weight limit. While I wish Base Camp had other models of the F11 available, the board is compact enough that you can easily bring it with you using the included backpack or put it in the trunk of your car.

If you grew up skateboarding like I did, want to pick up a new hobby or are looking for a quick and convenient way to get from place to place, the Base Camp F11 could be the perfect electric skateboard for you.

Anthony Spadafora
Senior Editor Security and Networking

Anthony Spadafora is the security and networking editor at Tom’s Guide where he covers everything from data breaches and ransomware gangs to password managers and the best way to cover your whole home or business with Wi-Fi. Before joining the team, he wrote for ITProPortal while living in Korea and later for TechRadar Pro after moving back to the US. Based in Houston, Texas, when he’s not writing Anthony can be found tinkering with PCs and game consoles, managing cables and upgrading his smart home.