Are you on a hunt for the best skateboard on the market today? Then you are in the right place as this comprehensive article is designed to give you information about skateboarding and types of skateboards in general. By learning about the different types of skateboards and what each one can do, figuring out what works for you the best is a lot easier.
As most people know, skateboarding is a really fun and exciting activity but you can’t expect to experience such fun and excitement if you own a low quality and subpar skateboard. You really need to find out the coolest skateboards out there so you can make the most out of the sport.
If you are just new in the field of skateboarding, then rest assured that there are many reliable skateboards for beginners that you can choose. Let’s delve deeper into the world of skateboarding and skateboards through this article.
Best Skateboards 2018 – Comparison Table
|#1. Powell Golden Dragon Flying Dragon Complete Skateboard||Regular Skateboard||Overall - Editor’s Pick|
|#2. RockBirds Skateboards 31-inch Pro Complete Skateboard||Regular Skateboard||Beginner Adults|
|#3. PUENTE 31-inch Complete Skateboard||Regular Skateboard||Kids|
|#4. Punisher Cherry Blossom Complete Skateboard||Regular Skateboard||Girls|
|#5. KPC Pro Skateboard Complete||Regular Skateboard||Budget-friendly|
|#6. Rimable Complete 22-inch Skateboard||Cruiser Skateboard||Overall Cruiser Skateboard|
|#7. Merkapa 22-inch Complete Skateboard||Cruiser Skateboard||Beginners|
|#8. Skatro 22×6-inch Retro Style||Cruiser Skateboard||Mini Cruiser Skateboard|
|#9. Ancheer 27-inch Cruiser Skateboard Complete||Cruiser Skateboard||Wood Cruiser Skateboard|
|#10. Penny Australia Classic Complete Skateboard||Cruiser Skateboard||Use in the College Campus|
Table of Contents
- 1 Best Skateboards 2018 – Comparison Table
- 2 Custom Skateboard versus Complete Skateboard
- 3 5 Factors to Consider When Buying a Complete Skateboard
- 4 Cruiser Complete Skateboard vs. Regular Complete Skateboard: Which One Should You Choose?
- 5 Top Rated Regular Complete Skateboards
- 6 5 Best Cruiser Complete Skateboard for the Money
- 7 How Much Does a Skateboard Cost in 2018?
- 8 Custom Skateboard Buying Guide
- 9 How to Assemble a Skateboard
- 10 Skateboard Gears You Might Need
- 11 Frequently Asked Questions
- 12 Conclusion
Custom Skateboard versus Complete Skateboard
When trying to find the best skateboard, you will most likely come across the custom skateboard and the complete skateboard. Which between the two is the best option? Here’s a bit of comparison of the two:
Custom skateboard is a good choice for you, especially if you love to add your own unique touch to the board and you are willing to shell out more money for it. However, custom skateboards are not that ideal for beginners because they still have limited knowledge and understanding of all things related to skateboarding.
If you are an intermediate or advanced player of skateboarding, then you can go for the custom skateboard since you are most likely aware of the different parts of the skateboard that you have to customize and design. For instance, you can build it your own by choosing the materials for the board, itself, and the wheels.
You can also add your own graphics or design to it. You can choose to add your favorite color and design it in a way that it perfectly fits your personality without causing you to experience difficulty managing it. However, you also have to prepare to spend more time, money, and effort if you choose the custom skateboard route.
It is mainly because custom skateboards are often costlier than the complete one. In addition, you will be spending a lot of time and effort choosing the perfect materials and designs that will go to your personalized skateboard.
The complete skateboard, on the other hand, is already pre-built. It has the majority of its parts and accessories built up. You just have to buy it and use it. It is often more affordable than the custom skateboard as it does not have specialized materials, products, parts, and designs.
The complete skateboard is actually a great option if you are still a beginner in the field of skateboarding. It is already complete, which means that you will no longer bother yourself thinking about how to build your own. That’s less to think about, especially if you are still new in the industry.
Since it comes complete, it is hassle-free and you can focus on mastering the tips and tricks on managing the skateboard instead of how to personalize it and make it your own. Once you master most of the things that you need to know about skateboarding, then maybe you can go to the customized route.
You are already familiar with the different parts and accessories needed in the skateboard so getting a customized one is much, much easier. However, even if you are an intermediate and advanced player, you can still go for the pre-built or complete one, especially if you do not want to deal with the hassle of creating or designing your own.
5 Factors to Consider When Buying a Complete Skateboard
Buying the best complete skateboards is actually quite tough. You need to figure out which one is the best for you while still ensuring that you are getting a good deal. So how can you pick the most suitable one for your needs out of the many complete skateboards for sale nowadays? Here are some important factors to keep in mind:
The level of experience you have as a skateboarding can give you a rough idea on which complete skateboard to buy. If you are still a beginner, then it is highly recommended to go for an inexpensive mini-complete skateboard, longboard or cruiser.
It is mainly because those items are guaranteed to help you familiarize yourself with the ins and outs of using them. They are a big help in making you feel comfortable when you push off with your feet while also balancing on top of the board when riding. It is not good to go for a very technical product, so it’s best to choose the mentioned types first.
