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10 Best Complete Skateboards We Bought & Tested

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Over the years I have tested about 40 skateboards and close to 20 cruiser skateboards. Many of the complete skateboards are exactly the same and have flaws.

If you don’t want to assemble a skateboard yourself there are a few decent options out there. Buying a pre-assembled skateboard might seem easy, but a quality skateboard is hard to distinguish.

A complete skateboard is fine when you want to learn skateboarding, but only if you pick the right one. Of all the boards we tested we concluded the following skateboards are the best:

  • CCS Complete Skateboard
  • Birdhouse Skateboards
  • Santa Cruz Classic Dot
  • SkateXS Kids Board
  • Arbor Pilsner (cruiser)

Jump to my recommended skateboards or continue reading to learn about how to buy a decent skateboard.

You don’t have to pay a lot of money for top-quality components when you’re a beginner. Once you improve your skills and parts start to wear, it’s easy to replace parts with better quality wheels, decks, trucks, and bearings.

I’ll start with explaining how to pick a skateboard and what too look for. I’ve listed the best 5 skateboards we tested for over a year and also included a guide on how to assemble your own skateboard.

complete skateboards

This post contains commercial links that may earn the me a commission.

What Makes A Good Skateboard

Performance and durability are the most important factors. A good skateboard should be able to withstand impacts, roll smoothly, offer enough balance when riding, and fit your style.

A decent skateboard consists of a stiff 7-ply hard rock maple deck, bearings that spin well, wheels that don’t wear fast, and skate trucks that can handle abuse.

Many complete skateboards offered online tick a few of the boxes but some only consist of a quality deck with lower quality parts which impacts overall performance.

Graphics are important, an epic graphic is a great motivator and gets skaters stoked.

Cheapest high quality
CCS Flames Skateboard 8.0
  • Best value
  • Only for tricks and skate parks
  • Available in all sizes.
  • Not comfortable to cruise.
Most Durable Skateboard
Birdhouse Skateboard Complete Tony Hawk Icon Red 8.0
  • Most durable beginner skateboard we tested
  • Great for skate parks and street skateboarding
  • Not suitable for rough sufaces
Cheap reliable Cruiser
Magneto Mini Cruiser
  • Not the best cruiser, but it works!
  • Suitable for all ages.
  • Very affordable.
  • Not for tricks, great for cruising.

Rest assured, a beginner will hardly notice the difference between professional skateboard and a decent complete skateboard.

Skateboards you should avoid are the $30 to $50 USD boards you see listed on Amazon.

After buying about 10 of them they all turned out to break easily, arrived damaged, and are downright unsafe. Often they are wrapped in plastic and mass produced.

What Does A Decent Skateboard Cost?

A quality skateboards costs between $70 USD and $250 USD, assembling a skateboard yourself is more expensive where pre-assembled skateboards are cheaper.

The cheapest skateboards go for about $30 USD but are unsafe and break easily as I have experienced myself.

There are other costs involved if you include gear. I summed up all the costs of skateboarding you might not think about at first.

What Size Skateboard Should I get?

A basic approach to choosing what size board to choose is by shoe size. If you wear a shoe ranging from sizes 6 – 9, a safe recommendation would be to select a 7.75″ – 8″ wide skateboard. You don’t want your feet to stick out too much because this makes it harder to control a skateboard.

The industry standard of skateboard decks on the more narrow side is 8.0″, but there are thinner boards that some smaller-statured riders, particularly kids, may be more inclined to try.

I’m referring to boards sized 7″ – 7.5″. Check out our recommendations if you are looking for a kid sized skateboard. Riders with a shoe size 9.5+ can most likely look towards a board in the 8″ – 8.5″ range.

For the skaters rocking a size around 12 or larger, you may be suited for more foot room in the 8.5″ – 9″ range. In the end skateboard size is about personal preference and your style of skateboarding.

Shoe SizeSkateboard Size
6 – 97.75″ – 8″
9.5+8″ – 8.5″
128.5″ – 9″

Don’t worry about the length of a skateboard. Wider boards are longer and narrow skateboards are shorter, manufactures adjust the size accordingly.

