The Best Skateboard Trucks That Will Improve Your Skills


collection of the best skateboard trucks

Skateboard trucks are the heart and soul of your board and if there’s one thing you shouldn’t save money on, it’s trucks. Trucks can last a long time( if you buy the right ones) and really make a difference between landing a trick or eating sh*t.

The skateboard community is divided about the best skateboard trucks, and you’ll often find neverending debates about Thunders and Indys. In the end, it comes down to personal preference and style, and there’s certainly a huge difference between cheap trucks and high-quality trucks.

There’s not one truck that is the best, it really depends on where you want to skate and the style you prefer. There are a few trucks that are all-around, some are great for cruising others perform well on the streets, skateparks, or bowls.  Let’s look at a couple of trucks and see what makes them stand out. Oh and for those on a budget, I got you covered.

1. Independent Trucks Stage 11

Independent trucks Stage 11 Forged Titanium

Independent trucks very durable skateboard trucks but have a reputation for being heavy. This changed when Independent introduced the Stage 11 Hollows and the Titanium trucks. Of all trucks, indy’s have to most ‘meat’ to grind through and are great for both street and transitions skateboarding.

Compared to Thunder indys turn better, which is also why many mini ramp and bowl/pool skaters prefer them. Not everyone is a fan of the stock bushings but that goes for every brand. I personally never had any issues, it just takes some time to break them in.

The metal on indys feels a bit softer which makes them great for grinding. They are also quite high, the forged trucks are 53.5mm (same as Venture and Tensor) and the standard/hollows are 55mm. If you’re used to riding low trucks this will take some time to adjust. In my opinion, Independent trucks are the best to pick from an economical perspective. Sure they are a bit more expensive but they last for ages, those few extra bucks are well worth it.

  • Great for transition and street
  • Must have for mini ramp, bowl/pool
  • Very turny trucks
  • Most durable trucks
  • Guaranteed for Life (whatever that means)

Independent trucks come in many sizes and support skateboard deck width from 6.2″ to 10″. Sometimes more than one size of truck fits but don’t stress too much about this. Trucks don’t have to align perfectly to your deck. There’s also personal preference and the size of your wheels. 

Independent trucks size chart and Deck width
Deck Width Axle width Model
6.2″ – 7.6″ 6.9″ 109
7.4″ – 7.8″ 7.6″ 129 
7.8″ – 8.2″ 8.0″ 139
8.1″ – 8.5″ 8.25″ 144
8.25″ – 8.65″ 8.5″ 149
8.6″ – 9.0″ 8.75″  159 
9.2″ – 9.75″ 9.125″ 169
9.75″ – 10.5″ 10″ 215

Stage 11 Standard

Even though the standard trucks are the cheapest, you still get a rad truck. To be honest, most skaters won’t notice the difference anyway but they are a bit heavier compared to the hollows and titanium trucks. The standard indy truck is also the only one that supports 10″ decks.

  • 55mm Tall
  • 356 Aluminum Hanger & Baseplate
  • Solid 4140 Chromoly Axle
  • Grade 8 Kingpin
  • Sizes: 109, 129, 139, 144, 149, 159, 169, 215 (check the table for reference)

Stage 11 Hollow

The Stage 11 Hollow is the lighter version of the standard truck (7% lighter), it’s hard to give an exact number because trucks vary in sizes. The reduced weight mainly comes from the hollow axle and hollow kingpin. Surprisingly this doesn’t mean that the material is weaker, not at all.

