Cruiser and longboard wheels can fit on a regular skateboard. All you need to do is add risers to avoid getting wheel bite. You should also tighten your trucks and get medium to hard bushings.
If you want to add cruiser or longboard wheels to your skateboard, get ½” riser pads and 1 ½” bolts.
Here are the tools and hardware you’ll need to put cruiser or longboard wheels onto your deck:
- Four longboard wheels (ideally between 60mm and 66mm)
- Two half-inch (12mm) riser pads (brand doesn’t matter)
- 1.5” skateboard hardware (x8)
- A skate tool (or any tools that you can use to make this work)
Once you have all of these tools and hardware, you’ll be ready to turn your regular skateboard into a cruising machine.
Putting Longboard Wheels On Your Skateboard
When deciding on which longboard wheels to put on your skateboard, keep in mind that they cannot be over 70mm.
Ideally, the longboard wheels will be between 60 and 68mm but I recommend using the smaller end of that spectrum. No matter the size of the longboard wheels, you’re going to need half-inch riser pads to avoid getting wheel bite.
Without risers, when trying to carve or turn the wheels would touch the board which acts as a brake. The board would stop abruptly, causing you to wipe out because as the rider you still have all of that forward momentum.
Along with riser pads, you’re also going to need 1 ½” bolts to allow for the extra half-inch of space between your trucks and deck.
Adding Riser Pads
As we already know, adding riser pads will help us avoid getting wheel bite which is not good for you or your board.
Get yourself some half-inch riser pads and a pack of eight 1 ½” bolts to secure them into place. Shorter bolts won’t be able to fit through the trucks and riser pads.
With the new risers in place, there should be a safe distance between the wheels and board. However, you may need to think about replacing your bushings.
Try standing on the board and leaning forward and back. Give yourself a few pushes and try turning. If the wheel rubs against the deck, tighten your trucks.
If, however, the wheels still rub with your trucks tightened you should look into getting yourself medium or hard bushings.
Best Longboard Wheels To Put On Your Skateboard
So as we now know it’s best to keep wheels under 70mm when attached to a skateboard, even if you have risers. But what wheels should you get?
Here are three of my personal favorites. Each is slightly different.
1. Fireball Tinder
These longboard wheels are 60mm, making them perfect with half-inch risers. They’re also 81A durometer, which is soft but not too soft. If you want to learn more about durometer, go check out this article on the softness and hardness of skateboard wheels.
The Fireball Tinder wheels are perfect for cruising, freeriding, and dancing. They’ll be a great longboard wheel to turn your skateboard into a cruiser.
2. FREEDARE Skateboard Wheels
The FREEDARE wheels are an awesome deal. These wheels are 60mm but also come with ABEC-7 bearings, spacers, and a skate tool. All for just over $20 during the time of writing.
They also come in a 70mm wheel but I highly recommend staying below 68mm wheels.
Powell Peralta G-Bones
Powell Peralta is one of the largest skateboard brands and with good reasoning. Honestly, these G-Bones are the first wheel that I’d recommend for beginners that want to try a cruiser setup.
At 64mm in diameter, they’re still small enough to fit the board with risers. Not to mention, the G-Bones are 97A durometer, making them closer in stiffness to a regular skateboard wheel.
Why Do Different Wheel Types Matter?
A lot of money, research, and development has been put towards designing the skateboard wheels that you see and love today. If you take a look at the history of skateboarding, wheels were first made with clay and steel.
Now, there are a few companies that have perfected the polyurethane wheels that professional skaters use today.
That being said, there are still many variables to consider when looking at skateboard wheels.
The two main things to consider are diameter and durometer:
Diameter = size of the wheel
Durometer = hardness of the wheel
The larger the diameter, the larger the wheel. Pretty simple.
The durometer is a little bit trickier. There are a few different grades, A, B, and sometimes D. As the durometer gets higher, the wheel gets harder. Learn more about soft and hard skateboard wheels.
Better Bearings Improve Your Performance
Another thing to keep in mind when turning your board into a cruiser is your bearings. All bearings look the same but they should not be treated the same.
Low-quality bearings will make your wheels underperform and tend to break easily.
That being said, you should look to invest at least 50 dollars for some high-quality bearings. They will last you a few years with proper maintenance.
Personally, I suggest getting Bones Swiss bearings. However, even Bones Reds could be a huge upgrade from whatever stock bearings came with your skateboard.
Clean your bearings two to four times per year and apply skate lubricant each time you clean them. It’s a bit of a pain but you’ll be thanking yourself when you’re skating on clean bearings.
Find out how to clean your bearings. There are also quite a few alternatives to skate lubricant that you may have around your house.
Don’t Have Proper Tools?
You always need the correct tool for the job. Sure, you can use an adjustable wrench and a screwdriver. However, a skate tool is an essential tool to have for every skater.
A skate tool makes it easier to swap your wheels and trucks, replace bushings, remove bearings, and rethread the axles. They come at all different price points and in different shapes, colors, and sizes.
Recommended Skate Tool: I suggest getting the Reflex Utilitool. It is eight tools in one and has everything that you would ever need to fix or replace parts on your skateboard.
You can turn your regular skateboard into an awesome cruiser that you can use to bomb hills. Remember to keep the wheels under 68mm in diameter and to purchase the proper tools and hardware for the job.
What You Need:
- Reflex Utilitool Skate Tool
- ½” Riser Pads
- 1 ½” Bolts (x8)
- 60 to 68mm Longboard Wheels