Wheels are probably the most crucial part of a skateboard responsible for moving it forward. As a result, they can heavily influence how fast a skateboard can run and how you feel while riding it. A Perfect Skateboard wheels come in many sizes and durability levels.
You can choose them based on your style and comfort. But you have to know how to measure it.
In this article, I will show you how to measure skateboard wheels. Let’s see how to measure skateboard wheels using various tools.
Tools Necessary for Measuring Skateboard Wheels
A skateboard consists of four wheels and eight bearings. These wheels are generally measured in millimeters. There are two options of tools that you can use for it. They are:
You can use an ordinary ruler to measure skateboard wheels by hand using millimeter measurement. We will see how to measure them with a ruler later in this article.
Caliper is another tool to measure your skateboard wheels. It has two jaws or legs that move and measure the diameter and thickness of skateboard wheels. On top of that, you can use a caliper to measure the distance between any two objects and other stuff.
For those unfamiliar with a caliper, you must know a bit about this measurement tool, which you might have to use to measure your skateboard wheels. There are two essential parts or components of a caliper. They are:
2.1 Two Jaws
As I mentioned earlier, a caliper has two large moveable jaws. They can measure the size of an object based on its distance from one side to another.
2.2 A Millimeter Scale
Another most essential part of a caliper is its ruler or scale. Like any other ordinary ruler, it will give you the reading of an object’s size. This scale shows measurements in both millimeters and inches.
How to Use Ruler to Measure Skateboard Wheels
A ruler is the most common tool for measuring skateboard wheels. It is widely available, and you can measure your skateboard wheel with some easy steps.
Here. I will show you a step-by-step process of measuring skateboard wheels using a ruler. Let’s begin:
Step- 1: Prepare Your Skateboard and Ruler: Obviously, the process begins with you taking out your skateboard and ruler for measuring the wheels.
Step- 2: Identifying the Center: The next step is identifying the center of your skateboard wheels. You will measure the size from that point.
Step-3: Place Your Ruler: Now it is time to place your ruler on the wheels. You have to make sure that you place your ruler’s starting point at the center of the wheels that you have identified earlier.
Step- 4: Take Measurement: Finally, your ruler is in place, and you can determine the size of the wheels. You can note it down on a piece of paper if necessary.
How to Use Caliper to Measure Skateboard Wheel
Caliper is another tool you can use to measure your skateboard wheels. While measuring with a caliper is not as simple as measuring with a ruler, you must know the process very well to measure the wheels effectively.
Here is a step-by-step guide to measuring skateboard wheels using a caliper:
Step- 1: Prepare Your Tools: The first step involves preparing your caliper and skateboard. Clean your skateboard if necessary.
Step- 2: Remove the Wheels: You have to remove all the wheels from your skateboard to measure their diameter and length with a caliper.
Step- 3: Place the Wheels in Between the Jaws: You have to take your caliper and spread their big jaws apart. Then you have to place one wheel in between them.
Step- 4: Measure the Diameter: It is time to measure the width of your wheel. You just have to measure one dimension of the wheel because the diameter is the same on all sides.
Step- 5: Measure the Length: After measuring the width, you can simultaneously measure the lengths of your wheel. You have to compare the distance between two markers on the caliper scale.
How to Measure Wheelbase With Inch Tape
A skateboard wheelbase is a distance from each inner bolt hole. You can easily measure the wheelbase with an inch tape. But you have to know the process like the palm of your hand. Otherwise, you might measure it wrong.
Here is a step-by-step process of measuring the wheel board using an inch tape:
Step- 1: Remove Wheels: If you are going to measure a currently used skateboard, you will have to remove the wheels. Make sure you have your inch ready.
Step- 2: Place on the Wheelbase: Take the inch measurement side of the tape and place it on the center of one side’s inner bolt and end at the center of the other side’s inner bolt. Make sure the tape is tight while measuring.
Step- 3: Determine the Measurement: Now that the inch tape is nicely placed on the wheelbase, you can determine its length. Measure the distance in inches and note down the reading.