  • 55mm Tall
  • 356 Aluminum Hanger & Baseplate
  • Hollow Chromoly Axle
  • Hollow Chromoly Kingpin
  • Sizes: 129, 139, 144, 149, 159, 169 (check the table for reference)

Stage 11 Forged Hollow

Super Lightweight Mid Profile Truck with Forged Baseplate and Hollow Axle & Kingpin

  • 53.5mm Tall
  • 356 Aluminum Hanger
  • Forged 6061 Aluminum Baseplate
  • Hollow Chromoly Axle
  • Hollow Chromoly Kingpin
  • Sizes: 129, 139, 144, 149, 159, 169 (check the table for reference)

Stage 11 Forged Titanium

The Forged Titanium trucks are the most expensive mainly due to the materials used. Titaniums are the lightest and very strong and finally helped Independent to get rid of the ‘heavy trucks’ image. That’s all in the past, sure Indys are a bit heavier in general but that’s because they have a lot of meat on them to makes them the most durable trucks. Anyway, I love these trucks and they perform well on both street and transition skating.

  • 53.5mm Tall
  • 356 Aluminum Hanger
  • Forged 6061 Aluminum Baseplate
  • Solid Titanium Axle
  • Hollow Chromoly Kingpin
  • Sizes: 129, 139, 144, 149, 159, 169 (check the table for reference)

2. Thunder Trucks

Thunder Trucks Team Edition

Thunder Trucks was founded in 1986 and is one of the biggest skateboard truck brands, many pros pick Thunders and for good reasons. Thunder trucks are many street skaters favorite trucks and loved for their responsiveness, grinding ability, and durability. Thunder trucks are about the best trucks you can get and will last you a long time. They are less turny than indy’s but most skaters won’t even notice.

  • A great choice for flip tricks and grinding
  • Perform great in skate parks and on the streets
  • Very versatile, if you like parks, street and tranny just go for them

Thunder offers many trucks so let’s break them down and see what works for you. It’s safe to say that the standard trucks are just fine but if you want to spend some extra cash you got a lot to pick from.

Thunder offers fantastic stock bushings and will break in quickly. You can either go for Thunder lows or highs, the lows can cause wheel bite sometimes depending on the size of your wheels. If you’re a tranny skater, go for the highs.

Thunder Trucks size and Deck width
Deck Width Axle Width Model
7.4″ and under 7.125″ 143
7.4″ – 7.9″ 7.62″ 145
7.9″ – 8.125″ 8.0″ 147
8.125″ – 8.38″ 8.25″ 148
8.38″ – 8.62″ 8.5″ 149
8.62″ – 8.85″ 8.7″ 151
8.9″ and up 9.125″ 161

Thunder Team Edition

Great trucks for every beginner, the standards are the cheapest of the bunch but probably the best bang for your buck. Their standards don’t have any exclusive stuff like hollow kingpins, forged aluminum base plates, or titanium axles which makes them a tad less durable. You can still skate them for years and they really are great for grinding.

Both the hangar and baseplate are cast so no fancy forged manufacturing-process, forged baseplates are stronger though. Thunder offers the HI (49,78 mm ) and LOW (49 mm) version, go for the high trucks if you are taller or ride bigger wheels. Go for the lows if you want to be as close to the ground as possible and ride smaller wheels.

  • Solid kingpin
  • Solid axle
  • Available in Hi an Low
  • Sizes: 143 low, 145 low, 145 high, 147 high, 147 low, 149 high, 151 high

Thunder (Team) Lights

A bit of an upgrade compared to the standard team trucks, the only difference is a hollow kingpin to reduce weight. Hollow doesn’t mean it’s less durable, it’s just as strong as a regular kingpin thanks to the high-grade materials used! A good choice if you want something more lightweight, but the difference isn’t shocking. The Team edition’s baseplate will give you a bit more clearance because it is 1 mm thicker.

  • Aircraft-grade hollow kingpin
  • Solid axle
  • Team edition’s baseplate is 1mm thicker
  • Sizes:

Thunder Hollow Lights (II)

Thunder Hollow Lights

Want a really fancy lightweight truck? The Hollow Lights might be right up your alley. This is a great quality truck with a hollow kingpin, hollow axle, and forged baseplates which makes them extra strong. Again, hollow doesn’t make them any weaker. The high-grade materials, production process, and quality control makes this one of the best trucks you can buy. This goes for all Thunder trucks, they offer lifetime guarantee in case you happen to break them. Check out this review if you want to learn more.

