Skateboard Wheels: The Right Contact to the Road
Choosing the Right Wheels
The wheels determine how quickly you skate. They are mostly made from polyurethane and are available in different;
The Diametre of the Skateboard Wheels
|The size of the Skateboard Wheel||The Properties of the Skateboard Wheel|
|48 to 53 Millimetres||Slower wheels for more stability when landing and rapid acceleration. Particularly well suited for street skating |
|54 to 59 Millimetres||The all-rounder wheel for beginners and good riders who like to skate street, bowl and mini ramp. |
|From 60 Millimeter||The biggest wheels are suitable only for Old School decks and longboards. They can go faster, on rougher surfaces. However, they do speed up more slowly than smaller wheels. |
The Hardness of the Wheels
The hardness- Durometer- is indicated by the A scale which goes from 1A for soft to 100A for very hard. Some manufacturers use the B scale as well, this is considerably harder. 80B is equivalent to 100A.
|The Hardnest of Skateboard Wheels||The Property of the Wheels|
|73a to 87a||Great soft wheels for bumps in the road. Perfect for cruisers and boards which require a great deal of grip. |
|88a to 95a||Faster and less grip than 78a wheels. You will often find these on longboards and decks for the skate park. |
|96a to 99a||The all-rounder for street and park skaters. Good grip and a good speed|
|101a||For experienced riders who like to grind and slide a lot. Reduced grip but very fast. |
|83b to 84b||For professionals with no limits. These wheels run extremely fast but have almost no grip.|
Contact Patch: the Surface Area of the Wheels
Another important feature of the wheels is the contact surface which greatly affects the way that you skate. A larger contact patch will distribute your body weight over a larger area. This causes your wheels to slow down, so manufacturers have rounded the edges of skate wheels. This means that wheels are lighter and rotate more easily. Longboard Wheelsspin easily despite their larger contact surface because they have a larger diameter. This also means that the wheels will slow down making curves because the outside wheels have to go further than the inside.
Not all manufacturers make their wheels exclusively from polyurethane. Spitfirehas developed a special formula – F1 Streetburners and F1 Parkburners- that offer you maximum performance in the park and in the street. Bones Wheelshave also created special formulas called:
- STF – Street Tech Formula and
- SPF – Street park Formular
The Mounting of Wheels
Once you’ve decided on wheels, all you need to do is stick your bearings(they are the same for Skateboardsand Longboards), in the wheels. The bearing will attach on to the trucks, then come the wheels, then another bearing. A bearing tool can help you with this work. Spacers, metal rings between the bearings, protects against lateral forces which the wheels exerts, and will increase the lifespan of the wheel. Not just with your home built skateboard but also with Complete Skateboards, you should make sure that before your first skate that the screws are not too tight.