If you are an intermediate player, however, then there is a great chance that you are a little bit comfortable with managing the skateboard. In that case, you can start taking chances and choose different wheels or trucks so you will know how they can affect your skateboarding ability.
If you are an advanced or expert player, on the other hand, then you have already built your foundational skills, allowing you to focus on bigger and more challenging tricks. In addition, there is a great chance that you are already aware of the perfect terrain for you when you are skateboarding.
Since you are already an expert player, then maybe it is time for you to build your own complete skateboard so you have an assurance that it will perfectly meet your needs. Go for one, which lets you customize the ideal setup based on your preferred hardware, grip, and bearings.
Having a customized skateboard can make you feel like you are indeed the boss when you are doing the sport.
Another vital factor that’s helpful in figuring out the ideal pro skateboard complete that you should choose is your own skating style. Note that skateboarding enthusiasts are actually divided into groups depending on the specific terrains they ride.
You have to know exactly your own skating style. Such is helpful in figuring out the perfect skateboard, truck, and wheels specifically designed for the surfaces and tricks you plan to expose yourself to. Your own skating style can also help you determine the right equipment for you depending on the kind of ride you are planning to take.
Some of the most popular skating styles today are the vert, the street and technical, and the longboarding technique. Find out which style or category you belong to so you can decide on the best skateboard setup for you.
Your Height and Weight
Both your height and weight also play a major role in your buying decision. Note that irrespective of the kind of board that you have – whether it is short or long, certain features of it need to adhere to the exact weight you will put on it.
Each professional skateboard is actually designed in such a way that its shape, length, and width perfectly meet the body, weight, and height of the rider. That said, look for one that really suits your body type, weight, and height.
It is also crucial to assess the actual deck prior to buying. Check its size, too. If you are someone who loves to skate on the street more frequently, then the best skateboard for you is that with a 7.5 to 8-inch deck.
However, if you often ride parks and pools, then the ideal deck is at least eight inches. If you are still a beginner, causing you to have no exact forte yet, then it is highly recommended to begin with a deck, which is around 8-inch wide and 30-inch long.
The wheels of the skateboard also matter a lot in your final buying decision. For instance, if you are more into street skateboarding, then make sure that you look for a skateboard with generally smaller wheels than the ones used in park skateboarding.
Such smaller wheels are crucial as they are more responsive and lightweight, promoting ease when you are flipping. Also, take note that wheels are usually measured in millimeters. The best size for street skating is around 49-52 mm.
However, if you are interested in vert or transition skating, then go for that, which is around 54-52 mm. since it is larger and capable of covering a lot of surface area.
Cruiser Complete Skateboard vs. Regular Complete Skateboard: Which One Should You Choose?
Two of the most popular types that will be introduced to you when shopping for good skateboards are the cruiser complete skateboard and the regular complete skateboard. What are the differences between the two and which one should you choose?
Purpose of the Board
The first difference that you may notice between the two is on the actual purpose that each of the board can fulfill. A regular complete skateboard is the one you should choose if you plan to do tricks. It is a good choice if you want to ride up ramps and over obstacles found on streets and skate parks.
It is not suitable for you if you plan to travel great distances, though, as it is not that comfy in that case. The cruiser complete skateboard, on the other hand, is good for you if you plan to use it for traveling. It is a good choice for your everyday commute.
Shape of the Deck
Another thing that makes the cruiser and regular complete skateboard different is the size of their deck. Regular ones often come with decks shaped like lozenges. They are also equipped with a tail and raised nose. They are available in various widths and lengths.
The decks for the cruiser are available in various sizes and shapes, too. Some even come with a kick-tail, allowing you to handle obstacles when traveling while also doing some basic tricks. You can also pick the Mello boards known as mini-cruisers due to the fact that they are only 22 inches in length.
Size of the Wheels
The regular complete skateboard often comes with hard and small wheels, making it suitable for hard and smooth surfaces. Cruisers, on the other hand, feature soft polyurethane wheels that are around 59 mm. This makes them ideal for rough surfaces, promoting fun when traveling distances.
Top Rated Regular Complete Skateboards
Best Overall Skateboard – Editor’s Pick
#1. Powell Golden Dragon Flying Dragon Complete Skateboard
The Powell Golden Dragon Flying Dragon Complete Skateboard is this review’s pick as it works well not only for beginners but also for expert riders. That means you will be getting a dual-purpose product. You can use it if you are still a beginner familiarizing yourself in the world of skateboarding.
When you become an expert, there is no need for you to invest in a new skateboard as it works well for advanced and expert players, too. It promotes a smooth and perfect riding experience. In addition, it works for both kids and adults, making it a really versatile skateboard.
It is equipped with a flexible and durable ligament deck with a more robust and wider polymeric strap reinforcement. Such ensures that the board won’t bend even when sliding and braking it. You will also most likely love the bidirectional skateboard design as it lets you ride it from two sides.
The grip tape-covered deck is also a nice feature as it provides a great traction in between your shoes and the deck. It is also equipped with 7.625-inch Golden Dragon aluminum trucks that guarantee an impressive sliding and turning capacity.
