What is a cruiser skateboard? What makes it different from other kinds of skateboards? And is it possible to create your own hybrid cruiser board? These are some of the questions that might have brought you here today. I know for an amateur, all this information might feel a little confusing so keeping that in mind, I have created a detailed article that answers each and every single of the above-mentioned questions.
So, if you are interested in finding out more, I would highly recommend you take a few minutes to read out what I have to say. I promise you won’t regret this read. With that being said, let’s get down to real business!
What Is A Cruiser Skateboard?
A cruiser board is exactly what it sounds like, a board for road cruising. You may use a cruiser board as your regular means of transportation and commuting. If you ask me, it is a great and fun way to ditch the horrible traffic of metropolitan cities. Just a few shortcuts and you will be at your workplace in no time at all.
It means that you will never be late to work or school or whatever distance you are trying to cover using a cruiser board. Now, speaking about the shape and size of a cruiser skateboard, it literally comes in all kinds of shapes and sizes. You may get the one that suits best your personality.
I personally like to use a more decent board so that it gives off an aura of elegance and refined taste, however, I have also come across some very funky skateboard shapes that represent a more wild and adventurous soul. So, you see, there is no hard and fast rule as to the shapes and sizes of cruiser skateboards.
But still, on average you will find words with a length of thirty to thirty-seven inches in the market. Apart from that, cruiser skateboards have very distinct wheels that are much larger in size and give off a very soft feeling to make commuting more comfortable and smooth for you.
Now, come to the two different kinds of cruiser skateboards, i.e. Mini cruiser and regular cruiser. A mini cruiser is much smaller in size and is specifically designed for easy transportation. So, if you need to run down the lane to the supermarket or drop off something at your friend's home, a mini cruise would be an ideal choice of fastest transportation.
On the other hand, a regular cruiser is larger in size and is usually used for surfing on ramps. So, if you are going surfing with your friends and want to spend an exhilarating time, a regular cruiser should be your choice.
Is A Cruiser A Skateboard?
To an amateur eye, a cruiser and a skateboard would look exactly alike. This is because they both have a basic shape and each has more or less the same components, however, it is the design of these components that set the two apart. Sounds intriguing, right? Exactly!
A cruiser is specifically designed for surfing and regular commuting. This is the reason why it has greater maneuverability and much larger wheels to slide over rough patches of the surface you ride. Plus, the kicktails are designed to give you greater control over each twist and turn you make on your board. Hence, it wouldn’t be wrong if we say that a cruiser board gives you ultimate control over your movements to allow you to ride any surface without a hitch.
On the other hand, a skateboard is designed to be used on smooth tracks. You can not ride a skateboard on rough roads during a busy hour. Trust me, I have tried this and the experience was absolutely horrifying. This is because a skateboard has much smaller and harder wheels. These wheels provide you with speed and greater maneuverability however they can not go over rough surfaces.
Discussing The Specifications Of Major Components Of A Cruiser
Specifications Of Deck Of A Cruiser Board
Typically a cruiser board has a length ranging between twenty-one to fifty inches. The best thing about the availability of such a wide range of lengths of cruiser skateboards is that you can get the one that suits your stance the best. In simple words, you can easily get the size of deck you are most comfortable riding.
However, let me guide you a little bit about what kind of performance you can expect from shorter decks versus larger decks. Let's start off with the features of a larger deck. You may have already guessed that a larger deck allows you greater traction and an enhanced ability to glide right over rough patches of terrain.
However, the downside of larger skateboards is that it is much harder to do tricks with them. It is because these do not have great maneuverability. But these cruisers are great for slides and free rides, as you will be able to have more control over your body balance.
On the other hand, a smaller cruiser is much harder to balance out your body weight. You will struggle to maintain your balance doing slides or free rides unless you keep practicing to do it. However, these cruisers are much easier to handle when you try to do various tricks.
For instance, you can easily do ollies and backflips using a lighter and smaller cruiser. But these cruisers do not have great traction and the slightest turn will feel harsh and you may lose your balance if riding at high speed. In any case, these cruisers have excellent maneuverability if only you could learn to control them!
