With the amount of negativity going on around the world, many of us are looking for a breath of fresh air with an escape to the outside world. My Onewheel has been that savior for me throughout these troubling times. Whether it’s a late night cruise or a shred through mountain biking trails, I find a sense of freedom and balance in my Onewheel, which nothing else has given me before. So I thought I would pay back the onewheel community that motivated and helped me so much, to hopefully inspire and assist the next generation of Onewheelers. But, let’s get to the reason you’re actually reading this, you want a Onewheel but don’t want to spend all the extra hard earned cash on retail pricing, taxes, duties and shipping.
My name is Nolan and this is my first post to E-Skateboarder.com, and I would like to welcome you to my used Onewheel buyers guide! I’m a third year university student based in Ontario, Canada and I take my Onewheel +XR essentially wherever I go (don’t worry though I come from an e-skate first). For me, the Onewheel works perfectly as a decently high-speed commuter vehicle, keeping it’s footprint small, while having all of the ruggedness to handle terrain like a mountain bike. The aim of this guide is to take away as much hassle as I can for new consumers looking at the used market, so we will break down everything from examining a used board, to spotting scams and stolen boards.
Why Buy Used? – Costs of Retail
The primary reason is the added cost and time of buying directly from Onewheel. If you’re unaware, Onewheel’s parent company Future Motion, only operates and produces out of two locations in Santa Cruz, California, so supply is very low, taking weeks to produce and ship, while duties and shipping costs make it very unattractive for international buyers. It is also worth noting that a small percentage of new Onewheel’s are said to have production defects, so the board may not work out of the box, or may shut down a few weeks into use. If you don’t believe me, take a scroll through r/Onewheel and search ‘Error’. I don’t want to bash Future Motion too much here, as I did buy my Onewheel new and had no problems, but it should definitely be a factor in your decision making process. So, by buying used, you essentially avoid all of these potential problems when dealing directly with the company, but there are also added benefits of the used market.
Why Buy Used? – Benefits of The Used Market
A big advantage to buying used, is the lack of a large market for second-hand Onewheels. What this means is there isn’t a lot of reference material for sellers to understand where to price their Onewheel, giving you, the buyer, an advantage. This also means that any accessories included with the board will most likely be discounted compared to retail pricing. Now, in some cases outside the U.S, there may not be much of any market for Onewheel’s, and this can be difficult to wait on. For the people in that boat, it may be beneficial to try and find a Onewheel dealership nearby your city. In that scenario, you get a new Onewheel while not having to pay the extra duties through Future Motion.
Where To Buy a Used Onewheel?
Before I go ahead and break down each of the services and marketplaces available to you, I will start with a general rule for those that don’t have access to some of these services.
- Find a marketplace that is commonly used in your area, for most, that would be Ebay and Craigslist.
- Set up push notifications on the service for any listings posted under “Onewheel”
- Have a template message ready for the seller right away. The market is already slim for used Onewheel’s, you don’t want to miss a deal because you took too long to type or missed the notification.
If you follow these really simple steps, you won’t miss any Onewheel in your specific marketplace.
If you haven’t already, join r/Onewheel on reddit, as from my experience you will learn much more about the product, community and related accessories rather than just scrolling through Casey Neistat esque review videos that care more about the visuals than actually critically addressing the product. The community overall is very helpful with any questions or concerns you might have, even if you don’t have a Onewheel yet, so don’t be afraid to engage and post in the subreddit.
In terms of actually buying a Onewheel, the moderators of the page have set up a quarterly marketplace megathread, which anyone can comment on looking to buy or sell.
I don’t personally have much experience in the thread, but the majority of it is cluttered up with Onewheel owners looking for cheap accessories, this is also the only service that you can’t specifically set notifications for. I would use the subreddit as more of an informative tool rather than focussing on it as a marketplace, because there’s always more to learn with the Onewheel. Recently, I’ve also seen buyers posting a potential purchase, asking members to asses if the price is fair and if the board is in good condition. If the market is scarce in your area, and you don’t have many prior sales to reference from, I would use this as a last resort.
Much like the subreddit, Facebook is another great place to join the Onewheel community, with different pages for specific riders like the Onewheel Trail Riders Group. Just the same as reddit, you can join these pages to better understand how the product is used and what accessories are most valuable and usable.
