Beginner's guide to buying a skateboard.

Buying a first skateboard can be confusing, so we’ve created this helpful guide to help you make the right choice.

We have a wide variety of skateboards in stock. If you come to the shop in person, you’ll see a wall of decks (the top part of a skateboard) and a stand of ready to ride, skateboards with trucks, wheels and bearings attached - these are called completes.
When buying your first skateboard it is usually more cost effective to buy a complete, and since we stock a wide range of these we can help break down which will suit you or your child best.
For kids aged 4-7, we would recommend a deck that’s a little slimmer and shorter than a regular full size skateboard. The widths of these range from 7” to 7.5” and some will come with softer wheels. The reduced size makes these easier to use for smaller people a softer wheels will take away some of the vibration underfoot, allowing the wheels to ride over little stones or grit. Kids this age are usually just learning to push and cruise, so it’s important that this is made as easy as possible. These decks are often called Mini or FP (First Push) decks. You can find a selection of these here:
For kids aged 8-12, we would recommend a skateboard that’s the same length as a full size deck, but a little thinner. Some come with soft cruising wheels, some have harder wheels which are faster and better for performing tricks. With these decks being a little thinner, they are then lighter and easier for smaller people to get off the ground when learning their first moves. Some of these will be labelled FP (First Push) which means they are great as a first deck.
Teens and Adults will use a full size skateboard with the width being a matter of personal preference. There is the argument that a thinner deck is lighter, flips quicker and is easier to get off the ground, but a wider deck has a bigger surface area for balance. In the last 20 years we’ve been selling skateboards, we’ve seen the average deck size go up and down, so quite often it’s a matter of what feels comfortable too the individual. However, saying that, a small 13 year old may find a large deck too heavy to use, so they might be best staying around 8” and a bigger 18 year old with larger feet may be best served with something around 8.25” wide.  You can find a selection of these here -
There is also the option of making up a fully bespoke skateboard by selecting all the parts separately. This can be a whole load of fun and most like to come into the shop to do this, but it can also be done online. 
The first step is to select your deck - see above to see what size range might suit best. Decks come with free plain grip tape which can be quite tricky to put on, so please let us know if you’d like us to apply it for you. There are also a number of fancier graphic grip tape options to upgrade to if you like. 
Next up comes your trucks. Trucks are sold in pairs and you will need to select the correct size for your deck, which can be confusing as different brands use different measurements. The chart below will help determine which is best for your chosen deck size.
Once you’ve picked your deck and trucks it’s on to wheels. For wheels, you want to consider where you will be skating and what you want to get out of the sport. If you want to cruise, then larger soft wheels are for you. If you want to learn tricks and skate street, then smaller hard wheels are best for this. Most people who want to do a bit of everything go for a mid size, standard wheel hardness between 53-56mm and 99a.
Bearings. Bearings go inside your wheels and enable them to spin on the truck axle - most beginners will go for a standard disposable bearing such as Bones Mini Logos, and someone who is a bit more experienced may choose a more expensive bearing that can be easily cleaned and maintained like Bones Reds.
Hardware is the common name for the various nuts and bolts that hold your trucks to your deck. These come in different sizes around an inch long and although there are a wide variety of brands and styles, these do not affect your ride as much as your choice of deck, trucks or wheels.
Finally, don’t forget a skate tool to help you put it all together - or you can just ask us to do it free of charge.
Whatever age you are, buying your first skateboard is a step to finding a whole new sport and we are sure you’ll love it, just as much as we do.
Artwork by Jon Horner.

Truck sizing guide. 

Suggested Deck Width
5.0 High
7.5″ – 7.75″Venture
5.25 High
7.875″ – 8.125″
5.8 High
8.375″ – 8.625″
129 Standard
7.375″ – 7.75″
139 Standard
7.875″ – 8.125″
144 Standard
8.125″ – 8.375″
149 Standard
8.375″ – 8.625″
159 Standard
8.625″ – 8.875″
169 Standard
9″ – 9.25″
215 Standard
9.75″ – 10.25″
143 High
6.875″ – 7.375″
145 High
7.375″ – 7.75″
147 High
7.875″ – 8.125″
148 High
8.125″ – 8.375″
149 High
8.375″ – 8.625″
151 High
8.625″ – 8.875″
161 High
9″ – 9.25″
5.0 Regular
7.5″ – 7.75″
5.25 Regular
7.875″ – 8.125″
5.5 Regular
8″ – 8.25″
5.75 Regular
8.25″ – 8.5″
6.0 Regular
8.5″ – 8.75″