  • Hollow kingpin to reduce weight
  • Hollow axle
  • Super lightweight
  • Durable forged baseplate
  • Sizes: 147mm, 148mm,  149mm, 151mm
https://youtu.be/rgFr3TleJHk

Thunder Titanium Lights

For those who want the lightest trucks, the titanium Lights are a great choice. The only titanium about this truck is the (solid) axle which might be confusing.  You get super-strong light-weight aluminum baseplates which are custom forged (not cast) and aircraft grade hollow kingpins.

This is the best truck Thunder offers but also the most expensive, will it make you skate better? Probably not. For those who can afford it or like to support their favorite truck brand, go for it.

  • Hollow kingpin
  • Light and strong titanium axle that won’t easily bend
  • Super lightweight, actually the lightest Thunder truck
  • Comes with a durable forged baseplate
  • Sizes: 147mm, 148mm,  149mm,

Team Hollows

Team Hollows are a bit higher than the other trucks, the baseplate is 1 mm thicker for extra clearance. The trucks feature a premium-grade kingpin and reinforced hollow axles, further reducing the total weight of the truck.

  • 1 mm extra height added to the base plates
  • Hollow kingpin
  • Solid axle

3. Venture Trucks

Venture Trucks

Venture Trucks are about the most stable trucks you can get which is very noticeable when you skate transition. The lows are great for street skating and the highs perform really well in bowl, pool, mini ramp, and vert. Even though they are a bit less turny compared to Indys, they increase your balance which means they are also great for beginners.

Most quality trucks now offer bushings that break in much faster than it used to be but these bushings only take about 30 minutes to. Venture Trucks are very snappy trucks and provide great pop given that you ride a medium kicktail deck. As for durability the fall right between Indys and Thunders meaning you will skate them for a long time.

  • Great lock-in on transitions, great for flip tricks
  • Very decent grind on flat bars and rounded ledges but the hard metal makes them grind slower
  • Very loose trucks, bushings break in quite fast
  • Dropped kingpin for extra clearance
Venture Trucks size chart & deck width
Deck Width Axle Width Model
7.5″ – 7.8″ 7.62″ 5.0 / High and Low
8.0″ -8.1″ 8.0″ 5.2 / High and Low
8.1″ – 8.3″ 8.25″ 5.6 / High and Low
8.4″ – 8.6″ 8.5″ 5.8
8.62″ – 8.9″ 8.75″ 6.1
https://youtu.be/k9gXiusWPqQ

Standard Venture Trucks

The standard Venture trucks is obviously the cheapest but a very high-quality truck. It features a forged baseplate, reinforced high-grade steel kingpin, a solid axle, and a forged aluminum hanger. For most of us ordinary skateboarder folks, this is all you need, but if you want something that weighs less keep on reading.

  • Solid axle
  • Solid kingpin
  • Forged baseplate
  • Height: Lo-48mm, Hi-53.5mm
  • Sizes: 5.0, 5.2, 5.6, 5.8, 6.1 (check the table for reference)

Venture V-Lights

A slight upgrade from the standard trucks as the name already might give it away, they are a bit lighter. The Venture V-Lights come with a hollow kingpin and a forged baseplate. It saves you a couple of grams and they are just as strong.

  • Hollow kingpin
  • Forged baseplate
  • Solid axle
  • Height: Lo-48mm, Hi-53.5mm
  • Sizes: 5.0, 5.2, 5.6, 5.8, 6.1 (check the table for reference)

Venture V-Titanium

The difference here is that the V-Titanium offers a titanium axle to reduce weight but it makes the truck more expensive. Titanium is great for people who jump bigger stairs and get bent axles. Of course, you also get hollow kingpins and forged baseplates. This is the strongest and lightest Venture truck you can buy, but also the most expensive.

