Whether you are shopping for skateboard wheels at your skate shop or online, it can get pretty overwhelming.
Well, they come in different sizes and colors, which can confuse you.
But don’t worry, I’m here to help you pick your ideal ones…
And yes, this isn’t another article that talks about the history of wheels – absolutely not!
We will discuss top 17 skateboard wheels for ultimate cruising experience in 2017!
Table of Contents
- 1 How To Choose Skateboard Wheels
- 2 The Best Skateboard Wheels Review
- 2.1 Spitfire Bighead 51mm White W Blue
- 2.2 Pig Wheels Head Blue
- 2.3 Mini-Logo Skateboards C-Cut 53mm 101A
- 2.4 ABEC 11 Freeride Centerset Green
- 2.5 Powell Peralta Rat Bones Re-Issue
- 2.6 Shark Wheel California Roll
- 2.7 Spitfire Classic Series High-Performance
- 2.8 Ricta, Clouds 78a
- 2.9 Everland 65x51mm
- 2.10 Pro Skateboard Wheels (White)
- 2.11 Orangatang Kegel 80 mm Downhill Cruising
- 2.12 Orangatang In Heat 75 mm Downhill Cruising
- 2.13 Spitfire Bighead 52mm
- 2.14 Spitfire Formula 4 101d Classic 53mm White W Red
- 2.15 Santa Cruz Skateboards Slime Balls Neon Green
- 2.16 Ricta Clouds 86a
- 2.17 Spitfire Bighead 53mm White W Green
How To Choose Skateboard Wheels
Well, we all know the modern day skateboard wheels are made out of polyurethane.
However, before you make order, it is essential to understand how to pick your skateboard wheels.
So, here is one of the most comprehensive guides that will take you step-by-step and explain what things to look in for when buying good ones.
The most important thing to consider is the diameter of a skateboard wheel.
It is measured in millimetres (mm).
The usual range in mm you’ll find on the market is 50-75mm.
A wheel which is small in size will give you a slower ride, and more substantial ones will go fast.
Since the diameter is directly proportional (oh my physics knowledge..) to the speed of your board, they also affect how quickly you can accelerate and how sharply the board can turn.
To give you a better idea of how a particular range will affect your performance, here is a quick comparison.
- 50-53mm: These are considered the smallest skateboard wheels. Perfect for beginners and offer the stability for trick riding
- 54-59mm: Medium or average size is perfect both for beginners and intermediate riders
- 60mm+: Made for the professional riders and especially for longboards, these wheels can roll on any terrain and are made for speed and to smoothly run over rough terrains
Depending on your skill level, choose the size wisely. If you are a complete beginner who is just starting, I would recommend the smaller items (50-53mm).
Diameter is the size of the wheel; DUROMETER is the measure of hardness. Like diameter, the higher the number of durometers, the harder your wheel will be.
The usual durometer considered best is 99a. This is measured on Durometer A Scale (a 100-point scale).
However, some manufacturers use a B Scale, measuring 20 points lower and allowing the scale an extra 20 points for harder wheels.
For the sake of an example, consider an 80b durometer wheel. It has the same hardness as a 100a.
These wheels are usually wide and with more accurate hardness range.
So, the question here is, “Do hard wheels ride fast?”
The answer is YES.
Though softer wheels are slower, they offer more grip.
If you love street skating, go for softer ones. They are great to ride on smooth surfaces like skate parks.
Some brands have wheels designed for specific use.
To make it clear to you, here is a quick comparison of the durometer scale and how they will affect your performance while cruising.
- 78a-87a: These are the soft wheels, good for rough surfaces, longboards and street boards. These will offer smooth ride
- 88a-95a: Slightly harder but faster at the same time. They may have a little less grip, but overall, they are perfect for street, rough terrain and hill skating
- 96a-99a: Hard wheels with a good speed and grip. These are perfect for beginners, skate parks, ramps, pools, etc.
