The Future of FreeSK8 - 2020

Hello everyone!


Thanks so much for joining us- pretty excited to get to share some updates and also give a clear picture of what our development road map looks like.

We’d also like to clarify some things about what we intend on doing with the FreeSK8 Project moving forward & how DRI (Derelict Robot Industries, us!) plays a part in that. I will cut to the chase and give an outline of our current development pipeline & where we’re at with each one.


FreeSK8 is an open source, comprehensive eboarding & LEV system comprised of multiple devices that communicate with each other to provide critical system sensor & fault data to the rider & other system components. These systems are comprised of an ESC (Electronic Speed Controller, VESC-Compatible), Radio Module/Datalogger/BLE Module (Robogotchi), Wireless Remote Control (FreeSK8 Remote/OSRR 1.0), GPS, SmartBMS (Battery Management System), Power Control (AntiSpark/power switch), Lighting Control System (LightShow Module), & various battery technologies.

In the longer term, it is our goal to expand our hardware offerings into full eBoard Kits with open source reference documentation on each component.

  • FreeSK8 NRF52 Module - In Beta Testing Now.

  • FreeSK8 Robogotchi - Entering Beta Testing phase.

  • FreeSK8 Mobile App - In Beta Testing Now.

  • GPS Module - Expected Beta Testing - Late December

  • FreeSK8 Remote (OSRR 1.0) - Expected Beta Testing - Early December

  • FreeSK8 BMS - Expected Beta Testing - December

  • AS Power Switch - Expected Beta Testing - December

  • FreeSK8 LightShow - Expected Beta Testing - December

  • FreeBOX V6 ESC - ETA Q1 2021

FreeSK8 & Open Source

We are committed to the open source philosophy of sharing knowledge & technology. This means that we want the FreeSK8 project to grow beyond just one team’s efforts and be a public asset that is available to all. In addition to publishing project documentation, source code, design files, schematics, & tutorials- our long-term goal is to stand up The FreeSK8 Foundation as a 501©3 Non-Profit Organization.

This gives an open source project such as FreeSK8 a number of different benefits that will help the project grow towards a sustainable future that is not attached to any individual or company. All FreeSK8 Project IP ownership will be transferred to this NPO so that it can reside in a neutrally owned organization. We are working with various members within the eBoarding & LEV community to sit on a Board of Directors that would oversee funding distribution, structure, & project goals over the course of the project moving forward.

This gives us the needed levels of transparency & accountability to build a foundation of a truly open, community driven technology platform. We are also working to organize under the Open Source Collective (OSC) to assist in accounting, fund-raising, & grant proposals. Donations made towards a 501©3 NPO are tax-deductible and ensures that we can keep funding focused at OS development efforts with minimal overhead.

In the meantime, we’ve setup a Patreon for anyone that would like to support the FreeSK8 project & get more involved in the beta testing & development efforts.

Funding from Patreon will be used transparently, only to fund FreeSK8 development & project costs.

Derelict Robot Industries Role in FreeSK8

Many Open Source Projects start with individuals or private companies that chose to share their work with the public either from the start, or at some point when they felt it made the most sense to open the project to external developers. We at DRI are a small team of engineers, tinkerers, & skaters that are super passionate about bringing the FreeSK8 System & Foundation into the world, but understand that for something to truly become a useful technology platform for all, we need to ensure that the platform is inclusive to all.

The DRI Team will serve as the principal authors of the FreeSK8 Project until we have the Foundation stood up, at which time we will transfer all Project IP over to the Foundation permanently, and continue to build the project in its forever home there.

We will also be manufacturing FreeSK8 hardware for B2B wholesale & direct retail to customers. We encourage other manufactures to engage the project and join us, as if we are successful in our goals- we expect that a number of companies in the future will also be manufacturing hardware based on FreeSK8 Open Reference Designs. We welcome this with open arms as we want to encourage this area of technology to grow, and it’s simply more fun to go forward with friends.

DRI also functions as a professional engineering design services & consultation firm for a number of esk8 companies that exist today. Many of these companies will be releasing their own FreeSK8 based hardware in the coming months, and we will be working with them to bring this other compatible hardware to the market as well. Our goal here is to have a round table discussion and get everyone on the same page so that we can build safer, smarter devices that have inherent cross-compatibility.

At the time of writing, the DRI Team consists of Andrew Dresner, Renee Love, Sean Hacker, & Benjamin Franceschi. We wanted to thank you once again for your support- we’re super excited to show you what we’ve been passionately working on this last year.

Let’s build some cool machines together!


Can I be the first groupie??


No.1 FreeSK8 Fanboi


I see you conveniently left the month/year out and just wrote late :expressionless:


20 character min reply length are you bejoking me?


For real.


Fixed. 5 chars now.


Has there been a decision on if you are going with HV or more traditional 60v design with the ESC?

Also given the separate A/S proposal, will the ESC have an onboard switch? Perhaps an RGB affair that was a nice feature on the Stormcore to give battery status,maybe some oneupmanship with a ring LED around the switch giving more precise info at a glance.

Hoping the answer is HV

Cue AC/DC track, maybe call it Rock⚡️n’Roll

FreeBOX, over here that is a satellite box which decodes paid tv channels, exciting!


Right now we are sticking with 60V and trying a little strut before we sprint.

It will be separate.

We’ll one-up them by adding the ability to discharge a shock from the button in case of grand theft skateboard. Probably vaporware tho.

We will get there but I really don’t like to talk about things that aren’t material yet.

Remote + Robogotchi + Mobile App are Step 1 for us because it gives us a good basis of collecting data in a meaningful way, which is going to dramatically help with testing/feedback cycles.

Trademarks be damned!


Since you won’t be using nasty components I’m guessing 13s will be fiiiine

Seems to be driverless ESC out which is interesting on .news maybe the Rion, could be worth a look


Locally sourced, organically grown.

(it’s mostly Digikey)


I beg my pardon, the Zesc ware is very interesting


110% agree, super interesting project. I’ve wondered about a driverless approach myself. There are actually a number of dedicated single-phase drivers that can be used if we wanted to step away from DRV at some point.

At the moment I’m building off things I learned shepherding the TB6 project over the finish line + some good note taking on conversations I’ve had with @Blasto. Not exactly rushing it, and building them in-house will be a goal of the project.


Designing and producing ESCs is not a fault tolerant space, seems to be a large influx of designs coming out.

It’s a great time to look around and consider options at leisure.

I mean the work ethic is admirable but you guys are squashing a load into 2020?


This is a legitimate effort to make the best of a pretty shit dice roll this year. We’re having fun though.

Besides, nobody likes bored engineers. :wink:


The 52840 Module is very capable unit I am working on adding WS2812B (Neopixel Controller) to my bluetooth Module via some line level converters. This will do away with the esp32 in all my boards and add more lighting controls to my remotes.


The biggest limitation we’ve found is that the NRF documentation is volatile & a lot of the SDK versions have quirks/instabilities.

ESB (the protocol used for the remote connection on the wand) also has some limitations were trying to work around at the moment.

Spot on though- 52840 does appear to be the lead contender. We’re using the 840F/E series from Fanstel.

I’ll try to get a comprehensive update posted by the end of the week.


I am working with the Minew modules I had to make my own footprint in Kicad.
No castilated Points on the bottom like the fanstel (a bitch to solder without a screen\oven) they stalked me on linkedin and sent me a metric shitton of documentation and files Mostly eagle and Altera. Creepy and helpful.


Is FreeSK8 Robogotchi open source?