Longboards are now days used for professional purposes which depend on a persons desire. Many people use longboards for transport, while others for racing or sliding, many others use them as a fun ride. There are many different types of longboards like pintail, kicktail, hybrid etc., but every type has its own use. Sometimes it is not easy to choose an appropriate longboard, however it all depends on ones personal preferences.
A bushing in a Longboard is the ride enhancer. Attaching it to your Longboard will incredibly increase the stability and your surfing speed. They are an easy deal at cheap price and after buying you will realize that you have not wasted your money, rather you have invested in a good longboard assistant that will help you learn longboarding quickly and if you are not an amateur then you cannot ignore the elevated feeling of pleasure.
A bushing is made of synthetic rubber or polyurethane (usually called urethane), it is a soft material, but its softness can be varied for assorted experiences. Bushings are distinguished by the type of output you want. Let us put it this way, depending upon the type of riding. For example, if you want to be a speed demon, use the kind eliminator, if you want to be one of the carving types, go for cones, etc.
Explanation of the Factors
There are many shapes for bushings, but two shapes always stun peoples eyes and are chosen the most, they are known as Barrels and Cones. Barrels are preferred by people for having more stability and rebound. On the other hand cones have a narrow shape and are preferred for taking more turn and less rebound. Best longboard bushings depend on what type of riding experience you want. An explanation to these major shapes is as follows:
These types of bushings can be maneuvered to get good stability. Unlike the cones, these are cylindrical shaped and have a greater resistance because of the fact that they are bigger in size than the cones and hence, they can’t really move a lot inside the center point, so, they obviously get a lot of support from the center. They are good for free rides and DH setups (downhill setups). They also have a greater rebound value than the cone bushing. If you want to go downhill then your best bet would be a barrel shape.
These types of bushings are the smallest and have less support from the center. Hence, they are best suited if you want some pleasant carving. They can also provide you speeding under 30 mph, but you’ll notice that it’ll still give you a very nice rebound. If you want to go cruising or downhill cruising, have a pair containing cone.
Sometimes you’ll find a third type named as eliminator. Now, these are of stepped bushing shape and they have the best stability. Not only this, they will rebound a lot, but won’t turn much. This is evident due to the fact that it fits better in the bushing seat. They can go at fierce speed and also prevent most of the speed wobbles. If you want to go beyond 50 mph, go for eliminators.
Considering the other physical factors like size, setup and softness, then one just needs to figure out the type of surfing they want to do. A smaller bushing will turn more than bigger one. It will be slow but provide very small angles for carving. Covering the aspect of the setup, then having a relatively softer bushing in front and harder on the rear end can result in killer stability, more carving and joyous ride. Softness decides the stability. People have coined a termed for measurement of softness known as Durometer. If we have two values of Durometer like78A and 82A, the one with the higher value of Durometer, implicates that it is harder and denser than the other bushing.
Classifying according to the weight of riders for riders between 50 and 100lbs are recommended to use 78-80a and 80-85a for riders above 75lbs and below 125lbs., above this weight categories are 125-145, 145-195, and 175 to 220. For these riders recommended are 88-93a, 90-94a and 91-97a respectively.
Trucks positions are made in accordance to the need of customers. For downhill, longboard trucks are made wider so that they should help in keeping the balance. Likewise the positions of bushings are done according to the needs. Trucks are related to bushings and thus bushing can be changed easily on a truck. The biggest advantages of bushings are that they make turnings possible. They can be made of any size, shape and can be made hard or soft.
Turning of a longboard depends mostly on its hardness and softness, but it is not the only factor, other elements such as bushings also create a great effect on turn. If they are hard, it is hard to turn the longboard while softer bushings make the turn easy. With soft bushings jumps, tricks, fakie, kick-turn, etc. become easier to perform, but on the other hand all these create an impact on washers. Thus it is important to understand that a flat washer is more appropriate than the cup or flip washer and makes tricks done fluently. Also the size of the washer varies the tricks and can help in a better performance.
The bushing seat creates a great influence on trucks; it is the area where hangar is close contacted. It allows the rider to be closer to ground, to have a lower center of gravity which increases stability and allows longboards to support high speed. The bushing seat also helps to de-accelerate a turn and provide better stability. Trucks come with loose, tight and very sensitive bushing seats and many come with no busing seats at all. It all depends on the choice of a person, for example: very sensitive bushing seats reduce busing deformation and very tight can be a real pain in the back. To provide more speed, stability and lean the bushing seats are designed and attached very accurately because any problem in the bushing seats is enough to make the ride uncomfortable. Trucks, deck and bushing seat are related to one another; they help in doing tricks and control the longboard from disasters. Particular attention is given to assemble them tightly and properly, generally wider hanger gives more stability. Today there are many bushing brands available in the market and to get the best longboard bushing brand you should know which companies are the leaders in skateboard hardware. Below is aÂ list I made about the bushing brands that will help you choose the best for your needs.