- 101a+: These are the hardest and the fastest ones but with the least grip. Made for pro riders only
- 83b-84b: Extremely hard wheel. Even faster and with very minimal grip
Contact Patch is another essential feature of your skateboard wheel as it affects your performance.
It is the area of the wheel which makes contact with the pavement.
Those of you with a longboard wheel, which are large, will also have a large contact patch.
If the contact patch is small, the body weight will be distributed over a small area and vice versa.
A small contact patch will increase the compression of urethane in your wheels and eventually decrease its rolling resistance, slow down the wheel.
However, the shape of the wheel also affects the size of the contact patch.
Rounded ones tend to make less contact with the pavement, whereas square wheels make maximum contact. This will affect its performance overall.
Which Shape To Choose?
To get the best cruising wheels, shape is another important factor. Since we’ve come a long way and have learnt how to customize our wheel based on our riding experience, the only thing left is to pick the shape.
If you are someone who loves cruising, carving and slalom, sharp lip shape is the perfect for you. They offer more grip, especially during hard turns.
Riders who love to perform surf slides and carves or anyone who is learning powerslide, wheels with the round-lip profile will offer you the best finish.
Now you know how to choose the right wheels for your skateboard.
The Best Skateboard Wheels Review
Here are some of the best performing skateboard wheels of 2018 that are going to enhance your performance and give you a great riding experience on your skateboard.
We have spent several days to pull out the best recommendations for you, so you don’t invest in the wrong product.
Spitfire Bighead 51mm White W Blue
The Spitfire Bighead are the wheels you can trust. These are hand poured and made in the USA from the finest quality materials. If you often face defect issues with your skateboard wheels, Spitfire won’t disappoint you.
Not only are they made to last longer, but they also come with a guarantee against all manufacturing defects.
With your purchase, you will get a set of 4 wheels with a pretty treaded surface, 51mm diameter and 99a durometer with a wide profile. This means these are the hard ones with more speed and less grip.
Even though they have a high durometer, still the width ensures better traction and stability at high speed. There is no chance that you slip out of your line.
Their treaded surface improves its grip on smooth surfaces, which in case of hard wheels is pretty tough.
Also, its 99a durometer makes them perfect for pools and parks. If you are a moderately skilled rider, these are the items you need for your skateboard.
- 51mm diameter which is perfect for beginners
- 99a durometer offering better speed and traction
- Wide profile provides more grip
- Comes in beautiful white and royal blue color which looks exotic under the board
- No drawbacks
Pig Wheels Head Blue
Pig Wheels are probably the best skateboard wheels’ money can buy. They are harder with a 100 durometer and is wrapped with ice white polyurethane which gives it a nice look at your board.
They have a big Pig logo and are available in the range of 50mm and as much as 60mm. What’s good is the price tag that makes them stand out from its competitors.
Since they use a grooved surface, it results in better traction, speed and stability. Though other companies do provide products with the grooved surface, the price is high. That is why I would recommend going with Pig wheels.
Also, they have a very wider width as compared to standard ones. Even if you are riding at a very high speed, you’ll get maximum stability and control and won’t slip out of your line.
They are perfect for pool or bowl.
The S-4 shape makes them perfect for cruising. Whether you are a street skater or loves to dip in the pool, these wheels are made for you.
- 101A durometer
- Natural color
- Great speed and traction with stability
- Not good for beginners
Mini-Logo Skateboards C-Cut 53mm 101A
One of the top quality skateboard wheels made to provide you value for your money. They have a super-high rebound formula which provides it better traction and speed. The high-rebound and long-lasting urethane give it a better performance.
These are C-Cut wheels at a very reasonable price and are perfect for technical street skating. The skinnier profile and a hard durometer scale clearly gives a sign that they are made for the pro riders.
It is important to know that they come with a narrow profile, thus offering minimal traction and made for only advanced riding. However, the treaded surfaces ensure better grip on smooth surfaces.
The combination of its high-performance urethane with simple graphic makes Mini Logo products the best on the market.