The 54×37-mm PGD polyurethane wheels offer more stability, letting you enjoy a smooth and fun ride and carving experience. The fact that its board is only around 31 inches in size also makes it small enough that you can easily ride, control and carry it around.
Best Skateboard for Beginner Adults
#2. RockBirds Skateboards 31-inch Pro Complete Skateboard
Another of the top rated skateboards today is the RockBirds Skateboards 31-inch Pro Complete Skateboard. It is a 7-layer Canadian maple skateboard known for its durability, allowing it to suit the needs of those who plan to use it to ride long distances. It is a great choice for adults who are still beginning to learn skateboarding.
The fact that it has nice and attractive prints also makes it a fashion skateboard. You can use it to show not only your passion in the sport but also your fashion sense. It is also equipped with a high-density emery surface known for being both waterproof and non-slip. With that, you have a hundred percent assurance of your safety when you are riding on it.
It is also sturdy and solid enough that it can handle riders who weigh up to three hundred kilograms. Since the deck is already pre-assembled, you can free yourself from the trouble of having to assemble it yourself. Such makes it more convenient to use. The skateboard is also equipped with 4 PU wheels.
Such wheels are created using top-quality and solid PU material. The base also makes use of the ABS material, which is known for its capacity to resist impact. It is nicely designed, making you enjoy the act of riding on it. Furthermore, you can see that the board comes with a high-quality grip tape.
The skateboard is not too heavy, too, making it easier to manage. It has great grips that are not prone to scratches. The bearings are also great additions to this skateboard as they promote a fast and smooth ride. In addition, the board is capable of absorbing shock that usually comes from flips.
Best Choice for Kids
#3. PUENTE 31-inch Complete Skateboard
If you are looking for a complete skateboard designed for kids, then the PUENTE 31-inch complete skateboard is one of your greatest choices. The skateboard is made of an 8-layer Canadian maple wood. This material makes the skateboard not only durable but also safe to use.
It also boasts of its high-bearing capability. It is equipped with a 5-inch truck, which also features a highly durable deck that can handle riders who are up to 180 kilograms in weight. This guarantees that it works well for kids. It, therefore, makes a nice gift for your child who loves skateboarding.
You will also find this product very convenient. It is mainly because it does not require you to assemble it yourself. It is a 31-inch skateboard, which is already pre-assembled, thereby preventing you from dealing with the hassle of doing this task on your own.
Another great thing about this skateboard is that it guarantees a more convenient and smoother control. It is due to the fact that it has most of the features that you need to promote a smooth and easy ride, including the ABE-9 high-speed bearing and the soft PU bushings.
There is also an assurance of safety, thanks to the shock-resistant 95A PU wheels integrated into this skateboard. Furthermore, this skateboard boasts of its double kick tail concave design, which is known for giving riders with full control over their movements. Such also promotes ease when it comes to braking.
In addition, you can use such design to perform a variety of tricks, making it good for kids regardless of their skill and experience level. It is easy enough to ride for kids, making them enjoy skateboarding even more.
Best Option for Girls
#4. Punisher Cherry Blossom Complete Skateboard
Another impressive skateboard, which works well for girls, is the Punisher Cherry Blossom Complete Skateboard. It is perfect for a girl who wants to own a colorful and nicely designed skateboard, which she can easily control. It is because this skateboard promotes a smooth ride while also providing riders with better controlling capability.
It is equipped with ivory wheels and alloy trucks designed to help you enjoy a firm ride with utmost fun. It works well whether you are a beginner or an expert, too. One of the most impressive features of this skateboard is its nice design and material. It has a deck made of 9-ply stiff maple wood designed with attractive cherry flowers.
There is also a guarantee that the material used in it is heavy-duty. For instance, it comes with a 5-inch heavy-duty metal alloy trucks. Another interesting feature integrated into this skateboard is its double-deck concave board. Such board promotes ease in case you want to do tricks while also helping you achieve better positioning and balance.
The fact that it is lightweight is also a good thing as it means that you can ride on it for quite a long time while also carrying it with you anywhere you want to go. A coarse grip tape also covers its deck, so expect to receive more than enough traction and grip in between your shoes and the deck.
The fact that it is easy to control also guarantees that it is a perfect choice for both beginners and advanced users who plan on owning a skateboard, which they can use mainly for learning a few tricks relevant to skateboarding.
Best Cheap Skateboard
#5. KPC Pro Skateboard Complete
If what you are looking for is a budget-friendly yet high-quality skateboard, then the KPC Pro Skateboard Complete is definitely your ultimate choice. It comes at an inexpensive price, giving you a great and reliable skateboard without having to shell out a huge sum of money.
The good thing about this skateboard complete is that it ensures that you can easily control it. It has a stiff deck, which is around 31 inches and boasts of its Canadian maple wood construction. Such deck is also beneficial as it is sturdy and strong enough that it can handle riders that are more than 200 lbs. in weight.
You will also most likely fall in love with the attractive combination of different deck graphics used in it, like the black and red checker, red and white checker, blue flame, black and white checker, and heartagram. It can also assure you of a smooth riding experience each time – thanks to its ABEC-5 bearings and the 52-mm Krown graphic wheels.