Skateboard, Cruiser, or Longboard?

There are 3 types of skateboards, classic skateboards, cruisers, and longboards. Traditional skateboards are great for tricks, cruisers offer a comfy ride for getting from A to B, longboards are for longer distances

Skateboard (Traditional):

  • Size: Around 31-33 inches long; Width: Generally between 6.5 to 7.5 (kids) and 7.6 to 8.5 (12+) inches. Wheels: Small and hard for even surfaces.
  • Purpose: Primarily for tricks on the streets and skate park. Features a nose and kicktail.

Cruiser Skateboards:

  • Size: Smaller than longboards, often around the size of traditional skateboards but with different shapes; Width: Varies, but typically between 7 to 10 inches. Wheels: bigger and softer for comfort and rougher surfaces.
  • Purpose: Designed for short-distance commutes, quick turns, and maneuverability. Ideal for city rides and quick transportation. Usually only has a kicktail.


  • Size: Longer, often between 34 and 60 inches; Width: Commonly between 9 to 10 inches, but can exceed that for some models. Wheels: Bigger and softer for comfort and rougher surfaces.
  • Purpose: Meant for long-distance cruising, downhill racing, and carving. Often doesn’t have a kicktail.

The width of a board can impact its stability, with wider boards generally offering more foot space and stability, especially for beginners or for cruising.

Pros and Cons of Buying a Complete Skateboard

Buying a complete is a good option for beginners. Many skateboarders started on a complete skateboard before upgrading.

The biggest issue is the medium quality and lack of performance. Often the trucks are from unknown brands and don’t last very long, once you start to do some more advanced tricks durability matters.

  • Deck: Often you get a high quality deck
  • Wheels: Quality varies; sometimes they wear fast.
  • Bearings: Often made of cheap materials, leading to issues like improper wheel spinning or not spinning at all.
  • Bushings: Can be either too soft or too hard, affecting skateboard turning speed.

Wheels are often made of low-quality polyurethane and may flat spot more easily. Higher quality wheels sometimes cost twice as much but last four times longer.

Bearings are often made of cheap materials causing the most complaints. It results the wheels not spinning properly or getting stuck.

Often the bushings are either too soft or too hard resulting in a board that turns too fast or too slow. Usually not an issue for lightweights, but heavier riders need to adjust the bushings using skate tool.

Don’t get a complete skateboard when you seriously think you’re going to skate for a long time. You’ll get a pro deck but the rest of the parts are usually not the best.

It won’t be long until you have to upgrade parts and you’ll end up paying more in the end.

Skateboard Parts Explained

skateboard parts explained

I’ll briefly address the most important parts of a skateboard. A detailed guide is included at the end of this article.

  • Deck: The flat, typically wooden board that you stand on.
  • Trucks: Metal components that attach to the deck and hold the wheels.
  • Wheels: The round, often polyurethane components that enable movement.
  • Bearings: Small, circular devices inside the wheels for smooth rolling.
  • Grip Tape: A gritty surface on top of the deck for traction.
  • Hardware: Nuts and bolts used to assemble the skateboard.
  • Bushings: Rubber or urethane parts in the trucks for turning control.
  • Riser Pads: Optional cushioning between the deck and trucks for added height.
  • Nose and Tail: The front and rear ends of the deck, which may vary in shape.

10 Skateboards We Recommend

The skateboard brands mentioned here (Arbor, CCS, Santa Cruz (NHS), Birdhouse, etc) offer both high and low quality skateboards, but a few skateboards really stand out.

The cheapest we bought and recommend is the CCS complete which is a great starter skateboard for skate parks.

Birdhouse offers the highest quality parts where Santa Cruz is right in between. I also included the Tony Hawk Signature Series which is a very cheap skateboard that isn’t great but also not terrible.

Lastly, I added a cruiser (Arbor Pilsner) if you want to quickly go from A to B and don’t care much about tricks.

We don’t recommend longboards because it’s a different kind of sport.

Birdhouse Complete: Best Under $120

Birdhouse skateboard trucks
  • Very durable maple deck, medium concave, lots of pop
  • Birdhouse trucks with lifetime guarantee
  • Great for technical skating
  • Still holding up after 2 years (deck needs to replaced though).

