Wheels, just like the rest or your skateboard, have to be COOL to you - You’ll get to choose your brand, signature pro-models, color, size and hardness to customize your ride.The hardness of your wheels should be the first thing you decide. Size will fall into place when you’ve decide what type of skateboarding you want to be doing.
Factors that affect the ride and performance of a wheel include durometer, shape, size, and core placement.
Durometer is a measure of a skateboard wheel's hardness and is measured on the A scale, with a range of 0 to 100. The higher the number, the harder the wheel.
Soft wheels (durometer of 78a - 84a): Soft wheels have a higher level of grip and provide a smooth ride on rough surfaces. They are best for cruising, and carving. However, they also wear down faster and are less suitable for performing tricks.
Medium wheels (durometer of 90a to 97a): Medium wheels are a good balance between grip and durability. They provide a good mix of grip and slide, and are suitable for all-around skating, including street skating and performing tricks.
Hard wheels (durometer of 99a or higher): Hard wheels have less grip and slide more easily. They are best for high-speed skating and are more suitable for performing tricks like sliding, grinding and flip tricks. Hard wheels also tend to last longer than softer wheels.
There are three main shapes of skateboard wheels - round, square, and beveled.
Round wheels: Round wheels are the most common shape of wheel and are also known as "traditional" or "conical" wheels. They have a rounded edge and provide a smooth ride on rough surfaces. They are best for cruising, carving, and longboarding. They also provide good grip and traction, making them suitable for performing tricks.
Square wheels: Square wheels have a square-shaped edge and provide a more aggressive ride. They have less grip and slide more easily, making them best for high-speed skating and performing tricks like sliding and grinding. Square wheels wear down faster than round wheels, so they need to be replaced more often.
Beveled wheels: Beveled wheels have a curved edge that is slightly rounded. They provide a more comfortable ride than square wheels, with more grip and stability. They are also more versatile and suitable for all types of riding, especially for street skating and performing tricks.
The shape of a wheel can also affect the way a Skateboard turns. Round wheels provide a smoother, more controlled turn, while square wheels provide a looser, more aggressive turn. Beveled wheels provide a middle ground, with a balance of grip and slide.
The size of the wheel also plays an important role, bigger wheels are faster, but harder to control. Smaller wheels are slower but provide more control.
Core placement refers to the position of the core, which is the central hub of the wheel, in relation to the outer edge of the wheel.
Centerset Core: A centerset core is when the core is centered in the middle of the wheel. This type of core placement provides an even wear and tear on the wheel, and is suitable for all types of riding. It allows the wheel to slide evenly on both sides and makes the wheel more predictable when sliding. Centerset wheels are also easier to flip, making them more versatile.
Offset Core: An offset core is when the core is placed slightly closer to one edge of the wheel than the other. This type of core placement can provide a different ride and feel depending on which edge the core is closer to. If the core is closer to the inside edge of the wheel, it will provide a more stable ride and will be more predictable when sliding. If the core is closer to the outside edge of the wheel, it will provide a more aggressive ride and will be less predictable when sliding.
Sideset Core: A sideset core is when the core is placed close to the outer edge of the wheel. This type of core placement provides the most grip and is best for performing tricks. It also provides a predictable slide, making it more suitable for sliding tricks.
Core placement can also affect the overall lifespan of a wheel, centerset core wheels tend to wear more evenly and last longer than offset or sideset core wheels.
Hard wheels are the most common as they go faster and slide easier. Typically 99A - 103A will be your choices so you just need to know the higher the number, the harder they are. Although not as common, there are a few choices in the low 90’s that can provide a hard wheel but with a bit of stick for riding extremely smooth surfaces. Soft wheels are typically 78-86A, the lower the number the softer the wheel. If a wheel is soft it is more forgiving on rough terrain and offers less chance of sliding when you don’t want it to. Occasionally you’ll see a “B” rating versus an “A” rating - it’s suggested that you add 30 on top of the B number and that would give you a comparable number in A ratings. For example, an 84B is an extremely hard wheel (84+30) = 114A.
Sizes are measured in millimeters and typically listed on the wheel graphic with either “mm” noted after the number. We suggest 52-56mm for trick skating and although the larger wheel will last a bit longer it has a greater chance of getting caught up on sliding tricks or rolling out from under you when landing tricks. A great place to start and most commonly sold sizes are 53-55mm skateboard wheels.
If you are looking at wheels over 56mm you will also need to consider risers to go under your trucks to help keep you away from wheel bite. Wheel bite is when your wheel makes contact with the bottom of your deck.
We support a lot of brands but always feel confident recommending Bones, Satori, Snot, OJ, and Spitfire skateboard wheels no matter your skill level.
All wheels are priced and sold in sets of 4.
Once you’ve decided on wheels, you will need to choose bearings to complement them. Sold in sets of 8 - 2 for each wheel - you will typically get a faster and smoother ride as the price increases.
We recommend for a high quality bearing are the Bones Reds for all levels of skaters on softer wheels or beginner/intermediate hard wheel skaters. For a faster and smoother ride pair the Bones Super Reds with a hard wheel. For experienced skaters looking for the ultimate ride you need to look hard at the Bones Swiss.
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