11 Best Skateboard Bushings for Tight & Loose Trucks
Bushings are an important part of your skateboard. They act as the suspension, dictating how well your board leans and turns. If you want your skateboard to feel amazing, you need to pick the right ones. In today’s article, I’ll show you some bushings that will help your trucks feel just right. I also talk about what you need to consider when buying these bushings.
11. Independent Standard Cylinder Cushions Medium Hard 92a
Coming from a brand that is well known for its trucks, these Independent bushings are in my opinion the best bushings for heavy riders. This is because the bushings fit that perfect middle ground between being medium and rock hard. So whilst they are hard at 92a, they will have enough squish that they will still turn and feel good in your truck. They would also make a good option for a lighter rider looking for a tighter feeling truck.
This bushing kit comes with both the top and bottom washers, ensuring you can replace your worn-out ones.
Finally, the bushings are standards and will fit the majority of traditional kingpin (TKP) trucks just fine. They will not fit most longboard – reverse kingpin (RKP) trucks. Check them out here on Amazon.com.
10. Bones(TM) Wheels Hardcore Bushings
The insert on these allows these bushings to have good resistance whilst be stiff enough to support heavier riders.
These bushings are good if you’re looking for stability without making your trucks feel to stiff. They will give you a bit more of a ‘center’ point in your trucks. Allowing you to feel more confident when setting up for tricks and landing them. That said, they are one of the priciest options on my list. Check out the Thunder bushings if you need something more affordable.
Finally, these bushings will last you a long time, so it may be worth the investment as a long term option. Check them out here on Amazon.com.
9. Shorty’s Black Doh-Doh Bushings 100a Rock Hard (2 Sets)
I only recommend you buy these if you know exactly what you want from your trucks.
If you want a tighter feel, but aren’t sure what to get, the Independents above will be a good option instead of these.
Finally, these won’t feel right for most styles, but I believe they would work well as freestyle skateboard bushings.
They will keep the trucks tight and stiff, and they won’t budge much under compression. It’s a good alternative to simply tightening the hell out of your trucks. These bushings will fit right in TKP trucks. Check them out here on Amazon.com
8. Venom Tall Double Barrel Bushings Purple 87a
These Venom bushings are regarded as the best on the market. This is because they have a great balance between cushioning and resistance to turning. In short, they have the perfect amount of ‘give’ when you lean on them.
Venom has a really wide selection of bushings, so you can get the right bushing for your weight. However, this variety of bushings only works for certain types of trucks. These only work in RKP trucks and only if they take tall bushings. To name a few tall bushing trucks – Arsenal, Rogues, Ronins, Bear Kodiaks, etc.
Make sure you know what you’re doing if you choose to get them. If you have normal longboard trucks, check out the smaller versions of these venoms below.
Find the tall 87a venom bushings here on Amazon.com.
7. Venom Bushings – High-Performance Formula
They don’t feel too squishy and like I said above have the right amount of give. If you choose the 85a barrel versions, you’ll have a truck that has a strong center point, but that can still lean and turn quite well.
Also, if you’re a bit heavier (200lbs+), you should go for the 90a barrel bushings for a similar ride. Finally, heavy riders (220lbs+), will enjoy the 93a barrels.
These bushings will work right in normal RKP trucks. They aren’t right for TKP trucks. If you want some similar choice in bushings for your TKPs, go for the Riptides short bushings below. Find the Venom bushings here on Amazon.com.
6. Orangatang Nipples
The Nipples are designed to have a lot of rebound. This simply means that they won’t lean and turn very smoothly, instead, they’ll kinda fight back.
This is nice if you want a very responsive ride, that bounces you out of a turn into another direction when you stop leaning. Great for cruising and carving, but may give you wobbles at speeds faster than 30mph. If you want something a bit smoother turning, check out the venoms above.
The bushings come in three options, soft, medium and hard. I recommend most people weighing 140-170lbs to choose the medium for their cruiser and electric longboards. If you’re heavier or lighter, pick accordingly.
These bushings are for RKP trucks. Check them out here on Amazon.com.
5. Riptide Short Street Barrel Bushings – Krank 87a
At this durometer, they will be perfect for people weighing around 100lbs and for TKP trucks. They also come with high-quality washers.
The Riptide Krank formula is high-rebound. Similar to the nipples above, it will ‘fight’ you as you lean on it. This will be nice for street trucks as it will make them feel more responsive and lively.
And if you keep your speed under 20mph, you won’t need to worry about the speed wobbles associated with these high-rebound bushings. For something smoother turning check out the Dim bags below below.
Find the Riptide Krank bushings here on Amazon.com.
