When your skateboard deck shows signs of deteriorating in quality, what will you do? Do you search for a new one or do the deck restore? Especially for beginners, it seems to be a hard question.
In the beginning, we found it hard to get the right skateboard for the game. So, we never want to replace the old deck but try to restore it instead. If comparing, the deck restore is undoubtedly much more convenient and money-saving than shopping for a new item.
Do you love to know the reason why? The answer is in the following part.
What Is the Skateboard Deck?
To learn how to do the perfect deck restore, you should know what it is first.
Manufacturers mostly use the Canadian maple to make the deck. It often consists of 5 or 8 layers of pressed wood. Sometimes other materials such as carbon fiber, glass fiber, bamboo, plastic, and tree sap also join to increase the strength or lighten the board.
The current decks are from 7 to 8,5 inch wide. Its width depends on the size of the player’s feet. The current game usually has a diameter of 7-8,5 inches depending on the size of the user’s feet. To perform the skateboard ramps, players will use a wider board for stability.
No matter how much a skateboard costs, its deck never lasts forever. You may find the deck worn out with lots of cracks by pressure after a time in use. Or the paint on the deck tends to peel off over time. These problems affect the aesthetics and your skateboarding performance as well.
There are many ways to fix these problems of the skateboard deck.. We will show you how, let’s see.
How Can You Restore an Old Deck?
The restoration will include three steps.
Step 1: Checking
Since you have not played on the board for a long time, you should begin by inspecting it entirely. Parts in direct contact with your shoes as well as joints are the ones to pay special attention. Then, you can keep going if there is no structural damage.
Many people store the skateboard in the warehouse, which is often freaking damp. The low humidity can cause the wood deck to get termite-cated. So, don’t forget to check carefully the whole board before moving on to the second step.
Step 2: Cleaning
Giving the deck a new look sometimes requires you to use some chemicals which are never healthful. When working with these products, you had better wear both eye protection and gloves.
You use a brush to go over the deck to clean the wood fiber. After removing all dirt sticking on the deck for months, you rinse the board. The staining process will be much easier and more effective if you keep the board damp.
Now, it is time to choose the right cleaners. Recently, tons of deck-cleaning products are available on the market for you to choose. The main ingredients for most of them are four chemicals, including sodium hypochlorite, sodium percarbonate, oxalic acid, and sodium hydroxide.
People call the sodium hypochlorite the chlorine bleach. It is often in use to get rid of mildew. However, sodium hypochlorite is not sufficient enough to remove dirt or other stains.
One note is that you must rinse the board thoroughly after applying the cleaner. If not, this chemical may eat away at the wood and worsen the condition of your skateboard deck.
The sodium percarbonate is an oxygen-based mixture of hydrogen peroxide and sodium carbonate. Unlike the former, this one acts as a detergent. It is perfectly useful to get rid of all dirt as well as mildew.
In case that the deck becomes ugly with bad iron stains or brown-black tannins, you should try cleaners with the oxalic acid. The chemical often goes with the deck brighteners.
But there is a minus point for the oxalic acid, which is its inefficiency against mildew. If your board gets trouble with the mildew, never choose this acid.
The sodium hydroxide or the lye is one of the critical elements of most removers on the market. Like the sodium hypochlorite, the sodium hydroxide tends to eat away the wood. So, do not leave it too long on the deck surface.
Step 3: Repainting
Checking and cleaning are done. Now, you can start to give the skateboard deck a new coat. It is helpful for you to repaint the old colors and patterns. Or for another choice, let’s feel free to paint a new one and show your style.
Only with one, two, and three steps, now, you have a perfect skateboard. It is truly an economical way to have a completely new deck for skating and performing tricks.
How Can You Restore a Peeling Deck?
Painting the deck requires you to create a sufficient bond between the paint layer and the deck surface. Then, the paint can stay with high durability. Moreover, skateboarding is an outside game. It means that the board gets exposed to harsh weather elements. So, this bond is essential.
