Buying Your First Skateboard: Choosing The Perfect Type

It’s simpler than you might think to buying your first skateboard, and I’ll do my best to make the process straightforward. Close this page and head to your neighborhood skate store for the simplest solution. Stay tuned if you want to study a little bit and get the best board for you.

Before beginning to learn stunts, a beginner should concentrate on learning how to ride. This implies that you don’t need to worry too much about details. A good skateboard makes it easier to skate; most of us learned on subpar skateboards. We’ll discuss cheap skateboards from places like Target, Walmart, and Amazon later; I’m not referring to those.

You may choose the best skateboard for your needs and budget by using this buying guide for novice skateboarders. Without getting too technical, I’ll explain why there are so many options and what all the specifications signify.

Keep in mind: As a beginner, you don’t need expensive gear!

This buyers’ guide is intended for people looking to buy a skateboard to perform tricks, do gnarly flatground stunts, or skate at their neighborhood skate parks. Neither longboards nor cruisers are the topic.

Skateboard Buying Guide For Beginners

Let’s begin with the condensed version. Beginner skateboards with a width of 8.0′′ or 8.25′′ are the most common. A skateboard that is 8.0′′ to 8.125′′ broad is recommended for shorter skaters. Skaters who are average height or taller should choose an 8.25′′ to 8.38′′ wide skateboard. Although there is a reason, I’ll keep it easy since this is a beginner’s guide.

If you wish to skate parks and/or flatground, you need wheels that are 99A or 100A+. Size counts, but 53mm is your best bet. Purchase affordable bearings, respectable Thunder trucks, and the least expensive deck you can from a reliable company.

If you shop wisely, the least expensive quality setup would run you between $130 and $140, but prices have recently gone up. Even though you won’t get all the premium components (which you don’t really need anyway), this will still give you a very good setup. Following are your choices when purchasing a skateboard:

  • Purchase an entire skateboard.
  • Purchase all the parts to get a super cool yet pricey skateboard.

To support your neighborhood skate shop, you may either shop online or go there.

If you choose option 1, choose a skateboard from CCS or Birdhouse. Now, more information:

Option 1: Buying A Complete Skateboard

According to what I’ve learned, this is also the most popular option because it’s simple. Priced between $100 and $110, a nice full skateboard isn’t cheap. The majority of completes have poor bushings, inexpensive trucks, inexpensive wheels, and an acceptable deck that are virtually identical. Don’t fall for Santa Cruz and Element’s trickery!

The majority of the brands will provide you with the identical board with a minimal change in vehicles. They aren’t of the highest caliber, notwithstanding their differences. NOT FOR THE DIE HARD Skateboarder YOU MAY BECOME, BUT FINE FOR BEGINNERS.

I was one of many skateboarders who began with a complete. The CCS completes, which cost about $80, are the least expensive. Keep in mind that you also need shoes because skating is expensive and has a lot of unintentional expenses.

The trucks feel very loose, which causes them to turn too much, and you frequently receive wheels that are a little too harsh for beginners. These drawbacks of buying a complete include not getting the best parts. By adjusting the kingpin nut, you may quickly fix your trucks’ tightness.

Although learning to ride on rougher surfaces is a little more difficult, harder wheels are fantastic for skate parks and are easier to glide on. (which is a good thing).

Pros of purchasing a whole skateboard: As long as you stay away from trashy Amazon skateboards from arbitrary merchants, they are inexpensive yet functional. Once you become a better skateboarder, parts are simple to replace. And lastly, you don’t have to put all the parts together. After making a few adjustments to the trucks, you are ready to take your first trip.

