Longboard coasts out of prototype stage

Longboard coasts out of prototype stage

March 19th, 2010 by Casey Phillips in Business Around the Region

Staff photo by Tim Barber/Chattanooga Times Free Press - Daniel Shartle, owner/operator of Chattanooga Longboard Co., holds two of his handmade longboards inside Grapevine of Chattanooga. The boards are made of red maple wood from Signal Mountain.

Staff photo by Tim Barber/Chattanooga Times Free Press...

* The product: The longboard, a stretched out skateboard used for recreational transportation.

* The company: The Chattanooga Longboard Co.

* Location: 2601 Broad St.

* Owners: Daniel and Brian Shartle

* What's special? Whenever he can, Mr. Shartle said he makes his longboards out of local wood provided by Rudd Montgomery of Push Hard Lumber on Signal Mountain. "That's about as unique as you can get," he said. "That board is pretty much 100 percent from Chattanooga."

* How did they hit on doing this? Brent Sanders, an artist with a studio above Grapevine, where the Chattanooga Longboard Co. is housed, encouraged Mr. Shartle to work on the longboard as a pet project. Mr. Shartle then decided to expand his production and built another half dozen boards.

* How long does it take to make? From start to finish, about a week. Two or three days are spent gluing and pressing the wood and two more shaping it and fine tuning. The last two days are spent finishing the board by adding trucks and wheels.

* Where is it sold? At the Grapevine location on Broad Street

* How long have you been making them? About 11 months

* Future expansions planned? Mr. Shartle said he isn't looking to mass produce his boards, but he is in the market to upgrade his vacuum pressing system to a hydraulic pressing system to increase production.

* What you've learned from doing this? "It's tough to compete with the big dogs, the big companies who can do mass production," Mr. Shartle said, "But they all started somewhere, too."