Reasons Why the Deck Peel off
As we mentioned, the adhesion of the paint layer are not simple. That specific criterion meets creates the bond between the paint and the deck surface. If one or more than one issue happens, the connection will fail, leading to the peeling.
What are some common reasons causing the peeling deck?
- Quality: It is impossible to create a tight bond without high-quality paint. The lack of the necessary properties may be the leading cause of inadequate coverage. Then, it eventually results in peeling.
- Application: Your satisfaction with the deck quality also depends on the method of applying the paint. If prepare the color from top brands, use expensive tools, but you apply improper techniques, we can say that you fail.
- Dirt: Many people still think that paint can stick on any surface. But the fact is the opposite. Paint cannot adhere to surfaces such as dirt and mildew. So, we suggest you remove all things like those from the deck before you paint.
- Moisture: Among all elements we mention, the humidity is the top one enemy of the deck paint. With the high-moisture condition, water vapor has a chance of separating the color from the deck surface. It means that the bond fails.
Tips to Repair
Repainting different decks are not the same. It depends on a lot of elements. Things as the age of the post-paint, the damaged positions, or the color will affect the repainting result. If you are a beginner, followings are some tips from experienced skateboarders.
- No.1: Before repainting, use a stiff brush or a scraping tool to remove all the peeling.
- No.2: To have a smooth paint layer, sand the deck surface lightly.
- No.3: Keeping the deck surface clean and dry is also a requirement.
- No.4: We suggest you apply the paint with a brush or a roller.
- No.5: Waiting for the first layer to dry, then applying the second coat will help to have the perfect paint.
When Is the Right Time to Replace Your Skateboard Deck?
It is not a good idea if you do the deck restore again and again. When there are some damages as chips, cracks or sharp edges appearing, you should stop. It is time to think about replacing with a new one. These signs show that safety is no longer get compromised. The more frequently you skate, the quicker the replacement must be.
Players usually do not notice that the deck wear out right away. Like me, we only do when we find struggling to skate on the board
The Frequency of Replacing the Skateboard Deck
There is no fixed timeline to replace your skateboard deck. It depends on how often you skate and what style of skateboarder you are.
For example, you only love skating the mini ramp. We are sure that the deck will last longer than when you do stake on the street too much. About hours per day for skating on the road, you will have to replace the deck sooner.
For those who only skate a few times every week, the deck could last longer. Even after two months, there is still no sign of deck wearing or tearing out. Regarding cheap skateboards, you should replace every four months. But, for as the strongest ones, they probably last more than two years.
Let’s turn back to the case of mini ramps. Skateboarders often do them on smooth surfaces. It is the reason why the deck will not wear out quickly. If you are the one who loves mini ramps, you may need to replace the deck maybe every six months or one time a year.
Like we said above, these timelines are only the estimation based on my experience. The skateboard quality and your bad luck also affect at most. That the deck is still okay does not mean the whole board has no problem. Do not forget to check other parts as well.
The Importance of Replacing a Skateboard Deck
Talking about the importance, I cannot ignore safety. No one wants to see the doctors after the playful skateboarding time. Doing the deck restore is only feasible for little damages. When the damages worsen the deck quality, snapping the deck when you land the skate is unavoidable.
What will happen if the tail breaks?
You roll your ankle and take a nasty fall. For frequent uses, the deck starts losing its structural integrity. Then, cracks, chips, or sharp edges will come. The board truly compromises safety then.
You can buy the new deck separately if other parts are still okay. Components such as trucks and wheels are often more durable than a deck. So, we recommend a blank deck if you have a tight budget.
There is no doubt that a blank deck is so boring. But the importance is that it matches the tight budget. For me, fancy graphics on the deck is sometimes useless. Moreover, they usually peel over easily when you do boardslide or tail/noseslides frequently.
Wow, you see, doing the deck restore is not as challenging as you have thought. It is extremely time-and-money-saving.
However, you should not overdo it. We only recommend for minor damages. If it is about time, do not hesitate to buy a new one. The replacing will be better for your safety.
Have you ever tried to do the deck restore?Let’s share your experience below. We will discuss more ideas regarding skateboards in my upcoming articles. See you, guys!