Complete Wheel guide

Complete Wheel guide

Skateboard wheels are the part of your skateboard that allow you to move, and help determine how fast you can go. Typically made of polyurethane, skateboard wheels come in a range of sizes, colors, and durability levels to suit your skateboard style and preference.

Skateboard wheels are measured by both diameter and durometer. Diameter is the size of the wheel, and durometer is the hardness of the wheel. Both of these factors are a matter of personal preference, and what you intend to do on your skateboard. Custom building allows you to choose what the best wheels are to match your deck, trucks, and hardware.


Skateboard wheel diameter is measured in millimeters (mm); most wheels range from 50-75 mm, and the lower the number, the smaller the wheel.

Wheel diameter also affects how quickly you accelerate and how tightly you can turn. Smaller wheels result in a slower ride, whereas larger wheels result in a faster one. Because they’re lower to the ground and typically easier to control, smaller wheels are ideal for technical or street skating. If you’re a beginner or someone who uses a skateboard as daily transportation, you’ll want to look into larger wheels instead. Their increased diameters offer speed and balance all in one, making them perfect for low-key cruising or vert skating.


Durometer measures the skateboard wheel's hardness, which can in turn specify if that particular wheel is better suited for skateboards or longboards. Most manufacturers use the Durometer A Scale, which is a 100-point scale that quantifies how hard a wheel is. The higher the number, the harder the wheel, although the average wheel durometer is 99a.

There are some manufacturers that may instead use the B Scale, which measures 20 points fewer than the A Scale, and therefore allows for an extra 20 points for the hardest wheels. For example, an 80b durometer is the same hardness as a 100a durometer. These skateboard wheels have a wider and more accurate hardness range.

Softer wheels are better suited to street skating; rolling over cracks and stones are much easier with a softer wheel. Harder wheels are better for smooth surfaces, such as skate parks and slide much better on rougher surfaces.

Here are some general guidelines for wheel durometer as it concerns your skating preferences and skill level.


78a-87a Soft wheel good for rough surfaces, longboards, or street boards that need lots of grip to easily roll over cracks and pebbles. Designed for smooth rides, cruising, longboards, hills, and rough surfaces.
88a-95a Slightly harder and faster with a little less grip, but the grip's still good. Good for street and rough surfaces.
96a-99a Nice speed and grip-- an all-around good wheel. Great for beginners skating street, skate parks, ramps, pools, and other smooth surfaces.
101a + Hardest wheel with the least grip. Slippery on slick and rough surfaces. These are pro wheels. Great for long power slides.
83b-84b Wheels using the B scale are extremely hard, measuring 20 points fewer than the A Scale in order to allow the scale to extend another 20 points for the hardest wheels. Usually used by park/bowl riders.


These are the basics of Wheels and this outline will hopefully help you pick the right wheel for your ride. At the end of the day wheels are personal preference and this should only be used as a basic outline of how each wheel works. Its up to you how you skate and which wheels work best for your style of skating. If you have more questions on wheels feel free to drop into the store or give us a call or email!

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