For some, skating is always about rolling on a wooden board straight and stable. However, circumstances change once you pass through rough roads or a friend asks you to practice on rails.
We know that different boards fit different scenarios. So, skateboard VS cruiser VS longboard—which one lands tricks? Which one lets you drive smoothly and fast?
Today, we will learn more about their design, purpose, and function. For now, check this snippet of their differences.
|Parameter of Comparison||Skateboard||Cruiser||Longboard|
|Width||Narrowest at 7” to 9”||Mid-range board width at 8” to 9.5”||The broadest of the three at 8.5” to 10”|
|Length||Second to longboards at 31” to 33”||Larger in range at 28” to 34”||Exceptional lengths at 33” to 59”|
|Wheels||Hardest wheels at 95a to 101a with sizes of 50mm to 60mm||78a to 85a with 58mm to 61mm diameter||The same hardness as cruisers but sized at least 65mm|
|Trucks||Traditional Kingpin (TKP)||Traditional Kingpin (TKP)||Reverse Kingpin (RKP)|
|Decks||Angled noses and tails to pop tricks||More mellow concavity and sometimes flat-tailed||Varied flat tails and noses|
|Best for||Technical skating||Short commutes||Downhill and speed-skating|
Table of Contents
- Longboard Vs Skateboard Vs Cruiser: Defined
- What Are Longboards for?
- When to Pick a Skateboard, Cruiser, or Longboard
- Tips for Choosing a Suitable Board
- Frequently Asked Questions
Longboard Vs Skateboard Vs Cruiser: Defined
It’s easy to say we’re cruising on a skateboard or riding on a cruiser board. Yet, we might end up confused about these boards’ distinctions.
Skateboards are the most common boards we see in parks and streets. Characterized by 48mm to 58mm wheels and 7.5″ to 8.75″ decks, they are the best for tricks and technical skating.
What are skateboards with big wheels called? Longboards. These boards are the most extensive of the three in size. Longboards have widths ranging from 8.5″ to 10.25″ and lengths from 35″ to 42″.
With their spacious profile, longboards work best for freestyling, dancing, and speedy rides.
Since they’re commute boards, skaters don’t find cruisers challenging to bring. In size, they sit almost between skateboards and longboards.
Cruisers have an average width of 8.0″ to 9.5″ and a length of 22″ to 38″. Also, their wheels go around 60mm to 65mm.
Let’s broaden our ideas about these boards through the following grounds.
In size, width needs more consideration. Why? Because it’s a relevant factor to the skater’s stability.
And if owning the broadest decks yields balanced rides, longboards win in this aspect with their average 8.5″ to 10″ width. Following behind are cruisers at 8″ to 9.5″ and skateboards at 7″ to 9″.
The length does not matter as much as the width. Nevertheless, it’s still good practice to consider such an aspect when choosing among these boards.
As with the width, longboards are superior in length, averaging 33″ to 59″. Skateboards go around 31″ to 33″. On the other hand, cruiser lengths are close to a skateboard’s range, averaging 28″ to 34″.
What wheels do longboards, skateboards, and cruiser boards use? We have two aspects to consider, size and hardness.
In terms of hardness, longboard VS cruiser is a tie. Ideally, these boards have soft wheels with hardness levels between 78a to 85a. As for different types of skateboards in the parks and streets, they often have wheels at 95a to 101a. With these, you can ace tricks and slide through rails more easily.
Other than hardness, wheel size also matters. The smallest wheels possible are 50mm to 60mm for skateboards. Cruisers follow with 58mm to 61mm. And ultimately, longboards have the largest wheels at 65mm and above.
As a rule, the board’s trucks should match its width. But besides the width, we should also consider other variations in these parts, like their types.
Trucks have two types, traditional and reverse kingpin.
What are traditional kingpin trucks? These trucks have their screws angled inwards. 100% of the time, they sit at the bottom of a skateboard. And a bit less often, these trucks are also on cruisers.
On the other hand, reverse kingpin trucks are for longboards. These parts have their kingpins pointing outward. They stabilize the board more and are better for carving.
Besides the deck size, we must consider the different shapes of skateboards, longboards, and cruisers.
The angled nose and tail of a popsicle-shaped skateboard do not come without a purpose. Often, these tips allow the rider to pop the board for tricks.
What about cruiser VS skateboard? Cruisers are less curvier than a regular skateboard, making it tougher to do flips on them. And if skateboards have angled ends, cruisers give you options to have them flat.