Through Facebook, the OneWheel Marketplace page has been the best in terms of constant activity between buyers and sellers, with over 25,000 members in the private group. Facebook’s marketplace function is very helpful when looking for the key points about the product like, price, miles ridden and hardware version. You can also set up push notifications similar to my example of Kijiji above, so whenever something is posted to the page, you will be notified. For example, a Onewheel with some accessories was posted for $987, and within one hour of the posting, two active buyers contacted the seller with a direct message. What I intend to show from this is that due to the limited supply there are a lot of other motivated buyers in the space, so you cannot be hesitant. To enter the second hand Facebook market, where a specific product may never show up again, you have to be sure of what you want.
This is one of the most popular buy/sell websites in the U.S, accounting for a decent share of the second hand market. Similar to the marketplaces above, you can set push notifications for specific listings so you won’t miss any activity. In terms of communication, the majority of sellers will include their phone number and email for contact. I would recommend gathering as much information as you can about the listing and your willingness to buy, then immediately call the phone number attached. This is the most direct, and fastest way to purchase the board, having no delay in communication like you would in text or email. Since I’m located in Canada, I don’t have much experience with this seller, but I would use the same rationality that I’ve stressed throughout this post.
Ebay is another very popular buy/sell website in the U.S, and hosts some onboard features like a live chat and invoices. For Ebay buyers, beware that Ebay has monthly fees for sellers that can directly affect the selling price by as much as 10%. Most experienced sellers won’t add this extra charge, but it is still good to keep in mind when browsing this marketplace. Since you cannot call the seller directly, I would stick to the three general rules above for setting notifications and contacting the seller.
Spotting a Scam
When looking into the second hand market for a Onewheel, you will almost definitely run into one scam or another. Here’s a great example that was posted a few days ago on r/Onewheel. This Onewheel +XR is up for $1380 with zero miles on the odometer, with no real pictures of the board but instead a screenshot of the website’s stock photo. Another big red flag lies in the description, they state “I only accept Bitcoin payments or lite coin.” Obliviously, that seems very suspicious, not to mention the other factors like pictures and price. Keeping in line with the theme of this post, always remember to think rationally and critically, using this guide as your base point.
How To Buy A Used Onewheel
If you’re buying a used Onewheel, try the board and meet the seller. In my opinion it is almost never worth it to buy a Onewheel directly online with no other verification. The Onewheel is a very complicated and expensive device that you do not want to overlook before purchase. Throughout this section, I want to be as detail oriented as possible when discussing model specific pricing and miles ridden, but every marketplace is different depending on where you are, so take it with a grain of salt. The biggest takeaway here is to just have common sense and be patient about these things. I know you’re dying to have that Onewheel, and your search may go on for weeks or months, trust me I know it feels like the worst thing, but don’t let that push you to make a rash decision.
Original Receipt and Warranty
All Onewheel’s directly from Future Motion come with a one year warranty, this covers any faulty parts or software and certain replacements for worn out parts such as footpads. Proof of purchase and warranty is a must for any used Onewheel with less than 500 miles on the odometer, since both the ownership and warranty will be transferred to you. The only case where warranty wouldn’t be available is if the previous owner never really rode the board and held onto it for years on end. The importance of the receipt is to confirm the board is not stolen or a fake, but you should hopefully be able to tell prior to this from pictures provided on the listing, but we’ll break this down in a separate section.
Once you’ve set up with a seller to meet, make sure it’s in a public place with enough room to test ride the board. When examining the Onewheel, keep the odometer in mind. For boards under 500 miles, you shouldn’t see any major damage but the board should have some normal wear and tear. For Onewheels with the odometer between 500-1500 miles, it’s important to understand how much upkeep the owner does on a regular basis and what major accessories have been changed. In this range of miles, you could see boards completely redone with a new footpad and tire, or you could see a completely stock board on its last legs. For Onewheel’s with an even higher odometer, it’s really important to understand when certain parts were changed and predicting how long those parts will last. For example, someone may be selling a Onewheel +XR with over 4000 miles on it, in this case it’s really important to understand when the tire was last changed, if the battery has been changed and what type of use it was under. Again though, these things can vary since every Onewheel owner is different in terms of technical knowledge, riding behaviors and riskiness.