Brands of Complete Skateboards We Recommend

Over the years, we’ve tested a lot of brands, and there are a handful that work particularly well for beginners:

  • Birdhouse sells high-quality items at a reasonable cost. Reasonable wheels and bearings, high-quality decking and trucks. We put Birhouse boards through their paces to the point where I will perish on this hill.
  • CSS The least expensive complete is CCS. Again decent trucks and deck for beginners, passable bearings but very hard and little wheels. It can be made easier to spin, and it’s the only board that requires softer bushings.
  • The Whiskey is a beginner-friendly board from Arbor that has somewhat softer and larger wheels. has turny Ace trucks and performs better on rocky roads. One of the greatest boards for teaching appropriate riding technique. The deck has less pop, but the trucks and wheels are excellent for beginners.

Choose the CCS if your budget is tight and you can only spend $80 USD. A Birdhouse skateboard is a good option for beginners who wish to learn how to ride and do tricks in parks. Choose the Arbor Whiskey if you want a smoother ride and you don’t have a skate park nearby.

Option 2: Build Your Own Skateboard

Here is when things become interesting and pricey. This one will be brief as well, and I’ll offer some basic pointers that apply to practically everyone. After this, the details will be worked out.

It costs more to build your own skateboard than it does to purchase one already built. The key justification is the availability of more expensive parts. Let’s examine a few choices that fit different spending ranges.

Budget Skateboard for $100 USD

The very minimal amount to spend on a skateboard is this. Although you won’t receive premium components, it will nonetheless function. Let’s look at your possibilities while keeping in mind that prices are subject to inflation and that I might be 10% wrong.

ComponentPrice USD
Skateboard deck (blank)35.00
Mini Logo C-Cut Wheels 54mm/101A20.00
CCS Skateboard Trucks25.00
Mini Logo Bearings12.00
Jessup grip tape7.00
Total$106.00 USD

After looking around, I must say that in this situation, you’re better off purchasing a CCS complete, which costs about eighty dollars. This entire costs just $106 USD, yet the setup isn’t even that good.

$130 USD Custom Skateboard

You may choose at least the best trucks for a $130 USD skateboard. The wheels and bearings will have to be sacrificed, but trucks last for years, whereas wheels and bearings need to be replaced more frequently. Let’s examine your choices:

ComponentPrice USD
Skateboard deck WKND45.00*
Bones 100’s wheels25.00
Thunder trucks45.00
Mini Logo Bearings12.00
grip tape0.00
Total$134.00 USD

I was successful in tracking a WKND deck that has grip tape. If you’re fortunate, 45 dollars for a deck plus grip tape is a great deal! Expect to pay at least $20 USD extra, but you can manage it if you buy wisely.

This skateboard setup costs $134 USD and is reasonably nice. Both park skating and street/flatground skating are compatible with it.

Quality Skateboard Setup for $160

Let’s attempt to create a configuration that works well for park, flatground, and street skating.

ComponentPrice USD
Premium deck Powell Peralta70.00
Spitfire Wheels F4 Classics 53mm/99A35.00
Thunder trucks45.00
Bones Reds Bearings + Spacers20.00
Jessup grip tape7.00
Total$167.00 USD

Close enough, this configuration is ideal for the street and will run you about $167 USD. Powell Peralta decks are inexpensive, so I chose those. Again, buy wisely and you can acquire a fantastic deck for a lot less money; I at least saved $15.

I chose Bones Reds Bearings since they provide spacers and some of the finest bearings in a package at a reasonable price.

$240 USD Premium Skateboard

For people who are very serious about skating or who have the money and demand the greatest equipment, this type of arrangement is appropriate. The best parts, premium brand wheels, the best trucks, excellent bearings, and a deck with the amazing graphic of your choice are all available at this pricing point.

I must admit that prices have significantly gone up over the years; this arrangement was 40–50 dollars less expensive three years ago.

ComponentPrice USD
Premium deck + graphic70.00
Spitfire Wheels F4 Classics 53mm/99A35.00
Independent Stage 11 Hollow60.00
Bronson G3 bearings + spacers30.00
Hardware Pig bolts (allen)7.00
Mob grip tape10.00
Total$242.00 USD

242 USD hurts. Beginners shouldn’t utilize this configuration because buying your first skateboard shouldn’t cost this much. I advise choosing the $160 USD setup if you want a fantastic skateboard instead.

