Best Skateboard 2018: the 6 best complete skateboards for beginners and pros alike

Lace up your shoes, strap on your pads and ride these unbeatable complete skateboards

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Whether you’re new to skateboarding or are a seasoned street warrior, a good skateboard is a must. 

It’s perfectly viable to put together your own board of course, but sometimes grabbing grip tape, a deck, trucks, bearings, wheels and all the hardware you need just isn’t worth the hassle, particularly when there are complete boards out there with some serious chops.

Our favourite complete skateboard is Plan B’s Danny Way Captain x Thunder Pro, a great combination of pro components and a deck that’s built for fun, but Venom’s Hollow Light budget build deserves a nod given just what it can do at the price.

If you’re more about freeriding, you can’t beat a longboard: the Globe Geminon is a great choice.  

How to buy the best skateboard for you

It’s easy to be caught out by the tempting price tag attached to some low end pre-built boards when starting out, but you would be absolutely mad to buy cheap. 

Cheap skateboards are inevitably terrible and require component upgrades across the board... pun intended.  

The wheels will pick up flat spots, the deck won't stand heavy or repeated impact, and we’ve even heard tales of snapped trucks due to low-quality metal. 

The perfect beginner board is a complete with hardware that will last, as well as moving and behaving in the right way. What's more, there’s nothing to say a starter skater can’t work with the same components the pros use – start as you mean to go on.

Think about how you’re going to use your board. If you’re going to be battering it attempting tricks, pick up a deck that can take the punishment. If you’re more likely to use it for travel, a board with wider wheels and a stiffer deck might be a better choice.

Whatever you buy – we’ve picked out a cross-section here, which should suit any rider – you’ll need a few essential extras; a good skate tool is a must, a bit of wax goes a long way, and a backpack won’t hurt.  Oh, and you’re going to be spending a fortune on shoes…

The best skateboard you can buy right now

Best skateboards: Plan B Danny Way Captain x Thunder Pro

1. Plan B Danny Way Captain x Thunder Pro

Fun, fast, and fully loaded

Specifications
Deck: 7-ply maple, BLK ICE treated
Wheels: 52mm Spitfire Big Head
Bearings: Bones Reds
Trucks: Thunder Raw 148
Reasons to buy
+A full-on, pro set up all in one +Industry standard bearings+BLK ICE ups the entertainment level
Reasons to avoid
-Pricey for a beginner 

The Plan B Danny Way Captain x Thunder Pro is a complete skateboard kit with real pro chops. 

Pulling in everything from the excellent Bones Reds bearings, Thunder Raw 148 Pro Trucks that are lightweight but still stand up to a heck of a lot of punishment, super-durable 52mm Spitfire Big Head wheels and colour-coded hardware so you won’t lose your tail, it's the best skateboard you can buy right now. 

That Captain America-esque deck, though, is where the real magic happens. It uses Plan B’s Blk Ice tech, which means it’s lighter than your average board, stronger than standard 7-ply maple, and it’s built to slide and pop like no other without any need to add wax. This also makes it more consistent; no extra slippery or sticky spots, just a smooth ride.

Best skateboards: Jucker Hawaii Nuha Cruiser

2. Jucker Hawaii Nuha Cruiser

Complete class with a comfortable ride

Specifications
Deck: 7-ply cold pressed maple
Wheels: 60mm Jucker Hawaii Mini Balls
Bearings: Jucker Hawaii ABEC 7
Trucks: Jucker Hawaii Rugged
Reasons to buy
+Fabulous veneer finish+Flat-tail for easy switch
Reasons to avoid
-Almost too fancy to ride-Not the best trick board

As adept cruising the streets as it is rolling through bowls and ramps, the 8.5 inch Nuha employs a cold-pressed maple deck for extra strength and couples it with an absolutely stunning walnut veneer on the base – if gaudy artwork isn’t your thing, this is the perfect around-town board.

 You might think twice about boardslides, though, given the beautiful looks on offer.

It’s apt that Jucker Hawaii has paired the board with such versatile wheels; its translucent Street Juice urethane mini balls have a decent 30mm contact surface, and they’re perfect for concrete, whether you’re on the pavement or in the park.