Specifications Of Trucks Of A Cruiser Board
The width of trucks on a cruiser board range between 109 mm to 200 mm. However, you must know that the width of your cruiser trucks should match the width of the deck otherwise, it will be a total misfit of the components of your cruiser. As a result, the overall performance of your cruiser will be greatly affected.
Other than that, you must also know that there are two different kinds of trucks currently in the market i.e, the Traditional Kingpin (TKP) and the Reverse Kingpin (RKP). Both these trucks have very different features from one another which means that you can use them to your benefit depending upon your own riding style.
For instance, Traditional Kingpin trucks are better suited for people who like to lift their cruisers in the air to do tricks and flips. These trucks will very efficiently support your flips.
On the flip side, the Reverse Kingpin trucks are designed to support the board in making sharp twists and turns. It means that you can make sharp turns all you want and still have your board keep riding as per your commands and foot nudges. So, if you are fond of riding haphazardly and confusing the minds of your fellow riders, you should definitely check out the Reverse Kingpin trucks.
Specifications Of Wheels Of A Cruiser Board
The size of wheels on a cruiser range between 52 mm to 80 mm. Smaller wheels give you greater speed and enhanced roll. Smaller wheels also allow you to easily do slides and board tricks comfortably and naturally. However, they will have a much harder time getting over rough surfaces and harder patches.
And that is where larger wheels come in. Large wheels provide a softer and more controlled riding experience. These will smoothly glide over hard surfaces. However, these wheels do not have the best speed. So, what you need to do is find the best size of wheels that work for you.
The wheel size 78a is the most commonly used cruiser wheel these days however, these are way too soft and slow if you ask me. So, I would recommend wheel size 80a. These wheels are a perfect combination of softness and speed. You are guaranteed to have the best riding experience using these wheels since you can use them for doing tricks as well as regular commuting.
Specifications Of Shock Pads Of A Cruiser Board
Shock pads are not the most important component of a cruiser board but you may opt to install these. What they do is, absorb the rough impacts of harsh surfaces thus giving the rider a very smooth riding experience even on rough terrain. However, shock absorbers lift up the deck thus increasing the distance between the road and the deck.
As a result, you will have less control over your cruiser. This is the reason why most people skip installing shock absorbers altogether. In any case, if you ask me, I would definitely recommend you get these bad boys installed for a smoother ride!
Differences Between Cruisers, Longboards, And Skateboards
As I mentioned in the first half of this article, a skateboard is designed for surfing. It is ideally suited for a ride on smooth pavements and park tracks. Don’t even think about taking your skateboard for a ride down a rough patch because you will be heaving your skateboard in your arms on your way back! Trust me, it is not a very fun experience. The reason behind it is that the wheels of a skateboard are much smaller and harder which is why they do go smoothly over rough surfaces.
Longboards are a combination of Cruiser boards and skateboards. It means that there are all different kinds of longboards available in the market for different purposes. For instance, there are longboards specifically designed for commuting, kicking the board around, doing slides, showing off complex tricks, etc.
In simple words, you can not do everything with a single board, if you are into doing slides, then you would have to purchase a longboard that is specifically designed for doing slides. The same goes for commuting, ding tricks, and so on. So, before you get yourself a longboard you just have to be completely sure about which discipline you are most interested in.
However, that does not mean that you have to stick to one discipline for the rest of your life just because your longboard only allows that. If you are interested in more than two disciplines of skateboarding like going downhill, showing off complex tricks, and doing slides as well, all you have to do is get yourself a different longboard for each separate activity!
How To Make A Hybrid Skateboard Cruiser?
It is near impossible to find a hybrid skateboard cruiser in the market because, to be honest, it is not good for their business. All the manufacturers want you to pay more in order to get all the right cruisers and skateboards for your practice. I mean honestly, why would they offer you a complete board package when they can make you pay for each individual board, right?
They will just make you think that it is impossible to get a hybrid board because of the different riding techniques and requirements of each type of boarding. However, let me just clarify how far from true that is. In fact, I have made myself countless numbers of hybrid boards and I just seem to keep getting better at making my own hybrid boards.
The trick is to use your skills and expertise in each kind of boarding and combine all your knowledge to create a board that suits you the best. Once you are done, you just have to feel the movement of your board. If something doesn't feel right, feel free to swap that component with another better one.
