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Daddies Board Shop

5909 NE 80th Ave.

Portland, OR 97218

Retail Hours:

Mon–Fri 12–8

Saturday 11–7

Sunday 11–6

All hours PST


Skateboard Buyers Guide General

As with all things, people develop preferences with their skateboarding, and when it comes to the equipment they use they can almost be religious about it. The particular equipment you use can help you out in your progression on a board, and to the opposite extreme, it can also deter you from ever progressing at all. It truly is important to make sure you have the right gear and that you are choosing good products for the application you prefer to use them in. Whether that is street skating, park skating, or transition skating we are here to help you find the right path by selecting the optimum skate products for your needs.

So you don't know what the different styles of skating are? Let us go ahead and break it down for you in a nutshell.

Street Skating

This one tells it all in the name. It is all about skating the raw street of your city. Whether it’s grinding down the handrail at a set of stairs, sliding across a picnic bench, or gapping an entire street itself, street skating typically is the most accessible type of skating. This form of skating welcomes the cracks in the sidewalks, kooks walking to their 9 to 5's and typically requires a ton of wax for chunky ledges. You can get extremely technical with your tricks in street skating or simply push around your city. Either way, you'll have a blast!

Vert/Transition Skating

This form of skating will typically be found in the skate parks in your local town or in the back yards of diehard skaters. Bowls, mini ramps and banks are all the types of things you will find vert skaters riding. Nowadays you will find many skaters using the beautiful architecture designers are coming up with to their benefit. Anything with a vertical transition is getting stalled on, aired out of or gapped into these days. Many see that Vert skaters are more prone to wearing helmets and other protective gear. That is because Vert skating is all about giant grabs, lip tricks, and a whole lotta spinning.

All Around

There is no reason that you cannot do all forms of skating. We find that local access is a major factor in the development of your skating style. If there are not parks or ramps in your area then you are more likely to just be a diehard street skater. On the contrary if mom and dad only allow you to skate the local skatepark you will more than likely find yourself becoming proficient in transition skating and more refined street skating. If you are lucky enough to have the best of both worlds you may become a mastered all around skater. Learn your tricks, practice them for hours at the skatepark and take it to the raw unforgiving streets!

Components of a skateboard:

A street skateboard complete is made of 6 key elements: the deck, griptape, mounting hardware, trucks, wheels, and bearings.

Characteristics of a skate deck:

Width: The width of the deck is measured rail to rail, or side to side. This will play a major role in your skate career. Many people will find one specific width that feels most comfortable for them and will repeat buying the same size deck. Decks range anywhere from the very skinny 7.5 inches, all the way up to yacht-size 9-inch decks. In today’s skate culture most people skate an 8-inch deck. Typically you will find that a smaller deck like 7.5 or 7.75-inch deck is easier to flip, rotate and get technical on. Whereas a wider deck provides a wider platform to stand on so people riding transition and in the park tend to lean towards the wider decks. Remember, it’s all up to what you like, personal preference is king in the world of skateboarding, there are no set in stone guidelines or rules.

Length: The length of a deck is when you measure from the nose tip to tail tip. You will find that most decks range from 28 to 32 inches. Often if a board is narrow it will be shorter, and wider it will be longer, but there are always exceptions. Once you find the particular width that you like you will find that the length will not vary too much from board to board; maybe half an inch at most. Again, the shorter the board easier it is to get technical and do rotating tricks. The longer the board the longer the wheel base (explained below) which you will find helps play a role in how stable you feel in transition which is why ramp skaters lean towards longer wider decks.

Nose/Tail: The graphic of the boards typically runs from left to right. The nose will be on the left and the tail on the right when you are looking down at the board’s bottom. A good way to tell which side is the nose and tail is also that the nose is almost always bigger than the tail. Oftentimes people will mark the grip on their board with some kind of personal indication of which is the nose and tail whether it is an arrow, a drawing or even just a scratch across the board made with a screw driver. Some people like to ride their boards backwards because it feels more comfortable to them. Again there is no wrong way to ride it is all about personal preference.

Deck Plies: Pretty much all standard street decks are going to be anywhere from 6 to 9 different plies of wood pressed together - joined as a family of plies.

