Building Your Own Skateboard: Crafting the Perfect Ride

Davis Torgerson

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Skateboarding is more than just a sport; it’s a culture, a form of self-expression, and a thrilling way to navigate the world. The wind rushing through your hair as you glide across the pavement, mastering tricks, and embracing the unique rhythm of the board underfoot – these experiences create an unmatched sense of joy.

Imagine elevating this exhilaration by crafting your very own skateboard, a personalized extension of your style and spirit. In this comprehensive guide, we embark on a journey to demystify the art of building a skateboard from the ground up.

From understanding components to selecting the right setup, we’ll answer your burning questions and empower you to create the perfect ride that speaks volumes about you and your passion for skateboarding.

Understanding Skateboard Components

Once you have decided on your skateboard type, you need to get the following parts:


This is the wooden board that you stand on. It comes in various shapes, sizes, and graphics. You can buy a pre-made deck or cut your own from a blank sheet of plywood.


These are the metal pieces that attach the wheels to the deck. They also allow you to turn and steer your board. You need two trucks for one skateboard. They come in different widths and heights, depending on your deck size and riding style.


These are the rubber or plastic circles that roll on the ground. They come in different diameters, hardnesses, and colors. You need four wheels for one skateboard. The size and hardness of your wheels affect the speed, grip, and smoothness of your ride.


These are the small metal balls that fit inside the wheels and make them spin. You need eight bearings for one skateboard. The quality of your bearings affects how fast and smooth your wheels spin.


These are the nuts and bolts that hold everything together. You need eight bolts and eight nuts for one skateboard. They come in different lengths and colors.


This is the sticky paper that covers the top of your deck and provides traction for your feet. It comes in different colors and patterns. You need one sheet of grip tape for one skateboard.


You will need some basic tools to assemble your skateboard, such as a screwdriver, a wrench, a razor blade, and a file.

How to Build Your Own Skateboard: Crafting Your Personal Ride

Building your own skateboard is not as hard as you might think, and it can be a fun and rewarding project.

How to Build Your Own Skateboard

Here are the steps you need to follow to build your own skateboard.

Choosing the Right Deck

When it comes to selecting a skateboard deck, size and shape are pivotal factors with distinct impacts on stability and maneuverability. Deck size influences your ability to perform tricks and maintain balance, while shape affects how comfortably your feet sit on the board.

Skateboard decks come in various categories, such as street decks for technical tricks, cruiser decks for smooth rides, and longboard decks for relaxed cruising.

To choose the perfect deck, align your decision with your personal preferences and skating style for an optimal and enjoyable experience on the board.

Selecting Trucks and Wheels

Trucks are the vital link between your wheels and skateboard deck, allowing for turns and balance. Their size is closely tied to deck width, ensuring a harmonious setup.

As for wheels, a plethora of options exists, each with varying durometer for ride smoothness and grip. To strike the perfect balance, harmonize your choice of trucks and wheels.

Aligning their specifications ensures a well-coordinated setup that enhances your overall skating experience.

Bearings and Grip Tape

Bearings are integral for wheel rotation and speed, influencing your skateboard’s overall performance. The ABEC rating system, which measures bearing precision, aids in selecting the right bearings for your needs.

On the other hand, grip tape plays a vital role in providing traction and control. Applying it correctly ensures optimal grip, enhancing your ability to execute tricks and maintain stability during rides.

Assemble Your Skateboard

Assembling your skateboard is a gratifying experience that cements your connection to the board. Begin by securing trucks to the deck, and aligning them with the mounting holes. Install wheels onto bearings, ensuring they face the correct direction.

Apply grip tape carefully, smoothing out air bubbles. Maintain alignment by checking truck angles and tightening bolts evenly, preventing wheel bite. A well-assembled board guarantees a safe and enjoyable ride.

How Much Does It Cost to Make Your Own Skateboard?

The cost of building your own skateboard can vary widely based on several factors, including the quality of components, brand preferences, and whether you opt for any customizations. Here’s a breakdown of the potential costs for each component:

  1. Deck: The cost of a skateboard deck can range from $30 to $100 or more, depending on the brand, material, and design.

  2. Trucks: A pair of skateboard trucks typically cost between $30 to $60. Higher-end trucks with advanced features might be more expensive.

  3. Wheels: Skateboard wheels can cost around $20 to $50 per set. The price can vary based on size, material, and brand.

  4. Bearings: A set of skateboard bearings usually costs around $10 to $30. Higher-quality bearings might be pricier.

  5. Grip Tape: A sheet of grip tape typically costs around $5 to $10. It’s a relatively affordable component.

  6. Hardware: A set of hardware (bolts and nuts) for attaching trucks to the deck costs around $5 to $10.

Overall, the basic components for a skateboard could total anywhere from $100 to $250 or more, depending on your choices. 