Common Sizes Of Wheels
Skateboards come in various sizes, providing different styles and comforts. The wheel size also determines how fast and easy you can ride your skateboard on various surfaces and terrains.
The size of skateboard wheels generally ranges between 48 mm and 60 mm. Let’s take a look at them:
48mm – 51mm
These are the smallest selection for skateboard wheels. While smaller wheels below 50 mm were popular in the ‘90s, the most recent ones started from 50 mm.
There are some pros and cons of small wheel size. They are very prone to entrapping in pebbles and cracks. But because the wheels are small, there is more space between the wheels and the board.
This medium-sized skateboard wheel is excellent for regular streets and transition skateboarding. Many skateboarders prefer and suggest starting with this size as they offer various durometers and styles.
Large wheels are specially designed to provide more stability and steadiness to riders. Another benefit of this large-size wheel is that you can generate more speed than other wheel sizes.
Besides, they do not trap in cracks, pebbles, and other faulty surfaces. All the reasons are why it’s widely popular with vert and ramp skateboarders.
How to Measure Durometers of Skateboard Wheels
A durometer is the measures the hardness of skateboard wheels. The higher the ratings, the harder the wheels. It measures the hardness of your rubber wheels. Here’s how you can determine the hardness of a skateboard’s wheels:
Stet- 1: Prepare the Scales: Firstly, you will find two scales to measure the Durometer for skateboard wheels. While most manufacturers use Durometer A scale, some others use the Durometer B scale.
Step- 2: Scale A: 100 is the highest rating on the Durometer A scale, representing the hardest wheels. As you can see, the highest the rating, the hardest the wheels. The average wheel rating is 99A on Scale A.
Step- 3: Scale B: The highest rating on Durometer B Scale is 80. Here, wheels with an 80B score are equivalent to 100A Durometer.
The Durometer is an essential indication of the wheel quality. But it would help if you remembered that hard wheels are fast, but soft wheels have more grip on the surface.
As far as the Durometer is concerned, soft wheels have more grip on the surface and slide less while riding. But hard wheels are faster, and they tend to slide more.
You can ride soft-wheel skateboards on the streets. In contrast, hard wheels are better for smooth surfaces as they have less grip and slide more.
There are many A scale and B scale wheels available for different users. Here are some of the common durometers:
It represents soft wheels designed for rough surfaces like streets. Besides, you can use them for longboarding, cruising, and filming boards. You can ride smoothly on rough surfaces with these wheels.
These are a bit harder and faster than previous wheels. You will get enough grip to ride on streets and other rough surfaces.
These wheels are the hardest and fastest with less grip. While 96A wheels are an excellent choice for beginners, any wheel with 100A+ is for pro riders and can be ridden on parks and verts.
B scale wheels are very hard. It is 20 points fewer than the A scale, allowing it to add these points for the hardest of wheels.
What Size Should You Choose For
Different sizes are designed for various use. Such as:
Different Tricks: Wheels with an 80A rating and 55mm-54mm are better for different tricks as they are large in size and soft with better grip.
Sliding: Wheels with a 78A-87A durometer rating are best for sliding.
Cruising: Wheels with 78A durometers are better for cruising.
Ramps: Wheels having a 96A durometer rating is best for ramps. These are tough wheels with excellent breaking capability.
Choosing the right wheel is the most crucial part for a rider. Wheels can heavily influence your skateboarding experience. So, you cannot fail in choosing the best wheel accordingly. I hope my article helps you find the best wheels for your skateboard.
Remember, you might have to use different types and sizes of wheels for different purposes. So, select the wheels based on their use.
Hi, this is Jerry, a skateboarder, who loves to talk about micro-mobility and future of that industry. Coming from motion engineering background, I am very enthusiast about speed, motion, balance and technology. I have taken a mission to carry the fuel free, environment friendly micro-mobile industry forward by educating people about micro-mobile products especially skateboards and longboards. I love skating around very much and encourage people to do so. Its a fun believe me.