Similar to sandpaper, grip tape, or “grip” as it’s commonly referred to, is applied to the top of your deck for traction. Grip gives you the friction you need to perform tricks such as ollies and kickflips. Not all grip tape is the same however. Each brand's products perform differently, so you may want to experiment with different brands to get a feel for what you prefer.

Buying a complete skateboard from a good brand is when you purchase an already put together board that comes with a deck, the tape already applied, the wheels, the trucks, and the bearings all screwed in. You can also make custom requirements for your complete skateboard like interchanging different trucks or bearings to better fit your own personal style of skating.


Well know for their creative cartoon graphics and high-quality deck construction, this Toy Machine complete is another great starting skateboard for beginners.  This deck is slightly larger than 8″ so it would be perfect for adults or people with larger feet who want a more stable ride.  This setup is another good example of generic parts with a pro quality deck for a very reasonable price.  A great option for a beginner who loves the logo and graphic, but wants to save money on the less important parts until they decide they want to take their skating the to next level.
The best thing to do when getting a new board is to go to your local skate shop and talk to the people there -- they are usually very helpful. The guys at the shop will be able to tell you what board will be good for your skating needs. Keep in mind different people have different opinions on board brands. People say Plan B's are good, but I know others that say it's not. Some like DGK boards, some don't. Just test the board out and see how it suits you. You may want to double check this if you are being extremely careful with your selection.

Pro Skateboarder, Jamie Thomas developed the Zero brand in Carlsbad, CA and has built it into one of the top skateboard brands. Though the Zero brand initially distributed clothing, it eventually evolved to boards designed to suit the need for any tricks performed. The Zero team is comprised of a close group of skateboard professionals that have turned their passion into a company dedicated to provide the latest in skateboard innovation and helped Zero Skateboards become a fantastic skateboard brand. Zero boards are great for maneuvers, stability and especially grinds, with their specially designed features. Their innovation and high-quality designs has made Zero Skateboards one of the good skateboard brands today.
They have continued to ride that wave over the past year, continuously putting out great edits, following cherry up with Sickness, Red Devil, Joyride, and Swoosh, all in collaboration with cherry’s filmer Bill Strobeck. We all know they will never fall off when it comes to putting out fire gear every new season and drop, but to keep it coming with actual great footage is another story, and is definitely making skateboarding better today.
Proper skateboard wheels are made out of polyurethane with minimal additives. Toy skateboard wheels can be made of plastic or a low quality poly mix which leads to poor performance in the best case and even outright dangerous situations with cracked wheels in the worst case. This is a case where brand recognition and reputation can come into play. 
This period was fueled by skateboard companies that were run by skateboarders. The focus was initially on vert ramp skateboarding. The invention of the no-hands aerial (later known as the ollie) by Alan Gelfand in Florida in 1976,[39] and the almost parallel development of the grabbed aerial by George Orton and Tony Alva in California, made it possible for skaters to perform airs on vertical ramps. While this wave of skateboarding was sparked by commercialized vert ramp skating, a majority of people who skateboarded during this period didn't ride vert ramps. As most people could not afford to build vert ramps, or did not have access to nearby ramps, street skating increased in popularity.
Originally referred to as sidewalk surfing, the birth of skateboarding dates back to the early 1940s and the use of wooden boxes with roller skates attached to their bottoms. While the board itself cannot necessarily be attributed to a single inventor of the time and was, instead, a spontaneous invention from multiple sources, the modern style of many of today's skateboards took form during the 1950s when California surfers were looking for a physical activity to keep them busy during times when the waves were flat. The first manufactured skateboards were ordered by a Los Angeles surf shop and were designed to be used by surf enthusiasts during their downtime. At the time, the shop owner set up an arrangement with the Chicago Roller Skate Company to produce sets of skate wheels, which the shop would then attach to square wooden boards.

