If you’re new to skateboarding there are two things to consider. One, how often you’ll be using your board, second, look at the type of skateboard that interests you. Finally, configuring a quality setup that meets the demands of your budget.
A good skateboard costs $170. However, additional options are available that are half the cost. The cost of decks, trucks, wheels, and bearings depend on brand, and materials they are made from. There are many solid options available, and important factors to consider.
Still completely lost? Scrolling seeking for answers the past hour? Well, glad I wrote this article! I’m revealing everything you need to know about the costs associated with skateboarding and top brands to consider. I’ll also include real life examples, and what your best options are.
Where Can You Buy Quality Skateboard Equipment?
We’re facing a problem…
Skateshops/parks are closing down more frequently as online retail continues to dominated the industry. Nobody can afford to compete nor pay outrageous costs to run such a place. This is rather upsetting as you can probably relate to the frustration it causes.
The Nearest Skate Shop
When I moved to Connecticut, I had trouble finding a local skateshop. The closest one only had very few products and unfortunately never open. Everyone had closed down, and it’s becoming an epidemic it seems. finding yourself in this situation, there’s other options.
There are TONS of online retailers out there today, but don’t jump the gun to quickly. Some businesses offer an array of prices that differ from competitors. This includes sales, what’s in stock, and even shipping costs. There’s Ebay, Amazon, and wholesalers that carry skateboard products dirt cheap. Of course, this can be risky if there’s no reviews to base customer experience on.
Avoid Buying Cheap Skateboards
What do I mean by “cheap?” Products from retailers that don’t specialize in the skateboarding industry sell products made with low quality materials. Common areas are Wal-mart, Target, and even The Home Depot are jumping on the bandwagon. These boards here are more dangerous than you think.
My first one was from Toys R Us Simpsons board. Wheels locked up which had me flying flat on my face. The trucks snapped leading me to roll my ankle pretty bad. They’re hard to control, especially learning tricks. When buying online you must be aware of what’s out there.
For example, reviews are very deceptive by placing higher reviews first. Everything looks good until digging deep only to find how customers received items. Let me tell you, I’ve found upsetting stories of kids Christmas destroyed! Wholesale and auction sites can be risky as you don’t know exactly what you’re getting. Whatever the case may be, just be cautious.
How Much Does A Skateboard Deck Cost?
What defines a good quality skateboard deck generally comes down to brand. However, additional circumstances play a role which I will discuss further details.
Brand Name V.S. Blank Skateboard Decks
Brand name skateboard decks are more expensive around $49.99 and up. As with any name brand product you’re paying more for the pro model, graphic, or special tech.
Blanks are the least expensive option, and the smartest alternative is from a reputable brand. They perform just as well as professional decks with options to choose specific sizes including concave level. Buying Decks In Bulk Decks and completes can be bought in larger quantities which prevents being stranded.
Shop decks are a great way to support local shops (if available). A logo is created, sent out to the woodshop, created, and shipped back to the shop. I would pay around $40 for a deck.
Complete Skateboard Packages
You have the option to go with a complete skateboard package, which includes all the components you need. However, the pre-assembly parts are pretty basic.This option is best suited for beginners, light users, or for basic transportation.
Setups like these are still a viable option, the only major disadvantage is the quality of trucks, wheels, and bearings they provide. Either way, far more superior to any Wal-Mart board! Plus, prices can be found well under $100 and found (here on my recommended resource page)
Recommended Brands And Prices
If this is your first time, or on a budget, the best skateboard deck would be a blank or shop model if available. Otherwise, be open to choose what stands out.
- Prices for name brands vary depending on sale items and new releases. Look at spending between $30-$49.95. Mini-Logo blanks run $33 + grip. (see retailer for shipping details)
- There are lots of companies around today, no one brand is “better” than another as most products are exceptional. You’ll most likely find something on sale as these numbers are just a reference. You’re going to find products you stick to and buy more than one time.
Quality Skateboard Trucks Are Important
Nothing comparable to receiving a new pair of shiny new trucks! There are many brands, sizes, and different ride quality depending on the style of skating. Assure trucks fit the size board you get. During the 12 years, I’ve been through about 8-10 pairs.
Prices are listed from their basic to their higher end products. Prices increase due to color, model, and material.
Choose The Right Size Wheels
To be honest, I didn’t realize how wheel size can change everything. As you progress, you’ll want to try different sizes to get a feel for personalized preference. For beginners, I’d suggest wheels between 52-56mm for your new setup.
Don’t Spend Too Much On Skateboard Bearings
You don’t have to spend top-dollar here. Higher end bearings are geared towards cruisers and longboards. With proper care, they can last years.
You are ready to apply a fresh layer of grip tape and throw on some bolts. If you’re new to this, I highly suggest having it applied for you. Going at it it the first time around is challenging. Bubbles forming, and assuring everything is lined up correctly is frustrating.
If you’re a daredevil, get yourself sandpaper and a sharp razor. Here’s a video if you do it yourself.
Stick to basic (under $5) If you like grip with color or stencil graphics it will cost around ($10-$19) Buying a complete usually comes with added shop grip for no additional cost.
At a shop, ask them to cut a strip to differentiate the nose and tail.
