What could be the best longboard wheels for your skateboard? The ideal wheels for your longboard would be determined by how fast you want to move. As well, your best longboard wheels will be determined by the type of longboard that you have, your level of expertise, the kind of surface you want to take your longboard to, and the riding that you do.
Longboard wheels are usually made of polyurethane, a type of petrochemical. Compared to wheels used on other skateboards, longboard wheels are rather soft with a much lower durometer rating and are much larger. These wheels come in varying colors, sizes, shapes and durability levels.
Because they are larger than regular skateboard wheels, longboard wheels are much more susceptible to wheel bite. To reduce wheel bite, riser pads or mid to high longboard trucks are installed. Your skating style determines the solution you use for wheel bite.
You will find your best longboard wheels depending on your particular needs and interests, as stated above. You will quickly find the wheels suitable for you once you understand how each feature of the wheels aids your usage of your longboard. Here is a review of 7 of the best longboard wheels.
Tiger Boards 59mm Skateboard
For those who worry about aesthetics, these wheels are ideal as they are available in a variety of bright colors. They perfectly fit Tiger longboards and other decks of the same size. They are amongst the best longboard wheels available on the market. Also available are Tiger 3” or 4” trucks and Abec7 bearings to complement the wheels.
- They are 59mm and just ideal wheels’ size for your longboard. They are a good large size for cruising and almost anything else you want to do with them.
- The wheels are quite soft with a durometer of 78a, which is within the range for longboard wheels.
- The bearings and trucks are sold separately, but they do perfectly complement the wheels.
- They are quiet even when ridden on rough surfaces. They are soft and smooth. You won’t trip over when riding over pebbles or cracks on the pavement.
- They are made of excellent quality materials.
These wheels come at a very affordable price for their excellent quality. Almost 70% of reviewers online gave the wheels 5-stars reviews, which show the customers were happy with the purchase. The complement bearings that come with the wheels, even though bought separately make these wheels easy to install and use. Get yourself these wheels for a smooth ride and at a budget price.
Wonnv LED Light-up Skateboard Wheels
These best longboard wheels come with an electromagnet which lights them up in many colors. They are perfect to use at night and look great. They are designed for longboards and thus offer a smooth and fast ride over rough surfaces. The wheels are very durable. Here are their key features.
- The size of the wheels is standard at 59mm by 45mm. They are designed for cruising.
- They have a hardness of 78a, which provides a smooth ride and are made of standard polyurethane.
- When spinning, each colored wheel lights up with high-intensity LEDs and flashes a variety of colors.
- Each 4 piece set comes with highly durable, high-performance ABEC-9 bearings.
- Since the wheels light up by magnetic induction, no battery is required.
- The magnets are permanent and are not be easily damaged.
- They are easy to install.
- The wheels come in many colors.
The wheels make a fantastic light show at night while spinning. Users find the bearings that come with these wheels an improvement on the ABEC 5. Because of their excellent construction, they provide a quiet ride. Get yourself a set of these incredible looking wheels for your longboard.
Shark Wheel Sidewinder Longboard Wheels
These wheels are the Shark brand and are made in California, USA. Their country of origin makes them a favorite of many who feel they come with superior quality. They are sold in a set with four, just enough for your longboard and have a great design. Even though they are pricey, they are well worth every cent you spend. They are amongst the best longboard wheels available anywhere.
- They have a 70mm diameter size.
- They are made with Sidewinder Formula with a durometer of 78a. Their soft material offers a superior smooth ride. The wheels provide a fast ride, excellent grip, and control.
- The wheels perform excellently on rough terrain. They are all-terrain wheels that offer a safe ride anywhere because of their good grip.
- They are high-performance wheels which have won top positions in three international competitions.
- Made with state of the art technology and have been featured on Discovery Channel as a reinvented wheel.
- Come in a variety of attractive colors.
The wheels have great reviews online with over 80% of reviewers giving them 5-stars reviews. Their performance is award-winning and excellent. Aesthetically, they are quite pleasing. If you get these wheels, you probably won’t ever want to check out any others.
52mm Wheels w/ Bearings & Spacers
These wheels come in appealing colors and are hard and durable. They are ideal for someone who does tricks a lot. They are perfect on smooth surfaces. Here are their key features.
- They come with 8 Hi-Speed ABEC-7 Bearings.
- Also, come with 4 spacers.
- Ideal for amateurs and beginners and as spare wheels.
- You can do super fast spins with these wheels.
- Extremely well made and sturdy and make for a soft ride.
- Provide a super quiet ride.
- They are perfect for any custom made longboards, maintenance, and replacements.