I was a bit on the fence about this skateboard when I saw it listed on Amazon. Being the skeptic that I am I browsed the reviews and people seem to really enjoy this board. The problem with reviews is they are often written by parents or grandparents who gifted a skateboard. You don’t really get to find out if it’s truly a decent setup.

I decided to just buy one and see if it holds up, and so far I think it’s a fine board considering the price. It’s not a board for hardcore skateboarders but great for kids and beginners. One of my local skateboarders has been riding it for almost a year and it still works great. Just a small chip near the nose of the deck which is normal.

The wheels seem to be made of decent urethane and the trucks hold up fine as and even can take on 6 stairs. You get a decent complete which can deal with abuse for a really solid price. Compared to the other completes from reputable brands, this is one of the better performing boards.

The wheels are not too hard and not too soft, 100a to be specific, which means they can be used on the street and in parks but not for cruising.

The trucks are strong, even after grinding them for days they still won’t budge. We’ve upgraded the wheels which made it perform even better! Don’t forget to tweak the trucks as they may feel loose, which is easy to fix. Absolutely recommended if you want a quality and safe skateboard, lots of boards available on Amazon.


  • Length: 31.75 inches
  • Width: 8.0 inches
  • 52mm/100a wheels
  • Truck Width: 8.0
  • 7-ply maple deck
  • Bearings are ok, not the best

Santa Cruz Classic Dot

Santa Cruz Complete skateboard classic dot
  • Comes with the slightly softer wheels which are great for beginners.
  • Quality trucks that last a long time.
  • Birch skateboard deck.
  • Offers a comfortable ride, deals well with pebbles and cracks.
  • Bearings aren’t great.

Tap/click for larger images

One of the few that rides great straight out of the box. The slightly softer wheels offer more grip and stability when riding uneven surfaces.

Works for both adult beginners and kids (pick the right size). Trucks aren’t too loose (depending on your weight), stable ride and easy to upgrade.

Maybe a bit overpriced because you don’t get a maple deck but lower quality birch.

Check Amazon for availability.

CCS Complete (Best Quality Budget)

CCS complete skateboard in a park

A very decent beginner skateboard and on top of the list because it’s really cheap (about $70 USD). Don’t expect to get a top-quality board, but it a great skateboard for beginners and affordable. We tested this skateboard and were impressed by its performance, check our CCS skateboard review.

Don’t grind curbs too often, the trucks are made of cheaper material but can handle curbs and stairs. The trucks won’t fail on you doing basic stuff, but after a couple of months of grinding curbs, they might need to replaced. Nothing a beginner should worry about though.

This complete is more suitable for skateparks because the wheels are 100a and 52 mm (very hard and small). It won’t give you a comfortable ride on rougher streets but is great for smooth surfaces.

Don’t buy this one if you just want to cruise. For that, I suggest looking further down the list . The bearings are fine, nothing too fancy but they will get the job done and last for quite a while.

It comes in different sizes starting at 7.0″ wide, anything up to 7.5″ wide is for kids under 10, 7.75″ to 8.25″ is great for technical skaters but you could go for an even wider board if you want more stability.

This board also doesn’t have any of the common soft bushings problems, actually they are a bit too hard. It will take some time to break them in before it turns properly, just loosen the trucks and you should be fine.

I think this board is the best bang for your buck, and it’s even the cheapest on this list. Want a decent skateboard that don’t cost an arm and a leg? This is the best choice! At this price there isn’t really much competition, they are available (sponsored link) on Amazon in many sizes!


  • Deck width between  7.0″ to 8.5″
  • 7-ply maple wood deck
  • Comes with a set of CCS trucks
  • 52mm 100a wheels
  • Standard bearings

Cheapest quality skateboard you can buy, it can deal with sever abuse but less comfortable on gritty asphalt because of the hard wheels. Its deck is beginner friendly because of the mellow shape which offers more stability.

Honestly the best choice on a budget and lots of designs available these days. Check Amazon for availability (sponsored link).