Troubleshooting Common Skateboard Issues

Skateboarding can sometimes come with its share of challenges. Here are solutions to troubleshoot common issues that skaters might encounter:

1.  Wheel Bite

  • Issue: When turning, your wheels scrape against the deck, causing the board to suddenly stop.
  • Solution: Adjust your trucks to be slightly tighter. Also, consider using riser pads between the trucks and the deck to create more clearance.

2. Wheel Wobble

  • Issue: Your skateboard wobbles or feels unstable at higher speeds.
  • Solution: Check that all wheels are securely fastened. If the issue persists, it might be due to imbalanced trucks or uneven wheel wear. Adjust your trucks evenly and rotate your wheels regularly.

3. Squeaky Bearings

  • Issue: Your skateboard’s bearings make a loud squeaking noise.
  • Solution: Bearings may need cleaning or lubrication. Remove them, clean them with a bearing cleaner, and add a few drops of skateboard-specific lubricant.

4. Uneven Wear on Wheels

  • Issue: Some wheels wear down faster than others, leading to an uneven ride.
  • Solution: Rotate your wheels regularly to ensure even wear. This extends their lifespan and keeps your skateboard riding smoothly.

5. Loose Trucks

  • Issue: Your skateboard feels wobbly and unstable.
  • Solution: Tighten your trucks using a skate tool, making sure they’re evenly adjusted. Remember that over-tightening can affect turning ability.

6. Grip Tape Bubbles

  • Issue: Air bubbles form under your grip tape during application.
  • Solution: Apply grip tape slowly, pressing down firmly and smoothing it out as you go to prevent air bubbles. Use a screwdriver or other flat edge to help flatten the grip tape as you lay it down.

7. Inconsistent Turning

  • Issue: Your skateboard doesn’t turn as smoothly as you’d like.
  • Solution: Adjust your trucks to find the right balance between stability and maneuverability. Looser trucks allow for sharper turns, while tighter trucks provide stability.

8. Bearings Not Spinning Freely

  • Issue: Your wheels don’t spin as smoothly as they should.
  • Solution: Make sure your bearings are clean and lubricated. If they’re still not spinning well, consider replacing them.

9. Deck Delamination

  • Issue: Layers of your skateboard deck start separating or peeling.
  • Solution: Delamination is often irreparable. To prevent it, avoid exposing your board to excessive moisture and be cautious with heavy impacts.

10. Grippy Grip Tape

  • Issue: Your grip tape is too abrasive, causing shoes to wear out quickly.
  • Solution: You can lightly sand the grip tape with fine-grit sandpaper to reduce its aggressiveness. Just be careful not to sand too much.

How Long Should Your Skateboard Be?

The length of your skateboard depends on your height, shoe size, and personal preference. Generally, shorter boards are easier to maneuver and perform tricks, while longer boards are more stable and comfortable for cruising.

A good way to find your ideal board length is to measure the distance between your feet when you stand on a skateboard with your heels and toes over the edge. This measurement should match the length of the board from the tip of the nose to the tip of the tail.


Can I mix and match different brand components?

Yes, you can mix and match components from different brands. However, it’s important to consider compatibility, especially when it comes to truck size and deck width. Make sure that the trucks match the width of your deck to ensure proper alignment.

Are there any safety considerations when building a skateboard?

Safety is paramount. Make sure the trucks are tightened appropriately to prevent accidents. Also, ensure the grip tape is applied securely to avoid slipping. Regularly inspect your skateboard for any signs of wear or damage to prevent accidents while riding.

What’s the significance of concave in a skateboard deck?

Concave is the curvature along the length of the deck. It helps you grip the board with your feet during tricks and maneuvers, enhancing control. Different levels of concave suits different styles of skating, so choose based on your preferences.

Can I build a skateboard that’s suitable for both tricks and cruising?

Yes, you can create a versatile skateboard for both tricks and cruising. Consider a deck with moderate concave width, paired with medium-sized wheels. This setup offers a good balance between stability for cruising and maneuverability for tricks.

To Recap

In this journey of crafting your own skateboard, we’ve delved into the intricacies of each component, from decks to wheels, trucks to grip tape. By now, you grasp how these elements harmonize to create a unique, high-performance ride tailored to you.

As you assemble your skateboard, remember the satisfaction of shaping every detail, turning a collection of parts into a masterpiece that echoes your spirit. The connection formed between you and your self-made board is unparalleled.

So, whether you’re a newcomer or a seasoned skater, let your journey begin with a board that echoes your style and ignites your passion for the incredible world of skateboarding.

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Davis Torgerson

I am a professional skateboarder who has been involved in the skateboarding industry for over 10 years. I have had the opportunity to travel across the world and compete in various competitions. I live in New York City and work as a professional skateboarder. I also work as an assistant editor at a company called Skateboard Mag, where I contribute to articles about street skating, traveling, and other related topics. I have always been passionate about skateboarding and writing. I am currently working on my first book which will be published soon! LinkedIn

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