Wondering how to make a skateboard for fun and to practice the awesome sport? The skateboard is one of the coolest modes of transportation and actually was originally used as such! It used to be a simple flat sturdy wood, so you weren’t able to make any tricks back then.
Once the first ollie was invented, that’s when skateboarding began to change for the better. Today, many people love to skateboard anywhere they go, doing all the tricks and rolls. If you want to get in on the action, read on as I show you the easy way on how to make a skateboard yourself!
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How to Make a Skateboard
Learning how to make a skateboard is actually easier than what people make it out to be. Before you do begin the process, make sure that you prepare the following materials:
- Tiebond glue and three ultimate glue
- Frame press
- Bandsaw or jigsaw
- Rasp router
- Spray paint or coat lacquer
- Painter’s tape
Once you have everything ready, follow these steps:
Preparing the Veneers
The first step on how to make a skateboard starts with the veneers.
Veneers should be made of hard maple, OR, you can also opt for oak and pine. Make sure that the Maplewood you choose is hard and strong to prevent it from breaking easily. With skateboards, it requires three types of veneers:
- The face is then enter sanded on one side, but not the other
- Core layer which is like the face without any sanding
- The cross band is the veneer sheet cut against the grain, not with it
Once you’ve measured and shaped it to the optimum shape, move on to the next step.
Gluing Your Veneers
When you begin gluing the veneers, I highly recommend that you use strong woodworking glue or those made for skateboarding. Another option would be waterproof glue, which is just as strong, to ensure the veneers don’t break apart.
Apply the glue with a paint roller if you can, one that’s about four inches wide with short naps. I use three ounces of glue per plywood, then two ounces per veneer. As you glue it, you should have an even coat, so you need to work quickly and evenly.
Once you have glued all the veneers together, begin pressing with the help of two cardboard pieces. They should be three inches wider and longer than your board. Place the frame on the sides, then put your veneers between the cardboard and your frame.
Use 20-16-inch nuts with bolts, washers, and 2-4-inch channel irons. Then, put your channel irons in the middle frame to press well and have it stay there to fully stick. Allow your deck to form for up to two days for the solid skateboard.
Drill the Holes
When pressed successfully, use a drill press when drilling your skateboard’s holes, or you can use a standard grill. Just ensure that the holes are perpendicular to your deck. If using a drill bit, use the 3/16-inch option for better accuracy.
When finding the hole location to drill, use an old skateboard deck for an easier time and more precision. Measure the deck’s center, locate its wheelbase, and follow it. All the holes should be about 1 5/8 inches apart and about 2 1/8 inches from the front to back.
Shape Your Skateboard
Just like drilling the holes, it’s best to shape your skateboard based on an old skateboard deck. You can also use regular skateboard measurements to get more of an idea. This can help make the job quicker and more accurate as you make your cuts.
To do this, make patterns from your previous deck, transferring that pattern to your uncut wood. That way, you’ll know where to cut so you have a good shape.
Once you have the pattern and shape, use a bandsaw or jigsaw to cut out the new deck.
Route and Sand Your Skateboard
How do skateboards get those smooth and rounded edges? It’s definitely not through cutting, but with sanding or by using a router. You can use a palm or mini router to make it more comfortable as you smoothen our your deck.
Most professional decks have a 1/8 to 3/16 inch radius, so you can choose to set your router to that option. Use the router to make the round edges, then sand the skateboard with an orbital sander. If you don’t have a sander, you can also use 80-grit sandpaper then create the extremely smooth feel with 200-grit sandpaper.
Seal the Skateboard
Once you’ve already sanded the deck, use a tack cloth to remove and throw any leftover sawdust. Once extremely smooth and perfect, it’s time to seal it according to your wanted patterns and to smoothen out the entire deck.
There are many types of lacquers and sealants to choose from, so make sure that you select one made for skateboards. You need to seal the skateboard outside or in a well-ventilated area since lacquer and sealants usually smell and emit harmful chemicals.
Add Some Graphics
When the board is sealed up, it’s time to add design and graphics according to what YOU want! So the freedom is all yours here, you can use spray paints, stencils, screen print, or even do freehand. It’s entirely up to you, as long as you use to paint with similar base colors to your sealer and final coat.
So if you used a water-based sealer, use water-based paint, and the same goes for solvent-based. And you’re done learning how to make a skateboard, it’s that easy!
Wrapping It Up
Learning how to make a skateboard doesn’t need to be so difficult, you’ll be surprised with how easy it is, actually. With the right materials and the dedication to make one, you’ll be able to begin using your own skateboard for practice. Just make sure that it’s sturdy and can hold on its own to prevent accidents!
I hope this article on how to make a skateboard helped you out. So don’t wait any longer and begin preparing the materials for your DIY skateboard now!
If you have any questions or want to share your tips and experiences on how to make a skateboard, then comment below. Your thoughts are much appreciated!