This review came about after a post on a Facebook group post. I've written a lot of this for friends previously so I collated it all here for all who want to know my own thoughts on this unconventional skate:
I got a pair of Powerslide Doops last year. 84mm wheels version. The selling point of these skates is that you can wear any flat shoes with them, so it reduces the need to carry your shoes whilst you skate. Previously I had a Salomon Chill LX which had a similar design, I really loved them but they started to fall apart after years of use. Sadly they stopped manufacturing them so I was hopeful the Powerslides would compare well to the Salomons.
Surprising the Doops are still quite heavy even though it’s missing the boot. (My Seba FR1 are about the same weight). This might be an issue for some people but I don’t mind giving the legs a little extra weight to work out with!
They do feel very secure and responsive. People often question this but remember they’re based on an aggressive skate, Xsjado, so it’s going to be able to take some punishing!
I like the ratchet system in the middle that makes it feels nice and snug. Two of the other tightening mechanisms are just Velcro but these can be replaced if needed. I've substituted the mechanism above the ankle with a more standard skate strap just so it's that little bit faster to tighten.
The break is a standard Powerslide setup which in my opinion is really badly designed. It’s difficult to and fiddly to put on. You need to keep an eye on the wear and adjust it every now and again. Salomon’s break pad was so much simpler and easy to use, which I’ve also heard repeatedly from other skaters and even skate shop staff.
I’ve tried swapping the break system with a Seba breaking system. This is easy to install but the break pad is very small, which will result in it being replaced often. Also it makes a horrible squeaking sound that doesn’t do much for my street cred. On the plus it ensures everyone around you are aware you’re coming!
Usually the wheels that come with any skate are basic. The ones that come with these are absolute rubbish. Rock hard wheels which I could feel every bump on the London roads. It made hard work of the ‘Sunday Stroll,’ skate.
The frames that come with them are also of poor design. I have to pull and force the wheels on some sections of the frame to get them in and out.
Since I’ve bought them I’ve swapped the frame for some Sebas ones. I’ve also got some nice Gyro wheels in combination to the horrible wheels. The horrible wheels are just on the toes, which I use as a break. (Good to find some use for them). Because of this I’ve got a semi rocker wheel layout. The setup is now great.
Are the Doops fast?
I’ve been asked this a lot, but they're only as fast as the wheels you've got attached, or more importantly the skater using them!
I used the Doops for the Le Mans 24 Hours Skate relay race. The starting skaters are required to have their skates on the other side of the track. When the race starts you run across the track and put on your skates before racing.
Now I thought the Doops would give me a nice advantage but even though it took me 25 seconds to put on both skates, there were people booting up a lot faster. The benefit for me however is that the mats we were standing on at the start of the race were wet, so no soggy socks for me whilst I skate!
What shoes can you wear with the Doops?
Most flat shoes work well. I’ve managed to use my formal shoes and even some wellington boots with them. Chunky Vans don’t work; they’re just too wide.
The thing for myself is that I have really wide feet. Last year I bought some cheap New Look sneakers, however the tight fit of the shoes started to become a problem for me. This problem only started when I began changing my skating style, skating more like a speed skater and hitting the outside edges of the wheels. So my toes felt most of the impact in my tight shoes. (This problem wasn’t particular to these skates as my speed skates gave me similar issues until they were heat moulded).
I tried using the shoes that worked previously with the Salomons and similar pains still happened that never occurred with the Chill LX. For most people the shoe fitting wouldn’t be an issue but having wide feet has often been a problem for me. There are definitely shoes that would fit my feet and would work with my Doops but I’m yet to find it.
Powerslide Doops vs Salomon Chill LX.
Both have plus and minuses. Weight-wise the Doops are slightly more heavy but not a huge amount. Salomon just seems to be made of better quality material but the buckles eventually gave way. The Doops already has some fraying with some part of the fabric. However the main ratchet on the Doops just feels so much more secure. Salomon loses out massively by the fact the frames cannot be changed, as they have been riveted into the boot. Doops can fit most frames, it can even attach to those mountain skis!
As with most skates the frames can be removed. I personally don't know much about the common frame setups as I've only ever swapped the frames once before. For my Doops the shop assistant suggested the Seba GT frames.
However here is an image of the baseplate which will give you a general idea of what you can fit on to the Doops.
Regretfully I’ve stopped using the Doops for now and gone back to my nice wide fitting Seba skates, until I find a suitable shoe. However I really miss the convenience the Doops offer whilst street skating, especially hopping on and off public transport, or popping in quickly into the shops.
"Any tips, reviews and advice are my own opinions and are not to be taken as professional view points. The information on this site is what has worked for me and is here for guidance only, but I hope you gain insight into the various activities I partake in." Jonathan Chen