These wheels are some of the best longboard wheels you can get. If you are new to longboarding or are returning to the sport after a while away, these wheels are an excellent choice. They get good reviews online. Go out there and get yourself a set for a most enjoyable ride on your longboards.
Choice Skateboard 99a Wheels
These come in some sizes, and you have to pick the size you want when you purchase. They are some of the best longboard wheels available. They are sturdy, durable and ideal for some longboards.
- The wheels have a durometer of 99a. They are just hard enough for the purposes they are designed.
- Wheel sizes range from 50 to 59mm. You choose the wheel size you desire depending on your needs.
- The wheels come in a variety of appealing colors for your choice.
- The wheels come at a budget price and are excellent quality for their cost.
- They have a good grip on concrete parks and streets and are durable.
- The wheels are perfect for ramp skating and commuting.
- They are quiet on the streets.
- Their bearings are sold separately.
These wheels are relatively hard and make for an excellent fast ride. For those who are concerned with aesthetics, you will find something to suit your taste. These wheels stand up to a lot of use. Get yourself a set of these affordable wheels, and you will never look for the more expensive types.
High Rebound Skate Wheels + ABEC-7 Speed Bearings
These are multicolored wheels for longboards and skateboards. They are versatile and a delight to own for those who care about aesthetics. They are amongst the best longboard wheels you can get.
- They are 60mm in size.
- They are 78a in hardness and Offset Hub Longboard Wheels
- Bearings are ABEC 7.
- Spacers are 4-8mm and are excellent. The bearings to are great.
- The wheels are suitable for cruising.
- The bearings come with the wheels and are not sold separately.
- The wheels handle rough roads quite well.
- The wheels are long-lasting and durable
- The wheels provide a soft, smooth, quiet ride.
- They come at a budget price.
These wheels are medium grade and not too hard or soft. They perform the function they are designed for excellently. A set of these wheels is a perfect complement for your longboard. Acquiring a set should be a priority for longboarders.
SLIDERZ Longboard Wheels
These are amongst the best longboard wheels you can get. These Sliderz from Magneto are the best for jumps and tricks. They are excellent for longboarders and other urban riders. Here are some of their unique features.
- Their size is 70mm by 42mm.
- Their hardness is 83a durometer.
- The wheels ride excellently and slide just perfectly.
- The wheels are made of excellent top quality materials.
- Bearings are not included in this wheel purchase.
- They have a perfect appearance.
- Their plastic core is very sturdy and robust.
- The wheels ride smoothly and are not too rigid.
- The wheels are good for sliding and commuting.
- Bearings are sold separately.
These wheels have excellent reviews online with almost 95% of reviewers giving them 5-stars reviews. These good reviews show that the wheels are about the best available anywhere. If you are into sliding, get a set of these great wheels, and you will not be disillusioned.
Longboard Wheels Buying Guide
What do you consider when you want to buy longboard wheels? To answer this question, you need to understand the construction of these wheels. You need to know the various parts and characteristics of these wheels to understand what will serve your specific requirements.
This buying guide outlines what you need to look out for when you shop for longboard wheels. You can use this guide to check out for the best longboard wheels for your specific requirements.
This refers to the hardness of the wheels. Longboard wheels are softer than wheels for other skateboards. Softer wheels are ideal for longboards because they give you a better grip, roll faster and provide more easily controlled slides than harder wheels.
Most companies that construct wheels use the Durometer A Scale to measure hardness. The scale ranges from 1 to 100. The lower the hardness numbers of the wheel on the scale, the softer the wheel.
Some other companies use the Durometer B Scale which measures 20 points lower and allows 20 points higher for much harder wheels. For instance, a 60B hardness wheel will measure 80A on the A Scale. The B Scale is wider, and its hardness range is more precise than the A Scale.
Most wheels range between 75a and 90a. Harder wheels are faster while softer wheels are slower but have a firmer grip. Softer wheels (75 to 80a) do not slide as easily as harder ones (83 to 88a).
The softer wheels tend to smear urethane on the road surface. These wheels leave lines of urethane on the road which makes such them wear quickly. The advantage of the softer wheels, though, is that they are very easy to control.
The following guidelines can be applied when considering wheel hardness.
- 96a to 99a. These types of wheels offer excellent speed and grip. For a beginner who wants to skate smooth surfaces such as ramps, streets, pools, and skate parks, this wheel hardness is just ideal.
- 88a to 95a. These kinds of wheels are softer and can handle some rough surfaces and the streets.
- 78a to 87a. Wheels with this hardness are smooth and can handle rough surfaces easily. These soft wheels are designed for longboards, cruising, hills, flat surfaces and will quickly roll over pebbles and cracks.
For the best longboard wheels, 78a and 80a are the most common hardness levels because they have a relatively good roll speed, grip, and slide-ability.
