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12 Best Skateboard Tools (Bought & Tested)

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“Does anyone have a skate tool? Bro, you have a skate tool?” I can’t remember how often I heard that one in my years of skateboarding and bringing a skate tool will certainly will get you some appreciation even if you skateboarding is trash.

Over the years I have tried a lot of different skateboard setups which requires a lot of assembling. First I just grabbed a wrench and screwdriver but noticed it took ages to assemble a skateboard.

So, I bought a skate tool, and another one, and another one, which led to the idea to review a bunch of skate tools and show you what they’re good at and what not. Obviously you don’t need a skate tool but it is very convienient.

collection of different skateboard tools

12 Best Skate Tools

From a budget perspective a cheap skate tool will do the job just fine. Tweaking the tightness of your trucks or hardware doesn’t take long. However, for the geeks there are some awesome tools available which doesn’t require to steal tools from you dad’s toolbox.

collection of skateboard tools

If you’re in a hurry, here are 3 tools we recommend. Note that this page contains affiliate links.

Most efficient
Silver Skate Tool

The Silver skate tool only lacks a re-threader but makes assembling a complete skateboard a breeze.

Sturdy & Compact
Ace AF1 Skate Tool

The Ace AF1 Skate Tool has everything you need and is easy to stow in your backpack.

Cheapest Tool
Zeato Skate Tool

The cheapest on this list that just works, but feels a bit flimsy.

1. Ace AF1 Skate Tool

Ace really aced it with this tool. It’s very basic but you can take it apart and stow away pretty easily. Holding it in your fist also gives a mean punch ;).

Ace Skate Tool

I had to look closely but it comes with an axle re-threader which is quite ingeniously hidden inside the tool. From all the tools on this list, it’s the only one that offers a re-threader without making the tool extremely bulky.

It’s kind off hard to take out the screwdriver, you have to push it on a hard surface to pop it out. I slightly bruised the palm of my hand at my first attempt. It gets a bit easier to take out over time.

Ace Skate Tool folded

The Ace skate tool feels very sturdy and has some decent weight to it. It’s made of quality steel and you’ll have a hard time breaking it.

It will probably survive a drop from the freedom tower. It also isn’t extremely expensive compared to other tools.

This is a great tool for minor adjustments to your skateboard setup and fixing axles (both kingpin and truck axles). Assembling trucks takes a bit longer because it lacks a ratchet.

Not an issue if you just need a reliable tool that gets the job done. It doesn’t come with grip tape file and lacks a bearing popper, though the easiest way to remove bearings is using your trucks’ axle anyway.

  • Very solid build, feel indestructible
  • Has some nice weight to it
  • Very portable
  • Comes with both a kingpin and axle re-threader
  • Fairly priced

Check current prices on Amazon.

2. Prime8 Skate Tool

I recently discovered Prime8 and just had to get their tools to try out. So far I am not disappointed.
This is another well built tool that almost has everything you need. It only lacks a re-threader which you can buy separately (more about that later).

Prime8 Skate Tool front

This is their most basic skate tool, their other version comes with a ratchet which is a bit of an overkill for most skateboarders.

It feels very solid build yet lightweight, it has great grip making it easy to remove rusty kingpin nuts or squashed axle nuts. It is extremely difficult to remove the screwdriver, but I figured it out eventually. If you tap it on (for example) the heel of your shoe it comes out. Hold you hand close to it to catch it.

It’s not a downside because you won’t lose the Allen/Phillips driver easily like other tools. I lost a few because they get unstuck too easily, especially with cheaper tools. So I’d say it’s a plus.

Prime8 Skate Tool back

You have your bearing remover, grip tape file, and all the other tools (except for a ratched).

  • Multi-functional tool that allows you to adjust axle nuts, change bearings, mounting hardware, and the kingpin nut on the top of the truck.
  • “All-Steel” Ratchet System
  • Reversible Axle/Kingpin socket (9/16″ & 1/2″)
  • Phillips head wrench screwdriver that pressure
  • Precision Bearing Pusher
  • Grip-Tape File

Check current prices on Amazon.