Before test riding, the most important things to check are the bumpers condition and the front footpad. The bumpers should still have a ton of clearance from the screw holes that keep it in place, if the screws are exposed or wearing out, ask the seller why that is and if they will discount the price to purchase new bumpers. Using my Onewheel as an example, you can clearly see my bumpers have almost no value and are in dire need for replacement, if you encounter something like this, don’t buy without a discount.
In terms of the front footpad, it holds two pressure sensitive pads that let the Onewheel know whether or not you’re on the board, it is also one of the most expensive parts to replace. To check if both are working, on Pint the lightbar indicator will split if you’re only covering one of the sensors, and on XR the headlights are split as well and each side will light up brighter when you engage the sensor. Also, be aware that if the grip tape has been replaced or the footpad has been changed altogether, ask the seller how they did it and if there have been any issues with the sensors. Below are my footpads with Pro Ride Traction Pads installed for reference, make sure the replacement fits flush and it’s not peeling from the pad itself. To note, these pads in their current state would add no value to the selling price with the amount of wear and tear, in my opinion.
When looking at the overall condition of the board, again keep the odometer in mind and make sure there aren’t any major dents or cracks that could be fatal in the long-term. Lastly, and I can’t stress this enough, ask as many questions as you can. The seller has most likely been with their Onewheel for over a year, so you want to understand their perspective on the contextual condition of the board, whether good or bad.
The value of certain hardware versions only applies to the +XR for now, but this could change with new hardware versions on Pint. If you have no clue what I’m talking about, each board made has a certain hardware number attached to it that can expand or limit the modifications available to you. The rule of thumb here is if the board is hardware version 4209 or lower, almost, if not all modifications are available for that Onewheel. For boards with hardware version 4210 or higher, no modifications are available for the time being, due to Future Motion actively blocking many of these mods as they hit the market. For a new buyer, this may mean nothing to you now, but take it from me, if you plan on making this your main vehicle, it’s very much worth having the option later. I own a 4211 +XR and now that I’ve crossed 621 miles (1000km), looking back I would’ve waited the extra few weeks or months to get a 4209 XR or lower. This now introduces the value added for these older versions with low mileage, with certain older version boards in North America selling for over retail price.
To confirm which hardware version your used Onewheel is, go to the Onewheel app, navigate to Board Settings and a long list of data should show up similar to this.
There are many different ways to modify your Onewheel, the first and most obvious would be accessories and other practical add-ons like the Fangs Nosedive wheels, but we will cover this in a separate section. The most common modification on 4209 +XR’s and lower, as well as Pints, is a form of range extender. I won’t go into too much detail as you are just starting your journey in this space, but there are multiple ways to do this. The first is a charge and ride setup (CNR), where you have a modified battery that can charge your Onewheel while you ride through the normal charging port. The second is vamp and ride (VNR) setup, which basically splices the main cable that powers the Onewheel and adds another external battery current to extend your range. The last is replacing the battery all together, where you can take apart your Onewheel and replace it with a new battery that can almost triple your range. The most popular company for this is Chi Battery Systems, who produce the batteries and will even install the modification for you!
For Onewheel’s with pre-installed modifications such as a replaced battery, make sure when you meet the seller to ask for proof of purchase for the battery as well. Take extra time to examine that everything fits flush and that no screws are loose or replaced with third party ones. Ask questions about the modifications, hopefully the seller will tell you their experience taking the board completely apart or if they had a specialized dealer do it for them.
If you find a used Onewheel you’re interested in buying with a couple added on accessories, understand the value that each holds overtime and the actual retail price of each accessory. If the accessories are also pre-installed, the value added decreases by a fair amount as you don’t know how long they’ve been used for. For pre-installed rail guards, charge plugs and grip tape, I would not expect those to be reflected in the selling price since they are the cheapest accessories from around $10-30 and have already been through moderate use.
For example, here are my rail guards after around 500 miles of use.
For pre-installed plastic fenders and float plates, I would expect the overall price to increase by around $50-100, as each accessory costs between $50-70. I own one of the Craft and Ride Spectrum Magnetic Fender, and after a few hundred miles of use, the screws holding down the magnets have already rusted, causing a decrease in value-added selling price.
