Skateboard Uses & Trucks
As you’ve probably already known, skateboards are mostly used to do tricks on. Your regular skateboard will measure somewhere around 33 x 8 inches. That number varies depending on the brands and models you get. The width range is around 5 – 8 inches and the length is 30 and above.
Because of the deck width, the truck width must also be made accordingly so it best fits the board. In simple words, the full truck width is the same as the deck width. You’ll typically find the width measured in mm or inches. This can be confusing at times.
Some measure the truck from the hanger start to end (excluding the axles) whereas others measure it from axle to axle. For example, a 180mm truck is actually a full 10-inch one. But, you won’t find such wide trucks on most skateboards.
On most skateboards, you’ll find:
|Skateboard Truck (inches)||Skateboard Deck (inches)|
|6 – 7.25||6.5 – 7.25|
|7.5||7.25 – 7.5|
|7.75||7.5 – 8|
|8||8 – 8.5|
|8.5||8.5 – 9|
|9||9 – 10|
Compared to longboard trucks, these are usually narrower. This makes sense because skateboards, in general, are narrower than longboards. A truck that is too wide for the skateboard deck will make it super difficult to do tricks on. Plus, it’s riskier.
The traditional kingpin design on most trucks is one that is facing inwards. So, imagine flipping your board belly up. You see the axle connecting the two wheels, right?
Okay, the kingpin is that little piece with some nuts at the middle of your axle. With a traditional design, you’ll find the two pieces facing each other, like this: Io – oI. The “o” represents the kingpins and the “I” is the axle.
The main purpose of placing the kingpins this way is that doing so will protect your skateboards from grinds. Especially when you’re popping up and down curbs or do some grinding tricks. This will make sure your trucks can handle such an impact and will last much longer.
The kingpin direction on longboards is different. We’ll talk about that in a few moments. Keep reading!
The baseplate is that metal piece that connects your truck and your deck. The baseplate angle is the angle from the baseplate to your kingpin. On most skateboards, you’ll find a baseplate angle of 50 degrees. This is a high-angle baseplate.
With a high-angle base plate, you’ll be able to turn easily. Because the baseplate is very responsive. Also, the higher the angle, the more room there is between your deck, wheels, and the ground. You’ll get fewer wheelbites thanks to this design (that is if you have regular not cut-out decks).
This angle is also great for doing tricks. Because you don’t have to apply too much force to get started. Doing a shove it, a 180, or whipping around is so much easier as well.
Longboard Uses & Trucks
Uses for longboard vary. Some people use it for cruising, carving, doing tricks while others use it for dancing or downhill racing.
Your typical longboard size is bigger in width and length compared to that of skateboards. Longboards are usually over 36 inches long and over 9 inches wide. Because of this, longboard trucks are comparatively wider than skateboard trucks.
You’ll usually find:
|Longboard Truck (inches)||Longboard Deck (inches)|
|9||9 – 10|
Some narrower longboards like those made for cruising may sport narrower trucks.
This is pretty much common sense if you think about it. The wider deck needs more support; thus, wider trucks. A narrow skateboard truck may not provide enough support for the overall longboard deck. Thus, it may be dangerous for riders at high speeds.
The main difference between longboard and skateboard trucks is in their kingpin direction. Remember we talked about the skateboard’s kingpins facing towards each other?
On longboards, you’ll find the kingpins facing outwards or away from each other, like this: oI – Io.
Excuse our little representation again! The “o” is the kingpin and the “I” is the axle.
This is called reversed kingpin (RKP). This design works great on longboards because it allows much smoother carving, turning or coasting from left to right, even at high speeds. The stability of the ride will improve thanks to this.
Baseplate angle on longboards is lower than that on skateboards. You’ll find baseplate with angles from 42 to 44 or 48 degrees on most longboards.
The reason for lowering the angle is to improve stability at extreme speeds. This makes sense if you think about race cars and fast sports cars. You see they are generally made very low to the ground, right?
The same principle applies here with longboard trucks. With a lower angle, you won’t get wobbly rides when riding fast. You’ll be able to coast left or right super smoothly. Taking deep downhill turns will also be safer and more enjoyable with this kind of construction.
This angle is not great for 180 tricks. A lower-degree baseplate will be more susceptible to wheelbites as well. This is one of the reasons why it’s not ideal to put longboard trucks on a regular skateboard.
Summary: It’s Still Your Call
As you can see, there are a lot of thoughts and maths involved in designing and assembling the components together. We know we’re not the engineers or anything. We do encourage you to get to know your boards as much as you can.
Of course, you can go ahead and change a few parts here and there if you truly understand what’s best for your boards. Although the trucks are strictly designed with specific purposes in mind, we can say that sometimes you can put longboards wheels on skateboards. But, this does come with several limitations.
We hope this info was somewhat helpful to you. We’re totally fine with riders getting creative and mix and match parts here and there. We love fidgeting with our toys, too! In our opinion, that’s an important part of progression and improvement.
If you find any sections in this post a bit off on the technical side, please let us know! We’re very open to any comments and ideas. Thanks for reading!