Since you heard about riser pads, doesn’t necessarily mean you should be using them. As skateboarding is an extremely personal choice, so does the riser pads. Depending on what you ride and how you style it defines the need for risers. In addition, if you are a clean rider, you might want to keep the graphics safe. Skateboard risers protect the stress cracks. How? You will get the answer shortly.
So what are skateboard risers? Do risers give more pop? How much is a riser pad different from a shock pad? Take a deep breath, you will find the thrilling answers below. Hang on with us till the end until you get all your queries solved about riser pads.
What Are Skateboard Risers?
The most inconspicuous part of a skateboard i.e. the riser pad is a rigid rectangular plastic pad sandwiched between the truck and the deck. As the name suggests, these are the pads to raise your skateboard. In other words, it increases the height of your skateboard. With this, a question must pop into your mind why do we need to raise our skateboards? Well! The answer is to reduce the wheel-bite, which is the core purpose of riser pads.
Most of you haven’t even noticed them in your skateboards. Maybe because they are not there. Yes! All the skateboards do not necessarily need riser pads. Maybe that’s the reason you have never seen them. So when do we need to install riser pads? Let’s dig into it to cover all the facts about riser pads.
Why Riser Pads? The Advantages
The elementary purpose of riser pads is to avoid wheel-bite. It is when your skateboard deck touched the wheel- while cruising around or doing whatever tricks. This will not only produce friction but also damages the board. By using the riser pads, the height of the board increases, bringing more space to take turns without snapping the board.
Riser pads also add more clearance between the wheels and the deck. This is quite helpful for sliding the rails. Hence, protecting the deck from nasty wipe out and saving the board.
When to use Skateboard Riser Pads?
- Avoiding Wheel-bite
The answer is obvious. When you experience consecutive wheel bites, you may want to consider them. The longer the board is the wider the wheels. So when you take turns, there are chances that the board will touch the wheels, leading to friction. That is the reason why riser pads are the most common among longboards.
- Doing Tricks
Riser pads not only favor the longboards. They also assist in a stable landing of skateboard tricks. Skateboard riser pads also give an extra pop to your skateboards. The distance between the tail and the ground increased with riser pads. Sliding is much more convenient with a little raise in the skateboard height.
- Smooth Rides
When you want a smoother ride, you can add a duplicate of the riser pads, which is the shock pads. They have a subtle difference in appearance, that why used side by side. However, both serve separate purposes.
How can I not mention shock pads while talking about the riser pads? Get to the next heading to learn more.
The difference Between Riser Pads and Shock Pads
Both look much alike and are inserted in the same place. Therefore, both terms are used interchangeably. However, the manufacturers have a slightly different plan. As the name depicts, riser pads are used for increasing the height of decks. While shock pads, on the other hand, absorb the shocks and give a smoother ride.
These independent purposes gave rise to the second difference which is material. Riser pads are made of stiff plastic, which keeps the trucks in place while increasing the height. Shock pads are made of something like soft rubbers and dense foamy material. The hardness of riser pads ensures constant height without compressing. The softer pads absorb the impact and give a leveled ride while changing their height.
Finally, yet importantly, the third difference is in the speed. Riser pads keep up with whatever speed you are riding. While the shock pads reduce the a little bit of the speed. Some of the force is wasted in absorbing the shocks and keeping the ride consistent.
You must still be thinking about how to know whether I should use them or not. We have got you covered. The next section will tell you about the size and its usage.
Skateboard Riser Pad’s Size Calculator
Now we are moving on to the crucial part. Do rush to buy the riser pads before reading this. Below is the guide which tells what size of riser pads will work for your skateboard.
For a generally used 7-ply skateboard deck, here is the size guide.
|Wheel size (mm)||Riser pad height (inch)||Hardware size (inch)|
|55-56 (tight trucks)||Not required||7/8″|
|55-57 (loose trucks)||1/8″||1 1⁄8″|
|58-64||1⁄8″ – 1⁄4″||1 1⁄8″ – 1 1⁄4″|
|65-67||1⁄4″ – 1⁄2″||1 1⁄4″ – 1 1⁄2″|
As for the 8-ply or -ply skateboard deck, the size guide becomes:
|Wheel size (mm)||Riser pad height (inch)||Hardware size (inch)|
|49-54||Not required||1 1/8″|
|55-57||1/8″||1 1⁄4″ – 1 1⁄2″|
|58-64||1⁄8″ – 1⁄4″||1 1⁄4″ – 1 1⁄2″|
|65-67||1⁄4″ – 1⁄2″||1 1⁄2″ or above|
Normally, using we don’t recommend using riser pads more than 1 1⁄2″. It may feel a bit uncomfortable. Let us step ahead to its shapes and types.
Shapes of Riser Pads
Riser pads exist in two shapes. Both of them serve different purposes. Check that out.
- A Regular Rectangle/ Rectangular Riser
These are the most common riser. They increase the height so you can feel the shocks less. Rectangular risers are generally flat i.e. the same height throughout. The increased height may lead to losing control because of the increased center of gravity. Longboards and cruisers can benefit from them. Make sure to follow the riser guide for better performance.
- A wedged Rectangle/ Angle Riser
These riders are slightly raised from one side at a specific angle. It raises the skateboards with some angle. An interesting thing about these raisers is that they can be inserted in any direction. That is the angled side facing the center or away from the center. Both of the placements have added crispness to your riding styles. People use angle risers to make flips easier by increasing the deck height with the lowered tail.
The angled edge changes the angle of the kingpin. It creates different effects while doing rear turns and front turns.
One thing to notice is that the hardware size will vary with the angles raisers. Therefore, get the right hardware keeping in mind the height of the risers.
The last thing I would like to mention is the holes.
Holes of Riser Pads
You might have noticed six holes on the riser pads. However, the trucks have only four holes. So what’s the purpose of those extra two holes? The answer is to accommodate both ‘old school skateboards’ and the ‘new skateboards’. The old-school skateboards have more space among the four nuts of the truck. Therefore, the riser pads are so designed to fit both categories.
- Do risers give you more pop?
The increased height provides more pop. Technically, while doing Ollie, the skateboard won’t raise high automatically, but it should pop because of that increased height.
- Do pro skateboarders use riser pads?
Well, not all may use the riser pads but mostly do. The reason is to avoid the wheel bite. Using riser pads doesn’t do much bad except for decreasing the stability. Therefore better to keep those raiser pads on.
- Do riser pads absorb shock?
Technically, they don’t. Manufacturers have designed shock pads for serving this purpose. However, it is seen that the riser pads also absorb slight shocks.
Wrapping It Up
Riser pads are a good addition to the longboards. However, not all skateboards would require a riser pad. Mini boards are far from riser pads. Using skateboard riser pads on penny boards can be a terrible idea. So stay away from that.
You have got your mind clear about what are skateboard risers. I hope you enjoyed the benefits of using riser pads. Since risers are heavenly addition except for the fact that it reduces stability. Just be careful with the increased height.