In terms of higher end accessories like the Fang’s nosedive protection wheels, Flight Fins, Carbon Fiber Fenders and upgraded footpads, the value added on the selling price can vary. For this tier of accessories the selling price may increase by $100-175 depending on which are installed. Again here, use common sense and compare the value-added with the original selling price and popularity of the accessory to better rationalize the sellers thought process.
Getting A Good Deal
In these unregulated second hand markets, it can be difficult to understand if you’re getting a good deal or not. What I hope to achieve with this section is to help you understand the product’s value overtime, without adding any external factors like modifications and accessories until later. From the graph below, I’ve attempted to take the average selling price of the +XR and Pint over the miles ridden on the board. Now, this may not be exactly reflective of each and every second hand market, but this can help you familiarize yourself with the relation between price over time, and hopefully will be a good reference point when negotiating the purchase of your Onewheel. Now, once you’ve compared the selling price to the graph, you can use your own judgment (and the accessories section above) to add-on any accessories being sold with the Onewheel, factoring for use and longevity. This top-down approach should help you rationalize the selling price and add confidence to your negotiation and purchase.
Buying a Used Onewheel – the CHECKLIST
I’m not gonna act like I know Onewheels better than the man himself, Jimmy Chang. If you don’t know him, Jimmy is one of the best, most objective, reviewers on the Onewheel, I’ll link his channel below. Here you’ll find my revised checklist with some of my thoughts and experience. Here’s a PDF link to his checklist as well. Complete Onewheel Inspection Checklist, by Jimmy Chang
Onewheel Inspection Checklist:
- Grab a helmet and other safety gear if necessary
- Download the Onewheel app to connect to the sellers board yourself
- Make notes on the listing for any questions you may have
Meeting The Seller
- Make sure to meet in a public space with a place to test ride
- Let the seller explain the product and overall condition, note the language they use and evaluate how much relative knowledge they have in the space
- Take your time when looking over board, as it will most likely be yours soon!
- Check each part for wear and tear, cracks and loose or replaced screws
- Examine the tire’s condition, is it treading out? Are there a lot of cracks and pieces of rocks or metal stuck into the tire?
- Make sure the tire holds air properly and there’s no debris or cable blocking the wheel well
The Test Ride
- Confirm with the seller your allowed to ride and connect to their board
- Power up the board and check for any error messages
- Confirm ridden miles and hardware version through app connection
- Power on the onboard lights and confirm the colours change when going backwards
- Mount and dismount 2-3 times to ensure both sensor pads on the front footpad are operation
- Test acceleration and braking, listening carefully for any rattling or squeaking when making sudden stops/starts
- Try different riding modes to ensure digital shaping is functioning properly
- Confirm proof of purchase for the Onewheel and any other accessories
- Examine the charger that comes with the board make sure it fits in the board well and confirm it charges the board if you can
- Ask the seller about the warranty for the board, and if they’ve logged it in Future Motions system or not
The Onewheel is an incredible device, and many don’t understand that until they step foot on it. If you’ve made it all the way to the end of this post without ever trying a Onewheel, I would try to reach out to local riders and enthusiasts to see if you could meet up with them for a test ride on theirs before you buy. A lot of consumers, much like you, want to focus on the dangers of the Onewheel without ever trying it for themselves, and that’s why I say if you can, try it. If you’re worried about nosdiving at any moment and you do not trust the board, just remember that this community would never exist if even 5% of the products had this problem. For reference, I have 621 miles (1000km) on my +XR and I have not had a bad nosedive since my 130th mile.
I understand that this can seem like a stressful process, but if you can keep a level head and don’t fall for the easy temptation to buy the first board you see available, you shouldn’t have any problems. We also have to keep in mind that the Onewheel is about escaping and getting out for a little fun, so don’t worry, the trails and fresh pavement will be waiting for you and your new Onewheel.
Thank you for reading through this post, I hope you found it informative and helpful! I’d love to have a conversation and help out the new Onewheeler’s, so feel free to reach out in the comments or hit me on Instagram @nolan_shin. On behalf of the Onewheel community, I’m happy to welcome you to some of the friendliest and most fun people that all share their love for the float!