For years now, Tensor offers the lightest skateboard trucks in de skateboard industry where Independent standard trucks are one of the heaviest. I would like to point out that from our experience lighter trucks don’t mean you improve your skills. It can make your skateboard more responsive when you ride a heavier than average deck.
The lightest skateboard trucks are the Tensor Mag Light Lo weighing 9.3 oz (8″, 231 grams) followed closely by the Tensor Mag Light regular weighing 9.3oz (252 grams). The third is the Thunder Titanium Lights at 10 oz (283 grams).
- Lightest Skateboard Trucks by Brand
- What Makes Tensor Trucks so Light?
- Pros and Cons of Lightweight Skateboard Trucks
- Are Lightweight Trucks Weaker?
- So What’s the Deal with Titanium Trucks?
- What Are Skateboard Trucks Made Of?
- It’s Not About the Weight of Your Trucks!
Lightest Skateboard Trucks by Brand
All the trucks in the table are 8 inches wide.
|Weight in ounce
|Weight in grams
|Tensor Mag Light Lo
|Tensor Mag Light regular
|Thunder Titanium Lights
|Thunder Polished Lights
|Indy Forged Titanium
|Royal Inverted Kingpin
What Makes Tensor Trucks so Light?
Tensor trucks are light because of the materials used. Tensor makes their trucks out of magnesium instead of a mix of steel like other trucks. They are supposed to be as strong as regular trucks though we managed to break the kingpin in under a year and couldn’t get the stuck kingpin out, truck wasted.
The baseplate and hangar consist of magnesium and the hollow kingpin and axles further reduce their weight. Hollow axles are the standard nowadays most of the reliable brands have them, hollow kingpins aren’t standard.
Skateboarding tech evolves and people are always searching for ways to improve their skills, even if it’s just a placebo. This started from the day the first skateboard was made.
People were wondering how to make their skateboards lighter and more responsive. Cutting of weight of the trucks is a one way of reducing the weight of your skateboard.
Pros and Cons of Lightweight Skateboard Trucks
There probably isn’t any set of trucks that are the best though Many brands offer great trucks these days. Some are better for carving, some are better for technical tricks and others help to smack someone if you get robbed. Not everyone skates the same, different styles need different trucks.
The only way to find out which trucks are best for you is to try them out. Most of us don’t have the luxury to try out all trucks before you can find the right one. Ask your friends to try out their trucks, swap trucks for a day for example.
One key performance factor is the bushings. Depending on your weight and your preference, quality bushings can make a huge difference. Some time ago I switched to Bones Hardcore bushings and my trucks are more responsive and reliable than ever before.
If you’re a beginner you can’t really go wrong if you pick one of the better brands. Some love the heavy Independent trucks, others are religious fans of Thunder trucks. If you’re looking for new trucks check out my in-depth guide about skateboard trucks for every type of skateboarder, or visit my recommended skateboard trucks page.
The weight of skateboard trucks will hardly matter how high you ollie and pop other tricks. Some claim they actually help where others can’t tell the difference. I know this isn’t the answer to what you’re looking for but people are heavily biased.
Advantages of Light Trucks
Obviously, your board is lighter when you carry it around. The main reason people buy light trucks is to get more lift, but again I couldn’t find any solid evidence this actually matters.
The theory is that you need less leg power to pop your skateboard, but does a couple of grams/ounces really matter? What sounds plausible is that the board pushes more against your feet when you catch it and responds faster when you flip it.
Light trucks tend to make your skateboard react faster. Your board will be more responsive when you do flips and pops. This offers some advantages if you’re a technical skater. Some skateboarders claim it makes it easier for them to jump over objects but this is purely anecdotal.
This doesn’t mean if you already flip your board easily and have no problems jumping over high object light trucks will make you jump even higher. It all comes down to your personal preference.