Concave: The concave of a street deck is the area in between each rail that dips down and, in a sense, cradles your foot. You will find that if a board has more concave it is typically easier to flip and get technical with, to a certain extent. Some riders prefer a very flat board whereas others prefer a board with a ton of concave. Standing on a few different boards will help you find what amount of concave feels good for the form of your foot.

Wheel Base: There are two sets of 4 mounting holes in each standard street deck. The wheelbase is the measurement from the middle of one set of mounting holes to the middle of the other set of mounting holes essentially the area each set of wheels sits in relation to the board on the trucks. The longer the wheelbase the harder it will be to turn, but you will find the board feels much more stable especially at higher speeds. A shorter wheelbase will make the board turn much quicker and feel more lively on the flats of your local town.

Finding your preference and choosing a skate deck:

At first many of skaters find themselves leaning towards the decks that have a "cool" or aesthetically appealing graphic. There is nothing wrong with this, but it is important to remember that the graphic will wear off in time as you learn to do grinds and slides and that there are more important things to be aware of when choosing a skate deck.

There are many different ways to go about finding the right skate deck for you. As previously mentioned, the narrower the deck the easier it will be for street tricks, getting technical in flips and rotations. Wider decks are often better for transition and park skating. So first you have to ask yourself what type of skating it is that you want to get into and then you can base your initial choices on this. If you see a few decks at the skate shop you like, ask to see them so you can lay them down on the ground in front of you and stand on them. If you put 3 or 4 decks of different sizes and shapes you often will find yourself liking 1 or 2 of them better than the others just based on how they feel to the shape of your feet. If you are just starting out and don’t have any reference point it is good to get a mid-sized deck like a 7.75 or 8 and see where it takes you. Over time you will develop a preference in size and shape typically gaining consistency in deck size will translate over to your skating and you will become more consistent with your plethora of tricks.


Here are our super simple recommendations to get you on a board quickly:

Our Top Picks:


Pick you up a new shred stick so you can get your roll on. We have all kinds of sizes, shapes, and purdy graphics.

Our Top Picks:


Great for slappy grinds and attaching to wheels. Pick up a new pair. Wax up that local curb and get your grind one.

Our Top Picks:

Our Top Picks:

Skate Shoes

Slide on some shoes get to flicking and drop hammers with the wide variety of kicks we have for your feet.


Not sure what stance you are?

Let’s say you are running down the street and have to jump over a recycling bin, which foot do you lead with?

Or say you are going to kick a soccer ball for a goal, which foot do you kick the ball with?

If you lead with your left foot you are Regular.

If you lead with your right foot you are Goofy.

No right or wrong stance it is all natural. Pick it, grip it, rip it. Shake and Bake.


If you are a beginner you are probably just getting into the idea of skating. This can be a real struggle at first with many variables. Learning which stance you are will come naturally but learning to push correctly and proficiently takes much longer. It typically takes people a few weeks to get super comfortable riding a board around and up to a few months to learn how to Ollie and Kick-flip. You'll land your kick flip for weeks with your back foot. Keep with it practice for hours and you will find yourself landing it and many other tricks you progress with.


When you find yourself at this stage in skateboarding you have more than likely developed quite a few preferences and there are probably a few companies whose gear you won't touch for various reasons. Maybe you bought a deck and snapped it on a flat land kick flip, hit a crack and had to get stitches when riding “so and so's” wheels. All these opinions and superstitions will arise over the course of your life skating and they are healthy. Are they factual and truly justified? Probably not but it all comes down to your progression. You will find that you have decided on what size deck, trucks and average wheel you will skate. You are developing a plethora of tricks but still learning to do them consistently, down things, up things and into grinds, slides and stalls. You’re probably trying to make sponsor-me tapes and day dreaming about turning pro. FACT: you probably aren't going to go pro but I bet your more about having fun and the feeling in your gut you get when rolling away from a new trick.


You and I both know you wouldn't be reading this. If anything you having been judging everything written on this page because you have such profound opinions and preferences. And guess what? That’s perfectly fine. That’s what individuality and skateboarding are all about.

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