SkateXS Beginner Skateboard (Best For Kids)

SkateXS Skateboards

SkateXS offers a high quality setup that is perfect for beginner kids from age 5 to 12. We skated this setup for some time and it’s still performing well. You get top quality trucks, colorful wheels, kids friendly graphics and a durable maple/bamboo deck.

  • High quality bamboo/maple deck
  • SkateXS Trucks
  • Standard Hardware
  • SkateXS Bearings
  • 52mm/90A soft wheels
  • Griptape of your choice

If you want a safe skateboard for a kid, this skateboard is worth the price tag ($117,95 USD). This is the only setup that doesn’t require you adjust the trucks. The bushings are specifically designed for kids and allow for great control.

No other brand offers this type of quality and combination of components and it’s not much more expensive compared to the big brands like Santa Cruz and Powell Peralta..

The basic version is Available on SkateXS (sponsored link) in many colors, you can even personalize this board and add a name!

Arbor Pilsner Cruiser

Arbor Pilsner deck top view

I couldn’t leave out this cruiser and the Arbor Pilsner is one of my favorites. I felt great from the first time I stepped on and the bushings and trucks are perfect for carving.

  • Great for just getting from A to B or riding aggressively.
  • High quality components what work well together.
  • Less suitable for beginners because of its responsiveness.

The amber-colored wheels are not only great looking, but they seem to be made for this deck and trucks.  Lots of concave for more aggressive sessions and super responsive.

The Paris Trucks are awesome, so much better than what you get on other complete cruisers. Here’s a test ride I quickly put together which is part of an in-depth review I wrote some time ago. 

Usually, bearings from completes suck, but not these. I don’t know where Arbor gets them but they are super quiet and fast.  This is the ultimate cruiser and definitely worth considering if you just want to cruise and hop a few curbs.

The Pilsner is the perfect mini cruiser with top-quality components, it even outperforms the Landyachtz Dinghy. Read my review and watch a test ride, or check if the Pilsner (sponsored link) is available on Amazon.

Arbor Pilsner Features:

  • 129mm Paris street trucks, top-mounted
  • 7 Ply Canadian Maple with a Premium Palisander Wood Finish
  • Wheels: 61mm/78A, 36mm contact patch
  • ABEC 5 Bearings with Spacers
  • 1/8″ Hard Risers
  • Glass Re-Grit grip tape (recycled) 

Tap/click for larger images

The Pilsner is the perfect mini cruiser with top-quality components, read my Arbor Pilsner review and watch a test ride. or check if the Pilsner (sponsored link) is available on Amazon.

A cheaper alternative is the Magneto Mini cruiser. It doesn’t perform like the Pilsner, but is a great starter cruiser for anyone who wants to learn how to ride a skateboard. Check our Magneto Cruiser review.

Element Complete

element skateboard

Element offers a budget complete that is great for beginners, but less so for experienced skateboarders. This board is a great value option and skateboarders are positive about Element completes in general. Almost all the parts come from Element, so no unknown truck brand or wheels.

Their complete offers a pretty solid components, and a very forgiving ride. The mellow concave makes it easier to keep your balance, and beginners will appreciate the softer 90A wheels that offer extra grip and stability.

If you are looking for something to do tricks and and a comfortable ride, this complete is a good option. The only downside are the rather soft bushings and it will take some time to break them in.

This means the wheels can come into contact with the board when you lean left or right but the fix it easy. Just gradually tighten the kingpin nut after skating it for a few hours and you should be good.

You get a decent quality deck that will hold up once you start to pop ollies. It’ll probably wear faster once you start grinding and do flips, but that goes for all skateboards.

Check for availablity on Amazon (sponsored link).


  • Deck width: 7.75″ to 8.0″
  • Deck length: 31.75″
  • Wheelbase: varies
  • Element 7-ply maple deck
  • Element 5.0 Polished Trucks
  • Element wheels, hardness varies
  • Soft 90a bushings
  • Allen hardware
  • Shielded bearings

Santa Cruz Flame Dot

Santa Cruz flame dot skateboard

Santa Cruz complete skateboards are pretty decent. What I like about this complete are the forgiving wheels, the ‘pop’ of the deck, and the medium-hard bushings. They are great for learning how to ride because of the 95A OJ wheels, not too soft, not too hard, perfect for beginners.

