Last Updated on July 29, 2021
If you are a longboarding beginner, then the world of longboards is probably very new to you. Trucks are very important when it comes to any type of skating, be it longboarding or skateboarding. Trucks lock the wheels in place and allow you to twist and turn your board as you wish.
To choose longboard trucks, start with the width of the trucks. It is recommended that the width of your trucks should match or, if not, be as close as possible to the width of your longboard deck. Choosing the best longboard trucks also depends on the type of ride you want from your longboard.
Truth be told, the world of longboarding trucks can be pretty confusing. In today’s article, we will be telling you how to choose longboard trucks and answer all the other questions you may have regarding trucks.
So, without further ado, let’s get started!
Parts Of A Longboard Truck
Before we jump into the qualities you need to look for in your longboard trucks, it’s essential to know about a truck’s parts and what they do. Essential parts of a longboard truck are:
A kingpin is a bolt that secures the bushings and washers to the hanger. It is the largest bolt of the truck.
The baseplate is the bottom plate that keeps truck assembly in place. Baseplates can come from many different angles.
Axles come in two different sizes, 8mm or 10mm. It is the equipment that keeps the wheels and the bearings together.
The pivot cup is round bushing containing the hanger. The hanger rotates inside it.
It is an essential part of a truck as this is the equipment that helps the trucks to turn around.
Each truck has two bushings on each side of the hanger; top and bottom. Bushings are urethane grommets that work as a brake when the truck turns around.
If you look at the baseplate, you will be able to find small holes. These are called mounting holes. Mounting holes are placed to set the baseplate onto the deck. There are various patterns of mounting holes.
Types Of Longboard Trucks
Since we are aware of all the parts that make a longboard truck, it is now time to learn about the different types of longboard trucks. There’s a wide variety of trucks available in the market, and each allows you to explore different riding experiences.
This is why understanding your options before you decide to settle for one is important. Some of the most popular types of longboard trucks are:
Traditional Kingpin Trucks
Traditional kingpin trucks, also known as standard kingpin trucks, are probably the most used and the most common longboard trucks. These can be seen in the streets used by both beginners and experts. The reason behind their popularity is probably due to the versatility it offers.
In a traditional kingpin truck, the kingpin faces the inner side of the board. This allows the rider to ride as they want and practice all the tricks they want.
Reverse Kingpin Trucks
These trucks are used for downhill riding because these trucks allow you to be in more control when you are going at a very fast pace. These are popular with longboarders who do downhill racing, freestyle carving, and turning around, which require them to be more in control.
In a reverse kingpin truck, the kingpin faces the outside of the board towards kicktails, and the kingpins are placed away from each other.
This is the reason reverse kingpin trucks stay steady and stable while going at high speed or going downhill. And when you are going at a slower pace, reverse kingpin trucks allow the board to be more responsive.
How To Choose Longboard Trucks?
Now that we are aware of almost everything one needs to know about longboard trucks, let’s learn about the qualities you should look for in your ideal trucks. Here is how to choose longboard trucks:
Size And Width Of Your Trucks
The size and width of your trucks are the most important thing when it comes to choosing the right trucks for your longboard. It is recommended that the width of your trucks match the width of your longboard.
If it doesn’t match exactly, the measurements should be as close as possible. The width difference between your trucks and deck should not exceed ¼ inch.
A wider truck offers you more stability, while a narrow truck allows you to be more in control. If you want more carve potential and control to make turns as you wish, a narrow truck will allow you to do so.
On the other hand, wider trucks are better if you are just starting and need to learn to be in control of basic cruising.
180mm trucks are an ideal choice for cruising around and freeriding. And 150 mm is used by most longboarders for carving and freestyling.
Type Of Your Trucks
The type of your trucks depends on the kind of riding style you wish to experience. As I have mentioned before, the most used trucks by longboarders are traditional kingpin trucks, reverse kingpin trucks, and duel pivot trucks.
If you own a comparatively small longboard and want trucks for cruising around in the streets or park skateboarding, opt for traditional kingpin trucks. Skateboarders in skating parks usually use these because of the smaller height and size.
Traditional kingpin trucks are also narrower compared to reverse kingpin trucks.
If your longboard is not small in size, and you need trucks that will give you better control along with sharp carve control, then opt for reverse kingpin trucks.
Reverse kingpin trucks are wider than traditional or standard kingpin trucks and also mounted higher. However, since they are mounted higher, they also have a smaller wheelbase. This extra height might make you feel uncomfortable as well.
If your longboard deck’s wheelbase is 20 inches or more, opting for more reverse kingpin trucks will be suitable for you. It will give you a better and steadier riding experience.
So, in short, traditional kingpin trucks are narrow, and reverse kingpin trucks are wider. And don’t forget to check the height of the trucks as well.
As we have mentioned before, the baseplate is the plate at the bottom that keeps the entire truck assembly locked and in place. Baseplates come from various angles. This angle is important because this is the deciding factor of how the hanger sits and turns around. So, the baseplate angle also affects the carving potential of your longboard.
High-degree longboard trucks offer baseplates with a higher angle. Reverse kingpin trucks offer 50-degree baseplates. Due to this, the trucks are mounted higher and allow the rider better control.
This is also the reason riders can pull off dives easily. The smallest amount of pressure on the longboard deck’s tip provides the rider the control and access to turn the board around. This is why 50-degree baseplates are recommended if you are into carving, freestyling, etc.
Usually, 42-degree baseplates are called low-degree baseplates. These are used in the situation where the rider is seeking more stability and steadiness. These are usually used for downhill riding due to their steady nature.
When you ride downhill, your longboard is very fast-paced and needs a baseplate that is steady and will keep you running.
Since it is lower in angle, putting the same amount of pressure you put on the 50-degree baseplate will make it carve less.
Things To Remember While Choosing Trucks
Here are some tips from experts that will allow you to choose the best trucks for your longboard.
- The height of the trucks always matter. The higher the height, the lower the stability. This means, if the trucks are smaller, it is easier to control and less risky. However, if you are looking for something that will allow you more carve potential, you should opt for taller trucks.
- Longboard trucks and skateboard trucks are entirely different. Do not interchange or use skateboard trucks for longboarding. This can cause severe accidents.
- There are no “ideal” trucks. Longboarding is a very fun and adventurous sport that allows you to experiment freely. It does not matter if someone prefers reverse kingpin trucks because of their height as the extra height might make you feel uncomfortable. It is recommended that you start slow and move upwards.
As I have been saying since the beginning, longboard trucks are very important. Without the right kind, your longboarding experience may not be as smooth as you expected.
Hopefully, with the guide we have provided you with, you will be able to find exactly what you need. It is still essential to research the trucks you are going to buy. After all, it is a matter of your safety.
Still, if you have any more questions, don’t hesitate to ask in the comment section. We’ll get to you as soon as we can!