3. Silver Skate Tool

This is my favorite skate tool because I assemble a lot of setups. I love the ratchet which is incredibly efficient at removing and attaching the trucks. It has some nice weight to it, isn’t too bulky and very durable. The only thing it lacks is a re-threader but it would make the tool very bulky like the Merkapa Ratchet Skate Tool which I covered as well.

As you can see I have been using this tool for a while and it’s still my go to skate tool for assembling setups. The paint will come off eventually but it doesn’t affect the tools’ performance.

Silver skate tool back

It also doesn’t come with a bearing remover, but I honestly just use the trucks axle for that like everybody else. Recommended for those that often switch setups or often assemble skateboards.

Perhaps a bit of an overkill for most skaters but a reliable and durable tool that won’t let you down. I do have some issues with the Philips/Allen screwdriver detaching, make sure to pop it back in with some force so it won’t get lost.

Check current prices on Amazon.

4. Prime8 Ratched Skate Tool

Prime8 Ratched Skate Tool front

Update: I heard complaints about the socket falling off, haven’t experienced this myself yet but will try to figure out if this is just bad luck or a design flaw.

I was very much looking forward to this tool because it looks so rad. It’s a high quality tool and extremely efficient at tweaking trucks or removing and attaching axle nuts. Maybe the ratchet is a bit of an overkill because usually it doesn’t really take long to adjust your trucks. I do appreciate it though because it makes removing and attaching wheels very efficient.

The socket wrench can be removed. One side is for adjusting the kingpin nut and the other side allows you to remove/attach the axle nuts.

Prime8 Ratched Skate Tool back

This tool really has that ‘WOW factor’ and the feeling you have something of the highest quality in your hands. I love quality tools because they just make life easier.

Just like their basic skate tool, it’s really hard to release the Allen/Phillips screwdriver because the pin for releasing the screwdriver doesn’t pop-out enough. You need to push the pin first and then tap the tool to release it.

Again, I suspect this is by design because the screwdrivers to tend to get lost with other tools because they come off way too easy. I also needed to complain about at least something because this is a really well though out skate tool.

Compared to the Silver Skate Tool it takes a bit longer to attach or remove trucks, though the Silver is less efficient when it comes to tweaking.

  • Extremely high quality components
  • Very efficient and fast
  • Could be an overkill for some skateboarders
  • Has some nice weight to it and handles very well.

5. Independent Bearing Saver T-Tool

Just like their trucks, the Independent Bearing Save Skate tool feels indestrucable. It’s a very simple but sturdy skate tool which has some nice weight to it and probably lasts a life time. I have no clue why it’s called a bearing saver because there isn’t a bearing remover present, probably missing something

Its very basic design is made of a single cast and smaller than most of the skate tools. Easy to remove the Allen/Phillips screw driver because they choose a different attaching system. It may not look sexy, but it works.

This is the most basic high-quality skate tool built like their trucks. It can handle a lot of force and feels like high grade steal.

if you’re the type of skater that likes to throw a skate tool to their buddies instead of just handing it over, this is the one to pick. Great for tweaks and removing stuck axle or kingpin nuts, buts less efficient to assemble an entire setup.

It doesn’t come with a re-threader or grip tape file. Also note that the Prime8 re-theader doesn’t really fit well if you were planing to combine the two.

  • Very solid build, feels indestructible
  • Has all the basic features you need.
  • Assembling a setup takes a bit longer but very doable
  • Little risk of losing the screwdriver.
  • Logo is upside down?
  • Best basic skate tool

Check current prices on Amazon.

6. Titan Key Chain Skate Tool

Extremely lightweight and compact. great for fixing stuff on the fly less to for assembling an entire skateboard. This is a setup tuner and not great for assembling an entire skateboard. Great to fix things on the fly though I have my doubts about it’s durability.

