A Guide to Rollerblade Wheel Hardness & Sizes

You will need inline skate wheels. You might have worn out yours, or your new skates arrived without wheels.

But which one should you get? You can find hundreds of sizes and colors on any website specializing in skating.

This quick guide will instantly make you a skating expert.

Which Skate Wheels Do I Need?

The size and hardness of rollerblade wheels vary by mm (A rating).

Aggressive skates wheels are small and extremely hard (42-72mm,88-90A), fitness and recreational wheels are large, medium hardness (70mm-90mm,78 – 84A), speed skates wheels are very large, medium hardness (90-100mm, 78-85A), and hockey skates wheels are medium and fairly soft (72-80mm, 72-74 A).

It’s a decent summary.

However, a little more explanation might be needed.

Let’s look at what those numbers really mean.

What Wheels Do I Need For My Inline Skates?

If you want to replace your wheels with the same ones, look at the wheels and notice the two numbers.

These numbers should match yours.

The maximum size of your skate frame should be printed on the frame if the wheels have been rubbed off.

Before you buy wheels, there are two things you need to know.

The best news is you can find the information you need on the side of your wheel.

Look along the side of a skate wheel to see two numbers.

These numbers represent the 2 important features.

  • The wheel’s size – This is followed by MM (millimeters).
  • The “hardness” of the wheel is the number that has an A next to it

These will be explained in turn.

I then discuss the hardness and size requirements for different types and activities.

You should now be able to make a decision on whether or not you want to buy new wheels.

The Two other important points that I will quickly address here are:

  • Hub size (but they are pretty much the exact same today).
  • The bearings (but you’ll still have them and will need newer wheels sooner than new bearings).
  • Wheels material quality (This basically reflects how much money you spend on the wheel or how good the company is).

To make the best choice, you only need to know the size of the wheel and its hardness.

The Wheel Size

The diameter of inline skate wheels is 50mm to 110mm.

As you can imagine having different size wheels feels a lot different on your feet.

You’ll feel less stable if you have really large wheels.

Picture yourself on tiny wheels and standing on a high pole.

You’ll see the difference.

It’s more difficult to balance on bigger wheels because your ankles can move further.

There are many sizes for wheels.

They can be used for different types of skating.

Speed is the biggest difference.

Big wheels are faster. Although other factors, such as the bearings on your skates, can also affect this, it is generally true that the larger the wheels, the faster you will go.

Mostly Speed skaters use very large wheels.

Three wheels are often used to maximize the space under the boot.

It also helps with maneuverability.

It is possible to have four large wheels of the same size, but they will extend out further from the front and back of your boot, making it more difficult to turn.

Imagine how different it is to turn on big skates than your pair of skis.

Another thing to consider: Smaller wheels have less polyurethane, so they wear out faster. Larger wheels, however, are more expensive.

What Size Should You Get?

80mm.

That’s it. These are the standard size wheels for recreational skating.

These can also be used to freestyle skate (which typically have a harder boot).

Still, they are not suitable for aggressive skates (which usually have two wheels and smaller wheels of 54mm to 72mm), nor speed skates with larger wheels (like 110mm).

The truth is that it all depends on how skilled you are at skating.

This is covered in detail below.

We recommend that you do not buy 80mm wheels by accident.

Instead, please review the following information to determine what your skates need.

The Wheel’s Hardness

The A number is hardness.

This is the durometer.

This ranges between 68A and 90A.

This scale is actually from 1 to 100.

However, this is the range for skate wheels (the scale measures how hard anything is).

A hard wheel is best indoors and a solf one outdoors.

A slower wheel is considered softer.

Faster is harder.

Higher numbers mean that the wheel is harder.

If you have a very soft wheel, it will change shape when you add weight to it.

It’s not happening in the way you see.

But at the micro-level, it is.

It changes shape and gets squashed under you, increasing friction and giving you more grip.

You will travel slower if there is more friction.

These are small differences, but it’s what’s actually happening.

A harder wheel will also have less change in its shape.

It will be less likely to stick to the ground and provide less grip but allow for greater speed.

