We have put together a skateboard buyer's guide to help you with your skateboard decisions and purchases. Below is information and details on each main component of a skateboard. Whether you're buying yourself a skateboard or for someone else we hope this is informative and helpful.
Complete or Custom?
You have two choices when buying a skateboard - You can buy a 'complete' – This is where the parts have already been assembled together giving you a 'Complete Set-up' OR alternatively you can choose a 'custom set-up' – where you are able to choose all the individual parts yourself to suit your personal preferences. Don't worry about having to put all the parts together though, Route One will assemble your chose 'Set-Up' free of charge. Click here to view all of our complete skateboards.
The Skateboard Deck
Decks usually come in a variety of sizes ranging from 7.375" for those with small feet right up to a wider 9" board. No matter what size feet you have though, it is more important to choose the board on the basis of how comfortable you feel on the board, try out some of your friend's skateboards to get a feel of the different sizes.
Click here to view all of our skateboard decks.
Grip tape is the strip of sandy- like material applied to the top of a skateboard deck which gives the rider more friction to control the board. Basically making the board stick to your feet! Every deck at Route One comes with free grip tape which can be applied free of charge on your request. Click here to view all of our skateboard grip tape.
Skateboard trucks are the metal components that are mounted to the underside of the board which pivots allowing the rider to turn left and right. Trucks are the most important part of your board; so make sure you choose wisely as they really will affect the way you ride.
There are many truck companies out there offering different sizes and heights trucks for different width boards. The wider the board the wider the truck, you will need. It may be helpful to check the truck to board ratio size guide above if you are unsure.
Don't forget to check if the trucks are sold individually or as a pair! Click here to view all of our skateboard trucks.
Wheels come in sets of four; you need two for each truck. They range from many sizes from 49mm up to 60mm. Anything over 60mm are usually meant for longboards or cruisers which need softer wheels for the rough texture of Britain's pavements!
Wheels between 49mm - 54mm are typically used when street skating whereas 55mm - 60mm are used on transition, ramps, or in the local skate park. There are many brands that offer wheels in a variety of colour's and designs, but this choice really comes down to personal taste.
If you are buying larger wheels, it may be wise to add a set of riser pads, which is a thin bit of rubber or plastic which fits under the trucks to raise the board a little bit to avoid 'Wheel bite' Wheel bite is where the wheel rubs against the board causing you to come to a holt suddenly. Click here to view all of our skateboard wheels.
Bearings are the small round part that slots into the wheel allowing you to roll and keep up speed. Almost every bearing comes with an ABEC rating which stands for 'Annular Bearing Engineers Committee'. Higher grade bearings tend to roll faster and last longer than low grade bearings, but can differ from brand to brand. Click here to view all of our skateboard bearings.
Bolts are what keep the trucks mounted to the skateboard. You can attached and adjust bolts using a 'Skate Tool'. 'Bolts come in many sizes - Longer bolts are only really need for trucks with riser pads. Once again, they come in a variety of different brands, lengths, colour and designs. Choosing coloured bolts could be used as an easy way of showing you which is the nose and which is the tail of the skateboard. Click here to view all of our skateboard hardware.
Protection - Helmets and Pads
Safety first! Put a lid on it!
Be sure to measure your head to find the best fit. Measure from your ears to the back of your head. Be sure it fits properly, so it can protect to
Knee and elbow pads are a good idea to stop any cuts and bruises you could get when you fall. They come in a variety of sizes. Make sure you get the best fit to ensure ultimate safety! Click here to view all our skateboard protection.
How much do I spend?
Treat it as I investment! The more you spend, the more you get in return! Cheaper parts could be of lower quality, so you may not get the performance you are looking for!
Thank you for reading the Route One Skateboard Buyers Guide. You still feel you would like more advice – It is always a good idea to go to the local skate park or anywhere the local skaters hang out and have a look and see what they are riding. If you ask them questions, we are sure they will be happy to help.