I rode for them as a ‘Amateur’ skateboarder in ‘79-’80, and they, at that time, had one of the Best boards out on the market, made of Fiberglass in a torsion box, with a foam core, and urethane ‘bumpers’ all around. I still have that board, and one set of C-70 Reds from then. I skated that gear hard, for many years, too. I still own 6–7 full sets of “krypto’s” for skateboards, and 8 that’re on quad-roller-skates. Great wheels, and they’re still in use.
Another bonus of shopping at an actual skate shop is that you get to see what the boards look like in person. Most skate shops will have a cool wall of boards, and it's fun to just stand there and look at all the graphics. If one jumps out and grabs you, then you can ask the shop owner about the brand, and whether it's a good one. There's nothing wrong at all with buying a skateboard deck because you like the graphics!
The skateboard industry is as colorful and competitive as the sport itself. It’s no surprise that the top skateboard brands all take on that daring, free expression and edgy creativity that is quintessential to the skateboarding community. But it’s not all fun and games — it takes a lot more than producing wooden decks with dope graphics to make it to the top. It takes hands-on dedication and genuine passion for the sport.
Let's be clear: Mike Carroll and Rick Howard are legends and modern skating wouldn't be shit without them. There. When the two good pals left Plan B to start their own brand in 1993, skateboard history was made. Girl and Chocolate are separate brands, but they act like two sides of the same family, and after 20 years making decks and apparel for skateboarders, the clan is stronger than ever.
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.
Its All Powell-Peralta Ligament decks feature a wider and more robust polymeric strap. The ligament strap is so powerful that in case your board breaks, the ligament strap will hold your deck together to allow you to ride out of it. Ligament decks are same in weight as a 7-ply maple deck but provide more pop and stiffness that lasts longer than ordinary boards.
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.
Navigator is a newer truck company and may be hard to find (the Navigator site has a store locator that should help). I've listed them here because they have some unique features on their trucks. For example, they have a special addition beneath the baseplate that holds the kingpin in place so bushings can be replaced without taking the trucks off of the skateboard. Also, Navigator is the only truck company that pins their axles, so they can guarantee their axles will NEVER slip! The Navigator site lists many other features - take a look and see what you think.
Punisher Skateboards Warphant measures 31 x 7.5 inch. It has a 9-Ply Maple Black Board with Concave Deck and Double Kick Tail. It comes with ABEC-3 Bearings, 5-inch V-style Heavy Duty Alloy Trucks, and Bases. It uses 54 x 36 mm PU injection molded wheels and PE Riser Pad with PU Cushion and Punisher Logo. It is perfect for learning and doing tricks. It is best suited for riders who are 8 years old and above. It has a 5 rating on Amazon.
As the oldest brand on this list, Santa Cruz rightly holds the distinction of being the oldest skateboard brand in the industry and thus, the brand which effectively created the modern skateboard brand as we know it today. Founded as part of NHS Inc. a Santa Cruz based skateboard distribution company over 40 year ago, Santa Cruz as a brand has played a large part in every era of skateboarding history since its inception.
In 1975 skateboarding had risen back in popularity enough to have one of the largest skateboarding competitions since the 1960s, the Del Mar National Championships, which is said to have had up to 500 competitors. The competition lasted two days and was sponsored by Bahne Skateboards & Cadillac Wheels. While the main event was won by freestyle spinning skate legend Russ Howell, a local skate team from Santa Monica, California, the Zephyr team, ushered in a new era of surfer style skateboarding during the competition that would have a lasting impact on skateboarding's history. With a team of 12, including skating legends such as Jay Adams, Tony Alva, Peggy Oki & Stacy Peralta, they brought a new progressive style of skateboarding to the event, based on the style of Hawaiian surfers Larry Bertlemann, Buttons Kaluhiokalani and Mark Liddell. Craig Stecyk, a photo journalist for Skateboarder Magazine, wrote about and photographed the team, along with Glen E. Friedman, and shortly afterwards ran a series on the team called the Dogtown articles, which eventually immortalized the Zephyr skateboard team. The team became known as the Z-Boys and would go on to become one of the most influential teams in skateboarding's history.
In the skateboarding world, there is considerable shuffling of the famous top brands as not many of them manage to stay in the spotlight for long. This continuous reshuffling paves way for new skateboard brands to come into the spotlight. However, it is important to note that no two brands are the same and comparing them is difficult but the following list has been created by extensive research of the saturated skateboard market and features the best skateboard brands out there that you must give a try.
The hoopla team helped to publicize just how well women can skate, and helped to create an onramp to skating's main road. Young girls and women have taken this opportunity so seriously, that they are no longer content to be part of a separate but equal skate community. In this era of the "Me Too" movement, shattered glass ceilings, and equality of pay, women have chosen to participate on each major company’s skateboard team, instead of supporting brands like hoopla, created just for women.
Skateboarder owned and operated is Magenta's mantra. “No middle-man or business-person involved,” it says on the brand's site, so you know what you're getting from this French brand is pure, uncut skate to the core. All of the art direction and graphics are done by co-founder and team rider Soy Panday, who has developed a unique artistic perspective for Magenta. You'll likely to see numerous skaters kicking around on Magenta boards in NYC these days, and with a strong offering of T-shirts, coaches jackets, caps, and a funny boxer short collab with Lousy Livin, there is plenty to appreciate.
This board also has a unique shape that makes it a lot easier to ease into turns, which is something that longboards aren’t always known for. It’s a lot easier to push off on this deck thanks to how low it sits, and you also get a one-year warranty from the manufacturer should anything go wrong. If you’ve never ridden on a board before, and don’t want to learn tricks right away, this is a great choice, especially if you’ll be riding around a lot of mostly flat areas.
Bearings are very important if you want to keep rolling without pushing constantly, especially while street skating. They're typically rated with the ABEC (Annular Bearing Engineering Committee) scale. The ABEC scale only measures the precision of the bearing, not how well it rolls or how long it lasts. It's a common misconception that the ABEC scale refers to how fast the bearing rolls. Anything above 1 is precision and will perform fine for skateboarding, but it's recommended to go above a 3.
Element, based out of Irvine, CA, is one of the cool skateboard brands today. They came in first on our list due to their quality boards, sustainable practices and the affordability they offer customers. They’re an environmentally responsible brand who creates their boards without causing any environmental damage. The Element team behind the company is comprised of a group of professional skateboarders who interact with a strong belief in the Element brand. They not only offer great products, but stand for an open minded and active lifestyle and have become one of the best skateboard brands in the world.
Founded by the original technical street skaters Daewon Song and Rodney Mullen, Almost Skateboards always pushes the envelope with fun, artistic cartoon graphics paired with high quality materials. Almost was one of the first brands to implement carbon fiber layers to their decks in the “Impact” deck line to increase the deck’s life and better maintain its shape.