This means you’re able to hop a curb without problems and the wheels won’t block easily when you hit a pebble or encounter a crack. The bushings are 90A which means they turn well but depending on your weight you might want to tweak them a little to your liking.

I would recommend this board if you’re a beginner and like to learn how to ride and ollie. Bullet trucks are decent, not top of the line but will hold up fine. Once you start grinding rails or curbs they will wear down quickly. This is a really great board and you get a lot of value for money.

Santa Cruz decks are great but the completes are made of birch wood these days which provides less pop. You get quality wheels and trucks but the deck is of lesser quality.

Go for an 7.75″ or 8.0″ if you want to do lots of flips and aren’t too tall. An 8.25″ provides more stability and is great for both street and skate parks.

There are currently a couple of boards available on Amazon (sponsored link).


  • Deck width – varies
  • Deck length – varies
  • Wheelbase – varies
  • Bullet Trucks with 90A bushings
  • 7-ply maple birch deck (graphics vary)
  • 54mm 95A wheels (good size for street skating, skate parks)
  • The shielded bearings are okay

Globe Complete Skateboard

Globe Skateboard

Can’t leave a reputable brand like Globe out of this I love their decks for their durability, shape, and pop. You get Tensor trucks (Rodney Mullen’s company), and 99a-52mm wheels. Good choice for riders that want to do technical stuff like flip tricks, ollies, slides, and grinds.

The Globe complete skateboard is great for anyone who’s looking for a poppy pro deck and get quality trucks for a fair price. This board is suitable for tricks but less so for commuting because of the harder 99a wheels.

You can adjust the setup to your liking and swap the wheels for Bones or Spitfire once you progress. You also won’t have any trouble skating street and parks with this setup.

The Tensor Alloy Standard Trucks are one of the better budget trucks and come with a lifetime guarantee. The bushings are soft and I advise to tighten the trucks before you ride.

Amazon offers a this Globe G1 skateboard (sponsored link), same board as we tested but different graphics.


  • Deck width:  7.75, 8.0, 8.125, and 8.25
  • Tensor trucks
  • Standard ABEC 7 bearings
  • 99a-52mm wheels
  • Deck average length: 31.6″
  • Wheelbase: 14

Arbor Whiskey Recruit (Great Beginner Skateboard)

Arbor skateboard

Arbor to my surprise offers a few completes and this board is perfect for both beginners and more experienced riders. This is a street setup with 54mm 90A wheels which offer a comfortable ride. You’ll still be able to ride both park and street and the softer wheels deal well with cracks and pebbles.

The softer wheels will help you to maintain stability and don’t make much noise. The Ace trucks are very turny and one of the best trucks you can get on a complete, decent turning abilities and can handle grinds and ollies.

Asphalt, concrete, and wood won’t be a problem and at 90A you can even take it for a short commute. Like the others, the deck is made of quality 7-ply maple wood and a decent setup overall. Arbor is reliable and one of the more popular brands wheit comes to cruisingcane quickly made a name for itself.

This is a great skateboard for those who want something stable, and softer wheels that can deal with rough terrain. The low/medium concave makes it easier to place your feet but kickflips require you to kick a bit harder. Great all around board for a very good price ($120)!

The bushings are rather soft so you might want to tighten the trucks on your first ride. 8.25″ is about the perfect size and in my opinion this is the best beginner board for anyone over 14 years old.

Sometimes available at Amazon (sponsored link) but you should be able to find one in the many skate shops online.


  • Width: 8.25″
  • Length: 31.75″
  • Wheelbase: – varies
  • 7-ply maple deck
  • Ace Classic Trucks
  • 90a/54mm wheels
  • Shielded standard bearings

Enjoi Skateboard

enjoi skateboard

This complete comes with standard Tensor trucks which are great all-around trucks . It comes with small 53mm 92A street wheels that are suitable for street and parks. They also offer a smooth ride on rougher terrain which makes it an excellent choice for beginners.

The Enjoi deck consists of 7-plys and has a medium concave which makes it easier to keep your balance. The standard bearings aren’t the best, but beginners won’t notice anyway. You can always lube them a bit to make them spin faster.