  • Hollow kingpin
  • Forged baseplate
  • Solid titanium axle
  • Height: Lo-48mm, Hi-53.5mm
  • Sizes: 5.0, 5.2, 5.6, 5.8, 6.1 (check the table for reference)

Venture V-Hollow Lights

This is the only truck Venture offers that has both a hollow kingpin and a hollow axle making them extremely lightweight. Not as light as the V-Titanium though, the 5.0 Titaniums Hi weigh 299 grams and the 5.0 V-hollow Lights weigh 323 grams. Compared to the regular 5.0’s (355 grams) that’s quite a difference. Remember that reduced weight is probably not gonna make you ollie any higher, it really comes down to technique.

  • Hollow kingpin
  • Forged baseplate
  • Hollow axle
  • Height: Lo-48mm, Hi-53.5mm
  • Sizes: 5.0, 5.2, 5.6, 5.8, 6.1 (check the table for reference)

4. Tensor Trucks

Tensor Trucks

Tensor is Rodney Mullen’s company and it’s known for its ultra-lightweight trucks.  The benefit is that it doesn’t hurt as much when they hit your shins and some think it can make them ollie higher.

The geometry of the baseplates makes grinding and slides easier. Tensors are rather low which can be a problem with bigger wheels but it also makes them very stable trucks. Tensors wear a lot faster and should be avoided if you don’t have a lot of cash to splash.

You often find tensors on complete setups, this is mainly because it’s a great all-around truck. My Globe cruiser for example came with these trucks, and even though they aren’t the ultimate cruiser trucks, they hold up fine. They don’t turn that well, but beginners won’t mind because of the stability they offer. You can always tweak the trucks a little or replace the stock bushings.

When it comes to the gnarly stuff you’re probably better of with something more durable. The magnesium truck tends to break faster so if you want a more sturdy truck, avoid them. Though some love how fast they grind, you don’t have a lot of meat to chew through.

It’s not that bad though, most skaters won’t notice, and fortunately Tensor upgraded their trucks recently. Tensor offers the lightest trucks and I think that makes mentioning them justified. They put a lot of time into researching and developing the lightest trucks in the world.

  • Ultra-lightweight
  • Decent at grinding and technical tricks, not so much for transition.
  • The biggest con, they aren’t very durable
  • Lifetime guarantee against breakage in case of a manufacturing defects
  • Low kingpin to avoid hangups
  • Interlocking bushings for better control
Tensor Trucks size chart & deck width
Deck Width Axle Width Model
7.5″ – 7.9″ 7.625″ 5.0
7.8″ – 8.2″ 8.0″ 5.25
8.1″- 8.4″ 8.25″ 5.5
8.3″ – 8.7″ 8.5″ 5.75

Tensor Maglight

There have been quite some discussions about Maglights on the web and honestly, I haven’t tested them myself. From what I’ve read and is that they aren’t very durable and need to be replaced more often than , for example, indys. Sure they are very light but the magnesium mixture to cast the hangar seems to be causing issues for some skaters. If you’re a hardcore street technician, you probably want to skip these. If you want the lightest skateboard setup, these trucks are right up your alley.

Riders that own them praise them for their grindability but do mention the durability issue. Recently Tensor updated their designs to make them stronger, let’s see how they will hold up.

  • Hollow kingpin
  • Hollow axle
  • 55mm high
  • Quite expensive
  • 92a bushings

Tensor Aluminum

The aluminum trucks are very lightweight though they weigh more than the MagLites.  This is a standard truck without fancy features but still great all-around trucks for beginners.

  • Solid kingpin
  • Solidaxle
  • 55mm high
  • 92a bushings

5. Grind King Trucks

Grind King Trucks

Grind King trucks are very well designed and just looking at the design makes you want to skate them. I think they are the best looking trucks ever created, but it does not about look right, it’s about how they ride. You won’t be disappointed, Grind King isn’t exactly new to the game but took a big hiatus. Recently Grind King came back with the disruptor, the raddest looking truck on the market.