Graphics Are Crucial

Although they don’t improve your skating or add any useful features, graphics are nonetheless significant.

Your motivation to skate outdoors is greatly increased by a fantastic heat-transferred design. As decks are designed to be destroyed, the image will eventually fade, but the sensation of having a brand-new deck and a fantastic graphic is unique.

The fact that you support the skateboard business is another factor in the importance of graphics. The revenue generated by the graphics is used to fund the creation of new technology, the sponsorship of professional skaters, and competitions.

A blank skateboard is undoubtedly more affordable, and nobody will object if you get one. Why not, if you can save yourself $30. Look for Mini Logo or CCS if you decide to go with a blank deck.

How To Choose The Best Skateboard Wheels

You won’t need to invest in pricey wheels as a beginning. You won’t be able to tell the difference between wheels because you don’t know how to ride and can hardly do it.

Skateboards with slightly softer wheels are easier to learn to ride, but they are also harder to slide on. You might believe that this is advantageous, but it all relies on your goals.

Trick landing will be simpler on wheels with a harder surface (100A+). It can mean the difference between pulling off a trick and stumbling. Better-sliding wheels make it simpler to repair little errors. You can maintain your balance and stay on your board with just a small amount of sliding.

If you want a little bit extra grip, I advise choosing wheels with a 99A rating. Additionally, they work well for sliding and let you fix small errors. The difference between 99A and 100A is barely perceptible.

Street and park wheels should be between 52mm and 54mm in diameter. Compared to larger wheels, smaller wheels accelerate more quickly.

Bowl, mini, and vert skating are all terrific with 56mm, 58mm, or even 60mm wheels. They move much faster due to their greater size.

How To Choose The Best Skateboard Trucks

Your board’s trucks are its heart and soul and provide you the ability to turn. You shouldn’t stress too much about vehicle height as a beginner. Just keep in mind that higher trucks make flip stunts a little bit more challenging while allowing for wider wheels and smoother turning.

Your center of gravity will be lowered by low trucks, which also increases ride stability. Your board will be nearer the ground, which will result in less pop.

Brands of skateboard trucks to consider:

  • Venture
  • Thunder
  • Independent
  • CCS (budget)

Decks & Brands for skateboards

The majority of skateboard deck manufacturers share the same factories. WKND and Thank You are two examples. Both are manufactured at the same factory using the same mold. (PS Stix, Tijuana, Mexico). The same is true for a lot of other companies; in fact, a lot of well-known brands originate from Chinese factories.

The decks are pressed in China after being sent from Canada to the US in maple. It seems like a waste, therefore purchase decks built in Mexico or the USA to protect the environment. Be aware that skateboard brands occasionally change manufacturers.

Brands of skateboard decks don’t important at all, especially those cheap imitations sold on Amazon as “brands.” Also, disregard your shoe size; your height or shortness is more important. A deck of average size should work, unless you have enormous feet.

Different skateboards have different levels of concavity. Although there is no industry standard for concave, beginners should stick with a mellow concave because it is simpler to balance. Flip tricks work well with steep concave, but I’d save that for your next deck. begin slowly, then pick it up.

The most crucial step is to make sure that the trucks you choose nearly fit the deck’s width.

Street Decks

Street Decks

  • Typically between 7.5″ and 8.5″ wide
  • Usually has a steep, concave shape for added stability during tricks
  • Nose and tail have a similar shape and size for performing flip tricks
  • Designed for street-style skating and technical tricks

A beginner street skater should choose a deck that is between 8.0′′ and 8.38′′, with 8.25′′ being the ideal size. The deck size range for shorter skaters should be between 8.0′′ and 8.125′′. An 8.25′′ to 8.38′′ is better for taller skaters for flatground and street skating. It doesn’t matter how long they are because these decks are made to be the proper length and width.

