Choosing the Right Skateboard Setup for You

We've created this section to help you choose which skateboard gear best suits you right through to how to set up your new skateboard. We believe if your gonna ride it, you need to know how it works...and its a great feeling of satisfaction knowing you've tuned your new skateboard setup yourself!

Which Skateboard is Right for You?

We sell the majority of our skateboards as seperate parts. We do this so you have the choice about what you are going to ride. Every skater has a different style of riding and because the use of the skateboard will be varied you need to have a choice.

Choosing what you need is not a science. All you need to know are a few basic fundamentals about skateboarding and your style of riding. Remember, because no skateboarder is the same, its totally up to you what you ride. We are only giving some general guidelines to try to help the people who are looking to start skating.

Feel free to contact us with any questions.

Decks - These range in size from 7.0" width minis up to 8.5" width. The most popular decks are 7.5" to 8". The narrower skate decks are usually ridden by skaters who like to do flip tricks. Over 7.75" width decks are more appropriate for ramp skating but all decks can of course be used for all skating and it is personal preference. The best advice we can give is try out a couple of decks at your local skatepark. Ask nicely and most skaters are happy to let you roll on their setup. Get an idea of what size suits you and feels comfortable to skateboard on and go for that. Other factors that come into play can include shoe size. If you have big feet you might find it more comfortable to ride a larger size skateboard deck.

We also have a great range of old school decks and longboards available.

Trucks - Range in size from 4.25" (for minis) width to 7" (for longboards). The standard size of trucks is about 5" which will work well on decks from 7.5" to 8" wide. Some trucks weigh more than others and are made with different materials. The rubbers in trucks vary in hardness and can be replaced with softer or harder rubbers if you would like to make your trucks have more or less movement when you ride. You can also loosen and tighten your kingpin to adjust movement.

Wheels - Vary in size and hardness. Softer wheels are more forgiving when riding over small stones and will generally be used on decks that are used for getting around eg. Longboards. Harder wheels will give you better speed on smooth asphalt but may stop in a sudden when faced with stones/rough surfaces. Skaters we sell to will generally go for smaller (50 to 54 mm) wheels with a hardness of 97 to 99 for their decks. Larger, softer wheels work well with longboards as the softness is good for rolling over rough surfaces and the larger size still allows for good speed.

Griptape - We sell tried and true Black Diamond and Element Griptape. Just choose the design/colour that you like and your away laughing. Griptape can be replaced on decks to give it a new lease of life. Try to keep your griptape away from mud and water to extend its life.

Hardware - The nuts and bolts that hold your trucks onto your deck. Larger sizes are available for decks that have risers. Good hardware is fitted with self locking nylock inserts to prevent the loosening of hardware while riding. Available in different sizes to accomodate if riser pads are to be fitted.

Risers - Fit between the deck and trucks. They come in different thicknesses and are used if you like to ride your trucks loose but don't want the wheels to touch the deck when carving.

How to Apply Griptape onto a Skateboard Deck

Work on a clean flat area. Peel back 10cm of the grip tape backing from one end of the sheet of griptape.

Center the grip tape over your skateboard deck while holding each end of the grip tape. Place the exposed end of the grip tape on the nose of the board leaving 5cm overhang. Ensure the grip tape is centered over the deck so that there is an equal amount of overhang on either side. Peel the backing off the grip slowly while pressing the grip down at the same time. Press from the centre of the deck outwards as you go to reduce air bubbles forming.

Using the side of a screwdriver score the grip tape around the outside edge of the grip tape. Do not file through the grip tape; just remove the grit from the grip tape to form an outline of your deck. This outline serves a guide when removing the excess grip tape from the edges of your deck.

Using the outline you made and the edge of your deck as a guide, use a sharp knife to remove the excess grip tape from your deck. Carefully follow the outline and cut around the edge of your deck removing the excess grip tape. Take your time as this part takes practise. Press out any additional air bubbles you see at this time. Finally using the truck holes on your deck as a guide, punch the holes through the new grip using a screwdriver or similar sharp object. You can now fit your trucks onto your deck. The rubbers on the trucks must face each other.

How to Install Bearingsinto Skateboard Wheels

This involves pressing the bearings into the wheels. The easiest way to do this is to use your trucks to press the bearings into the wheels. Start by sliding a bearing onto the axle of one of your trucks. Using leverage between your truck and your hand push the wheel onto the bearing.

Remove the wheel and slide the second bearing onto the truck. Again, using leverage between your truck and your hand push the second bearing into the other side of the wheel. Repeat this process for all your wheels.

To Remove the bearings from the wheels, use the end of the axle to leverage the bearing out of the wheel.

Do not overforce the bearing into place as this can cause damage to the bearings.

Fitting Wheels to Trucks and Trucks to Deck

Trucks come with washers. Washers are used to create a good seat between your wheel bearings and axle nuts. Washers also reduce friction, which helps your wheels to spin faster. These washers should be installed between the axle nut and the wheel.

Tighten the axle nuts until the wheel is snug then back off about a 1/4 to 1/2 a turn until the wheel spins freely without any play from side to side. Skatetools are available from SKATEgear.

Now it's time to install your trucks. Find the mounting holes on your deck and punch through the grip tape with one of the bolts from your mounting hardware. Flip your deck over and push your mounting hardware through the holes.

If you use riser pads on your board install them sliding them onto your mounting hardware.

Now, slide your trucks onto your mounting hardware; ensure the bushings are facing each other. Install all the truck nuts onto the bolts and finger tighten them evenly. Finally, tighten the truck mounting hardware using a skate tool.

Congratulations, you're ready to ride your new skateboard!

Please contact us if you have any questions or suggestions of what we can include in here.