Since this is a small company they only offer trucks for board sizes 8.0, 8.25, and 8.5. Pretty standard sizes so I’m sure many of you can fit these trucks.  The bushings (with built-in washers) aren’t for everyone and it will take quite some time before you break them in.

  • Long stable grinds, great for smiths and feebles because of the inverted kingpin provides lots of clearance
  • Great manual balance and pop feel
  • Built-in washers
  • Inverted kingpin for more clearance
  • Not very turny at first it takes some time
  • Perfect for street
  • Great for medium to steep concave decks, those will provide the most pop.
  • Can be noisy at first, put some wax in the pivot cups to solve this.
Grind King Trucks size chart & Deck width
Deck Width Axle Width Model
87.5″ – 8.0″ 7.67″ 5.0 Disruptor
8.0″ – 8.25″ 7.87″ 5.5 Sparks and Disruptor
8.5″  8.5″ 6.0 Sparks and Disruptor

 

https://youtu.be/rgFr3TleJHk

Grind King Disruptor

The GK Disruptor is (in my opinion) one of the most innovative skateboard trucks to date. I mean, no washers, an inverted kingpin, and the lowest height for the smoothest grinds. As for the lack of washers, these are integrated into the bushings but not everyone is a fan. It also features a unique “anti focus” hollow baseplate that is and rounded, which prevents your board from snapping. Pretty cool stuff!

  • Sizes 5.0, 5.5, 6.0
  • Reversed kingpin
  • Integrated washers
  • Great for street skating, less for transition

Grind King Sparks

The Sparks are rather unique and have 7 spark plugs that create bright sparks when you grind! This is pretty awesome and great for photo’s especially when it’s about to get dark. Geometry is the same as the disruptors but they don’t come in size 5.0.

  • Sizes 5.5, 6.0
  • Spark plugs
  • Reversed kingpin
  • Integrated washers
  • Great for street skating, less for transition

6. Paris Trucks Co

Arbor Oso foundation trucks

Paris trucks co offers trucks for dedicated cruising, longboarding trucks, and even cruising and street trucks. These made it to the list because I know there are a lot of skaters that love to do some cruising and hop a few curbs, and maybe some slappies? Anyway, Paris Trucks offer something for everyone but don’t quite excell at anything making them the perfect all-around truck.

They offer traditional kingpin trucks for technical skating and reverse kingpin trucks for cruising and longboarding (V2, V3, Savant). I personally don’t have any experience with the longboard variant, but I like to ride the street trucks on two cruisers which I think are just the best (Arbor Ose and Pilsner).

These trucks are very carvy and have lots of meat to grind through. For a pure street skateboard? No, there are way better options. Paris fills a much-needed gap between cruising and tricks.

Paris offers the V1, V2,  V3, and the more exclusive Savant trucks (downhill trucks).  Both the V2 and V3 trucks are great for sliding, the V1’s are a bit outdated. The new V3’s are an upgrade from the V2’s and Paris uses a new manufacturing process. The casting process, bushings, pivot cups all got an upgrade, and Paris now also offers 165mm wide trucks.

The more exclusive Savant trucks are quite expensive which mainly has to do with the manufacturing-process. The Savant’s are about as stable as you can get, great for downhill but perhaps a bit of an overkill for just cruising. They feature a tighter bushing sear, a forged construction, and a CNC finish (that’s what probably makes them expensive).

In general. Paris trucks are a jack of all trades master of none kind of truck. You often find them on completes because they are great all-around trucks. If you’re in doubt about your cruiser setup, go with Paris trucks.

