Skateboard Wheels As Beaters

drstrangefunk

Senior Member
i'm intrigued by the use of Skateboard Wheels as beaters.

what is the method used to turn wheels into beaters ?

are some wheels better than others ?
 

Shild

Member
I don't know, but I do know there are lots of different hardnesses to choose from in those wheels...
 

GruntersDad

Administrator - Mayor
Staff member
Some of the older beaters , single faced only had a threaded rod into the beater. Put on a nut and then washer, then the wheel, then a washer and nut and tighten. Done
 

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drstrangefunk

Senior Member
Some of the older beaters , single faced only had a threaded rod into the beater. Put on a nut and then washer, then the wheel, then a washer and nut and tighten. Done
hmmm. Thanks GD.

so far i'm thinking 78A is the softness i'd want, but i haven't explored this in person. just a place to start from what i read last night.

has anyone ever re-shaped the wheels ?

the smallest i saw diameter-wise was 52mm. i'm thinking 43mm would be more like what i'm thinking about. i saw a lot of wheels in 40mm thickness, but no smaller than 52 in diameter.

i liked the look of the clear ones. they remind of some i saw back in '76. was there any trouble with them possibly getting grits embedded in the wheel and smashing them into the batter head ?

[i like to think things through.]

: )

and thanks Shild. yes, i saw the softnesses last night.
 

Big Foot

Silver Member
I think you'd have trouble finding 78a - 80a durometer (hardness) wheel in those smaller sizes.
 

Deathmetalconga

Platinum Member
hmmm. Thanks GD.

so far i'm thinking 78A is the softness i'd want, but i haven't explored this in person. just a place to start from what i read last night.

has anyone ever re-shaped the wheels ?

the smallest i saw diameter-wise was 52mm. i'm thinking 43mm would be more like what i'm thinking about. i saw a lot of wheels in 40mm thickness, but no smaller than 52 in diameter.

i liked the look of the clear ones. they remind of some i saw back in '76. was there any trouble with them possibly getting grits embedded in the wheel and smashing them into the batter head ?

[i like to think things through.]

: )

and thanks Shild. yes, i saw the softnesses last night.
Cool idea. You can use lots of things for beaters. I use large superballs because they give a fat sound with lots of chomp, but are not obnoxiously loud.

I would buy a new wheel to eliminate the possibility of abrasion. Heck, take the bass drum and pedal down to the skate store and try out a few colors and sizes. You may wish to keep a few for different sounds.
 

Big Foot

Silver Member
is it possible to re-shape them ?

cut or file or ________ [fill in the blank] them down to the size and shape that i want ?

thanks.
If you have a lathe you can trim them down. It's actually pretty easy. I used to do it to my skate wheels (really old school) to get a conical edge on the truck side. I did this as a kid on my Dad's lathe when I was a kid.
 

drstrangefunk

Senior Member
If you have a lathe you can trim them down. It's actually pretty easy. I used to do it to my skate wheels (really old school) to get a conical edge on the truck side. I did this as a kid on my Dad's lathe when I was a kid.
ahhh...coolness...a lathe...yes. i don't have one.

i might be able to Dremel it.

please help with terms "conical edge" and "truck side".

thanks.
 

caddywumpus

Platinum Member
Yes. Been there done that.

1. Get a NEW wheel. If you try a used wheel, you have the concern of a jagged/sharp/embedded surface splitting your batter head.

2. Go to the hardware store and find a steel dowel that's the same size as the one you're using with your current bass drum pedal. Have them cut it to length and thread the top part of it for you. Also, buy 2 nuts and 2 washers that will fit the threaded dowel and into the space where the bearings would go.

3. Tighten the nuts on the skate wheel. If you *really* need an explanation, the order is: nut, washer, wheel, washer, nut. Tighten them together to cinch the wheel in place. You do NOT want it loose, and you DEFINITELY don't want any bearings on the wheel, allowing it to spin. It makes extra noise.

4. Most important...make sure the wheel is contacting your batter head FLAT. You don't want the top or bottom edge of the wheel digging into your batter head, 'cause it will. Also, with such a hard, heavy, and focused sound, you really don't need to play that hard. If you're a heavy stomper, you'll want to use a different beater, or be prepared to replace your bass drum batter head frequently. Oh, and the extra weight of the skate wheel will make your spring more sluggish. You'll want to tighten up your spring tension on your bass drum pedal.

...in the end, I decided that the skate wheel wasn't the best idea for me and my uses. Let us know how it works for you, if you choose to do it. Good luck!
 

Big Foot

Silver Member
ahhh...coolness...a lathe...yes. i don't have one.

i might be able to Dremel it.

please help with terms "conical edge" and "truck side".

thanks.
Skate wheels used to be flat on the inward edge (truck side, trucks are the metal things that turn the board and hold the wheels). We would chamfer (conical) this edge to make it roll off the edge of the pool or ramp more easily. Modern wheels are rounded in profile.
 

drstrangefunk

Senior Member
Skate wheels used to be flat on the inward edge (truck side, trucks are the metal things that turn the board and hold the wheels). We would chamfer (conical) this edge to make it roll off the edge of the pool or ramp more easily. Modern wheels are rounded in profile.
interesting.

i love learning new stuff.

thanks !!!
 

drstrangefunk

Senior Member
Yes. Been there done that.

1. Get a NEW wheel. If you try a used wheel, you have the concern of a jagged/sharp/embedded surface splitting your batter head.

2. Go to the hardware store and find a steel dowel that's the same size as the one you're using with your current bass drum pedal. Have them cut it to length and thread the top part of it for you. Also, buy 2 nuts and 2 washers that will fit the threaded dowel and into the space where the bearings would go.

3. Tighten the nuts on the skate wheel. If you *really* need an explanation, the order is: nut, washer, wheel, washer, nut. Tighten them together to cinch the wheel in place. You do NOT want it loose, and you DEFINITELY don't want any bearings on the wheel, allowing it to spin. It makes extra noise.

4. Most important...make sure the wheel is contacting your batter head FLAT. You don't want the top or bottom edge of the wheel digging into your batter head, 'cause it will. Also, with such a hard, heavy, and focused sound, you really don't need to play that hard. If you're a heavy stomper, you'll want to use a different beater, or be prepared to replace your bass drum batter head frequently. Oh, and the extra weight of the skate wheel will make your spring more sluggish. You'll want to tighten up your spring tension on your bass drum pedal.

...in the end, I decided that the skate wheel wasn't the best idea for me and my uses. Let us know how it works for you, if you choose to do it. Good luck!
thanks so much for the detailed info.

i'm thinking about something like this:
 

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