Bowl Decks

Bowl Decks

  • Typically between 8.5″ and 9.5″ wide
  • Has a less pronounced concave than a street deck
  • Has a wider and more rounded shape for added stability in bowl skating
  • Nose is usually slightly larger than the tail for performing grabs and airs
  • Designed for bowl-style skating and carving

Decks for bowls or pools must be at least 8.5 inches wide. A larger setup is definitely beneficial if you want to develop into a serious pool rider. Wider decks are more difficult to flip, thus kicking your board requires more effort. They are a bit heavier as well.

Kids Decks

Bowl Decks

  • Typically between 6.5″ and 7.5″ wide
  • Has a smaller size to fit the smaller feet and bodies of children
  • Has a more shallow concave for easier control
  • Nose and tail are usually symmetrical for simpler riding and learning
  • Designed for children learning to skate

A 7.75-inch deck is better for children under 10 because riding an 8.25-inch deck will make it more difficult to perform stunts. In this situation, a deck under 32 inches long is recommended. Since narrow decks are typically shorter, I wouldn’t worry too much about this. Manufacturers mastered the length-to-width ratio through time, and not much has changed since 2010.

Choosing Bearings

This is a simple one! Standard Bones Reds or Bronson G2 bearings are acceptable, and please disregard ABEC ratings. You shouldn’t spend more than $20 on bearings. Although everyone talks about ceramic bearings, they aren’t any faster than inexpensive Mini Logo bearings.

There is just no benefit to spending more than $20 on bearings, even though they do last longer. There won’t be any noticeable differences.

Ensure You Purchase the Proper Hardware.

You must choose the correct hardware size when assembling your own skateboard. If you don’t have risers or wheels larger than 58mm (and you don’t need risers either), 7/8′′ or 1′′ hardware will always work on any arrangement.

The best option for you is definitely an allen bolt because it doesn’t lose its head when you attach your vehicles. Particularly Independent-made Philips hardware frequently sustains damage.

Grip Tape Is Not Really Important

Grip tape is the least of your concerns because, as a novice, it is irrelevant. I’ve never written an article about “the best grip tape” since it’s ridiculous.

The two most widely used brands of grip tape are Jessup and Mob. Mob offers more grip, while Jessup is less rough. Additionally, Mob grip tape is perforated, which makes it simpler to apply the grip tape and helps prevent bubbles.

In all honesty, Jessup is also really simple to apply, and if bubbles appear, you simply poke them with a tool knife. When you skate, the majority of the bubbles disappear regardless.

Regarding grip tape, there is only one distinction that counts. Because there is more friction, grittier grip tape will make flipping your board more difficult. It’s also wonderful for skating in dusty bowls to use grip tape that is more abrasive, but as a novice, you shouldn’t be concerned about this.

Many colors of grip tape are available, however most skaters choose black grip tape. It’s not a fashion show; it’s useful. Personally, if I skated in a checkered grip tape pattern, I would feel woozy. Unless a sponsor specifically requests it, you hardly ever see pros ride grip tape with large branding. You decide; however, grip tape with prints costs two to three times as much.

Pro tip

Never apply grip tape when it is extremely chilly; we had to learn the hard way that it mysteriously won’t stick.

Matching Your Trucks’ and Deck’s Size

It’s crucial that you choose trucks that match the size of your board, or vice versa, once you’ve decided the parts you want. They don’t need to line up exactly; a 0.25′′ difference either way is acceptable.

To find out what you need, look at this table:

Deck SizeHanger WidthAxle WidthIndyThunderVentureCCSAce
7.5 to 7.75″127mm / 5″193mm / 7.6″1291455.012922
7.75 to 8.25″37mm / 5.25″203mm / 8″1391475.2513933
8.25 to 8.75″149mm / 6″215mm / 8.5″14914914944
8.75 to 9.75″160mm / 6.3″226mm / 8.5″1695.855
Over 9.75″183mm / 7.2″254mm / 10″215

Read the description carefully when going shopping. The truck width is listed for each brand.

If you buy skateboards on Amazon, stay away from these brands.

