Do you just skate for recreational purposes like showing technical movements or you want a skateboard for moving somewhere with a better balance? Well, you need to choose the right size of wheels for your skateboard to fulfill your need. The size of skateboard wheels measures from 48 mm to 60 mm and sometimes above this.
Skateboard wheel size chart
The diameter of skateboard wheels also depends on the size of the skateboard deck. The larger the deck becomes the larger wheels it demands. So before choosing any size of wheels, you must first check out the size of the deck.
Purpose of use
7.4 – 7.75 inches
48 – 51 mm
Performing tricks on streets
7.75 – 8.125 inches
52 – 55 mm
Provides a perfect mixture of speed and acceleration
8.125 – 8.375 inches
56 – 59 mm
Provides enhanced stability in transition skating
8.375 – 8.75 inches
60 – 65 mm
Made for especially transition skating
8.75 – 9.125 inches
65 – 70 mm
Great for cruising
9.125 – 9.75 inches
Used mainly for cruising and downhill longboarding
The size of skateboard wheels is mainly measured by the diameter of the wheels. As I already mentioned, the diameter of skateboard wheels measures from 48 mm to 60 mm typically. However, wheels measuring up to 70 mm in diameter are also available there.
Different sizes of skateboard wheels
48 – 51 mm
Wheels in this category are the smallest ones in diameter. Due to their small size, they are lightweight that also makes them highly responsive. The wheels are made for skating on flat grounds as they are not suitable for rough surfaces at all.
You can do technical street skating movements with these wheels set underneath the skateboard. You can perform tricks like heelflips, kickflips, varials, and so on. They most often are not usable on busy roads. Although the smaller diameter gives more space between the wheels, they still get stuck into cracks or other obstacles. These wheels are now not as popular as they were in the 1990s.
52 – 55 mm
If you want skateboard wheels for skate transition and street, wheels in this size category are going to be a perfect choice. Most manufacturer companies make skateboard wheels that fall in this category. 54 mm wheel seems to provide the skaters a perfect mixture and speed and acceleration.
The younger ones can learn the basics of skateboarding through these wheels. With these wheels, you can slowly come down from the high area and also accelerate the speed by pushing the board forward. As these wheels are not so heavier, you can perform a few flip tricks or other tricks on them.
56 – 59 mm
These are more than average wheel size and these are mostly used by the bigger skaters. Coming out of lightweight, trick-performing wheels, these wheels are comparatively heavier and provide better stability on the ground. These wheels are much better for transition skating.
You can use wheels in this category for bowl skating. You don’t need to run your skateboard on a flat surface with these wheels, because they won’t get stuck on the roads due to cracks or other obstacles. The wheels are made to produce more power and speed than the smaller ones of course.
60 – 65 mm
If you are fond of cruising, then you must select wheels from this category. Smaller wheels are never going to be a good companion of the skateboard for cruising. Because of the heavier weight, these wheels increase the center of gravity.
These wheels are never a good choice for performing tricks like smaller wheels. However, the speedy nature of these wheels makes them suitable to produce speed for rough surfaces as well.
65 – 70 mm
These are the largest wheels on the list. They are basically not used for tricks movement or smooth flat surface. They are used for cruising, downhill longboarding, and on rough surfaces. These wheels are very soft, which makes them perfect for producing fast speeds.
The contact patch of skateboard wheels
The contact patch is that area of the wheels, which are contact the pavement directly and lets your skateboard move on. There are two types of contact patches, narrower and wider.
Narrow contact patch
Narrow contact patch is used in small wheels, which are situated in small-sized decks. This distributes the bodyweight into a small area. Consequently, it puts pressure on the wheels of skateboards. This pressure slows the wheels down and makes it perfect for performing tricks on the streets.
Wide contact patch
Unlike the narrow contact patch, a wide contact patch distributes the bodyweight into a larger area. It puts minimal pressure on the wheels. The wider the contact patch, the more it will make contact with the surface. It also provides a better balance with more traction.
What shapes of wheels are there
There are a few shapes of wheels available and all of these wheels have their intended uses.
This type of wheel is going to provide you a smoother ride instead of letting you performing tricks on the streets. It comes with a narrow contact patch, which makes it difficult to control a bit.
This type of wheel is a perfect choice for performing tricks on the streets as they are a bit wider and also use a wider contact patch.
It is the opposite type of wheel from the conically shaped wheel. These wheels have a greater contact area that helps the skater to have a smoother ride.
Narrow outline wheels
This type of wheel is also a great option for doing technical movements on the streets. It has a smaller lip radius, which offers a smaller contact area with the pavement. Ultimately, it becomes easier to perform tricks.
You will find more grip during a hard and tough situation. This makes sharp lip-shaped wheels a nice choice for cruising.
Knowing about the durometer of skateboard wheels
How fast your wheel will move depends on the softness and hardness of the wheels largely. And the softness or hardness of the wheel is defined by the durometer. The harder the wheels, the more speed it will produce with less traction. On the contrary, softer wheels are slower with excellent grip.
The hardness of the wheel is measured with an A-scale durometer. However, some manufacturers do the same thing with B-scale durometer. The B scale provides 20 points low measurement.
- 78a – 87a: These are the softest wheels, which are excellent for rough roads providing a smoother ride.
- 88a – 95a: They tend to be on the harder side producing a little traction on the ground, but a faster ride.
- 96a – 99a: Beginners will find these wheels perfect as they come with a good bit of hardness and provides a faster ride.
- 101a+: These are the hardest and fastest wheels you will get and these are suitable for pro skaters only.
- 83b – 84b: Wheels in this category produces extremely high speed with minimum traction.
How to measure skateboard wheels
The main factor to measure skateboard wheels is to select the right diameter. However, before doing this you need to decide for what purpose you are going to skate. Then choose the shape and type of wheels perfect to your need. Then decide the hardness of the wheel by the durometer. And lastly choose the right diameter, which is also compatible with the size of the skateboard’s deck.
Choosing the right size of skateboard wheels will enhance your performance. But you also need to check out the related measurement or requirements before choosing the diameter or size of the wheel.