This version (8.0″ wide) is great for kids and teens of 12 year and older, but Enjoi offers lots of skateboards in different sizes. Also make sure to check my best kids skateboard article. If you are looking for a quality skateboard for kids, it’s definitely worth a read.

8.0″ to 8.25″ is a great size for technical tricks and offers more stability and control. Remember that this is a budget board so you won’t get top-notch components. It’s a very decent starter skateboard, especially considering the price. Once you get the hang of it you can always upgrade the bearings. Check Amazon for availability and prices (sponsored link)

Enjoi features:

  • Deck width: 7.625″ to 8.25″
  • Deck length: varies
  • Wheelbase: varies
  • Enjoi 7-ply maple deck
  • Tensor Trucks
  • 52mm Enjoi street wheels

Tony Hawk Signature 540 Series

tony hawk skateboard

I was pleasantly surprised because I thought these cheap Tony Hawk branded skateboards we’re terrible. They’re actually pretty decent and cheap if you shop smart.

This is the top end of the Tony Hawk Signature Series Skateboards. All components of this setup are upgraded to the highest quality of the series. This setup works well in skate parks for a more advanced beginner/early intermediate skater.

Even though the deck and components of the 540 Series are upgraded from the 180 and 360 series, does not mean that you will be getting a top or even a standard quality skateboard by industry standards. You aren’t getting straight trash either.

The deck is made of maple and comes with decent trucks and wheels. It even has spacers to prevent the bearings from crushing, not something you see often. The wheels are around 54mm which makes this board a bit faster but the trucks are quite heavy making it feel a bit sluggish.

The Tony Hawk Signature Series Skateboards are designed for beginners and not meant for high impact skateboarding. Available on Amazon, shop smart and compare prices (sponsored link).

Alien Workshop Full Spectrum

Alien workshop skateboard

Alien workshop offers one of the best skateboards you can get for street and park, but it’s not for everyone. The 97A/52mm wheels feel very smooth and grippy, and not too bouncy. They are a bit softer compared to most standard skateboards and more forgiving on gritty asphalt and rougher surfaces.

It comes with Xenia trucks which are fine for beginners but you want to tighten the trucks a few times because of the super soft bushings. No worries, you won’t be jumping 7-stairs anytime soon so they are perfectly fine.

Don’t get this board if you’re a bit taller or heavier, this one is made for kids up to 14 years old. They come in sizes 7.75″ and 8.0″. Tony Hawk signature series (sponsored link) are available on Amazon

  • Width: 7.75″, 8.0″, 8.25″
  • Length: 31.5″.
  • Wheelbase: 14.25″
  • 52mm/97A wheels
  • Basic bearings
  • Xenia Trucks

How to Pick the Right Skateboard Parts

Buying skateboard parts yourself is usually more expensive but when it comes to quality you get the best.

Also, you need to put the parts together but many shops assemble a skateboard before shipping as an option.

I always advise to go to your local skate shop. They love giving advice according to your budget. There’s nothing wrong with asking and they can go on and on about wheels, trucks, bearings, and boards.

If you don’t have a skate shop nearby, buying online is a good option. It’s important that think about what you’re going to use your skateboard for so you can pick the right parts.

Mainly wheels are the culprit here, but let me break it down for you.

Step 1. Pick a Style

Make sure you know what you want to ride and where. There are different setups available for different styles. For more details I suggest to visit one of these articles:

Step 2. Picking the Right Skateboard Deck

different skateboard shapes and sizes

The only thing you need to know is that decks between 8.0″ and 8.25″ is the standard for street skating.

Wider decks between 8.25″+ and 8.5″ are better for transition skateboarding (parks and ramps) because they provide more stability.

This doesn’t mean you can’t skate street on an 8.5″, actually a wider deck is great for beginners! I’ll leave that up to you.

The truth is many skateboard decks come from the same manufacturers. There’s a difference is how some of them are pressed and the shape.

The most important thing is to get a board that isn’t pressed in large quantities at the same time. Sometimes decks are pressed 10 at a time which causes inconsistencies in the concave, you don’t want that!