Basically all of the skateboards that are the top sellers on Amazon are junk; yes, they are inexpensive, but you get what you pay for. Though some are better than others, the majority of them break after just one ollie. At least Cal 7 and Magneto have a deck that won’t break right away, but the rest of the parts are of poor quality. Ignore brands like:

  • Cal 7
  • Wolff
  • Magneto
  • Minority
  • WhiteFang
  • Beleeve
  • Retrospec
  • Metroller
  • KPC
  • Etc

There are plenty more, but in general, every skateboard priced under $75 USD is subpar.

Support Your Local Skate Shop

As I previously stated, visiting your neighborhood skate store is the best course of action. Skate shops have long been the center of the local skateboarding scene, and they frequently are a part of it.

They are more able to communicate with you on a skater level and comprehend your requirements than you do. Local events, skate parks, and the skateboard lifestyle are sponsored by skater-owned skate shops.

Another advantage is that they will put your board together immediately, and you might pick up a few tips in the process. No online store can provide you with that experience; although it can be a little less expensive, you can never be sure if you made the proper decision.

Some Final Advice

I’ve already given some advice, so let’s review it. I was also able to purchase all of these subpar skateboards, pricey bearings, and expensive decks because of this blog. (looking at you Baker). The following considerations should be made while purchasing your first skateboard:

  1. Avoid Amazon junk and don’t buy a skateboard for less than $75. Buying a secondhand skateboard might be a good idea if you don’t have at least $80 USD. People frequently give up easily, so you can frequently get a terrific deal and buy a nearly brand-new skateboard for about $50.
  2. Your first skateboard shouldn’t cost you more than $150.
  3. Steer clear of skateboards with names like Tony Hawk; these $40 skateboards are junk.
  4. Ignore ABEC ratings; if a bearing brand uses an ABEC rating in its advertising, that is a significant warning sign.
  5. Buy a skateboard elsewhere except Walmart or Target. Return a skateboard right away if it is plastic-wrapped. Even if you only use a skateboard once, you are not allowed to return it.
  6. When you get your first skateboard, start by learning the fundamentals. Before learning tricks, learn to ride. Before you begin performing ticks, you must become familiar with how a skateboard feels and how it reacts to your input. It is not spectacular to perform stunts while riding incorrectly. In fact, if you don’t master the fundamentals first, learning tricks will take significantly longer overall.

That’s it; I believe I covered everything that was fundamentally significant. Searching for a full?


What size skateboard should I get?

Your height and shoe size affect the skateboard’s size. For adults, it’s recommended to select a deck that is between 7.75 and 8.5 inches broad, and smaller for children. In order to correctly balance and control the board, it’s critical to select the appropriate size.

What type of skateboard should I buy?

Skateboards come in a variety of styles, including longboards, cruisers, and street models. The most popular and functional skateboards, which are made for tricks and feats, are street skateboards. Longboards are made for downhill and long-distance riding, whereas cruiser skateboards are made for cruising around town and commuting. Pick a type based on how you plan to utilize it.

How much should I spend on a skateboard?

The cost of a skateboard can range from $50 to more than $200. It’s crucial to spend money on durable skateboards, so try to stay away from the most affordable ones. An excellent skateboard will cost you between $100 and $150.

Do I need to assemble the skateboard myself?

Although most skateboards are pre-assembled, some do need some assembly. Before making a purchase, verify the product description or ask the seller if you’re unsure. If you need to put it together yourself, you can look up instructions online or get assistance at a skate store.

What safety gear should I wear?

Always wear a helmet when skateboarding, as well as knee and elbow pads. It’s also a good idea to wear wrist guards and a mouth guard. Safety should always be a top priority when skateboarding.

How can I learn to skateboard?

The best way to learn to skateboard is to practice regularly. Start with the basics, such as balancing and pushing off, and gradually work up to more advanced tricks. It’s also helpful to watch tutorial videos online and take lessons from experienced skateboarders.

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