Furthermore, it has a grip tape, which also guarantees proper traction and grip on your feet when you plant them on the skateboard. If you are a tall rider, then you will be pleased to know that this skateboard can accommodate your needs considering the fact that it is around 7.75-inch wide.
That width ensures that you will have a better positioning regardless of your height. The fact that this skateboard is easy to control also means that you can easily learn how to manage it even if you are still a beginner in this sport. It is lightweight, too, without sacrificing its durability.
5 Best Cruiser Complete Skateboard for the Money
Best Overall Cruiser Skateboard
#6. Rimable Complete 22-inch Skateboard
If you are after a skateboard, which can really give you real value for the money you spent, then the Rimable Complete 22-inch Skateboard may be what you need. It is one of the top skateboards known for its cool design and functionality. It suits the needs of not only beginners but travelers and cruisers as well.
The skateboard has a solid and stiff mini-deck, which is around 22 inches and constructed out of 100% plastic material. Such deck is very lightweight. It is only four pounds but you have an assurance that it can handle up to 198 lbs. of weight. You will also fall in love with the board as it comes in 23 graphics and colors, so picking a favorite is much easier.
The fact that the deck is made of plastic makes it flexible while still retaining its stiffness. Such provides the deck with a high level of flexibility, promoting better control and a smooth ride. It is equipped with a kick tail as well, which is a nice feature for cruisers as it lets them perform quick turns, slides, and tricks.
Another noticeable feature of this skateboard is the 3-inch light aluminum truck, which is known for fitting perfectly with the board. Such helps ensure a smooth ride for the board. The fact that the screws used in assembling the skateboard are of top-notch quality also means that it is sturdier when compared to the others.
Best Cruiser Skateboard for Beginners
#7. Merkapa 22-inch Complete Skateboard
Another of the best rated skateboards that work perfectly well for beginners is the Merkapa 22-inch Complete Skateboard. One of the most remarkable things about this skateboard is that it features a nice design. It is equipped with a colorful deck, which many find attractive as well as wheels with multi-color LED light.
You will also surely love it because it already comes fully assembled. This means that you can ride it right away. It makes it suitable for beginners who want a pre-assembled skateboard as it lets them learn the art of skateboarding right away. It is also ideal for advanced and experienced riders.
It also accommodates the needs of both teenagers and kids who are up to 180 lbs. The fact that it does not need any batteries makes it very convenient to use, too. The LED lights provide an ultimate source of brightness without the need for a battery so you can use it right away.
In addition, the grip built into the board is not slippery, so rest assured that it is very safe to use. Another thing that you will surely find favorable about this skateboard is its traditional penny size. It has a reasonable size, giving you an assurance that you can safely and easily maneuver it.
Aside from all those features, it looks cool with the lights and the color combinations. Expect to impress everyone who see you riding on it because of its really attractive design.
Best Mini Cruiser Skateboard
#8. Skatro 22×6-inch Retro Style
The list of great skateboards also often include the Skatro 22×6-inch Retro Style – Mini Cruiser Skateboard. It is a reasonably priced skateboard guaranteed to meet the demands of those searching for a mini cruiser. It is quite similar to the traditional 22-inch penny skateboard.
What makes it different, though, is the Skatro flex technology built into it. Such technology is a big advantage as it makes sure that the plastic material used in the deck is not only flexible but also of optimal quality. It also makes use of a special machine designed to compute the plastic, which is used in manufacturing the boards.
This results in a more consistent deck when compared to the ones used in regular skateboards. Such is also guaranteed to help promote a smooth ride. You will also be thankful with the bearings integrated into the skateboard as they are known to be stronger when compared to the regular bearings often made of steel used in the others.
This skateboard is also versatile and flexible in the sense that it promotes ease when it comes to commuting regardless of the surfaces you expose it to. Also, rest assured that it is lightweight enough that bringing it on the plane, bus, train, and subway is easy for you.
You will also feel glad with the T-tool included in the skateboard as it is known to be really handy. You can use it in separating each part of the board effortlessly. However, note that the wheels are slightly slippery at first but you can solve that with some wear and tear. Eventually, it will be more fun to ride without the slippery feeling.
Best Wood Cruiser Skateboard
#9. Ancheer 27-inch Cruiser Skateboard Complete
Getting the real value for the money you spent is also what you can expect if you pick the Ancheer 27-inch Cruiser Skateboard Complete. It boasts of its classic cruiser style board, which is around 27 inches and constructed out of a 9-layer Canadian maple wood. The wood material is strong enough that it suits kids and adults who are up to 220 lbs.
The ABEC-7 high-speed bearings added to the skateboard are also known for their precision, keeping riders safe. There is also a solid aluminum truck, which can withstand wear and tear. It also features smooth, double-row, and shock-absorbent PU wheels that can guarantee a smooth ride.
They are smooth enough that riding over bumps and cracks found on sidewalks and streets is much more convenient and easier. The size of the skateboard, which is just roughly 27 inches, is also adequate enough for adults and kids who want to have an easier time maneuvering it on the streets and sidewalks.
The desk that comes with it is lightweight and durable while also boasting of its colorful pattern. You will surely like riding the skateboard knowing that it is attractive to look at. There is also a guarantee that the board has a nice and good grip, thanks to its frosting surface and the non-slip design.