Step 3. Pick Trucks That Match the Width of the Deck

skateboard trucks width compatibility example illustrated

Skateboard trucks are the most vital part of your setup. Reputable brands are Venture, Independent, Tensor, Ace and Thunder trucks. While there are differences in price and quality, it comes down to personal preference.

Ventures provide stability, Indys are a bit more carvy and Thunder is a good choice for street skating.

I skated transition on Thunders for years before I moved on to Independent but don’t have any preference.

Independent trucks are more durable. So economically that would be the best choice. Sure you pay a little extra but they outlast cheap trucks by a factor of 5.

I recently got Indy Titanium’s, and at my age I probably don’t have to buy new trucks ever again. Check out my extensive trucks buying guide.

Skateboard deck widthTruck axle width
7.75 inch to 8.0 inch7.75 inch / 197 mm
8 inch to 8.5 inch8.0 inch / 203 mm
8.5 inch to 9.0 inch8.5 inch / 216 mm
9.0 inch to 10.0 inch9.0 inch / 229 mm
10 inch or more10.0 inch / 254 mm

Step 4. Picking the Right Skateboard Wheels

skateboard wheels differrent sizes

As for size up to 56mm is fine. get 52-53mm wheels if you want to skate street and do tricks. 54mm to 56mm is great for transition skateboarding.

That’s the gist but there is so much more to it that I covered this in another article.

Spitfire classics are a great choice, Bones wheels are on par and for just cruising and tricks 54mm – 96A Ricta Clouds are a great choice.

I happen to have used all of these wheels and they are great, but designed for different purposes. It gets a bit more tricky here because you have to pick the right hardness (durometer) but this isn’t really complex.

Durometer A and BStyle
100A – 85B Hard, great for skate parks and ramps/verts. less grip
95A/96A – 81B/82B:A solid option for cruising and tricks, a bit more grip
90A/92A – 76B/78BGreat for cruising, bouncy for tricks, more grip
85A – 71B:Just cruising, more grip
80A – 66BToo soft for regular skateboards

Step 5. The Right Bearings

Bones Reds standard bearings

Bones bearings and Bronson are excellent bearings and come in different price ranges but the cheaper version are the best choice.

If you hear anyone talk about ABEC ratings ignore that, the ABEC rating has nothing to do with skateboarding, it’s for machines that need to be able to run 24/7 and should be ignored.

Make sure to clean them 2x a year to get the most out of them. Proper maintenance can triple their life span, oh and don’t skate in the rain. It will kill your bearings.

Step 6. Grip Tap, Hardware, and a Skate Tool

Most shops will apply grip tape and you get free grip tape as a bonus. Standard grip tape is fine but fancy prints aren’t always the best.

Some tape will come off because of poor quality so don’t go shopping for fancy stuff unless you don’t mind replacing it when it peels off.

You need hardware for your trucks and they need to be the right size. It’s not complicated. The bolts and nuts to attach your trucks come in sets of 8.

If you don’t plan on buying riser pads or shock pads go with 7/8”. Get 1” if you want  1/8” risers/shock pads.

Make sure to get the right size hardware, it’s quite frustrating to get all parts and you totally forgot to order hardware.

If they’re too tall you could shorten them, but it will leave sharp edges, don’t do that.

Custom Skateboard and Styles Suggestions

skateboard brands decks trucks wheels

As promised here are a couple of custom skateboard setups to choose from. You can pick parts according to your budget, my example are to show what works well.

You can pick different wheels, trucks and pick a deck of a brand you like. If you don’t have the right tools at home, consider a skate tool to assemble the parts. 

Here a are examples of different skateboard setups for different styles:

All-Around Beginner Skateboard Setup

If you don’t know what style you prefer, are new to skateboarding or just want something that works for all styles, go with this setup.

You can go for either Spitfire or Bones wheels between 52mm and 54mm, Thunder or Indy trucks that match an 8.0″ wider deck (indy 139, Thunder 147).

The deck is 8″ wide which is about the average width people skate and Indy trucks will last forever. Standard Bones reds including spacers, grip tape, and hardware to attach the trucks.