Titan Key Chain Skate Tool

The Allen and Philips screwdriver won’t last forever as the material feels a bit flimsy. Time will tell though and I’ll be sure to update once I know more.

Still, a very smart design which you can always carry around by attaching it to your key chain. It also makes for a great gift for skateboarders.

  • Lightweight but a bit flimsy
  • Comes with a manual
  • Not great for assembling a skateboard
  • Perfect for minor adjustments
  • Perhaps a bit expensive for what you get

7. Sk8ology Click Carabiners Skate Tool

Another keychain skate tool because I figured you want options. This is another well thought out skate tool that is easy to carry around. Although the clip and the tool feels a bit flimsy, it works for fixing minor issues or doing some minor tweaks to your setup. Because of it’s shape it is harder to use force so removing a stuck axle not will be more of a challenge.

KeyChain Skate Tool

In essence it’s great for minor tweaks but not great for assembling an entire skateboard. You also can’t put a lot of force on the Allen/Phillips head screwdriver making it harder to tighten the bolts. This tool is extremely lightweight, comes with a handy clip you can attach to your bag.

  • Relatively cheap
  • Can’t get a decent grip Allen/Phillips head screwdriver
  • Great for minor adjustments but not for assembling setups
  • Perfect for minimalists

Check current prices on Amazon.

8. Merkapa Ratchet Skate Tool (White Label)

After doing a bit of digging I believe the Merkapa Ratchet skate tool is some sort of white label tool. I’ve seen the same tool with different logo’s but they are very likely from the same manufacturer.

I had to return the first one because it was damaged on arrival. The little plastic cylinder near the ratchet was broken, which wasn’t a great first impression.

It looks like the Silver Skate Tool but comes with an axle threader. At first I though this was ideal but it makes this tool extremely bulky. It’s advertised as an all-in-one skate tool but comes with two Allen bit and a bit to pop out bearings. These are the first things that will get lost.

The tool feels a bit flimsy and I don’t trust it to remove bearings. The ratchet bends a lot and over time it will probably break. The plastic casing also feels a bit cheap and not handling the tool with care can cause cracks and tears.

Merkapa Ratchet Skate Tool

While the re-threader seems like a great idea, it really makes this tool extremely large. It just feels a bit clumsy compared to the Silver skate tool, sort of like it’s retarded brother.

In all seriousness, it does a great job at assembling a complete setup, the ratchet makes this process extremely fast and efficient. Also it’s a lot cheaper than the silver skate tool and if you handle it with care you can get quite a few miles out of it.

  • Great for assembling complete setups
  • The tool feels flimsy and should be handled with care
  • Not the most expensive tool
  • Very bulky, takes up a lot of space.

9. Pig Skate Tool

Another quality skate tool that almost has everything except for a grip file. This is a Y-shaped skate tool that just works. You get the urge to use it as a boomering but so far it has failed to return. You can throw it over to your fellow skateboarder instead of having to walk, it will survive the impact if you fellow boarder fails to catch it.

Pig skate tool font

The plastic casing is of excellent quality and can take lots of abuse. The Y-shape allows for lots of force to remove stuck nuts. It’s also pretty easy to remove the screwdriver even if you bite your nails.

Pig skate tool back

The Allen/Philips driver works better than most of the other tools because you can get a better grip. However, it’s not the smallest tool on this list. Even if it isn’t as bulky as the Merkapa or Reflex utili-tool, it does need some space to stow in your backpack.

Again, this is a tool that just simply gets the job done and can deal with abuse. The re-threader certainly makes it a great almost-all-in-one skate tool. One of the better all around skate tools.

  • Decent quality and handles well for a basic tool
  • Comes with an axle re-threader
  • It’s rather big because of the Y-shape

Check current prices on Amazon.

10. Reflex Utili-Tool

This was one of my first skate tools and it served me well. The thing is, you’ll notice it when you carry it around in your backpack because it’s quite bulky and heavy. This is also the reason why I’m not using it anymore. It does a good job at assembling and tweaking a skateboard, but it’s too heavy and bulky for my taste.

