Wheel Size and Speed
Country: United States
Date: November 2007
How does the size of skateboard wheels
effect its speed?
In an ideal world, where wheel bearings have no resistance at
all to rotation, and both pavement and wheels were hard and
perfectly smooth, wheel size would not make any difference to
a skateboard's speed.
But in reality, small wheels turn faster, and the bearings in
a faster rotating wheel will have increased drag. Smaller
wheels will also be more affected by small bumps in the
pavement than large wheels, and so small wheels will encounter
more drag than large ones.
Not at all, on a smooth surface. On a bumpy surface, a large wheel
averages over bumps
better than a small wheel, and might allow the board to move more
controllably at high speed.
Click here to return to the Engineering Archives
Update: June 2012