The size of longboard wheels is measured in millimeters and is also referred to as the diameter. This is the first thing you probably will need to decide about the longboard wheel you want to purchase. The most typical size of longboard wheels is 70mm. Most range between 64 and 80mm.
Larger wheels handle rocks and debris easier than smaller ones. The large wheels accelerate slower but rise to higher speeds. On the other hand, smaller wheels fit most setups, accelerate faster but increase to a lower top speed than larger ones.
The critical issue to consider when selecting wheels is if they will fit your set up without causing wheel bite. If you have reverse kingpin trucks or have large cutouts on your deck, you should not have a problem with wheel size. But if your deck has no cut-outs or has small ones, you may need to add a ¼” or even more riser pads to accommodate wheels larger than 70mm.
Larger wheels can tackle a wider variety of terrain. Also, factors such as your weight and height can affect what wheel size feels right for your board
The shape of the wheel you use for your longboard is as important as the size and durometer of the wheel. The shape of the wheel will determine how well you perform on your longboard. It determines if you will commonly slip or you will cruise perfectly downhill and make smooth turns.
Here are a few basic longboard wheel shapes.
- Square edge shape wheels. These wheels have squared off edges. The wheels are known for their grip and are ideal for riders who need to maintain contact with the ground for better speed. An example where this wheel shape is perfect is such as when going downhill.
- Beveled edged wheels. These wheels are not flat at the edges, and neither are they round. On the sides, they are cut at an angle. This provides a contact patch at the very edge of the wheel. This contact patch can come in handy while taking a turn while tackling hills.
- Rounded edge wheels. These are ideal for carving and sliding. The rounded edges of the wheels give you less friction on the pavement while you force your wheels to a slide.
- Size of Contact Patch
Contact patch refers to the actual area of the wheel that makes contact with a surface that the wheel is ridden. This is another important aspect that determines the performance of a longboard wheel. The larger the wheel, the larger the contact patch.
The size of the contact patch will determine the distribution of your weight over the contact area. If the contact patch is large enough, the wheels will move as fast as they should. This is because your weight will be distributed over a large area, which will reduce the compression of the urethane on the wheels.
Wheel shape can determine the contact patch. Rounded wheels do not make as much contact with the ground as square wheels. Longboard wheel contact patches often range from 29 to 70mm. However, the best longboard wheels contact patches are between 38 to 55mm.
The core is another important aspect of the wheel and its composition, size and shape determine how your longboard will perform. A wheel with a core with a larger diameter will roll faster. This makes wheels with larger core diameter ideal for freeride, transportation and downhill.
A core made of a harder material will improve roll speed, reduce urethane deformation during slides and result in even wear. All these qualities can also make the wheel slide faster. A balance must be achieved as quickly slowing down if often necessary when racing downhill.
- Core Placement.
Longboard wheels have core arrangement done in three different ways, each of which gives different performance. The three different installations of cores are the following.
- Centerset wheels. These have cores placed right at the center of the wheel, same distance from the outer edges of the lips. This placement gives the most grip by creating an enormous inner lip. Center set wheels can be flipped inside out, which promotes even wear and elongates lifespan. Most freeride wheels have centerset cores, matched with round lips and small contact patches.
- Sideset wheels. These have cores aligned directly with the wheel’s inner lip. This core placement allows no inner lip and therefore, has the least grip. Sideset wheels slid easily with little force but are harder to control. Another disadvantage of a sideset core is that the inner lip wears incredibly fast as compared to the outer rim. This uneven wear can result in serious coning. Sideset wheels, however, are still quite popular for freeride and for beginners learning to break traction with their boards.
- Offset wheels. The core placement here is a blend between sideset and centerset. This arrangement gives the rider the best of sideset and centerset. Most downhill and freeride wheels are offset because the rider gets the best qualities for their activities. An offset is preferred because the core placement provides hook-up, right slide initiation, ample grip, and slide control.
Not all urethane is made equal. This means that not all 80a wheels will perform the same. The formula of the urethane building a wheel will determine its performance.
Urethane formulas are different, and each has different slide-ability, durability, and grip. You can learn the various characteristics of a urethane formula by trying out a few types on your own. This trying out will give you a feel for what is ideal for you.
Fortunately, though, companies are now categorizing their different formulas. They have the downhill and freeride categories. Broadly speaking, freeride formulas slide faster and with much more ease than downhill. However, the freeride formulas provide less durability and grip than the downhill formulas.
If you are still on the lookout for the best longboard wheels for your deck, check out our guide above and know what factors to consider. If you give due consideration to every point made, you are bound to get ideal wheels that match your needs. Then you can go out there and enjoy your longboard.