Finally, consider the type of grip tape you'll want on the board. While function is important in this regard to give your feet ample support, there's nothing wrong with adding some bling to the board's surface either. Many skateboard retailers will offer you several choices of grip tape and board styles, so it's definitely important to ask a lot of questions.
Buy a quality deck. Decks available at your local department store are usually of low quality and have pictures of cartoon characters on the bottom. If you want an entire board, but don't know exactly what you want, buy a complete skateboard from a company or go to a skate shop and ask the employee about the products. If you want to ride on the streets, get a 7.5 to 8.0 deck, if you want to ride vert, 8.0 and up is probably best. However, it's all personal preference. People street skate all the time with decks over 8.0.
You guys must have noticed that we have an absolute adoration for boards that not only ride smooth but are also easy on the eyes. Plan B covers the graphics of skateboards quite well, with its own unique style and color schemes. Some of the examples of their visual masterpieces are, the Riot Cole (with the Plan B logo embedded in different art schemes) and the Anatomy Cole 8 (with individualistic graphics).
Welcome is doing everything the way that people would probably tell you not to when it comes to how they run their board company. With no real full-length project out since it became a company, and with no pros to name, but boasting a full roster of official riders, Welcome is as unorthodox of a skate company as it gets. They don’t even make a single board in the traditional popsicle shape most boards are made today.
The wheelbase of a skateboard deck is the distance between the centers of the inner most truck mounting holes. This distance ranges between 13.5 to 16 inches and is generally proportional to the deck length on standard popsicle decks. Some specially shaped boards and cruiser decks have differing length/wheelbase ratios. Wheelbase can impact stability and turning radius, but the effect is often subtle and not a major concern for a beginner.
What the fuck is Bro Style? That's what a lot of skate nerds found themselves wondering at the end of 2012. Bro Style crept onto the scene with a goofy guerrilla-style internet marketing campaign that involved little more than the thumbs up logo. Little by little, product started to trickle out—beanies, snapbacks, pocket tees, socks, and other odd ephemera—and a few video clips. Bro Style is still something of a mystery, but one thing is clear, it's not meant to be taken too seriously. And that is seriously important for the skate industry to remember.
Also called Standard Kingpin Trucks, these trucks will mount to any standard or cruiser deck. They are the most versatile type of trucks and can be used for any type of skateboarding. There are many brands and various features to consider, including truck height, weight and replaceable components. Trucks are easily adjustable and allow you to loosen or tighten the board's responsiveness. For more information on trucks, check out our Skateboard Trucks Guide.
What started off as a crew of Montreal skaters filming full videos featured on SLAP magazine has suddenly turned into one of the highest quality and apparel brands in skating today. When Virgil Abloh drops by to your pop-up shop and your skate contest, you must be doing something right. Coming fresh off a recent collaboration with Vans, Dime seems to be keeping the clean silhouettes and instant classics on deck.
It has been our great pleasure to work with Cara-Beth Burnside and Mimi Knoop to introduce many girls to skating, encourage those who were devoted to it, and help craft careers for hoopla's amazing and wonderful team. We are proud of what we did together to further women's skating. The hoopla team was filled with amazing skaters, each a star and inspiration.
Without good grip tape, skaters have a tough time staying on top of their board. The main complaints about poor grip tape tend to be that it was never very grippy or lost its grip really quickly. Once again, we recommend trusting in name brands with years of experience supporting skateboarders. Unfortunately, if you are buying a pre-made complete skateboard, you probably won't have access to the brand name of the grip. 
The Moose Blank Skateboard deck is a made with a 7-ply composition and features Canadian Maple wood. The board is 8.25 inches in length, but Moose Blank offers shorter boards as well, fitting men and women of just about any size and skill. The deck itself has a modern concave, making turning a breeze for beginners and pros. The nose and tail are particularly steep for tricks and “perfect for shredding,” says Blank Moose. Although this board is 100-percent blank, Moose Blank offers stains and dips for monochromic board designs as well. There are also Moose Blank sets for sale, which provide a set of blank decks at a discount.
Their hard and soft goods feature 90’s imagery like Kurt Cobain with Courtney Love and Corey and Topanga from Boy Meets World, and it comes together to become pure fun for the hell of it. With brand mastermind Grant Yansura holding a spot as an official videographer for Nike SB, you know he must be doing something right with all his work. His Cosmic Vomit series is just another insight into the breadth of his great work.
One thing can already be told – compared to 2015 a lot has changed! The selection of the ‘Brands of the Year’ is made up of the combination of sold decks, brand shop visits, search queries and your interest in blog entries regarding the top players in the business. Our own brand SK8DLX was not considered for the ranking. We are happy, however, that you love to skate our in-house boards diligently and the SK8DLX deck series is celebrated well. In this sense, a big thank you to you all! Let’s start with the 16 most popular skateboard deck brands of 2016!
Without good grip tape, skaters have a tough time staying on top of their board. The main complaints about poor grip tape tend to be that it was never very grippy or lost its grip really quickly. Once again, we recommend trusting in name brands with years of experience supporting skateboarders. Unfortunately, if you are buying a pre-made complete skateboard, you probably won't have access to the brand name of the grip.  
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