A skateboard is meant to be ridden, which means at some point, it will wear out. While this is unavoidable, there are a few things you can do to delay the inevitable. Here are a few tips so you can get the most out of your skateboard.
Store Your Skateboard Indoors
Skateboards can take a lot of punishment on the road or at the park, but this is no excuse to leave yours outside and at the mercy of the elements. For starters, rainwater can penetrate your deck, making it soft and soggy. It can also dissolve the adhesive that holds the maple wood plies together, causing your deck to delaminate.
Aside from ruining your deck, moisture can also cause your bearings to rust. If enough water gets in, it can dilute the lubricants inside and make it harder for the wheels to spin. Even worse, your bearings can seize up completely, leaving you no choice but to replace them right away with new ones.
In some places, your deck does not have to be rained on directly to get wet. If it gets humid enough, moisture can settle on your board or bearings. Other extreme weather conditions can also ruin your board. Excessive sunlight can cause expansion that will wear out your board faster. Also, the heat can carbonise your bearing’s lubricant, hardening it in the process.
Regardless of the weather in your area, keeping your skateboards safely tucked away indoors will save you much grief down the road.
Repair Razor Tails and Chips Right Away
Crashing or bailing is a normal part of skateboarding, which means that your deck’s tail will inescapably wear thin. It also means that the edges of your deck will have chips, especially at the nose and tail.
While razor tails and chips are unavoidable, you are hardly helpless against them. You can smoothen splintered wood with sandpaper and round off sharp edges. Your deck would lose a little bit of pop, but it would give you more time to save up for a new one.
If you see split or chipped layers, you can put some glue and hold them together with a clamp until the adhesive dries. This is also a temporary fix, but again, it will hold off buying a new deck for a few more weeks.
Clean Your Wheels and Bearings
Clean your wheels regularly, right into the core. This will help keep dirt from making its way into your bearings. The bearings themselves can also be cleaned and lubricated, but it can take a bit of time and effort.
A good compromise is to check if the wheels are still free-wheeling. If they are, you can hold off cleaning and lubricating your bearings. If the wheels’ rotation is not smooth, then you may need to invest in bearing maintenance. Still, it beats having to buy new ones, especially if your old ones are still working.
Check for Defective Parts and Replace if Needed
New skateboards look shiny and beautiful. To some extent, they may even seem invincible. However, your mint skateboard will eventually wear out. The wheels will have flat spots, the grip tape will fade, and the deck can have stress fractures. Keep an eye on small defects that could turn into a big headache, or worse, cause an accident. Replace them right away if they cannot be fixed or cleaned.