4. Dime Bag Hardware Skateboard Truck Rebuild Kit
A rider can choose between soft and hard bushings. The soft bushings are between 88a to 94a and the harder bushings are between 95a to 99a. These bushings will fit perfectly in normal TKP trucks.
The selection process is similar to the bushings above, lighter riders should go for the softer bushings and heavier riders for the stiffer ones. Though these Dime bag bushings tend to run a bit soft, so I recommend most riders go up a durometer or two to get a good feel consistent to other brands.
If you’re not looking for a rebuild kit and simply need some bushings, check out the Independent bushings above.
Find out more about these bushings here on Amazon.com.
3. Hairy bushings
Though questionably named, this sack comes with a variety of bushings that you can use to dial in your trucks and get the perfect feel out of them. It comes with two barrel and two cone bushings in the following durometers – 88a, 91a, 93a, and 97a.
Even though there are a ton of bushings, I only recommend these to heavier riders who will be cruising and carving. Whilst an 88 bushing will feel good for riders under 160lbs, the other options won’t. Check out the Venom bushings above, they have a soft 85a option that will feel good for these lighter riders.
Find out more about the Hairy sack here on Amazon.com. They are good for most longboard trucks.
2. Khiro Tall Cone Bushing Set 95a
These guys have the best hard bushings. Whilst other trucks bushings lose tension the harder they get in durometer, Khiro’s remain pretty consistent. The bushings are the Tall cone in a 95a durometer. These will be perfect for longboards and will last a long time in your trucks.
A tall cone is perfect in combination with a barrel bushing on the bottom, so I recommend getting that if you choose these. Your setup won’t have a big center point but will turn very quickly before not turning much anymore. Check out the Khiro 95a bushings here on Amazon.com.
1. Thunder rebuild KIT 95du
Coming in at a durometer of 95a, these will be great for medium-weight to heavyweight riders. If lighter riders want a tight-feeling truck, this would be a good option too.
Finally, if you have Thunder trucks, these will feel softer than the stock bushings that came in your truck. Just something good to note if you wanted something similar.
Though slightly more expensive than the Dimebag kit above, I think these are worth the cost. Especially since kingpin and axle nuts often need to be replaced when rebuilding your trucks.
Check them out here on Amazon.com.
How to pick the right bushings
What are skateboard bushings?
Bushings are the little rubber things in your skateboard trucks. They come in different shapes and sizes and determine how your truck will perform. If you want your truck to feel a different way, you can swap out your bushings for different ones.
What trucks are you riding?
The skateboard trucks you are riding will determine what type of bushing you will buy. This is because the bushings that go into TKP trucks are different from those used in RKP trucks. Thusly, you must be sure you’re buying the right thing for your trucks. If you don’t, you could have your skateboard bushings popping out when you’re using them, or simply have wasted on money on gear you can’t use.
Finally, the TKP trucks usually use hard durometer bushings than RKP trucks. I don’t understand the science behind it, but this is the common practice.
How much do you weigh?
Weight plays an important role in picking the right bushings. Imagine a bushing as an elastic string. The more you weigh, the more the string will deform under your weight. So to counter the weight of a heavy person, they need a bushing that is harder/stronger as it will deform less under their weight.
You typically pick the hardness of the bushing according to your weight. The best bushing companies have charts that help users pick the right bushings for their weights.
When to replace your bushings?
Typically every couple of months, or simply when your skateboard trucks start to feel a bit crappy.
If you just cruise and carve, you can ride a good set of aftermarket bushings forever. Just don’t tighten them too much as that reduces their durability a lot.
Can you make your own skateboard bushings?
Yes, you probably could make your skateboard bushing. You’ll need a mold, some liquid urethane formula, and an oven I think? It seems like it would be a fun experiment to do.
However, I think it would be hard to create a product that can compete with the urethan brands above. As much as urethane is just rubber, these companies have probably tried hundreds of proprietary formulas before settling on one. I would suggest saving yourself the headache and buying a premade bushing.
Tight or loose trucks?
This is a topic of personal preference. But there are pros and cons to either.
- Tight trucks have more stability and control but have limited turning.
- Loose trucks have less stability and control but they flow and turn better.
- It’s easier to land and set up for tricks on tight trucks and you’re less likely to get wheel bite.
- Loose trucks are more fun to skate.
This debate could go on forever. Ultimately, I think a skater should skate their trucks as loose as comfortable. Hopefully, this will give them the best of both worlds.
Which bushings will you choose?
Getting the right bushings can change how your truck feels for the better. Hopefully, my guide has helped you choose what works for you.
If you’re in a hurry and don’t have time for research, pick the Thunder bushings if you got TKP trucks. Pick the Venom 87a’s, if you got RKP trucks.