Author Archives: Kyle Bihler

How to tune your skateboard wheels

After heavy use, wheels can start to wear unevenly causing flat spots and bumps for a rough ride. Your board won’t be able to perform at its best ability and can throw off your balance. If your ride is being affected by old wheels, it may be time to replace them. It is an easy switch and can be done in a matter of minutes with the right tools. If you don’t have a skate key or bearing puller, stop by your local skate shop and pick one up. They’re inexpensive and are a handy tool to have.

Once you have everything you need to switch your wheels out, get down to business with five easy steps:

  1. Remove the old wheels by unscrewing the nut from each side of the axels with an adjustable wrench or a skate key. Set the nuts aside for when you put the new wheels on.
  2. Remove the bearings from your old wheels if you plan on reusing them. If your skate key has a removal nub, you can use that to remove the bearing; otherwise you’ll have to get a bearing puller. Be careful to only apply pressure on the edges, not the shield, to protect the bearings.
  3. Clean the axels and bearings when you’ve got them exposed.
  4. Insert the bearings into your new wheels the same way you removed them.
  5. Once the bearings are back in, place the new wheels on the axels and secure the nuts back on. Adjust the tightness until you have the right amount of play in the wheels and take your new wheels out for a test run.

Once you’ve replaced your board’s wheels a few times, the routine will become second nature and you’ll never be at a loss when your wheels start to hinder your ride. Find everything you need to change out wheels at Eternal’s new skateboard shop.

Picking the right longboard

Longboard Slide

Want something a little mellower than skateboarding or a new way to cross-train for snowboarding? Give longboarding a shot. Longboards have more stability and traction than skateboards and most riders use them to cruise. But before you hop on any board, make sure to choose the one that will give you the best ride possible.

Don’t run out and invest in a new sidewalk surfer before you assess your riding style. There are a lot of great boards out there, but learning how to ride will be more difficult if you start on the wrong board. If you’re just getting into longboarding or plan on just cruising around with minimal hills, then you’ll want a cruiser or carving board. If you‘re more interested in nailing some tricks or boardwalking, you’ll need a flexible freestyle or dancing deck, but if you have a need for speed, put your money down on a stiff freeride or downhill longboard.

Once you’ve got your style figured out, focus on the board shape. The pintail is the most common longboard shape and is good for more casual cruising and some small hills. Cutouts or drop-throughs are the most versatile shape and are a good investment. They’re great for cruising and have no wheelbite when carving, but they are also stable at higher speeds.

Downhill decks are good for the speedsters. They hold your feet in during fast turns and some have cutouts to eliminate the wheelbite. Cruiser decks are typically shorter and are easier to maneuver and have a kicktail for the sharp turns necessary when skating through crowded sidewalks. If you need more control, go for a shorter board until you learn to maneuver seamlessly on longer boards.

Check out the selection of longboards from Eternal’s new skate shop.

Street League Skateboarding stop 5: Portland

July 14 is right around the corner, which means Street League Skateboarding (SLS) will take over Portland. This world tour ends after a stop in Los Angeles and the Super Crown final in New Jersey. Pros will give it all they have throughout the series to bring home a piece of the largest prize in competitive skateboarding – totaling more than $2 million. Are you suddenly feeling the urge to go practice until you can compete on their level?

Portland’s Rose Garden Arena will host the most elite competitive series in street skating and some of the sport’s biggest names. Twenty pros will compete in the preliminary heat for a spot in the top eight. The top eight will skate for a chance to walk away with $100,000 and a guaranteed spot in the World Tour Super Crown World Cup. After the event, all pros will be invited to the DiamondLife Afterparty jam session where they will free ride the course, and you can watch over a live webcast. Pros can redeem themselves after a knockout or celebrate their win.

Street League Skateboarding was founded by professional skateboarder and entrepreneur Rob Dyrdek in 2010. The league aims to popularize street skating across the world, and has used the SLS World Tour to do just that.

Is Portland too far a hike to make it to the event? Don’t worry, you can catch the pros at the Sunday preliminaries on a live webcast at StreetLeague.com at 4 p.m. EST and then the finals live on ESPN2 at 7 p.m.

Summer snowboarding alternatives

Glynn Osburn Tail

While the majority of people are impatiently anticipating the arrival long days of summer, do you find yourself mourning the loss of all the fresh powder on your favorite mountain? Your snowboarding days may be over for the season, but that doesn’t mean you can’t enjoy the summer.

Stay in shape during the off season so you’re ready to strap in with the first signs of snow. Sure you could hit the gym every day and lift weights to build up your strength, but when the sun is shining you don’t want to hide away in a cavernous gym. Any workout that targets you core and legs will be prime conditioning. Boarding requires strength, flexibility, muscular endurance and balance, so look for activities that do the same. Find some trails and go for a hike or mountain biking. You’ll work in your cardio and all the hills and rough terrain will build up your legs and glutes. You could always try your luck with skateboarding, wakeboarding or even mountain boarding, if it’s available near you.

If you’re really itching to hit the slopes, take an unconventional summer vacation and find some snow. If you want to stay in the U.S., make your way to Timberline Lodge and Ski Area in Mt. Hood, Oregon. This resort boasts year-round snow and excellent slopes. British Columbia also offers some great summer riding at Blackcomb Glacier. If you’re feeling extra adventurous, jump down to the southern hemisphere and visit the mountains in Chile, Argentina or New Zealand. Just don’t forget to pack some sunscreen whatever you choose to do.

Still Hard Teaser

Still Hard

The bad girls at Too Hard are at it again. Still Hard is their second movie and promises to be well Still Hard. The full movie drops August 2013 and judging from the teaser it should be full of bad behavior. Peep it.

Riders include: Madison Blackley, Alexa McCarty, Danyale Patterson, Fancy Rutherford, Kumara Kelley, Riley Elliot, Taylor Elliot, Mary Rand, Vanessa Moore, Marie-Andree Racine, and more.

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