Paris Trucks size chart & Deck width
Deck Width Axle Width Model
6.8″ – 7.2″ 6.875″ 108 Street
7.4″ – 7.8″ 7.6″ 129 Street
8.3″ – 8.7″ 8.5″ 149 Street
8.7″ – 9.3″ 9.0″ 169 Street
8.5″ – 8.8″ 8.75″ 150 V2, 150 V3
9.0″ – 9.5″ 9.0″ 165 V2, 165 V3
9.6″ – 10″ 9.75″ 180 V2, 180V3

Paris V2

The Paris V2 truck is the successor of the V1 truck. Paris made the trucks beefier to increase durability and improved the pivot and bushing seating. The V2’s are a good choice for cruising but not recommended for street skating. They are great for sliding, dancing, and recommended for beginners that just want to cruise around.

  • Sizes: 150mm, 165mm, 180mm
  • 90A bushings
  • Carving and cruising
  • Inverted kingpin

Paris V3

The Paris V3 trucks are quite new and the V2 successor. Paris improved the alloy forming process that increases the strength. The hanger and bushings are a bit wider, improved pivot cups. Overall the Paris V3 trucks are currently the second-best trucks they offer for cruising (the Savants are actually the best but overkill for your average cruiser). 

  • Sizes: 150mm, 165mm, 180mm
  • 90A bushings
  • Great for carving and cruising
  • Inverted kingpin

Paris Street

Paris also offers street trucks which are great for mini cruisers. In fact, all Arbor cruisers come with Paris street trucks. They are taller than your average truck (57.15mm) which makes them great trucks for cruising and tricks without having to worry about wheel bite. No need for riser pads and lots of lean for the ultimate cruising experience. They come with six holes which allows you to adjust the wheelbase and the bushings are 93A (cone-barrel).

  • Sizes 108, 129, 149, 169
  • Used for cruising and tricks, any deck with a kicktail will do

7. Krux

Krux is a good choice for street skating, lighter than indys. Very slight camber to the hanger and shaved off baseplates to make them lighter. Very recognizable by the hole which exposes the kingpin and bushings. Not recommended for transition, mini ramps, bowls, vert, or anyone that likes to ride loose trucks.

  • Decent manual feeling
  • Adequate for flip tricks
  • Very stiff, they don’t turn really well
Krux Trucks size chart & deck width
Deck Width Axle Width Model
7.4″ – 7.8″ 7.6″ 7.6 
7.8″ – 8.2″ 8.0″ 8.0
8.1″ – 8.4″ 8.25″ 8.25
8.3″ – 8.7″ 8.5″ 8.5
8.7″ – 9.3″ 9.0″ 9.0

8. Ace trucks

Ace trucks are very carve-y trucks and could be considered for bowl skating or cruising. The stock bushings are fine but it’s hard to replace them, only Krux bushings seem compatible. I know Bam loves them because the bushings don’t require you to break them in, at least that’s what he said.

Less suitable for technical grinds as they are harder to lock-in. Kingpin clearance is minimal and they tend to wobble at greater speeds. Not for skaters who like to ride their trucks tight.

  • No need to break-in
  • Good choice for a cruiser
Ace Trucks size chart & deck width
Deck Width Axle Width Model
6.50″ and under 6.5 “ 00
7.00″ -7.30″ 7.25 “ 11
7.12″ – 7.75″ 7.6 “ 22/02
7.75″ – 8.12″ 8.0 “ 33/03
8.12″ -8.50″ 8.35 “ 44
8.5″ – 9.12″ 9.0 “ 55
9.12 – 9.62  9.35 “ 66

9. CCS Trucks

CCS skateboard trucks

Not the best, not the worst and a great choice when you really don’t want to spend too much. CCS trucks cost around 30 bucks a pair and that’s pretty cheap compared to the competition. They aren’t as durable as indys and if you like to grind curbs you are jump 5-stairs, you probably should look for a different truck.

They hold up fine for basic tricks and yes you can grind curbs but they will wear quicker compared to the more expensive trucks. Beginners don’t have to worry about this anyway and the trucks can take some abuse for sure. They turn fine and are medium height which makes them suitable for street skating and parks. 

