The Ryan Williams Signature Scooter is here. This is what R-Willy rides in Nitro Circus shows (including the upcoming North America tour, which kicks off Sept. 28), as well as at skateparks and everywhere in between. He worked directly with world-class product developer Greenover Sports to painstakingly design it with a focus on versatility and some specific features that you won’t find together anywhere else. Check it out at the Nitro Circus Shop, and read on to hear from R-Willy himself on why this scooter is going to be perfect for riders of every level.
We caught up with R-Willy in Australia, just before he left for the tour, and asked him what it was like to finally design his own scooter from ground up. “To be honest, I probably gave a few people headaches with how much input I put in,” he says. “But hey, it’s the only way to get the perfect signature scooter for myself, and I couldn’t be happier!”
It was a long time coming for an athlete of his caliber, but it was worth the wait. “Pretty much from the time I started riding I would always customize my scooters to my own liking,” he says. “So from the very get go I was working my way to this point.” His years of tweaking and personalizing scooters came into play, and he got to work directly with designers to realize his vision. At this point in his career, he knows what he needs in a scooter. That said, it wasn’t as simple as sketching it on a napkin and calling it a day.
“Designing a complete scooter isn’t as easy as you might think,” he says. “There’s plenty of moving parts, and trying to mix all your ideas into one design that works wasn’t easy, but we made it happen.” His idea was a professional quality scooter designed for riders who want to take their skills to the next level, but that would work for more casual riders as well. Loosely translated, that means he wanted his scooter to be versatile without sacrificing the features he needs to get the job done as a professional scooter rider. For those who like tech specs, here are some numbers:
Deck: 540mm x 130mm
Forks: Alloy Thread-less Fork
Handlebars: Alloy Bar, 635mm x 635mm Y Bar
Grips: 140mm Length Soft Grip
Head Parts: Fully Integrated Thread-less Headset
Clamp: SCS Clamp
Wheels: 120mm Alloy Core LP
Brake: 3 Bolt Brake
“My biggest focus of the scooter was getting the deck perfect for every trick in the book,” he says. “One thing I’ve always hated about some scooter decks is the fact that some make it incredibly difficult to do certain tricks (e.g. footjams).” R-Willy goes back to this trick a few times when he’s describing what sets his signature scooter apart from the increasingly large pack — a large pack that, according to him, is surprisingly lacking in decks that allow a rider to do a proper footjam. “The first trick I tried on it was a footjam, as I know a lot of other scooters make it so hard to footjam,” he says. This was one of the bars he set for his model, and he kept at it until they got it right, working through several prototypes with Greenover. “Now the scooter footjams better than any other scooter I have ever ridden,” he says. But, he emphasizes again, it’s not only about the footjams. “The biggest thing for me was ensuring every trick in the book would work on it.”
Greenover was the perfect partner for this project. The company has been deeply involved in the freestyle scooter scene for years, not only on the product side but also on the event and competition circuit as well as being a pillar in the movement to introduce scootering to up-and-coming action sports fans and riders.
Ryan was able to be very hands-on in the process, testing and tweaking and making certain that this model would hold up under the pressure he puts on it as a big-air freestyle athlete who also loves to ride the skatepark. “I’ve made a lot of modifications to this scooter that I couldn’t do to my old scooters even if I tried. It’s the perfect balance of lightweight and strong,” he says. “At first I couldn’t believe how light the scooter was — it wasn’t even a custom scooter like my previous one, and it was so much lighter. I did worry about the strength since it was so light, but I still have that same first prototype deck to this day!”
Speaking of that deck: “My favorite part of the scooter by far is the deck,” R-Willy tells us. “I wanted to make it perfect for every type of riding. Whether you’re riding a handrail, your favorite quarterpipe or even a mega ramp, the deck is perfect for it all.”
But what about the aesthetics? R-Willy went with a subtle visual design and focused more on the technical aspects. “For me looks aren’t a huge deal,” he says. “I mean, just the colorway of the scooter makes it look perfect for me. This scooter was designed for performance first. Don’t get me wrong, though, she is beautiful!”
His first stop when he got a prototype was to test it out in the place where many of you will also be riding it for the first time: the park. “Mate, of course the first place I took it was my local Caloundra Skatepark,” he says. That’s where he tried that first footjam and continued to hone the scooter to ride well in the park. Now it’s right where he wants it. “Not only can I do crazy new scooterflip variations, I can back it up with World First grind and footjam combinations,” he says. He also, of course, took the scooter out on tour to ensure it would hold up in those very different conditions.
The result is a highly customized piece of gear you can get for yourself today. Click here to check it out.