There are hundreds of every type of component out there, but not all are good enough for us. We curate our collection to buy only the items that are a good price and professional quality level, so you don't have to worry and can focus on what you need and what catches your eye.
Here is some basic information for you to be a pro in minutes and feel confident in what you're buying.
Most boards are around the same length, but will vary in width. The most important thing to note is that your board and trucks should be in the same size range (see below under TRUCKS). You can figure out the size of your board by measuring the top of the board at it's widest point to the closest 1/16 of an inch. The adult size range starts at 7.5" wide. Anything smaller is for youth. The most common size range is 7.5-8.5" wide, though they go all the way to 10.5" wide for the old-school style boards. If you're trying to do flip tricks, you'll want to stay in the 7.5-8.5" range. If you're just cruising around, you can buy whatever size you want and you'll get used to whatever you're riding. If you're just cruising around or have big feet, the bigger the board is, the more room and more comfortable it will be.
- Pintails which look like a surfboard shape are for cruising and are the least aggressive shape.
- Drop-Throughs have an area in the middle to plant your feet and can be used for more aggressive riding. Some are twin tip, so you can ride them both forward and backward.
- Top Mount is when the trucks mount onto the board normally.
- Drop-Through is when the board has a hole in each end and the trucks are mounted by separating the baseplate and hangar and reconnecting them with the board in between.
- Drop-Down boards are a top mount where the board shape curves down like a lowrider.
- Double-Drops are boards that have both a Drop-Through, and Drop-Down
Skateboard: Your board and trucks should be in the same size range, so you'll need to know what size your board is (see SKATEBOARDS for how to measure). Different companies use different measurements for trucks, and they are only sometimes the exact width of your board. Here are the size ranges, and how they are sized as trucks:
|Board width||Truck Hanger (mm)||Truck Hanger (inches)|
Longboard: Longboard specific trucks are a different design with a reversed kingpin which provides more stability at higher speeds. They are referred to as Reverse Kingpin trucks or RKP for short. They are usually either size 150mm (9") or 180mm (10"). You'll want to choose the size that won't be sticking out on the sides from your board so you don't kick your wheel (stopping you and making you fall). RKPs are about a 1/4" taller than standard skateboard trucks, giving you more room to have a larger wheel without needing riser pads.
Most RKP trucks are 50 degrees which is the angle the hanger sits at. If they are lower (usually 43-45*) they turn less and are more stable, ideal for high speeds (35mph+). If they are lower like 52* trucks, they will turn more but be less stable.
The standard 50* truck is the best of both worlds and is what is included in most complete set ups.
There are a few things to know about wheels, but the main two are sizing, and hardness (durometer).
Size: The bigger they are, the more they go over.
Skateboard wheels range in size from 49-65mm, but will most commonly be size 52-55mm. Anything above 55 will need a riser pad (a part that goes between the board and the truck to keep the wheels from hitting the board when you turn. See RISERS below for sizing.
Longboard wheels range in size from 65-80mm, but will most commonly be size 70-75mm. If you have a drop-through longboard, you can go bigger than 70mm, otherwise you can only with riser pads. See RISERS below for sizing.
Durometer: The harder the faster, but only on smooth surfaces like concrete. The softer they are the more shock they absorb, and smoother the ride (better for rougher surfaces like asphalt). The range is 78-104A
Some bearings are ABEC rated, which means the ball bearings inside are polished to a certain measurable level. The higher the rating, the higher the polish, and less friction they will have. Higher ABEC = Faster bearings. You'll want to start at a 3 for children, 5 if you are a beginner, 7 if you have more experience and want to go faster, and 9 for racing and rollerblades. Some companies don't use this rating system, but that doesn't mean they aren't good. Generally if the bearings are not ABEC rated, you can assume that a bearing in the $20 range will be somewhere around an ABEC 5 in speed. If they are around $12 they will generally be more like an ABEC 3.
Fun fact: Skateboards, Roller Skates and Rollerblades all use 8mm bearings!
If your wheels are bigger than 56mm, you'll probably need risers so you don't get wheelbite. You'll also need longer screws.
Skateboard recommended sizing:
49-55mm wheels = no riser = 7/8 - 1" screws
56mm wheels = 1/8" riser pad = 1.125" screws
60mm wheels = 1/4" riser pad = 1.25" screws
65mm wheels = 1/2" riser pad = 1.5" screws
Longboard recommended sizing (with Reverse Kingpin Trucks, if there are no wheel-wells on the board to give the wheel more space):
72mm wheels = 1/8" riser pad = 1.125" screws
75mm wheels = 1/4" riser pad = 1.25" screws
80mm wheels = 1/2" riser pad = 1.5" screws
If you have standard skateboard trucks on your longboard, add 1/4" to your riser height and screw length.
You can buy a pack, or if you buy them individually, you'll need 8 screws and 8 nuts for a set to hold your trucks to the board. See RISERS above for sizing
Skateboard: Flathead screws, in either a Phillips or Allen head.
Longboard: Flathead for a Top-Mount board, Panhead for a Drop-Through