The trucks hangers and axles are straight, there aren’t any visible deformations or warping issues which often is the case with cheaper trucks. CCS checks for quality before the trucks hit the stores.

  • High-Grade Kingpin
  • Steel base plate
  • Bushings are okay, at  least they turn well
  • Quality controlled hardware
  • A great option for beginners
CCS Trucks size chart & deck width
Deck Width Axle Width Model
7.5″ -8.0″ 109
7.5″ -8.0″ 129
8.0″ – 8.4″ 139
8.5″ 149

10. Mini Logo Trucks

mini logo trucks

Mini logo trucks might not be the best but sure makes one of the best choices for riders on a budget. They are dirt cheap and comparable to CCS trucks. It’s a good choice for beginners as you won’t be doing any grinds or huge ollies. Mini logo is part of SkateOne and Powell-Peralta and you’ll often find these trucks on completes sold by SkateOne.

The trucks have a slight camber, meaning they the hanger curves a bit which is supposed to make it easier to lock your grinds. Most people won’t notice though.

Once you can skate a bit better I would suggest upgrading these trucks though, they’re not as durable as Indys or Thunders and the cheaper materials will wear quite fast once you get to the gnarly stuff. Keep in mind that upgrading your trucks will be a frustrating experience in the beginning as you need to break in the bushings and get used to how they respond. Usually the smaller trucks below 8.0″ come with softer 84A bushings, from 8.0 and up the bushings are 94A which is quite hard for lightweights.  

  • Bushings aren’t great
  • Cheap and budget-friendly, recommended for beginners and kids
  • Come in sizes 7.13″, 7.63″, 8.0″, 8.38″, 8.75″
Mini Logo Trucks size chart & deck width
Deck Width Axle Width Model
7.0″ – 7.3.0″ 7.13 109
7.5″ – 7.8″ 7.63″ 129
8.0″ – 8.1″ 8.0″ 139
8.5″  8.38″ 149
8.75″ – 9.0″ 8.75″ 149

Skateboarding Styles and Proper Trucks

Not every truck is great for your personal style, I wouldn’t recommend cruiser truck for a hardcore street skater not would I advise a stiff truck for transition. It really depends on what types of disciplines you like and you have to compromise.

All the trucks listed here are great for skateboarding. Some are better for cruising others are better for street or transition. By now you should probably know what suits you but let’s talk a bit about the different disciplines and what to expect. 

Street

Many street skaters love loose trucks, heck some pro skaters even completely remove the bushings (looking at you Daewon Song). If you really want to only skate street and don’t like transition, your best bet is Thunder trucks. They are great at locking in grinds and have a low profile which keeps you closer to the ground.

Great for flip trick and durable enough to withstand grinds on gnarly concrete. There are a couple of brands that offer great trucks for street. If Thunder is a bit too expensive, consider Krux, Ace, or even the cheaper version like CCS and Mini logo. Get Thunders though, seriously.

Mini Ramp

You’re in luck, I’ve been riding mini ramps for a long time and you have two options here. Your first option is obviously Independent, your second option is Venture Trucks (High). To be fair I used to ride Thunders for a long time and I loved how I the grinds locked in and it took me some time to get used to Indys. I feel like Indys provide me a much smoother ride and turn way better. It’s anecdotal but Independent Trucks are the favorite trucks for mini ramp, vert, and bowl skaters because of their turning ability.

Venture (highs) is another great option, these are very carvy and offer lots of stability. I should skate them more often to give you a better opinion but as soon as you try your first axle stall, you’ll notice. Don’t get the lows, you want max turning radius, the lows are better for street skating.

Vert

Vert skaters probably already know what they need and there’s no point in explaining because these guys are gnarly. Just make sure to pick Independent or Venture because you’re gonna need stability.