- High-quality with high-rebound and long-lasting urethane
- A-Cup shape for all terrains and C-Cut shape for advanced technical skating
- Comes with a lifetime warranty against all manufacturing defects
- Made for pro players who have experience skating on thin profiled
- Very narrow, not for beginner or intermediate riders
ABEC 11 Freeride Centerset Green
The spot on wheels made to offer ultra-fast free riding experience. They come with a wider profile and a 39mm contact patch with a symmetrical shape and feature better wear characteristics for a longer life-span.
The lip profile is pretty round and steeper walled at the same time. This gives your wheel ware evenly all the way down to the core.
If you want to flip them around and ware down, it is pretty easy. Also, this way wheels will offer the same performance because of the center set bearing hub.
These items have set the standard for ALL free riding wheels. Perfect for an all-around longboard, cruising, carving, slashing and sliding.
Overall, these wheels offer a smooth ride with better grip and stability.
- Fast, smooth and drifty
- Wider contact patch for controlled drifts
- Longer lifespan
- Made to ride on all type of terrains
Powell Peralta Rat Bones Re-Issue
Powell Peralta are known for their quality built, stability and traction. Their products are perfect for cruising, skate parks and shenanigans. Since they are pretty soft, they are perfect to take part in tomfoolery.
This one uses natural formula and features a wide profile for better stability and balance. The regular wheels of Powel Peralta come with a 90a durometer except for black which has an 85a.
Also, they are smooth, which means there is less surface friction and this makes them easier to slide. The treaded surface has more surface friction, and thus they don’t slide easily.
- 60mm size which is perfect for the pro players
- 90a hardness, making it fast
- 44mm width for better stability at fast speeds
- Perfect for parks, streets, pool, etc
- No drawbacks
Shark Wheel California Roll
Say hello to the reinvention of the wheel. These are an advanced modification of the classic longboard. The usual wheels we use to see are round in shape, but these are squared shape but smartly engineered. Shark Wheels also appeared on Shark Tank, and from there they got the boost.
While you may feel that theys can be bumpy or not smooth to ride, they are actually smoother than the conventional items and three times faster.
Moreover, these squared wheels offer more grip, sliding control, greater traction and are perfect rain and gravel ones.
So, if you are curious to test out this reinvention of wheels, go ahead and try it today. You won’t regret buying these.
- 60mm diameter which makes them perfect for pro players
- 78a durometer
- Three times faster and stable
- Great for rough terrains and wet conditions
- Slightly expensive
Spitfire Classic Series High-Performance
This classic set of 4 wheels from Spitfire come in 10 different colors to choose from. It features a 51mm diameter and 101a durometer making it extra fast and hard at the same time.
Even though these wheels may not be well suited for a particular scenario like a narrow or wide wheel, they are perfect for most of the situations. It has more of a classical shape and is exclusively made for the beginner riders.
Since their surface is smooth, there is less friction as compared to the treaded wheels. Hence they are easier to slide. Just in case you love to do some crazy stuns with your skateboard, these products are for you.
What makes them stand out from its competitors is the Formula Four Urethane. It offers a unique abrasion resistant to fewer flat spots. Not only that, but you also get more grip, lasting speed and a smooth anti-slick slide which gives you the best skateboarding experience ever.
Finally, its classic shape is something worth mentioning. Not only do they offer more speed, but you’ll also get maximum control during those sharp turns and downhill rides.
- Durometer range 99a-101a
- Hand poured with a classic shape
- 100% made in the USA form the finest quality materials
- Guarantee against any manufacturing defects
- While it slides pretty good, if you love the powerslide, you’ll be disappointed
Ricta, Clouds 78a
Ricta offers super bouncy and fast wheels which roll smoothly over the roughest terrains. The modern shapes make them light in weight and not much bulky. If you love cruising around the town, need a maximum grip on the sharp turns and perform some crazy skateboard stunts, these items are perfect for you.