Best Longboard Bushings List
|Image||Company & Product Name||Bushing Shape||Bushing Material||Durometer Rating||Hardness||Overall Rating|
|Image||Company & Product Name||Bushing Shape||Bushing Material||Durometer Rating||Hardness||Overall Rating|
|Bones (Hardcore Bushings)||Cone||Rebound Urethane||81a, 91a, 96a||Soft, Medium, Hard||4.6|
|Orangatang (Nipples Bushings)||Barrel||Rebound Urethane||85a, 87a, 89a||Soft, Medium, Hard||4.6|
|Venom (Super Carve Bushings)||Cone||Rebound Urethane||78a, 81a, 85a, 87a, 90a, 93a, 97a||Soft to Hardest||4.5|
|Hairy Bushings||Cone-Barrel||Premium Urethane||82a, 85a, 88a, 90a, 91a, 93a, 97a||Soft to Hardest||4.0|
|Khiro (Aluminum Insert Bushings)||Cone||Rebound Urethane||73a, 79a, 85a, 90a, 92a, 95a, 98a||Soft to Hardest||4.3|
|Shorty (Doh-Doh Bushings)||Cone-Barrel||Premium Urethane||88a, 92a, 95a, 97.5a, 100a||Soft to Hardest||4.1|
Our Choice of Best Longboard Bushings
Highly Responsive and Double Action: Bones Hardcore Bushings
With the advent of Bones Hardcore bushings a revolution of highly responsive skating has started. These bushings improve the performance of your longboard and give you maximum sporty experience. Their company has developed them with Premium Quality Urethane with a motto to improve your skating. They are made to fit into trucks of any make and installing them is also very easy, just put them, adjust and off you go. The two sides of Bones Hardcore bushings are bonded by HardCore insert which is in the center of the bushings. These can be called as bushings of an advanced era because when the hangar web squeezes its one side, that side reacts like a normal bushing, but the other side does not squeeze, as a chemical bond between HardCore and cushion protects it. They are also known as double action truck bushings because both of their sides resist your turning force.
These bushings are quite reliable and sturdy and it is also not necessary to wrench them down for getting good control. The best part of them is that after turning they rebound back smoothly to their original shape and their rigid quality makes them last longer. You might find them a bit costly but they actually saves you money because they are tough and you can use them in all of your setups.
High Quality and Excellent Performance: Orangatang Nipples Bushings
Orangatang Nipples are barrel type bushings that are made from premium quality rebounding urethane and are an ideal choice of skaters who love cruising, carving and freeriding. The top and bottom bushings work differently to provide a great riding experience, for instance the top bushing adjusts itself when the rider leans on either side to turn. To compensate for this weight shift the bottom bushing is made slightly taller (0.10 inches) than the top one and both these bushings are beveled on one edge for a better fit with large cupped washers.
They are supplied with large flat washers made of strong carbon steel that resists bending. These washers are 1 inch in diameter and 0.055 inch thick and are made by the company itself for better durability. These bushings can be used in combination with other washers available in the market and the outcome is a different riding skill.
The bushings come in different colors and different materials for example bushings in Organge color are Soft, Purple color is for Medium Hard and Yellow color symbolizes Hard material, so if you are not thrilled about speed choose soft bushings that are meant for skating at about 20 mph and if your purpose is high speed try the harder ones. Also soft bushings are meant for riders weighing below 80 kg, Medium for riders in the range between 80-100 kgÂ and theÂ Hard ones are for riders weighing more than 90 kg.
This set of bushings could be a good choice for beginners and skilled pros and are quite affordably priced. If you are planning for a good set of bushings then do consider these for a better longboarding experience.
Stability and Control: Venom Super Carve Bushings
Venom Super Carve bushings are very popular among carvers and cruisers, but are not recommended by the company for downhill racing, however many downhill riders consider them because of their high quality. Their double conical shape believes to be less turn resistant and more responsive than barrel and eliminator shape. These bushings are designed to provide ultimate turning experience and have a unique rebounding formula that keeps you on track.
They come in different colors that symbolize their Durometer and Material type i.e; how hard or soft they are, so if your weight between 50-100 lbs choose 78a or 81a and so forth. In order to skate smoothly you should choose Durometer according to your weight which goes hand in hand with the skate deck chosen by you, thus it is a good practice to choose your deck first and all other things step by step.
Venom bushings are tested everyday by experienced skaters and these bushings provide you great control and stability over your board even at high speeds. Their price is quite reasonable and could be a good choice for beginners and professionals alike.
Note: We recommend you to always use washers because they provide support to your bushings. They also help bushings to bounce back and keep your skateboard in your control. Sometimes flat washers are not as worthy as cup washers and they should also be chosen carefully. Many skaters consider small cup washers for the reason that they provide controlled and progressive lean.
After choosing your skate deck make a list for your skateboard parts and choose everything carefully and also keeping your goal in mind. Below is a cheet sheet that will help you choosing the best longboard bushings for you according to your body weight.
50-100 lbs: 73-80a
75-125 lbs: 78-82a
100-145 lbs: 80-85a
125-175 lbs: 80-87a
145-195 lbs: 82-90a
175-220 lbs: 85-93a
200-250 lbs: 90-93a
225 lbs and up: 90-97a