How to pick your skate setup

How to pick your skate setup

As we repeated many many times over the past few weeks, skateboarding isn't canceled. In fact, we noticed more and more people want to take advantage of the situation to start skating or even get back on the board after years of not stepping on it! All the questions we got concerning skate setups brought us to build this little guide that will definitely help you to get the skate setup that suits you the most. LET'S GO!


In addition to being one of the most accessible sports, skateboarding is a free activity (one you bought your equipment) that can be practiced anytime and anywhere. This sport is also a great way to work on your perseverance and stay fit. That being said, there’s a reason why half of the people who start give up after a couple months: Skateboarding is hard to learn.

Put the odds on your side by taking time to evaluate the different parts of your skateboard equipment to make sure the setup fits your needs and allows you to progress at a faster pace.


The width

The first detail to check when buying a board is its width. If you prefer to skate transitions and rougher terrains, go for a wider board (8 ¼ or more). If you prefer the more technical side of skating, a smaller board will allow you to handle it more easily (8 ¼ and under). In addition to the type of skateboarding you like to practice, the size of a person will also greatly influence his board width. Relying on your shoes size is a great way to estimate the width that will be best suited to your needs. If you are tall and wear size 13 shoes, a wider board will allow you more stability while if you are smaller and you wear a 7, it may be harder for you to make the big board move under your feet.

The Shape

The shape of the board is the second aspect you have to check, starting with the concave, which is the elevation of the sides of your board from its center. Some prefer flatter concave and others more aggressive ones. The shape of the board is often a matter of personal taste, but if you don't want to take risks, start with something less agressive and work your way up if you think you need more concave on your next board.

The nose and tail

Finally, take a look at the nose and tail of your future board. The front and back end of a skateboard can be very different from one brand to another. Depending on the posture you take when you ride or how you place your feet on your board when you pop, a shape that's adapted to your style will help you land maneuvers more naturally. Again, the key is to start with something less agressive and work your way up from there. 

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IMPORTANT! The width of the board must always be in harmony with the width of your trucks. Usually, the majority of skaters choose between two formats of trucks: 139mm and 149mm. For wider boards (8 3/8 and up) go for the 149s. For a narrower board, the 139s will fit perfectly.

Once you know the size of your trucks, you need to choose which brand you're going to want to stick to. Because after you find the trucks you like, you won’t ever want to switch to another brand. At this level, it becomes very personal. Some people prefer the lightness of the Thunders while others would simply not skate if they don’t have Independents under their feet. Take time to check every detail about the truck, they usually last for a while.

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The bearing selection process is quite simple. The higher the ABEC number is, the faster bearings are. Be careful though, because the faster the bearings, the more fragile they are. For beginners, there is nothing better than a good set of ABEC 3. For experienced skaters, ABEC 5 is a fair choice and for those who really like to ride fast, treat yourself with a nice set of ABEC 7.

If you just started skating, Mini-Logos or Bones Reds will do the job just fine. The bearings are probably the only part of the board that does not include any "feelings", or very little. As long as you have bearings that roll well, you're good to go. Our advice: start with a more common brand of bearings before going for the fastest one on the shelf.

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Finally, the last part of the process: The wheels. Like the bearings, choosing your wheels is also quite simple. However, there are a couple technical features to know before you can make a perfect choice. Pretty much the same as boards, the size of your wheels depend on the terrain you like to skate. If you like bowl skating, go for larger wheels (54mm and up), but if you prefer to skate flat and ledges, we suggest smaller wheels (53mm and under).

With the "rugged" condition of our Quebec streets, it’s better to avoid small wheels, but that being said, don't go too big either. You don't want to end up not feeling the pavement at all. Bigger wheels will also make it more difficult when you try to learn actual tricks. Not too big or too small, 53mm is one of the most popular sizes. If you are a beginner, go with that. Success guaranteed!

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Once the board, wheels, bearings and trucks are selected, put a sheet of griptape on it, mount the parts together and that's it! You'll be ready to go shred with a board you'll love from the first seconds you step on it!