Product Thrash: Landyachtz Mini Zombie Hawgs
Size: 70mm // Durometer: 80a, 82a, 84a // Width: 45mm // Contact Patch Size: 38mm // Contact Patch Surface: Stone Ground // Edge Type: Round // Core Position: Sideset
Landyachtz is a company based out of Canada, and is best known for their boards, but they also have a wheel lineup by the name of “Hawgs”. Landyachtz' first freeride wheel, and the Mini Zombies' predecessor, were the “Zombie Hawgs”.
The original Zombie was 76mm tall, and in my opinion, was too bulky and heavy to have a nice slide. The mini zombies are a nice size, coming in at 70mm, which is the ideal size for a freeride wheel. At $47 these wheels are in the average range of pricing as far as freeride wheels go. I was able to core these wheels within 1 week of riding, but keep in mind this was the result of heavy skating and weighing 170 pounds, as well as the fact that the wheels absolutely dump thane once broken in.
The slide of the wheel can be described as chalky; somewhat grippy but also feature a smooth slide, and leave loads of thane. The Mini Zombie urethane could be compared to a Cloud Ride Ozone, in that they feature similar grip characteristics, and leave similar amount of thane lines. However, the Mini Zombies do have a greater lifespan, and are easier to initiate slides due to the sideset core.
The wheel felt controlled overall, and I never feared the possibility of icing out during any of my slides. The new cores in the Mini Zombies provide great roll speed, which allows you to pick up speed very quickly after your slides.
Fresh out the Package
The Mini Zombies come pre broken in with a stone ground finish, which allows you to start freeriding them right out of the box. Due to the fact that they do no have a mold release, or skin; there are no downhill capabilities, but you can hold a line under 25mph. The wheels slide fine with the stone ground finish, but truly start to excel once they have been worn down a few millimeters.
Fully broken in
The Mini zombies should be broken in around 66mm. This typically happens about after 1 or 2 good sessions. At this point the wheels dump huge white lines all over the road. Weighing 170 pounds, I constantly had thane all over my trucks and board, and even left thanes during the smallest 180’s.
The wheels are great for higher speed freeriding, as you can slide them to control the exact speed you want for your run. The urethane does kill a good bit of speed, but with the vented cores, the roll speed quickly makes up the speed lost from sliding. Big standups are a breeze on the Mini Zombies as you have control throughout the entire slide.
With that being said, they won't slide as far as an 83a Moronga or something of the sorts, so you don’t want to use these wheels for a longest slide competition. Personally after riding the Mini Zombies, I felt myself progressing a good amount, especially in my switch checks.
Close to the Core
When the Mini Zombies start to get small, flat spots become almost inevitable for the inexperienced rider. Urethane flies off the wheel and isn't as durable once you get close to the core.
At this point in the wheels life, if any slide is held for 10ft+ over 90 degrees, the wheels will develop a flat spot, which makes your wheels uncomfortable to ride. The smaller the wheels get, the rougher the ride becomes. The large core helps with the roll speed of the wheel, but also makes for a rough and icy slide towards the end of the wheel.
As the size of the wheels decrease, they lose some of the grip that they once had, fast 180’s and 360 are able to be thrown more easily, but icing out becomes more likely at higher speeds. If you’re not aiming to core the wheel, I recommend putting the Mini Zombies on a double kick, and ride them until you can’t anymore.
The Mini Zombies lasted me around 10 hours of solid freeriding, in warm weather. Keep in mind, I do weigh 170 pounds and skated the wheels very hard. The durability is pretty much on par with any wheel that dumps massive thane.
Once the wheels get smaller, the life of the wheel goes by extremely quickly, due to the easy breaking of traction, and massive amounts of urethane left on the road. The wheels would last and inexperienced freeride approximately 8-16 hours, and much longer for a rider learning to slide.
The Landyatchz Zombie Hawg excels in fast freeriding. They come pre broken in which allows you to slide them out of the packaging. The control that the Mini Zombies give boost your confidence as a rider and allows you to push yourself, while still being confident and in control. The chalky urethane the wheel leave give nice, thick thane lines after being worn in.
The wheels are sideset, which allows for easier slide initiation, ideal for those learning to slide. The vented cores also help with the roll speed, and keep the wheel lightweight. Once the wheels are around 50mm or so, they make for a great double kick or low wheel clearance wheel, as they are easy to slide on, and very lightweight.
Due to the sideset core; the wheels have an inconsistent wear pattern, but coning can be avoided by properly rotating your wheel. If you fail to properly rotate your wheels, an uneven wear pattern will quickly become apparent.
The large core doesn’t make for a smooth ride once the wheels get small, and flatspots can easily occur. The wheel doesn't have a tons of flaws, but these are the main three I noticed the most.
The Landyacthz Mini Zombie is great introductory wheel into intermediate freeride, but would still be enjoyed by a upper level freerider. The controlled slide allows for a rider to progress with confidence.
The urethane is nice a chalky thane, that isn't likely to disappoint. One might ask why not to get a butterball instead of this wheel. One of the best things this wheels has to offer, is the ability to be used on a double kick once small. In a sense, it's like buying two wheels for the price of one. You first get a fast freeride wheel, and when the wheel becomes smaller, you get a fun wheel to put on a double kick or low wheel clearance board.