Its standard shape makes it perfect for all terrains and also makes them suitable for the beginner riders.
They also feature a shiny coating on the surface, also known as skin or mould release, which helps to add more grip and traction while you ride.
The wheels come in the following colors and durometer range:
- Black or Red Duotone: 86A
- White or Red: 86A
- Black or Blue Duotone: 78A
- Crystal Blue: 78A
- Crystal Clear: 78A
- Crystal Red: 78A
- White or Blue: 78A
The diameter ranges from 52mm to 60mm. Choose wisely as per your skills.
- Comes in multiple colors
- Diameter and durometer range available for different riders
- Affordable price
- Guarantee against any manufacturing defects
- Slightly expensive
These are a unique kind of wheels that appear attractive in the very first sight. The sleek design comes in multiple colors and has a 51mm diameter. They are strong enough to handle flips and cornering.
If you are a frequent street skater, then you must have the Everland’s products. This set of 4-wheels are made of high-quality polyurethane material which ensures a good grip, excellent shock absorption and increases the lifespan of the wheels.
Overall, these items are promising and would give you a good riding experience.
- Comes in set of 4 cruiser wheels
- Durable and long lasting
- Available in more than 12 colors
- Perfect for beginners and intermediate
- They have a very weird chemical like smell
Pro Skateboard Wheels (White)
The Pro Skateboard Wheels comes in a pure shining White color and have a glamour of their own. They come in a set of 4 and are available in the diameter 53mm and 54mm only. In short, they are perfect for the beginner riders.
When it comes to performance on the road, the Pro Skateboard products are of no exception. Extremely durable and they feel like pro. What’s best about these products is their low price tag. In less than $20, you get some of the best items for your skateboard.
Since they are made for beginner riders, don’t expect power slide, though they can handle the power slides, this would result in a quick wear or chip.
- Exotic white color
- Perfect for beginners
- 101a durometer, which makes them fast and grippier
- Not made for some crazy stunts and tricks
Orangatang Kegel 80 mm Downhill Cruising
With a pretty large core, Orangatang Kegel are known for their large diameter race wheels. A massive 88mm tall and 56mm wide, this item has the power to roll over any terrain and offer you the best grip.
They use urethane which prevents you from slipping out of the lane.
Since it has a massive diameter, you get extra speed, the balance of traction and slide response. Its cantilevered outer lip hugs the road tightly and you ain’t losing your balance. Also, the shorter inner lip has a subtle inward bevel, making them perfect for race traction and some cool drifts.
Its deep valley-shaped cross section is worth mentioning here as it reduces weight while providing better acceleration, momentum and crisp slides.
They have been tested and proven over the years for their durability and performance. You’ll get the best grip and traction with this set of four under your skateboard.
- Best downhill longboard
- Offer maximum speed and grip
- Can roll over anything
- Maximum traction
- Happy urethane with large supportive core
- They chip easily if used too much on rough terrains
Orangatang In Heat 75 mm Downhill Cruising
The 75mm model of Orangatang has a pretty hard profile with sharp edges made of grip and thick lips that help maintain the speed. You’ll also find rippled inner walls that act as progressive energy return on those sharp turns or when pumping.
They have been designed to maintain grip and have a very smooth feel on nearly all types of terrains.
They don’t slide right of the box because of the firm grip and sharp edges. You have to ride them a bit to make them easily slide.
If you want more sliding wheels, I would recommend trying the Freeride. These Orangatang wheels are made for speedboarding in high speed and rough road courses because of their size and width of the contact patch.
Overall, they offer outstanding performance, durability, traction and grip with the road. If you love to ride your skateboard at high speed, these items are perfect for you.
- Versatile longboard
- Fast and well-balanced, so you don’t slip out of lane
- Maximum traction and made with happy urethane
- Strong and supportive core that maintains your balance
- No drawbacks
Spitfire Bighead 52mm
Expect no less than an outstanding performance from these 52mm Spitfire Bighead that come in seven beautiful colors and designs.