Since it is already pre-assembled, rest assured that it is ready to ride. It is a complete mini-cruiser that’s ready to use and can suit the needs of the rider no matter what his/her skill level is. It can also handle different surfaces, including skate parks, pools, ramps, smooth surfaces, and rough grounds.
Best Cruiser Skateboard for Use in College Campus
#10. Penny Australia Classic Complete Skateboard
Penny Australia Classic Complete Skateboard should also be included on top of the products you should consider buying if you are looking for a high-quality and reliable skateboard that can give you the fun and excitement linked to the sport. It works well for college campuses.
It comes as a Penny plastic cruiser, which is around 22 inches in length. The design used in this product can also reference the ones used in the 70s. It boasts of its classic design and construction, which is actually a good thing as it also provides a retro replication of the skateboard’s origin.
It is also a good skateboard to bring in school as its small and compact design promotes ease in fitting it inside your locker. You will also fall in love with the soft wheels integrated into this complete skateboard as it is known to suck up all sidewalk cracks. With that, expect to enjoy the smoothest ride.
It is also attractively made. You will like the high-quality and color coded Abec 7 bearings made of steel, as well as the high tensile bolts of the skateboard. In addition, it features a 3-inch aluminum truck, which is not only solid and sturdy but is also attractive enough with its powder-coated finish.
The wheels used in this skateboard are not only smooth but also come with an equally vibrant and nice color. It is lightweight, which makes it easy to carry around. It can definitely give you a fun ride anytime you want.
How Much Does a Skateboard Cost in 2018?
Now, it is time to tackle the prices of skateboards, so you will know how much you will most likely spend if you buy a complete skateboard or go for the custom-made one. If you choose to buy the complete skateboard, then note that the average price for it this 2018 is around $50-$200.
If you choose the more reputable brands, then expect the prices to go up to $300 and sometimes more. Still, you will feel like it is worth it since a complete skateboard is already a pre-assembled gear, which is ready to use right after you purchase it. However, you can also go for the custom skateboards route.
Custom skateboards are those that you build your own. On average, making your custom skateboard can cost you anywhere from $90-$500. It is more expensive than the complete one since you will be making a unique skateboard from scratch using your preferred materials and sizes for the parts.
To give you a rough idea on how much you will most likely spend when building your own skateboard, here are the usual prices of their individual parts:
- Deck – The deck is undoubtedly the most vital part of your custom skateboard as it refers to the board where you will stand when doing your skateboarding tricks. If you want to make your own custom skateboard, then expect to shell out around $30-$45 for the deck as it is its average cost.
- Truck – You should not also skimp on the truck as it is a vital aspect on how smooth your ride will be. It usually costs $15-$30.
- Wheels – Wheels are also among the most useful components of the skateboard. You can’t expect to roll without them. It should be noted that the price of the wheels for skateboard vary based on the size, formula, and shape. On average, though, the wheels cost around $15-$35.
- Bearings – These are vital parts of the skateboard, especially if you plan to keep on rolling without having to push constantly. Such is helpful in case you wish to try street skating. As for the bearings, expect to shell out around $18-$140.
- Hardware – It is usually composed of the locknuts and bolts that are essential in attaching the truck to the deck. When you buy the hardware, expect them to be available in a set composed of 8 items. Each set usually costs around $4-$10.
Money Saving Tips
If you want to save money when buying or making your own skateboard, then rest assured that there are tips that can help you, including the following:
It comes with a plastic board deck, which is small in size, making it ideal for riders who need a really sturdy skateboard. It is more suitable for both experts and beginners who want to learn new tricks in skateboarding. The fact that it is stable and small makes it good for kids, too. It promotes ease in riding and controlling it in a crowded street. This complete skateboard is lightweight, too, allowing you to carry it almost everywhere.
- Choose blank skateboard decks – Blank decks and gears for skateboards are actually composed of decks and wheels made without a company name or logo attached. Note that these decks are often generic. They are usually available in just one color but if you want to save money, you can go for these blank decks as they are way cheaper than the others.
- Avail discounts – Always keep an eye on certain skateboard brands as there are instances when they offer discounts. Check these companies for discounts, especially during special occasions, like the holiday season, as you will most likely be able to grab discounts in those instances.
- Be aware of your specific needs – Before you start shopping for the best skateboard, you have to figure out what you really need. Do you want to own a skateboard so you can learn some tricks? Are you planning to use it for transportation?
Figure out the exact purpose of the skateboard. That way, you won’t end up wasting your money buying a skateboard or making a customized one that does not suit your exact needs.
Custom Skateboard Buying Guide
Do you plan to get a custom skateboard instead of a complete one? Then you have to be aware of some of the most vital parts of a skateboard and make sure that you are well-guided when it comes to buying a customized one for each part.
The deck of your custom skateboard serves as the foundation of how it feels overall. Due to that, there are some points you need to consider when it comes to customizing or buying the deck. Some of these are your specific riding style, essential components, like wheels or trucks, and the number of obstacles you will most likely deal with.
Width – It would be best to choose a skateboard deck based on width, instead of length. Note that the average width that’s perfect for the deck is around 7.5 to 8.5 inches. Pick a width based on your skateboarding style as well as your size.