Apart from that, you just have to develop your own practicing trick to make a single hybrid board do all the work for you. There are no set guidelines for this. You just have to trust your gut and let your body and balance decide what’s best to do in what type of condition.
In any case, let me give you a complete guide on how I create my own hybrid boards and how you can do the same for yourself. Let me tell you in advance that this is not easy and you will have to spend countless hours trying to find out the best components for your hybrid skateboard cruiser board. But trust me, all that effort is absolutely worth it. So, let’s get started!
Step # 01: Get Yourself Better Replacement Parts
Since you are working with your old skateboard, you will have to replace all the defective worn-out parts. You can definitely keep the components that you think will work out fine for your hybrid board. However, what I do is start my work with the board that I like best. I take out all the old parts from the board and just get newer branded components for my skateboards.
The reason why I use an old board is that I already know how the board feels under my feet. So, I wouldn't have to work extra hard trying to find my equilibrium on a brand-new board. But it is a completely different story for the other components since they can easily be replaced without losing your balance.
Even if I like an old component, I don’t use it on my hybrid, I just go to the market to fetch a brand-new one. In this way, I can get the feel of a brand-new hybrid board. And I don’t know about you, but it just makes me feel all the more excited about my hybrid boards.
Step # 02: Re-grip Your Board To Make It Your Own
This is the most crucial part of creating your own hybrid board. It is because you will have to create an image in your mind about what final look you want your hybrid board to have. If you want to add any stickers or sheets to it, buy them beforehand so that you can have an estimate of what goes where.
This step will also give a new look to your old board. In fact, I like to call this step “Branding your own Board”. Just think about it, you are literally rebranding an old board that would have gone to waste if you hadn’t taken the initiative to redo it!
However, if you don’t know how to regrip your board, just search this term online and you will find tons of video tutorials and articles explaining in depth how to get started and how to get the results you want.
Step # 03: Clean Off The Old Trucks And Reassemble Them With New Parts
I personally don’t like to replace the trucks of my skateboard because I feel like skateboard trucks are exactly the same as cruiser trucks. So, what’s the point of wasting money on getting something I already have and can make use of?
However, what I do is clean up the existing trucks to make them look as good as new. So, to do that, I disassemble the trucks from the board and take out the bearing and wheels from them. Then I take a wipe and dip it in strong alcohol to clean away all the gunk and stubborn rust from the trucks. You may also use any other strong cleanser of your preference. But whatever you choose, don’t forget to wear gloves to protect the delicate skin of your hands.
Step # 04: Install Shock Pad
You may want to skip this step altogether and that is totally up to you. However, I personally feel like shock pads make the skateboard more adaptive to cruising. The small wheel of the skateboard may find it hard to go over the rough pavement however, that does not mean that you have to feel its vibrations, does it?
Sure, the shock pads will raise your board a little higher from the ground but that is something you just have to get used to. It is just the hard pill you will have to swallow in order to get dual performance from a single board.
Step # 05: Install New Bearings And Wheels
This is the last step where you install your favorite wheels and brand-new bearings. I would not recommend you use the old wheels and bearings because that will just give you a new skateboard and not the hybrid. The whole point of this procedure is to create a hybrid board that you can use as a skateboard as well as a cruiser.
So, I would suggest that you use wheels slightly bigger than the skateboard wheels but also slightly smaller than the cruiser wheels. This will give you a perfect combination of speed and control over your board. Besides, you can always swap the wheels with another set if you are not comfortable with the performance of the existing ones. And that’s it! You have successfully created your own personal hybrid skateboard cruiser!
No, normal skateboards are not good enough for cruising. I mean you can still go out on a cruise using your normal skateboard but the experience won’t be as fun and comfortable. The small hard wheels of a normal skateboard will have a really hard time going over rough pavement. So, if you are really into cruising, I would recommend you swap up a few components to make your border more cruise friendly.
So, this was all from my side. I hope you all enjoyed reading through this article. I tried my best to give you as much information about cruiser skateboards as possible. In fact, I also explained a step-by-step procedure on how to create your own hybrid board. Don’t forget to share this article with your friends who might benefit from it as well!