Reflex Utili-Tool front

This doesn’t mean it’s a bad skate tool, not at all. It’s a high-quality skate tool that will last forever and it feels unbreakable. I never used the bearing remover but the axle re-threader has come in handy many times.

Reflex Utili-Tool back

Because it’s a bit bigger than your average skate tool it also allows you to remove deformed axle buts, baseplate nuts, and kingpin nuts. It’s not the fastest at assembling entire setups because it lacks a ranched like the Silver and Prim8 Skate tool.

  • Extremely durable tool
  • Has a good grip to it
  • The shape makes it a very bulky tool
  • Lacks a grip tape file
  • Not the cheapest tool

Check current prices on Amazon.

11. Prime8 Axle Threader

The Prime8 Axle Threader has a single purpose and you’ll to combine it with a socket wrench. It can also be combined with a few other skate tools like the Silver and Pig skate tool. Be aware that the socket of your tool has to have enough room to fit.

Prime8 Axle Threader

Not much to say, it’s made of quality material and just works. I like the idea of a separate re-threader because you don’t often have to rethread the truck axles. This way you can store it somewhere in case you need it.

Prime8 Axle Threader in a skate tool

It’s rather small and easy to get lost so store it wisely. It’s perhaps a bit oo much for most skateboarders but I thought it would be great to mention so you are aware that stuff like this exists.

  • High quality
  • Doesn’t fit all skate tools
  • Perfect to combine with Prime8 skate tools

Check current prices on Amazon.

12. Zeato All-in-One Skate Tool

Zeato skate tool

The Zeato Skate Tool is the cheapest you can buy and it just works. It isn’t particularly high-quality or durable tool but it gets the job done. While the tools feels flimsy and the plastic rather cheap, it has most of the stuff you need to make minor adjustments to your skateboard. Advertised as an all-in-one tool but it doesn’t come with a rethreader, bearing popper, or grip tape file (which is fine).

I noticed that the Allen/Phillips screwdriver tends to fall out over time so keep you eye on it.

  • Cheap flimsy tool that works
  • Great for basic adjustments
  • Can’t deal with abuse so don’t throw it around
  • Takes a while to assemble and entire skateboard

Check current prices on Amazon.

What Tools Do I Need for Skateboarding?

skateboard truck, wrench and screwdriver

Having the right tools is essential for a great skateboarding experience. Whether it’s your skateboard itself, trucks, wheels, or bearings, having the correct gear will enhance your enjoyment and ensure you can skate confidently and safely. Here’s a quick guide to the essential skate tools:

  1. T-Tool / Y-Tool: For most skateboarders, a T-Tool or Y-Tool is the go-to tool that can handle almost any skate-related situation you may encounter. These tools are versatile and compact, making them easy to carry. If you want to be extra prepared, you can also pack a Phillips Head #2 screwdriver, but make sure to keep it in a safe place like a backpack to prevent any accidents.

If you don’t have a dedicated T-Tool or Y-Tool, don’t worry! You can use the following tools as substitutes, although they may not be as convenient to carry around:

  • Phillips Head Screwdriver #2 or 1/8″ Allen head.
  • 3/8″ Socket or Wrench.
  • 5/16″ Socket or Wrench.
  • 10/32″ Socket or Wrench.

While these alternative tools may be useful when you’re at home, it’s much more convenient to have a pocket-sized T-Tool or Y-Tool. Carrying around a bunch of tools isn’t ideal and I personally tend to lose them.

Skate Tools Work with Almost All Skateboards

In general, skate tools are designed to be compatible with all skateboards and longboards. However, it’s important to note that there may be certain specialized boards that require specific tools due to non-standard hardware like eboards.

Electric skateboards sometimes have unique hardware that can’t be adjusted with a skate tool, for that you need specialized tools. Therefore, whether or not a skate tool will work with your specific skateboard depends on the type of board you have and the tool you’re using. If you have an eboard, consult the manual to see which tools you need.

