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How To Choose Skateboard Wheels Home >> News Center >> How To Choose Skateboard Wheels

Well, we all know the modern day skateboard wheels are made out of polyurethane.

However, before you make order, it is essential to understand how to pick your skateboard wheels.

So, here is one of the most comprehensive guides that will take you step-by-step and explain what things to look in for when buying good ones.


Diameter

 

The most important thing to consider is the diameter of a skateboard wheel.

It is measured in millimetres (mm).

The usual range in mm you’ll find on the market is 50-75mm.

A wheel which is small in size will give you a slower ride, and more substantial ones  will go fast.

Since the diameter is directly proportional (oh my physics knowledge..) to the speed of your board, they also affect how quickly you can accelerate and how sharply the board can turn.

To give you a better idea of how a particular range will affect your performance, here is a quick comparison.

50-53mm: These are considered the smallest skateboard wheels. Perfect for beginners and offer the stability for trick riding

54-59mm: Medium or average size is perfect both for beginners and intermediate riders

60mm+: Made for the professional riders and especially for longboards, these wheels can roll on any terrain and are made for speed and to smoothly run over rough terrains

Depending on your skill level, choose the size wisely. If you are a complete beginner who is just starting, I would recommend the smaller items (50-53mm).


Durometer


 

Diameter is the size of the wheel; DUROMETER is the measure of hardness. Like diameter, the higher the number of durometers, the harder your wheel will be.

The usual durometer considered best is 99a. This is measured on Durometer A Scale (a 100-point scale).

However, some manufacturers use a B Scale, measuring 20 points lower and allowing the scale an extra 20 points for harder wheels.

For the sake of an example, consider an 80b durometer wheel. It has the same hardness as a 100a.

These wheels are usually wide and with more accurate hardness range.

So, the question here is, “Do hard wheels ride fast?”

The answer is YES.

Though softer wheels are slower, they offer more grip.

If you love street skating, go for softer ones. They are great to ride on smooth surfaces like skate parks.

To make it clear to you, here is a quick comparison of the durometer scale and how they will affect your performance while cruising.


 

78a-87a: These are the soft wheels, good for rough surfaces, longboards and street boards. These will offer smooth ride

88a-95a: Slightly harder but faster at the same time. They may have a little less grip, but overall, they are perfect for street, rough terrain and hill skating

96a-99a: Hard wheels with a good speed and grip. These are perfect for beginners, skate parks, ramps, pools, etc.

101a+: These are the hardest and the fastest ones but with the least grip. Made for pro riders only

83b-84b: Extremely hard wheel. Even faster and with very minimal grip


Contact Patch

Contact Patch is another essential feature of your skateboard wheel as it affects your performance.

It is the area of the wheel which makes contact with the pavement.

Those of you with a longboard wheel, which are large, will also have a large contact patch.

If the contact patch is small, the body weight will be distributed over a small area and vice versa.

A small contact patch will increase the compression of urethane in your wheels and eventually decrease its rolling resistance, slow down the wheel.

However, the shape of the wheel also affects the size of the contact patch.

Rounded ones tend to make less contact with the pavement, whereas square wheels make maximum contact. This will affect its performance overall.
 


Which Shape To Choose?


To get the best cruising wheels, shape is another important factor. Since we’ve come a long way and have learnt how to customize our wheel based on our riding experience, the only thing left is to pick the shape.
 
Sharp-lip Shape
If you are someone who loves cruising, carving and slalom, sharp lip shape is the perfect for you. They offer more grip, especially during hard turns.
 
Round-lip Shape
Riders who love to perform surf slides and carves or anyone who is learning powerslide, wheels with the round-lip profile will offer you the best finish.
 

 

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