What does a longboard look like? Often, longboards have slight concavity, with the freeriding and dance varieties being curvier than cruisers. Still, their nose and tail tend to be flat compared to a skateboard. These boards have varied ends like swallowtails, flat-nose, pintails, and the famous drop-through.
Once and for all, let’s settle where each of these boards fits. So, when should you pick a cruiser, longboard, or skateboard?
Other than being for technical skating, skateboards fast-track your skating journey. Using this board type will eventually enable you to ride cruisers and longboards.
Why? Because as many people on Reddit claim, skateboards are challenging to learn. All the fundamentals you master here are more often necessary to use other types.
Cruisers are ideal for transport. They’re smooth, calm, and able to dodge road debris. If you don’t want to step on obstacles, cruisers will still help you ride away because of their superior controllability.
What Are Longboards for?
If cruisers allow you to maneuver through tight city spaces, longboards make long rides on open trails smooth and fast. Besides this setup and downhill skating, a longboard is also beneficial for beginner skaters because it helps them learn faster.
Pros and cons of skateboards, longboards, and cruiser boards
Each of these boards can rise to select occasions. Similarly, they have a few downsides. Let’s dig into these aspects.
|Skateboards||– Ideal for technical skating and tricks
– Lets skaters ride almost every board after learning
|– Less momentum than cruisers and longboards
– Not for riding on rough surfaces
|– More stable because of superior stepping surface and size
– Fast and can travel long
|– Slightly heavy and awkward to carry for some
– Not as responsive as skateboards and cruisers
|Cruisers||– Optimum maneuverability against obstacles and traffic
– Portable and perfect for commuting
|– Unstable and shaky when used at high speeds
– Might need risers to prevent wheel bite
Cost of skateboards, longboards, and cruisers
Our budget remains a constraint when choosing among thousands of boards in the store. So, here are a few products to introduce you to the prices of longboards, skateboards, and cruiser boards.
- Beleev Skateboard for Beginners – $39.99
- WhiteFang Skateboard – $45.99
- Magneto SUV Skateboard – $99.99
- Yocaher Earth Series Longboard – $59.95
- Atom Pin-Tail Longboard – $73.15
- Apollo Longboard – $99.97
- Tony Hawk Complete Cruiser Skateboard – $36.92
- Magneto Mini Cruiser Skateboard – $59.99
- Flow Surf Skate Surf Skateboard – $84.95
When to Pick a Skateboard, Cruiser, or Longboard
We have already discussed how these boards differ based on various criteria. So, here are the specific instances you can use these boards.
- Skateboards – Tricks, technical skating
- Longboards – Learning skateboard for the first time, fast rides, downhill races
- Cruiser boards – Short commutes, riding through traffic
Tips for Choosing a Suitable Board
Aside from the attributes we discussed, here are a few more tips that can help you select your board.
- Seek assistance – A few inquiries with experts won’t make you a worse skater.
- To see is to believe – Sometimes, what you see online isn’t the same as reality. So, if you can visit a local skate park to ride, do it.
- Safety first – You may want to add safety accessories like helmets and elbow pads when buying any of these boards.
- Test the board – The feel of the board is as significant as its specifications. A few steps on the deck won’t damage it.
- Carpet for online boards – The best way to test online-bought boards is by trying them on a mat. If you’re not happy, you can return the products clean.
Frequently Asked Questions
Is a longboard or cruiser better for beginners?
Between longboards and cruisers, the longboard wins. Why? For the following reasons:
- Spacious stepping surface
- Large wheels
- Better stability
Is a longboard easier than a cruiser?
Yes, since it’s more stable. However, here are a few areas that may put cruiser boards on the more comfortable end.
- Superior maneuverability in tight and urban spaces
- Smooth-riding on rough pavement
- Perfect for short commutes
What you observe about a board is valid. If you find skateboards challenging, longboards bulky, or cruisers stiff, there’s nothing wrong about that. These boards excel in unique ways, like skaters.
So, if we argue about a skateboard VS cruiser VS longboard, we can’t reduce them to one factor only. If it’s technical skating, skateboards win. For downhill rides, longboards are it. And for short travels, cruiser boards take the cake.
Now that you know these differences, it’s time to decide which type you prefer.
Hi, I am Charles Harris. I opened this site to write as much as I can about my biggest passion – skateboarding!
I started as a clumsy yet passionate rookie 10 years ago to now a still passionate yet much better skateboarder! But I have to tell you, the whole journey has always been fun and rewarding, indeed not without hardship.