Whether you’ve been a skateboarder for a long time, or are just getting started, it won’t take long to realize that although the main parts of your board are indeed important, it’s necessary to pay attention to the smaller aspects, such as skateboard bushings and risers, too.
The Purpose of Your Bushings
If you turn your board on its underside, you’ll notice a T-shaped axle. In the skateboarding world, it’s called a truck. The bushings are rubbery O-shaped parts that fit within the truck and contribute to the board’s ability to turn. They also play a role in the sensations that a rider feels when travelling over certain surfaces.
Usually, each truck will have two bushings, with each one serving a particular purpose. The larger of the two normally fits into the centre of the truck and makes a difference in the springiness of the skateboard. The smaller bushing rests directly below the bolt that holds the skateboard together. The bolt is called a kingpin. The second bushing makes it easier to adjust the skateboard truck so that it feels tighter or looser to a rider.
As you might imagine, the desired tightness or looseness is largely due to a combination of personal preferences, and the specific ways that the skateboard is being used. Regardless, riders usually greatly appreciate that the second bushing makes it simpler to perform quick adjustments, even if they don’t normally consider the overall purpose of their skateboard bushings and risers at length.
What About the Risers?
Now you should understand the purpose of skateboard bushings, and risers are important, too. They’re also rubber-like, but specifically, they keep the skateboard and wheels separated. Sometimes, when riders turn sharply, or are trying out some new tricks on the halfpipe, the board and wheels make contact with each other, which causes excess friction, also known as “wheel bite”. If a rider is inexperienced and not aware of how to control the board when this happens, they’ll end up taking a nasty fall.
Risers help to prevent the occurrence of “wheel bite” so that riders can turn sharply without worrying about extra bumpiness. Some enthusiasts also feel that both skateboard bushings and risers can prolong the life of the board itself because the parts work together to give riders a smoother experience, but also help the board withstand the impact from hard landings.
No matter which type of riding that you do, it’s important to understand the purpose of each skateboard part, and also know how to spot signs of wear. When you’re aware of when skateboard bushings and risers be replaced as well as other parts, you’ll be able to practice the sport of skateboarding safely, and have more fun, too.