Hardware (Nuts And Bolts)
The right hardware is essential, you don’t want bolts too short or too long. Longer bolts are generally needed if you choose to apply riser pads. I’d recommend colored bolts to tell the difference between nose and tail (trust me, it’s annoying!) Stay safe and get something 1” long from Independent for a little over $2.
Total Cost For Complete Skateboards(Build-Your-Own):
Average skateboard setup costs run a little under $170. As you can see, the deck and trucks bring prices up.
Least expensive setups can cost around $64-$ if choosing to build your own complete.
Just for fun, let me show you how expensive it can really get.
Yes…$316.65 for a skateboard. If you’re a long boarder this would be a normal expense.
Additional Skateboard Accessories
Listed below are extra optional components you’ll be asked to add when buying a skateboard. They’re not necessary. It’s extremely helpful to have extra parts just in case though, life happens.
Riser pads are used to raise the board to prevent wheel bite, and prevent premature pressure cracks. I’ve used them in the past, but best for wheel clearance from the deck. Risers are pretty inexpensive and cost around $2-$5 for set.
These are the rubbery pieces in between your trucks. Sometimes stock bushings aren’t providing you with a quality ride. Most times they’re too stiff or just uncomfortable They come in soft, medium, and hard. I wouldn’t worry too much about switching them until you’ve broken in the original ones first. A new set of good bushings will run around $10.
Skateboard Equipment To Seriously Consider
Skate Tool [RECOMMENDED]
Every skater needs a skate tool. Digging though dads box of tools in the basement isn’t fun, especially when not available! A skate tool will cost your $10 and a lifetime of hassle. The best one to start with is quite affordable and can be found on Amazon here.
Being a skateboarder for so long, there’s one item you need. Grinding curbs with dried out wax, locking up and falling on your face is a real problem. Plundering your sister’s candles only causes issues, and soap from your bathroom is messy! For under ten dollars you can save yourself a face plant. Skate wax prices range from $2-$8.
This was my dream when I was growing up but never had. Rails are offered all over the internet, but be careful as some offer poor quality. A good quality rail will cost over $150+ but last forever. Building a custom rail is optional if you know someone who welds, or use your imagination with extra wood lying around.
A set of decent pads is good in case your park requires them . When you’re first starting out falling is a part of the learning process, that’s going to happen often. Some indoor and outdoor parks have this as a mandatory requirement, especially helmets for liability concerns.
Knee, elbow, and wrist pads would be highly encouraged for beginners. They can be uncomfortable, but it’s not fun tearing a nice chunk of flesh out of your knees. A set can cost between $30 up to $60. Professional grade pads can cost $70 just for knee pads.
Acquiring a helmet is a no-brainer! States like Connecticut enforce laws for anyone under 12 to wear helmets partaking in an activity like skateboarding. Most indoor parks, this as a mandatory requirement requiring a signed waiver.
How To Save On Skateboard Clothing
Falling causes pants to rip, sweating causes shirts to rot away, so it’s good to keep this in mind. Clothing is expensive and ripping a pair of $40 pants the first day isn’t pleasant.
Don’t spend a lot of money on skateboard clothing unless you’re wearing it casually, find it on sale, or wear it once in a while.
Going with something simple like a pack of tee-shirts is cost effective. Pants do make a difference in my opinion. Some prefer tight stretchy pants while other love something baggy. The way they are designed just feels better to skate in.
Goodwill is my go-to store as there’s a large selection. Ordering pants online is risky, true to size may not be correctly advertised, leading to refunds. Skate pants aren’t a bad idea, these are just options to save some money.
Skate shoes are necessary! They are designed for abuse they endure. You don’t need to spend tons of money for an amazing pair as there’s always sales around.
- Average cost for a pair is $60. Clearance deals can be found as low as $35-$40. Sometimes though it seems impossible to find places that are in stock, or have my size.
- Bottom line, every skater needs comfortable, long-lasting shoe that lasts longer than a week! There are many durable skate shoes available.
My top recommendation are the Etnies Marana Michelin. These have been top contenders since release, and have been a personal all-time favorite.
You can find good discounts and colorway selections found on Amazon here.
How Long Do Skateboards Last?
Skateboarding parts can be costly, and there are some instances where unfortunate events happen unexpectedly. In the past, I’ve snapped decks in a matter of minutes after set-up doing a simple ollie down a 6 set.
If you’re doing tricks down stairs or down drops, there’s a greater chance of breaking your board. Manufacturers design decks to prevent this from happening. After spending extra money on them, I’ve only been disappointed after breaking one first try a 6 stair.
Reflecting on how hard you skate, how you land on your board, and overall how you maintain your equipment are all factors to consider. Trucks, bearings, and wheels have lasted me years before buying new ones.
Grinding a lot, especially on rugged curbs or ledges will eat trucks away very quickly. Riding through water causes bearings to rust. Skating rough surfaces or power sliding wears down wheels quickly.
Now you’ve got all the essential cost information for a killer new skateboard complete! Just remember that you’ll want to try different sizes, brands of products. It takes trial and error to find what suits your needs as you progress in skateboarding. This is another thing I love about skateboarding, you create your own style, and inspire others along the way. Don’t worry about what other people think, or how good you are… It’s all about having fun!