You will be able to slide it more easily.

A hard wheel is helpful if you want to do many powerslides.

A softer wheel will also be less likely to separate, much like the difference between rock and cheese.

So small, tiny parts that are difficult to see will rub away when used, especially over rough ground like pavement.

Therefore, a wheel with a softer surface will last less, and If it’s very soft, it may not last as long.

A hard wheel can cause you to slip if you are skating on a very smooth surface.

A soft wheel will be more comfortable on such a surface.

The wheels of hockey skates are slightly soft.

A person who wants to do the same kind of skating as their friend but who is twice their weight will require a different wheel.

They’ll need a softer wheel but a harder number than their friend.

Because their weight is pushing down on it, the wheel changes shape and wears out quickly.

Outdoors, it is not possible to get below 82A hardness. Indoors, it is 80A. A 190lb skater will need to have 82A skating hardness.

This is different from a 150lb skater.

Remember that weight matters.

Durometer can sometimes be replaced by FIRM or XFIRM.

The harder the wheel, the higher the number.

While a hard wheel is more durable and lasts longer, but you will feel the bumps.

It is important to note that speed does not necessarily mean hardness.

These ratings are only for the outer core.

What About The Hub?

Hub refers to the central part of the wheel that houses the bearings.

There are two sizes: a micro hub or a standard hub.

Only the standard hub is available on newer models, while older models have the micro hub.

What Is The Best Time to Get New Wheels For My Inline Skates?

  1. The wheels are worn down on one side. They can be worn down on both sides if you have been rotating them.
  2. You would like to improve performance by increasing the wheel size and hardness.
  3. You wish to change your color so that you look cool. Technically, this could also be a reason.

Different Types of Skating Require Different Wheels

Inline skate wheels for aggressive skating

Aggressive inline skaters prefer control, speed, and the ability to accelerate quickly.

So the wheels are hard and small and have a profile similar to skateboard wheels.

These range from 54mm to 59mm.

However, some people are now skating in larger sizes, sometimes up to 72mm.

The hardness of these wheels is always between 88a and 90a.

These wheels have a short profile, wide, and solid core.

To help grind, people sometimes use smaller wheels or none in the middle wheels.

However, this will make it harder to skate because you don’t have all four wheels.

This can lead to less speed and require more energy.

You may have very small rocker wheels that grind the inside of your 2 wheels.

They can range in size from around 45mm to 49.5mm.

Skating wheels for recreational skating

The wheels of recreational skates range in size from 70mm to 78mm, with hardness ranging between 60A to 80A.

Because they are outside, you want to go fast but not crazy.

Also, you don’t want your skates to get too high to lose stability.

They are basically for all purposes.

Skate wheels in freestyle skating

You can use these skates to skate around the city for recreation.

However, you have better frame capabilities and can fit larger wheels if needed.

You can also see these wheels being used in slalom through the cones.

Slalom can range in height from 72 to 80mm.

It is also rounded for maneuverability and grip.

Skating wheels for fitness skating

This is becoming more serious.

By this time, you should be able to deal with larger wheels.

For serious fitness skating, they are 76-90mm tall.

They also have a thinner profile and can travel further.

Speed skates

This is where you get into the big leagues.

The smallest size wheels measure between 90mm to 110mm.

They are just as large as the largest fitness skate wheels.

These wheels are thinner and tapered for speed.

Hockey skates

72mm and 80mm, respectively, 72A – 74A to ensure maximum grip and maneuverability

What Does 82A Stand For on Rollerblade Wheels?

These wheels are great for outdoor skating, especially those under 180 lbs.

The 82As can also be used on painted or sealed outdoor surfaces but will not perform as well as multi-purpose wheels because of their hardness.

What Are Wheel Profiles?

There are many different profiles of the wheels.

Generally, aggressive skates have the flattest profile because they provide good grip and stability.

They also offer great acceleration.

On the other hand, speed skate wheels are thinner and offer maximum speed.

Are Wheels Different in Width?

It’s not really.

The industry standard is 24mm thick for speed or aggressive skate wheels.

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