8.0″ beginner Skateboard setup:

  • Independent 139 Trucks or Thunder 147 Trucks
  • 8.0 deck (any reputable brand will do)
  • Bones Reds bearings (washers and spacers included)
  • Spitfire OG Wheels
  • Jessup Grip Tape
  • 7/8 hardware

Want something wider, an 8.25 is also a great option. It offers more stability and you’ll still be able to flip your board once you’re ready to get gnarly. The only thing you need is an 8.25 deck and trucks that fit.

8.25″ beginner setup:

  • Independent 144 Trucks or Thunder 148 Trucks
  • 8.25 deck (any brand will do)
  • Spitfire OG Wheels<
  • Jessup Grip Tape
  • 7/8 hardware

Street Skateboard Setup (Technical Skating)

Wheels suggestions: Spitfire Classics 52 mm-54 mm/99D, Bones STF. These are the most common (high-quality) wheels every street skater likes.

Any reliable brand B deck with matching Thunder trucks, Venture, Royal or Indy trucks.  Standard bones Reds bearings, and 7/8 hardware to attach your trucks. Don’t forget to pick grip tape.

8.0″ street setup:

  • Independent 139 Trucks or Thunder 147 Trucks
  • 8.0 deck (any brand will do)
  • Bones Reds bearings
  • Spitfire Classics or Bones STF
  • Jessup Grip Tape
  • 7/8 hardware

8.25″ street setup:

  • Independent 144 Trucks or Thunder 148 Trucks
  • 8.25 deck (any decent brand will do)

Skate Park Skateboard Setup

This is a bit of a wider setup that is excellent for parks and transition skateboarding. The wider deck provides lots of stability and the Indy trucks are great for turning.

The larger Bones Skate Park Formula wheels are the best wheels for parks, I personally love them and so do most of the pros. You can also go for Venture Lo trucks instead.

8.0″ park setup:

  • Independent 139 Trucks or Thunder 147 Trucks
  • 8.0 deck (any brand will do)
  • Bones Reds bearings
  • Spitfire Classics or Bones STF
  • Jessup Grip Tape
  • 7/8 hardware

8.25″ park setup:

  • Independent 144 Trucks or Thunder 148 Trucks
  • 8.25 deck (any brand will do)

8.5″ park setup:

  • Independent 149 Trucks or Thunder 149 Trucks
  • 8.25 deck (any brand will do)

Cruiser/Tricks Custom Setup

custom cruiser trick setup close up

Looking for a skateboard for cruising and tricks? Go for this cruiser/ street hybrid. This one requires you to pick the parts yourself but it’s really easy, I promise.

The Bones All Terrain wheels are soft and big (80A/56mm) and provide a smooth and stable ride, very forgiving on rough asphalt. Pebbles, twigs, or cracks are not an issue.

You can pick a blank skateboard deck (8.5″) from a trusted seller or get one with a graphic. Just pick a standard 7-ply maple deck with medium concave and lots of pop. 

The wheels are great for both cruising and basic tricks. They are rather big and soft so skating a mini ramp or bowl will require you to push harder.

Pick Thunder 149 trucks or Independent 149 Hollows.

You can always pick cheaper parts and upgrade along the way, consider cheap mini logo bearings and jessup grip tape.


  • Deck: 8.5″ of any brand
  • Standard Jessup Grip Tape
  • Bones ATF wheels size 56mm with a durometer of 80A
  • Eight fast Mini Logo bearings
  • Thunder 149 or Indy 149 Trucks

Heavy Riders Skateboard Setup

If you’re bit heavier or taller get harder bushings. Check out this article.

Related questions

Q: Do all skateboard bearings fit all wheels? A: Yes, it’s all standard sizing so don’t worry about that. Bearings are overrated, cheaper skateboard bearings work fine.

Q: Why do different skateboard truck brands classify sizes differently? A: There isn’t any standard unfortunately but the axle widths are always mentioned so check if that matches your deck.

Q: Does it matter if my trucks don’t align perfectly with my deck? A: No, it really doesn’t matter just don’t go overboard a .25″ deviation is fine.

It looks a bit strange if your trucks are way wider or shorter. That’s all, nothing to worry about as a beginner.

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