It is because choosing a deck, which is too wide for your shoe size and height might only cause you to exert more effort, making skateboarding and tricks hard to do.
Length – The length of the skateboard usually ranges from 28 to 32 inches. When considering the length, note that shorter board also raises the chance of it becoming narrow. Also, long boards can result in it being wider.
Still, ensure that you prioritize the width, instead of the length, when building and customizing your skateboard.
Wheelbase – Another important consideration in choosing the best deck for your custom skateboard is the wheelbase, which refers to the distance in between the inner mounting holes of the board. On average, the wheelbase should be around 13 to 15 inches.
Also, take note that choosing the right wheelbase and making adjustments to it has a dramatic effect on the overall performance of the board. Remember that your level of experience also has a say on the ideal wheelbase for you.
Other factors that you have to take into full consideration when selecting the best deck for your custom skateboard are the nose and tail, concave, mounting holes, and overall construction.
Among the key components of your custom skateboard are the trucks or the metal axles holding the wheels. They are the pieces that you can see mounted on the skateboard’s underside, keeping its bearings and wheels attached securely. That is why you really have to be careful when buying the trucks as they need to be long-lasting and durable.
They have to be able to withstand the wear and tear linked to the daily grind. Choosing the best skateboard trucks is possible with the aid of these factors:
Truck profile height – The truck profile refers to the distance in between the bottom part of the deck as well as the hanger. Generally, you can pick the mid-sized truck since it works well for a majority of skateboarders. However, low or high trucks are also good choices if you plan to use it for various skating styles.
Go for the low truck profile if you want to obtain additional stability when you do flip tricks. It also works well for small wheels. The mid-sized trucks are good for all-around use, especially in streets and parks. You can also choose the high-sized trucks that are good for carving and cruising, which is the reason why they are perfect for huge wheels.
Width – It is also possible for you to make the best custom skateboard by picking the right width. In this case, you have to know exactly the size of the truck that will perfectly suit the deck. Note that the trucks’ width directly correspond to the deck’s width.
If the truck is too narrow, then there is a great possibility that it will be unstable. If it is too wide, then expect issues, like shoe-to-wheel contact when pushing. That is why you really have to find the right balance.
Aside from the height and width, it is also crucial to check thoroughly the other components of the truck, including the bushings, axle, and kingpin.
The wheels of your skateboard can greatly affect your ride in numerous ways, such as the speed, your ability to take control of the skateboard’s movements, and what you feel while riding the board. The good news is that they come in various sizes, levels of durability, and colors, allowing you to pick one that suits your skateboard preference and style.
If you are thinking of building a custom skateboard, then you can also choose the best wheels that perfectly match the hardware, truck, and deck. Here are some factors that can help you choose a good skateboard wheels:
Material – Note that all wheels used in skateboards are constructed from polyurethane (PU), a hard composite material. That said, ensure that you make your wheels using pure polyurethane material as it has a major impact on the skateboard’s overall performance.
Also, PU wheels are known for being inexpensive, so there is no need to splurge a huge sum of money to get a quality material.
Diameter – Most skateboard wheels are around 50-75 mm in diameter. When thinking about the ideal diameter for the wheels, take note that smaller ones also result in slower rides. Larger ones, on the other hand, can result in speedier ones.
The diameter of the wheels can also have an impact on the speed of acceleration and the tightness of each turn. If you wish to do technical tricks on shortboards, then it would be best to go for smaller wheels. However, larger ones are recommended if you plan to use longboards and cruisers as such provide you with the right balance and speed.
Durometer – This refers to the hardness of the wheels. The average durometer of a skateboard wheel is actually 99a. Also, take note that higher numbers also translate to harder wheels. Generally, hard wheels can be expected to work faster while the soft ones are slower without sacrificing grip.
That said, expect soft wheels to be more suitable for street skating. Hard wheels, on the other hand, are ideal for smooth surfaces, like skate parks.
Another important component of the custom skateboard is the bearing. It is vital as it helps get rid of friction in between the metal within each wheel as well as the metal axle where it spins around. Skateboard bearings can also help ensure that the wheels spin while preventing the metal from grinding up.
Some factors that should affect your decision when choosing and buying the perfect bearings for your custom skateboard are:
Materials – You actually have two options for the material to use in the bearings – the steel and the ceramic. It would be great to choose steel if you are looking for a more durable and economical option. Just make sure to keep them clean, dry, and well-lubricated to ensure that they last long and work efficiently.
The ceramic material, on the other hand, is another good choice because heat energy has the least impact on it. Also, take note that ceramic bearings derived from silicon nitride are also known to be harder and smoother when compared to steel.
Size – It is important to assess the size of the skateboard bearings, too. The most commonly used size is actually the 608 standard. It usually comes with an 8-mm core, 7-mm width, and 22-mm outer diameter, which makes it an industry standard. It is also a good choice as it matches almost all skate wheels today.
It is also necessary for you to spend time assessing all the smaller parts in the bearings, including the C-ring, outer ring, bearing shield, inner ring, ball retainer, and steel balls to increase your chances of buying the best one for your needs.
