What pops do you like to skate and why?

I went through two otherbrand pops when I first started skating that I was fine with at the time, but after grabbing a Powell Peralta pop I realized that the tails on these decks were extremely short and made ollies hard for me. Given that there seem to be a million tiny little variations in decks, what are your favorites and why?


  • powell ones are all i ride
  • edited October 2019
    Trucks can change the wheelbase and affect the feel of tail length. Mini logo trucks make a tail feel longer, Thunder/Venture make it feel shorter, though there is variation within a truck brand.
    Risers make a tail feel shorter, as do larger wheels and tall trucks

    If you rode ML trucks or even some 48mm high ones, with 50-52mm wheels and no risers the deck would probably not feel so short

    Steeper tips also feel shorter
  • As mentioned by @Wheelbyte - Trucks and wheels make a big difference, so it's really about finding what works with your truck/wheel combo.

    One thing to look at is the number of fingers worth of flat space between the back truck bolts and where the curve of the tail starts to go up. Decks with less space tend to do better with Ace/Indy and decks with more do better with Thunder/Venture.

    Steepness of the kicks is a big difference - and the current K20 concave Powell/Mini Logo decks have the mellowest kicks I have skated - 18 degrees. Many other decks are in the 21 degree range.

    I really like the Real Ishod Twin Tail shape. Another that works for me well is the Santa Cruz 8.375 shape - even though I dislike most of the Santa Cruz/Creature graphics.
  • edited October 2019
    Trucks: In my experience Thunder trucks are the only brand that extends the wheelbase by about a 1/4” and due to their unique base plate extend the tail length. Most other trucks (Indy, Tracker, Gullwing, ace, ML) have almost identical baseplate settings. Almost everyone has copied Independent’s Independent suspension geometry. Honestly Indy makes the best standard truck. They are the perfect height (55mm) and are tough as nails. They can grind the roughest curbs and coping and the smoothest too. Not many trucks can handle the gnarly curb in front of my house, but Indy’s always do!

    Decks: Most DLX (real, antihero, krooked) and black label have longer tails on their pops. All those brands are made by Generator and the wood is good.

    Andy Anderson’s 9” deck has a large 6.75” tail, but it’s not a pop.

    I don’t like the K20 decks either....too short and the kicks are too mellow.
  • I found that when I went from Gullwing Sidewinders(pretty much a Pro 3 or 4 with plastic baseplate) to Tracker Dart Sixtracks I lost about 1/4-1/2” on my wheelbase @ovaldragon
  • black label is made in mexico by ps sticks
  • PS Stix designs the shapes for black label, but generator makes them.
  • ok guess they changed woodshops then
  • @ovaldragon trucks cant extend the wheelbase and the tail/nose length at the same time
  • edited October 2019

    Thunders have a smaller baseplate and their hanger sits back more than most trucks. Put Indy’s on a deck, measure from axle tip to axle tip, measure the tail from where the baseplate ends to the tip of the tail. Do the same with thunders.... the wheelbase and tail will both be longer...
  • edited October 2019

    okay the smaller baseplate technically extends tip length...
    but as far as the feel of a longer tail goes it does little
    except tail and nose slide area, blunts, drop ins, etc

    but are we here talking about tip length feel as it relates to pop tricks, or tip length without imputing its effect on pop tricks
  • @ovaldragon I reread this and realized I made it sound like I don't like the Powell K20 pops, but that's not what I meant. I definitely like them more than what I skated before because they have longer kicks, but I'm an optimization nerd because I have a lot more time stuck in a cubicle than I do on my board.
  • Rodney likes being stuck in a cubicle
  • edited October 2019
    I always liked Chocolate's Raven Tershy deck that had the same nose and tail; they aren't making it anymore and I have switched back to older shapes.
  • I have some questions about deck shapes. The board I am learning on is just under 8”, a Skull-and-Sword I bought on Amazon 5 years ago (it waited in the garage until I was ready!). The old Amazon page describes the board thusly:

    - Concave: K12
    - Shape: 188

    Powell Peralta seems to have 2 popsicle shapes (243 vs. 248 for 8.25”). I spend a lot of time on ramps, but am also trying to work up my street skills.

    Can anyone suggest a board shape and setup? I am honestly clueless. I prefer the popsicle shape for sure, and I am pretty stuck on the Skull-and-Sword or Skull-and-Snake graphic (I seem to be programmed with Those graphics from an early age, although the Ripper or Peeking-Ripper are possible too). So, I have the *most* important part picked out, the graphics, but need help with the minor details like shape, trucks and wheels. ;)

    Also, is it possible my 5 year old wheels got “stale”? I ordered a newer board with same type (53mm 99a from TGM) but they feel softer.

    As always, any help is appreciated.

  • it really comes down to personal preference but most ppl who ride just ramps mainly prefer indys or theeves or ace trucks and u should definitely have some bones bushings in the trucks u get and the board shape depends if ur anal about numbers if not then it shouldnt really matter and wheels is also a preference as harder wheels which i like to ide aka 101a makes u go faster but if u have a shitty surface at the park u may want something softer and bearings u cant go wrong with reds
  • For bearings I'd spring for Super Reds (if you're not willing to go Cadillac with the Swiss, that is).
  • @brigade_bill Thank you, I like the comment on being anal about numbers. I can barely ollie as it is (standing still), so I’ll stick with graphics as top priority and work from there. Maybe I will try 101a wheels....right now I just can’t seem to get enough speed to pop out, axle stall, or tail stall....I just can’t get out of the mini-ramp. Part of it is technique (I need to practice pumping as it turns out) but a faster wheel could improve the fun factor.

    @SkaterRick ok, I think I am using Super Swiss 6 now. nice to know They are not what is holding me back. I will stick with them. Thank you.
  • STF rock as a go to wheel
    56-60mm will increase speed on ramp
    but how heavy RU and what shoe size RU as 7.9 deck is small for ramp
    unless you are lightweight like Daewon
    wheels/bearings are the most important consideration to exceed coping
  • @Wheelbyte cool, I actually just got the SkateOne e-mail advertising the 99a STF. They just might make a difference for me.

    I am about 165 pounds, 10.5 shoe

    I appreciate all the help. Things are getting clearer.
  • if u live in the u.s. and ever want to try a 101a wheel get at me as i have my own wheel brand
  • Stop. You must NOT hop on pop.

    I'd go up to an 8.25 or 8.5 deck for the mini ramp. I skate those two sizes most and am 150 lbs, size 10.5 shoe. For wheels I have settled on 56mm as my ideal all around size, and I think harder does make it a bit easier to get the speed you need.
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