Bowl

Again, Independent trucks but don’t rule out Ace trucks. It’s also important to loosen your trucks a bit for extra carving ability. Tight trucks are a nightmare to ride in a bowl! Check out my post about trucks that are great for bowl and pool skating.

Skate Park

Any trucks mentioned in this post are fine for skateparks. If you are more of a street person go with Thunders. Want to ride everything, go with Independent. We’re just talking trucks here but wheels also play a huge part.

Cruising

Paris V2, V3, and Street trucks are a good choice but don’t rule out Venture Hi and independent trucks. You could also consider longboard trucks because in general, they turn much better due to their angle and sometimes reversed kingpin. Get risers if you go for indys or Venture trucks. Check my post about skateboard trucks for cruising if you want to learn more.

Cruising and Tricks

You need trucks that turn well, offer stability but also the wheels you pick make quite a difference. Paris Street trucks, Venture Hi, and Independent Trucks. Paris won’t need extra rise pads but indys and Venture often require some extra clearance.

Skateboard Trucks Explained

Let’s dive a bit into the anatomy of skateboard trucks, to the layman’s eye they all look the same but there are many differences in geometry, quality, and the manufacturing-process. Hollow kingpins, titanium or hollow axles, forged baseplates, etc. They all play a factor in performance and durability. I’ll keep this one brief because I already wrote a huge skateboard truck guide

Truck Hangers & Length

The length of a hangar not only relates to the width of your deck, but it also determines your grip when turning. Shorter hangars rely on mechanical grip when turning and are less stable. Wider hangars offer more stability and more grip when turning.

This is less of a concern to street skaters, but transition skaters and cruisers should pay attention. Street skaters benefit more from shorter trucks because they are more responsive, you want your trucks to react fast when performing technical tricks!

Height

usually, trucks come in high and low versions, not all brands offer lows, mediums, or highs and there’s not an industry-standard unfortunately. A high truck from brand X might be a medium brand Y truck. Low trucks are often better for street skating as you want your center of gravity as low as possible.  It’s all preference though, some like to skate high trucks on the street and can’t get used to low trucks. This is something you’ll learn along the way, the more you skate the more you know what you like and don’t like.

Baseplate

Not all trucks are created equal, a lot depends on the materials used. Most trucks are made of a mix of metal like steel, magnesium (Tensor), aluminum, and brass. Cheaper trucks are cast in a mold and usually consist of lesser material. It won’t impact performance though, cast baseplates are less durable compared to forged baseplates and tend to break after extensive use. Often the mounting holes show tears. Some brands offer baseplates with six holes to adjust the wheelbase.

Bushings

Often overlooked but bushings play a huge part in how the trucks perform. Nowadays, most stock bushings are fine but it takes some time to break them in. Ace and Venture trucks break-in after 30 minutes, but Thunders and Indys require more time. Most trucks offer cone-barrel shaped bushings, and just like wheels bushings come in different durometers. Often this is not specified so it’s a bit of a gamble. Just remember if you’re a bit on the heavy side you need harder bushings.

Conclusion

I know, another best skateboard truck article. There are tons of these articles but the funny thing is, they never actually test them (and probably never touched a skateboard in their life). This post is a work in progress, it will get better in time because I actually test stuff but it will take a while.

All the skateboard trucks listed here are reliable, some are more durable and better for hardcore skating, and some are excellent for beginners who don’t want to spend too much. Even though trucks are the most important part of your skateboard, you can always tweak them (to some extend) and eventually replace them once you know what you really want.

Test some trucks of friends if you can, try to skate them under different circumstances, and see what feels right. Whether you pick Thunder, Indys, Venture, or Mini Logo trucks. In the end, you are the one that needs to commit and nail those tricks. Quality gear really helps though.

 

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Ruben Vee

I'm an aged skateboarder, but I still shred responsibly. I started skateboarding 25 years ago and I'm out there whenever I can. Insta @skateboardershq

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