Also called the mounting hardware, the skateboard hardware is useful in connecting the trucks to the deck. Every truck is actually in need of 4 bolts and locknuts. If you are planning to buy hardware for your custom skateboard, then note that they are often sold in sets composed of 8 parts, though it is also possible for you to buy individual parts separately when required.
When buying, one of the most important things that you have to check out is the size. The perfect size of hardware for you is actually dependent on the kind of skateboard you own. If you have one for shortboard applications, then note that the standard size or length for the hardware is one inch.
If you own a cruiser or a longboard, then make sure to go for a hardware, which is around 1 and 1/8 inch. In case you plan to incorporate a riser into the board, then ensure that you make some adjustments on the hardware’s length. It is because the riser can also increase the space in between the trucks and deck.
Skateboard Grip Tape
The grip tape found on a skateboard can actually be defined as the grainy sheet, which resembles sandpaper that also comes with a sticky underside. Such underside needs to adhere to the deck’s surfaces as a means of increasing traction or grip. No matter what skating style you use, the grip tape is extremely helpful in your attempt to stay on the board.
When looking for the best grip tape for your skateboard, note that it does not have as much scales and factors that you can use in measuring its quality as the ones in skateboards and bearings. In this case, you can just make your choice based on your brand preferences.
Just make sure that you go for a really reliable brand of grip tape as such plays a major role in ensuring that your skateboard is always street-ready. Also, take note that aside from offering traction, it can also brighten your board while also showcasing your unique and personal style.
In most cases, it is available in black but you can also find clear ones that are ideal for you if you want to show a specific logo. Another nice choice that you have is the die-cut grip tape, which works in displaying the color or design of the deck beneath it. Make sure to choose a grip tape at a size, which perfectly suits your skateboard’s deck.
Skateboard Riser Pads
The risers or riser pads refer to the hard plastic pads that you can insert in between the deck and trucks of the skateboard as a means of increasing its overall height. It is an important component at times as it prevents wheel bite, a situation that usually happens when the wheel rubs the deck when you make a turn or perform a trick.
The problem with wheel bite is that it tends to stop the motion of the wheels. This can result not only in a bad wipeout for the rider but also damage to the wheels. With the help of the riser pads, it is easier for you to preserve the deck of your skateboard since these pads can reduce the tendency of having stress cracks on where the trucks and deck meet.
Before buying a riser pad, though, decide whether it is really needed for your skateboard. If your skateboard comes with larger wheels, then note that it is also prone to wheel bite. That said, you may consider buying a riser in case you have a skateboard with large wheels, like a cruiser or longboard.
Generally, when buying a riser pad, you have to consider the length and size of the boards and wheels, respectively. Longer boards and larger wheels often require more height from the riser pad. If you have a shortboarder, then you can also install the riser pad as it helps you avoid wheel bite after you land when doing a skate trick.
It would also be best for you to buy a riser pad if you want your skateboard to be able to absorb shock and impact. If you choose to add a riser pad to your custom skateboard, then be ready to make adjustments on the size of the hardware as a means of accommodating the additional height.
How to Assemble a Skateboard
Now that you know how to choose and buy the vital parts of the skateboard, it is time for you to learn how to put them all together. Here are the usual, simple steps involved in assembling a custom skateboard. You’ll get a comprehensive idea on how it’s done by checking out this video:
- Step 1 – Gather all the individual parts of the skateboard so you can prepare them to build your own.
- Step 2 – Get the grip tape and attach it to the deck.
- Step 3 – Mount the trucks to the deck. What you have to do is to find the mounting holes first then with the help of a screwdriver or bolts, punch holes downwards via the grip tape. Hold the hardware and ensure that they stay in place while you are attaching one truck at a time. Use a socket wrench or skate tool to fasten the nuts.
- Step 4 – Install the wheel bearings. After that, you need to connect the wheels to the trucks.
- Step 5 – Lastly, test the skateboard. Ensure that the screws and grip tape are even. It is also important to check the trucks. Ensure that they are secured firmly to the deck. Test the trucks’ tightness and figure out whether the wheels are capable of spinning freely.
If everything feels and looks good in your custom skateboard, then you can start using it on the road and the streets.
Skateboard Gears You Might Need
Aside from the skateboard, it is also a must for you to invest in the following skateboard gears:
Backpack & Bags
If you love skateboarding, then it is a must for you to invest in a high-quality backpack or bag. It is an essential gear, especially if you are someone on the go. You need it as it lets you bring all the things and items you need while you are riding to work or school – that’s possible while still ensuring that you bring your board with you all the time.
Ensure that you pick a solid backpack, which is not prone to damage. The best skate backpack and bag is also that which can store numerous items, including your book, beads, tools, laptops, and camera.
It is also a must for you to invest in the right skateboarding shoes. The right shoes for skateboarding can’t only guarantee a safe ride. It also helps you enjoy a smooth and good ride. The best shoes, in this case, are those with a high-quality sole.
The good news is that majority of skate shoes today come with high-quality flat soles that are capable of providing the maximum surface area designed to let you come in contact to the board, thereby promoting better control. Look for a really durable shoe, which you can wear comfortably to guarantee a safe and enjoyable experience when you are skateboarding.
