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Skateboard trucks grinding with Blue Tomato Team Rider Felix Widnig in Radstadt

Skateboard Trucks Buyer's Guide

Patrick Steiner
Pro Advice

Trucks are easy to understand. In fact, most of the important details of your trucks are determined by other factors such as the size of your wheels and deck. With the right trucks, skating is easier.

Alex
Alex
Skate & Snowboard Buyer

Kapitola 1

Which width trucks should I use?

The width of the trucks should match the width of the deck. However, different manufacturers use different units of measurement for their trucks which can get a little confusing. So here we have a small table with the four largest manufacturers and their measurements and how they fit with your deck.

Deck width (Inches) < 7.5" 7.5" - 7.99" 8.0" - 8.49" 8.5" - 8.99"
Independent Trucks 109 129 139, 144 149, 159
Thunder Trucks 143 145 147, 148 149, 151
Tensor Trucks - 5.0 5.35, 5.5 5.75
Venture Trucks - 5.0 5.2 5.8
Truck
widths
  1. < 7.5"
  2. 7.5" - 7.99"
  3. 8.0" - 8.49"
  4. more than 8.5"

Small trucks for kids' decks

These trucks fit slim decks up to 7.5".

Graphic showing the front nose of a skateboard where the trucks have the same width as the deck

Trucks for street decks

These trucks fit decks between 7.5" and 7.99" making them great for street skateboarding.

Graphic showing the front nose of a skateboard where the trucks have the same width as the deck

Trucks for park decks

These trucks fit a deck between 8.0" and 8.49" - ideal for riding skate parks.

Graphic showing the front nose of a skateboard where the trucks have the same width as the deck

Trucks for bowl decks

We recommend these wider trucks for bowl and vert decks from 8.5".

Graphic showing the front nose of a skateboard where the trucks have the same width as the deck
Kapitola 2

How high should my trucks be?

When we talk about the height of a truck, we mean the distance between the baseplate and hanger. Or, to put it more simply, how far away are your wheels from your deck?

With skateboard trucks, there are three different heights: Low - 50 to 53 millimetre wheels, Mid - 53 to 56 millimetre wheels and High for bigger wheels.

Choose
the right height
  1. Low trucks
  2. Mid trucks
  3. High trucks

The most stable

Low trucks are the most stable. For street and park skating, this is particularly important. A risk is the threat of the deck and wheels touching. This is called wheel bite when this happens, the board will stop abruptly- buying smaller wheels will reduce the risk. Low trucks can be used with riser pads, for bigger wheels.  

Icon of low trucks

The most versatile

Mid trucks are the most versatile. You have some of the stability of lower trucks but can use larger wheels for better handling on rough surfaces. Mid trucks are can also be used with riser pads for use with larger wheels.

Icon of mid trucks

The best pop

High trucks give you the best pop, due to the bigger distance between to the ground. If you need some help with your ollies, go higher. With these trucks, you can use bigger wheels without the risk of wheel bite.

Icon of high trucks
Kapitola 3

The parts of a Skateboard Truck

Icons showing the different parts of a skateboard truck from the front as well as from the back

The trucks of a skateboard determine the behaviour of your board when you’re riding. The components of a skateboard truck are as follows: The Kingpin, the Baseplate, the Hanger and the Bushings.

The different
parts of a truck
  1. The Kingpin
  2. The Baseplate
  3. The Hanger
  4. The Bushings

The Kingpin is the large screw on which the bushings sit, which holds the hanger and baseplate together- very important! You can tighten the nut on the end of the kingpin. This, in turn, makes steering a little tighter. If you want a looser feeling, loosen the nut. You can experiment with different tightnesses until you find what works for your skating.

Independent trucks from above showing the kingpin screw

The base on which the components are fixed is called the Baseplate. This part is attached to the skateboard with screws, the hanger rests in the pivot pocket on the baseplate.

Independent Trucks from the side, showing the baseplate

The hanger is attached to kingpin and rests on the baseplate. The hanger rod is at the end of the hanger is where the wheels attach, the axle nut is at the end and physically fixes the wheels.

Skateboard truck from the front showing the hanger

The rubber parts on the kingpin, are, with the tightness of the kingpin responsible for the steering of your skateboard. A harder rubber set of bushings (96A) is stiffer for a more responsive ride. A softer set of bushings (81A) is more forgiving.

Replacement bushings for skateboard trucks
Kapitola 4

Accessories for Trucks

Different pads and screws allow you to adjust your skateboard setup to your preference.

If you use your additional pads, you will also need longer screws.

Bolt kits Height of riser pads
7/8" to 1" No pads needed
1" to 1 1/8" 1/8" riser
1 1/4" 1/4" riser
1 1/2" 1/2" riser
Riser
Pads and Hardware
  1. Riser Pads
  2. Skateboard Hardware

Riser pads are the plastic pads between the trucks and the deck. Complete skateboards come usually without them. However, you might need them if you want bigger wheels as the pads increase the height of your trucks. 

There are two types of riser pads.

  • Riser Pads are made from hard plastic and increase the distance between the wheels and board to prevent wheel bite.
  • Shock Pads are made from rubber and absorb shock for a more comfortable ride and softer landings.
Riser pads from Independent for bigger wheels

The screws with which you mount the trucks to the deck have to be the right length. Most sets of screws are 1" for skateboard trucks mounted without riser or shock pads. If you are using riser or shock pads between your trucks and deck, then you will need even longer hardware to accommodate this.

 

Screws and bolts for attaching skateboard trucks to decks
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