Best skateboards: Enjoi Faded Panda Resin Complete

3. Enjoi Faded Panda Resin Complete

Cuddly exterior, but tough as nails

Specifications
Deck: 7-ply maple with resin
Wheels: Enjoi 52mm Whitey Panda
Bearings: Speed Demons shielded
Trucks: Tensor
Reasons to buy
+Great for smaller feet+Super springy resin deck
Reasons to avoid
-Intermediate components-Not a great cruiser

Standard skateboard decks fuse their layers together with wood glue, but Enjoi’s cute Faded Panda deck – which comes, in this case, with Enjoi’s own super-soft Whitey Panda wheels – is a bit different.

It switches that glue out for resin, giving this deck an extra level of stiffness and pop. If you’re more about the ollies and flips than cruising, this combo is a great choice.

It’s also pretty well suited to smaller riders, or at least those with smaller feet, as it’s on the shorter side and slim at 7.75”. Raw-finish trucks from Tensor and a set of Speed Demons shielded bearings cap off the package, for a smooth ride that has its sights set firmly on the street.

Best skateboards: Santa Cruz Kendall End Of The World 10"

4. Santa Cruz Kendall End Of The World 10"

A real blast from the past

Specifications
Deck: 7-ply maple
Wheels: Santa Cruz 60mm Slimeball Vomits
Bearings: Santa Cruz nylon
Trucks: Krux 850
Reasons to buy
+Great for blasting pools or cursing+Old-school look and feel
Reasons to avoid
-Classically heavy-Lacking modern versatility 

If you last stood on a skateboard in the mid-80s, the classic styling of Santa Cruz’s authentic reissue will bring back some serious memories – but it’s far from a novelty piece.

The wider, stubbier form of the old-school deck makes it absolutely perfect for covering distance comfortably, and it’s a manoeuvrable board all told.

Why? Well, the medium hardness Krux trucks certainly don’t hurt its ability to turn a corner, and the wide 60mm Slimeball wheels are soft and large enough to skim happily over stones but they’re tough enough to last a long time. 

There’s even a set of side rails bolted on, should you happen to lean into those turns a little too hard.   

Best skateboards: Globe Geminon Mini Drop 37.5

5. Globe Geminon Mini Drop 37.5

A board that keeps on rolling

Specifications
Deck: 7-ply maple resin with Rosewood veneer
Wheels: Globe 70mm 83a
Bearings: Globe ABEC 7
Trucks: Slant 180mm reverse kingpin
Reasons to buy
+Symmetrical freeriding shape+Great traction at speed
Reasons to avoid
-Only a cruiser-Limited foot space

While an old-school board is a good contender for cruising, there’s nothing better than a modern longboard for serious movement at speed. 

Globe’s scooped-out deck drops your feet closer to the trucks (and the ground) for tighter control, and the cutouts above each of the road-hugging 70mm wheels mean you can brake with your soles if you’re brave.

We’re fond of the rosewood styling on the bottom of the resin-processed deck, though this isn’t a board that’ll spend much time without the grip tape facing up – at least, you’ll hope it isn’t. Make sure you wear the proper protective gear if you’re hitting the hills.

Best skateboards: Venom Hollow Light Complete Skateboard

6. Venom Hollow Light Complete Skateboard

A starter board with clout

Specifications
Deck: 7-ply maple
Wheels: Venom pro 100A
Bearings: Venom ABEC 11
Trucks: Venom Hollow Light
Reasons to buy
+A well priced beginner board+Eminently customisable 
Reasons to avoid
-A little bland by default

Venom’s skateboard package won’t break the bank but it’s a few steps above the cheapest in terms of quality; if you’re a beginner, it’s a great choice. 

With a long, wide 8.25” 7 ply Canadian maple deck, suitable for larger feet or those who just prefer a little more material between them and their wheels, it’s a quality collection of components that makes up a highly credible board.

Everything’s here: that deck, a set of Venom’s nylon cage bearings, the full complement of durable urethane skate wheels, grip tape, and even a skate tool for assembly and maintenance. 

We’ll readily admit that the dull finish of the deck cuts off a few cool points, but slather it in stickers and nobody will know.