Primate Longboards brings skateboarding back to its primordial past.
The backyard shed of Jackson Jones’ Mankato home is the creative center of Primate Longboards, a new skateboard company, that makes handcrafted wooden boards with original decorative designs.
As a teenager, Jones wanted to buy a longboard, but after seeing their price tags, decided to build his own. “I grew up in a family of makers and with a mentality of if you want something, you can probably build it,” says Jones. Many failed attempts later, Jones finally got the hang of board-pressing and cutting. After joining the entrepreneurship club at Minnesota State University at Mankato, he decided to combine his board-building skills with his interest in business. Jones now designs and manufactures longboards from raw materials to finished product.
Each Primate Longboard is hand-pressed, cut and designed by Jones, and more recently, with his partner, Nick Bartell. Since Primate’s inception, Jones has graduated to engineering boards with computer-cut molds, ensuring both consistency and quality.
Longboard styles vary depending on their intended use. That can range from cruisers, which are ridden like a surf board, to down hills, which are designed for high-speed racing.
The finishing touch on a Primate Longboard is the deck art. Jones says each one is “completely handcrafted using a burning pen, paint brushes and stain rags. It’s the most primitive and organic thing you could do to a board.” Boarders are offered three options: 1) the original art designs created by Jones during Primate’s inception; 2) a design from Primate’s Artwig Series, which commissions local artists to create designs. “We do this to help local artists gain the recognition they deserve;” 3) boarders can work with Jones to create a custom design to show off their personal flair.
“We are living in a world in which everything is mass produced,” says Jones. “And I think now more than ever, people are hungry for a sense of creativity and originality.”
Jones hopes to build a company that engages and gathers communities around art and skateboarding, making Primate a household name. More at primatelongboards.com