Not a psychologist here but confirmation bias can play a part. Just like when you feel more confident wearing protective gear, you think a light skateboard makes you pop and flip better. So if you think lighter trucks will help you perform better, go for it. Skateboarding is a often a mind game and a confidence boost helps to improve your skills.
If you’re new to skateboarding I wouldn’t worry about durability or weight that much. Not that you should buy cheap low-quality trucks, but it’s more likely you won’t jump huge stairs or grind rails all day. Lighter trucks may even help you flip your board better or help you get your skateboard off the ground.
Disadvantages of Light Trucks
The biggest downside of lighter trucks is the price tag, the difference in some cases is almost $50 in total and even more extreme in the case of Theeves trucks ($250 USD for a set). Not a problem if you have the money, but it adds up.
Often people claim that lightweight hollow trucks are less durable. Because of hollowing out some parts they are supposed to be more fragile and wear down sooner than regular trucks. The theory is that there’s just less metal to support for example your kingpin and axles.
Every time you grind a tiny bit of metal is scraped of the trucks until you reach the axle at some point. By that time snapping your trucks is more likely.
Are Lightweight Trucks Weaker?
I couldn’t find any evidence that they last longer or break more easily than regular solid trucks. Most of them consist of top quality materials and I really wouldn’t worry about it. Heavier skaters will surely break trucks more often than skinny people and the same goes for high impact skateboarding.
Durability entirely depends on your style. Steel trucks break, titanium trucks wear out and so will hollow trucks. We managed to snap a brand new Independent Titanium axle, but that was just a fluke.
So What’s the Deal with Titanium Trucks?
If you’re unsure about hollow trucks you could consider getting titanium trucks. Titanium trucks are stronger than normal trucks and lighter than standard metal trucks. Only parts of these trucks are made of titanium like the axle, for example.
Titanium trucks are considered a superior combination of high strength and low weight ratios when compared to steel trucks. Be careful here though, there’s also marketing involved. The best steel is stronger than titanium, but don’t expect trucks to be made out of the best steel. Trucks would be extremely heavy and even more expensive.
In general, titanium is 45% lighter but still as strong as steel. If your trucks were made out of the best steel you probably couldn’t even pop your deck anymore.
What Are Skateboard Trucks Made Of?
Most basic trucks are made from a mix of steel or aluminum. Hangers of different composites and truck axles of steel. Some brands offer more pure materials and composites which increase quality and durability.
There are solid titanium trucks, hollow titanium trucks, a mix of steel, composites, hollow steel trucks etc. Some parts of the trucks consist of aluminum and others of a mix of steel and magnesium. In any case, it’s always a mix of materials from the list below.
It’s Not About the Weight of Your Trucks!
Trucks are the heaviest part of your skateboard and almost everybody wants lighter trucks. You know what really matters? Responsiveness, stability, maneuverability, and no sudden hang-ups. You need some counterweight in order to feel your board. if your board hardly weighs anything, you won’t be able to pop an ollie. The board needs to stick to your feet when you pop.
Being happy with your equipment matters. You get used to how your skateboard responds. The feedback from your skateboard when you ride the street, the sounds of your wheels when they spin or the feeling when you pop your deck.
When you buy a new deck you usually have to get used to it and you miss your old deck. After a few hours you are usually ok, and in a day or so you are completely used to the setup. If not get a new deck!
Your skateboard should feel like a natural extension of your body. At a certain skill level and any changes to your setup will take you some time to get used to. It’s perfectly normal.
So what’s my point? I believe technology certainly helps us getting better material and keeps us safer. Compared to the early old school skateboard we’ve come a long way. I just don’t think it always helps us skate better.
If you get new trucks and suddenly your skills improve it might be that these trucks fit your style better than your old ones. It could also be a placebo, you think they are better and you have more confidence. All of a sudden, you seem just skate better. Forget that last line, maybe I’ve just ruined your placebo effect (sorry).
Sources: Manufacture websites, email inquiries, my own scales, and this awesome video on youtube.