Some skate tools offer additional features that others may not have. For instance, certain tools come with axle rethreaders (Merkapa, Silver, Pig), which can be beneficial for riders who frequently land on the side of their board (primo) or do truckstands tricks or of flip tricks.

How to Use a Skateboard Tool?

Using a skate tool is pretty straight forward. It should be pretty obvious when you’re holding your tool but I might as well give you a few pointers. Basically it’s righty-tighty-lefty-loosy. There are three types of adjustments you can make to your board with a skate tool.

Except when assembling an entire board where a grip tape file comes in handy, or when rethreading you axles. Let’s look at the most common adjustment you can do with a tool

How to Tighten and Loosen Skateboard Trucks

How to tighten and loosen skateboard trucks

Some skateboards come with stock bushings that are either too hard or to soft for your weight. Sometimes you want to make turning easier and sometimes a board just turns too hard making it difficult to control.

Take one of the larger socket wrenches in your skate tool and press it onto the center bolt of your truck to find which size fits. Once you find the correct socket size, turn the skate tool clockwise to tighten your trucks and counterclockwise to loosen your trucks.

The tighter the kingpin nut is the less turny your skateboard. Your board will be very stable, but it might become difficult to turn which can result in losing control. A looser the kingpin nut will increase the turning radius but harder to control the skateboard. You just need to find the sweetspot that works for you.

How to Remove, Adjust or Attach Skateboard Wheels

adjusting a skateboard wheel with a tool

You don’t really want to adjust the tightness or looseness of your wheels much if at all. But it can be a solution if your wheels don’t spin for a longer period of time. This is what happened to a meow skateboard I bought, the axle nut was too tight resulting in wheels that hardly spun.

It’s great for removing wheels to swap them around or when you have to attach new wheels or replace skateboard bearings.

You’ll need the medium sized socket (big one is for the kingpin nut, and the smaller on for the hardware. It usally is located on the top of the T-shaped skate tool. Turn the skate tool counterclockwise to remove the wheels and/or bearing.

Once you are ready to attach the wheels, dont forget to attach the wing shaped washers to prevent friction and heat buidling up. Now turn the skate tool clockwise to tighten and attach the wheel and bearing. it shouldn’t be too tight and you should not use lots of force or you might crush the bearings. Just tighten it untill you can’t go much further and test it the wheels spin properly.

Remove or Attach Your Trucks

attaching the trucks to a skateboard

Removing trucks is pretty simple but can be a bit of a chore. It’s not uncommon because you often have to replace your skateboard deck.

To attach your trucks to your deck you need to tighten four screws for each truck. The screw heads are on the top of the deck, or the side with griptape on it. Take the Phillips or Allen head screwdriver (depending on the type of skateboard hardware) from your skate tool and turn each screw clockwise to attach or counterclockwise the remove the truck.

Pro tip: make sure when you re-attach your trucks to not swap the front and back truck. Figure out the front and back of your skateboard and attach them properly (and not inversed!). Usually your back and front trucks behave differently because of your weight distrubution on a skateboard.

The bushings will form in a certain way which makes swapping them around feel very awkward when skateboarding.

Test Your Skateboard

Take you board for a ride and see if the adjustments are to your liking. If not, dow a couple of more tweaks untill you tuned the board the way it feels right. There is no science to it, it’s just what you prefer.

Don’t forget to bing your skate tool becaue it can mean having to end a session. it also can’t hurt to bring some extra parts like a spare bearing, axle nuts, hardware, etc if ther eisn’t a shop around. having to end a sesh too soon sucks and you could also be the hero of the day helping out someone who has some issues.

Last Words

While a skate tool isn’t necessary, it is totally worth it. I assembled many boards and they are a huge timesaver. Once you get a skate tool you never want to go back. There is no need for a really expensive skate tool, though some are able to get the job done faster then other tools.

If you often experiment with different setups, a tool with a ratchet is a must. Otherwise a basic tool is just fine.

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