They are made in the USA and come with a guarantee against any manufacturing defects.
The surface is made traded with a wide wheel profile and 99a durometer, so you get maximum speed, traction and grip while on the road.
This durometer is actually perfect for pools, parks, streets and streets and ideally perfect for the moderately skilled riders.
- Advanced urethane made
- Durable, fast and hugs on the ground so you don’t slip out your lane
- Guarantee against all manufacturing defects
- Perfect for beginners and moderately skilled riders
- Not good for pro players who need extra traction
Spitfire Formula 4 101d Classic 53mm White W Red
Another classic design from Spitfire with a range of cool colors and design options to choose from.
They have a classic shape and are perfect to use in most of the situations. The surface is made smooth, so there is less surface friction as compared to treaded ones.
The key feature here is the Formula Four Urethane, offering an unmatched abrasion resistance, so there are fewer flat spots and more grip as you speed up.
Overall, they have a slim riding surface, made for speed and maximum control and worth your money.
- Formula Four Urethane for better grip and more speed
- Classic shape
- Smooth surface
- No drawbacks
Santa Cruz Skateboards Slime Balls Neon Green
Santa Cruz may be the expensive items, but they are worth investing. They use an original mold, urethane formula, warpaint graphics, logo and trademark and a unique formula that enhances the performance.
Santa Cruz guarantees that their products don’t also chip any coning, no bearing seat stretch, no softening and no speed loss at all.
The durometer is 97a, which may seem a little less but don’t let the numbers fool you. These wheels have an amazing speed, traction and grip when rolling over any terrain.
The surface is made smooth, making it easier to slide so you can perform your crazy skateboard stunts.
- Guarantee for no chip, wear and coning
- Bright NEON Green color that glows in the dark
- Great speed, traction and grip
- Hard with a smooth surface for easy sliding
- Slightly expensive
Ricta Clouds 86a
The Ricta Skateboard aren’t your normal skateboard gear. These are super bouncy and extremely fast, making it possible for you to ride smoothly on the roughest surfaces.
With a modern shape, these wheels are slim and lightweight and perfect for filming and cruising around the city.
Their smooth surface with a shiny coating is made for grip and traction, so you get the most from your skateboard riding.
The only thing you’ll regret is that you didn’t buy them when you had the chance.
- Extremely smooth for better grip and traction
- Super bouncy and very fast
- Modern shape with a smooth surface and shiny coating
Spitfire Bighead 53mm White W Green
Last but not the least are the Spitfire Bighead (Set of 4) with a 53mm diameter and 99a durometer for hardness, speed, traction and grip with the road.
These are made to give you the best skateboarding experience of your life.
The extra width not only makes sliding easy, but it also maintains your balance on the sharp turns.
A high-grade urethane is used in the manufacturing of these ones for a super smooth ride on the streets and to prevent all kind of wear and tear for its longevity.
- 53mm diameter
- 99a durometer
- Extra speed, traction and grip
- Guarantee against all manufacturing defects
- Shipping takes too long
How to Install Skateboard Wheels
So, I’m pretty sure my recommendations have helped you in finding the best skateboard wheels.
How about learning to install them on your skateboard?
Well, follow the instructions below.
Firstly, we’ll start by removing the old ones. The whole procedure has to be done with extreme care since you don’t want to damage any of the parts supporting the wheels. Otherwise, it would ruin the skateboard or cost you extra bucks for repair.
Here is a video that I recommend. The guy (KIRA) in the video explains how you can install new wheels on your skateboard easily.
Do watch it guys; it’s only 5-minutes but worth your time.
So, as I always end up my discussion saying that I’ve played my role to recommend you the best skateboard wheels available on the market.
We’ve honestly spent hours in the research so our readers can get hands on the best ones out there and don’t invest in any bogus product.
It is your turn to pick one from the list.
If you have any questions, feel free to ask them in the comment section. I’ll be more than happy to help you out.