Invest in a high-quality helmet if you want to keep yourself safe when you are skateboarding. Avoid committing the mistake of other skaters who neglect buying and using their own helmet while hitting the streets. A good helmet is designed to protect your head.
Note that skateboarding makes you prone to hitting your head in case you encounter an accident. By putting on a helmet, you can protect your head and avoid serious injuries. Look for a lightweight one so it would not hamper your movements when you are wearing it. Also, ensure that it can really give you the protection you need.
Knee and Elbow Pads
You also need to invest in knee and elbow pads to guarantee your safety while you are hitting the street. Go for knee pads that you can easily slip over your leg. Make sure that you can also secure them with a Velcro strap. It can protect your knees in case of a crash.
Elbow pads are also among those safety gears that you should not neglect investing in. Remember that your wrists and elbows are the parts of your body that are most likely exposed when you are skating. By wearing a wrist guard and elbow pad, you can limit or prevent skateboard-related injuries.
Each time you hit the road and streets with your skateboard, you have to bring a tool kit with you. It should contain all the things you need to keep your skateboard in good condition. Your tool kit will serve as your best buddy in case you need to fix some things in your skateboard.
It has everything you need to do the necessary repairs in case you encounter a hard hit or just in case you want to tune up your board to experience the perfect carve. In most cases, the kit contains the essentials, including the screwdriver, L-wrench, sockets, files, and hardware ratchets.
Finger Skateboards with Tricks
You will also find it helpful to have finger skateboards with tricks in your skateboard gear collection. A finger skateboard actually refers to a mini-skateboard, around 96-mm in size. It lets you do a few finger skateboard tricks with the aid of your two fingers, instead of your feet.
It is ideal for those who wish to skate but for some reasons can’t. You can use the finger skateboard to accomplish tricks that are similar to the ones done in an actual skateboard. Even if you are actually doing actual skateboarding, you can still make use of this gear to improve your skills and master tricks.
Frequently Asked Questions
What are the types of skateboards?
There are actually several types of skateboards but the most common ones are the longboard, cruiser, and carve skateboards. A longboard is usually at least 33 inches. It is a great mode of transportation and works well for cruising around. The cruiser also works well as a mode of transportation but many consider it more beneficial as it has a shorter skateboard, which promotes ease in transporting around.
The carve boards, on the other hand, come with special front trucks that make it possible for the skateboard to tilt, the wheels to alter their direction, and the trucks to pivot. There are still more types of skateboards but it’s up to the rider which one can suit his/her needs the most.
How height and weight affect your choice of skateboard?
Both your height and weight should play an important role when you are choosing a skateboard. You need to find a skateboard, which fits your weight and height. Picking one, which is either too small or too big might only cause you to experience difficulty controlling it, especially if you are still a beginner learning the ins and outs of skateboarding.
Aside from your height and weight, consider the size of your feet, too. If you are younger with smaller feet, then a wise tip is to choose a board, which is narrower than the others (around 7 and ½ inches if possible). Go higher if your shoe size is also larger.
What size of skateboard do I need?
In figuring out the size of skateboard you need, it is crucial to take into consideration your height and weight as well as your physical built. In most cases, the skateboard has an average deck of around 7.5 to 8.25 inches. Choose a size based on your height, weight, and built, as well as the riding style you plan to perform.
If you think you are a bigger rider, then you should look for a skateboard with a wider deck. On the other hand, if you are a street skater with a smaller build, then a skateboard with a smaller deck is often enough.
Skateboard, penny board or longboard: What should a new rider choose?
If you are new to skateboarding, then you may get overwhelmed on the different skateboards that are introduced to you. As a beginner, you might find the longboard more useful than the penny board. It is because it is easier to maneuver for beginners while also providing enough stability.
It can also promote a smooth ride when exposed to rough grounds. While penny boards are fun, they are not that ideal for beginners. It is mainly because of their small deck sizes that make them quite demanding to ride so it is not that good if you are still new in the field and want to learn the basics.
Are skateboards allowed on airplanes?
The answer is yes. Skateboards are not actually among those items that are completely banned in any country so rest assured that you can bring your own skateboard with you while you are on a trip. However, you need to make sure that you check the luggage restrictions prior to bringing your skateboard with you.
Find out if you need to check it as a luggage or if you are allowed to bring it as a carry-on item. Almost all airlines, though, require skateboards to be brought as checked luggage. It should, however, be a max of 62 inches in length and weigh less than 50 lbs. so you won’t have to pay an additional luggage fee.
Skateboarding is indeed one of the most exciting activities anyone can try. Aside from being a great sport, skateboarding also offers numerous health benefits. It is a great way to improve your overall fitness considering the fact that it can help you burn calories and stay in great shape.
In addition, it can help improve your physical endurance and flexibility. Many also say that it aids in increasing their pain tolerance, considering the fact that aches, pains, scars, scrapes, bruises and bumps form part of skateboarding. It is also a great way to relieve stress.
Since skateboarding is one of those activities that are good for your mind, body, and soul, it is indeed a wise move to invest in your own skateboard. Look for a complete skateboard or choose the customized version by building your own so you can start enjoying all the benefits that this sport can offer.