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Roller Derby Forum Discussions about banked-track and flat-track roller derby events, teams, skaters, and training methods.

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Old January 7th, 2018, 04:55 AM   #1
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Join Date: Jan 2018
Posts: 3
Default Looking for a comparison of 20 degree plates:

Looking for a comparison of 20 degree plates:

Crazy Venus vs Chaya Shiva (or Ophira) vs. Bont Athena vs Roll-Line Dance (or any others around 20 degrees) / Plate rec

Why: I play roller derby. The Venus has been my favorite plate, but I snapped 7 kingpins in just over a year. Since the kingpins are threaded through the plate, I would have to pull off the plate and hurridely re-mount when it happened during a game to replace the kingpin, which made me miss about a quarter of the game.

My style of skating: I block. I do both choppy steps and like to be able to have a lot of controlled slide. Not a jumper, but I stop very hard and fast, and I am guessing I stress-fractured the kingpins over time because they would break when I was only just rolling. We even tried swapping out the plates to see if mine were defective, and I broke all of the kingpins (front right, front left, etc) at least once.

Plates I have tried since the Venus:
- Pilot Falcon Plus: yuck without the adjustable kingpin, okay with it. Could not quite get the action out of it I wanted, even with the softest cushions and my lock nut threatening to come off. Hated where the toestop was. Also was something else about this plate I did not love - maybe the cushions? (which makes me worry a bit about a roll line with the shorter bottom cone, but it is also completely possible that it was not it at all - I skated the Revenge years ago, and this just felt different in a way I did not like)
- Mag Avenger: More action than Falcon, which I liked. Had a weird dead spot if I leaned into a hockey stop too much (for that plate)- had to be more straight up to break my wheels loose. Pivots always knocked out of adjustment by the end of practice. Also had to change a few trucks out in a short amount of time because the adjustable pivot locked up. (Caveat: may have been something wrong with one plate because it always felt like the left front pivot was coming through my boot even after I changed out the pivot cup and tried lowering the pivot pin way too low).
- Platinum Arius: plate is fine. I like it better than the Falcon Plus and Mag Avenger. Don't like that it feels like it has no center to return to. Feels like not all of my push always transfers to the floor. Worst thing that has happened was that the Axis pin fell out once. No kingpin for me to break.

Additional info: 170lbs, hard or medium top cushion, soft bottom cushion

I skated fine on all of the plates, and I am fine on the Platinum Arius. After a bunch of cushion tries, I am happy enough with the plate, but I still really miss the Venus. That plate felt so natural to me, and I had no adjustment period. The only complaints I ever* had was that it was a heavier plate and that I wished it had adjustable pivots.

I may be asking for something that does not exist, but I am curious to hear from people who have skated on more than one 20 (or 22) degree plate as to how they compare. I would also be fine with a Franken plate. I have been wondering if roll line trucks would fit on the Chaya Shiva. Also thought about replacing the Bont* Athena kingpins with Snyder titanium (I read somewhere that they were the same size).

TL;DR: Looking for a plate with a similar feel to the venus, but more durable and preferably lighter
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Old January 7th, 2018, 05:25 AM   #2
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Do a forum search on Falcon and Athena and you will find some interesting discussions.
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Old January 7th, 2018, 05:57 AM   #3
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Thank you for the suggestion, but I have searched and read every thread I could find on Skatelog (and elsewhere) on the Venus, the Chaya plates, the Athena, the Roll-Line Dance/Novita/Ring, and I have not found a good comparison. The closest I found was that Doc was going to review rhwm against his Rings, but I could never find that review, and that another member said that the liked the Athena best, but that he could not explain entirely why.

There may be threads out there that I missed through operator error or because my phone or computer would not let me see all the hits. If you know of any that compare the plates, could you please post a link?
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Old January 7th, 2018, 12:23 PM   #4
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Location: NH
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Donít have a Venus in hand, does the king pin screw in or press in.
Grab a set of Snyder advantage, great plate, easily sourced parts, you wonít break a king pin, you can add titanium parts as you go, or just useíem.

Any roll line plate also, 18-20 degrees, same thing, more expensive possibly, but parts are available.

Pro line plates are 5 or 10 degrees, bombproof, but if you want 18-20, itís your call.

Back to the Snyder, established company, you can go full titanium or any point between stock and full titanium, lots of cushion choices, adjustable pivot pins, easily sourced.
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Old January 8th, 2018, 07:40 PM   #5
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Location: Pittsburg, Kansas
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I have skated Venus, Chaya, and the new Bont Athena.

Chaya: VERY well built plates. Ophira are a bit heavy. Shiva are lighter, but pricey. I didn't skate them long enough to judge durability. Price is the main downside.

Bont Athena: Amazing plate at this pricepoint. some have complained that 6061 aluminum is not light enough. It skated well. I can not confirm, but it felt like a lower "deck height" than many other plates. I did NOT have any wheel rub. Best thing... cushions are a standard size, so you should be able to use Sure-Grip cushions (I have not tried). Also, king pins are the same size as Snyder. Getting parts should be easy.

Crazy Venus: Plate is strong and colors are cool. I like the cushions and hardware. Aluminum kingpins prone to breaking. The cheaper steel king pin option seems to be less of an issue. I used to sell this plate a lot to those who really wanted colors. I rarely sell these anymore.

MY Opinion: I really wanted the Bont Athena to be my dream plate. It is such a good product! All of the 20 degree plates I mentioned skate similarly. For some reason, 20 Degree plates just don't agree with me. To me, there is just a "dead" feeling. Obviously, they are great for a lot of people.

I am skating the Roller Derby Elite Magnesium 45 degree plate right now and really like it. It skates differently than the Sure-Grip Avenger. I had problems with RD Elite Kingpins in the first generation, but they seem to be better now.

As with any product, your milage may vary. That being said, if you want a 20 degree plate at a great price, consider the Bont Athena.
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Old January 10th, 2018, 02:38 PM   #6
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The kingpon goes in through the top of the plate; it doea not screw into the bottom.

Thank you for your thoughts ans conparisons!
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Old March 11th, 2018, 03:28 AM   #7
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Originally Posted by TenderSkater View Post
The kingpon goes in through the top of the plate; it doea not screw into the bottom.

Thank you for your thoughts ans conparisons!
Most skates you work on that are not 30 degree kp angle have limits on their tuning abilities. More of a fixed system than one that can be tuned a lot. You get what you buy and may not be able to find the right plate with buying a lot of different plates.
What are your specifics on a plate?
"Liberal Logic", not possible.... a phrase in conflict with itself....
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Old March 16th, 2018, 07:37 AM   #8
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Join Date: Aug 2012
Location: Huntington Wv
Posts: 3,259
Default Oh boy, here we go! :)

Little info about Arius plates(both red and platinum)

Arius plates develop their center point after hours of use. Essentially the hinge gets broken in/lapped in and becomes more stable after several hundred edge to edge leans. Until it starts to lap in holding a center point or a perfectly straigjt line will be more difficult. It is similar to trying to stand on a tightrope at first.

They are a flawed design in stock form...as I found out. I made a fix for that however.

What flaw?
The trucks and plates wear out in their stock configuration, and are destined to be throw aways after 3 to 4 years of daily use.(3 days a week is what I skate on average and I wrecked mine in that time frame but I skate ALOT harder than anyone else I know 3 hour sessions and I almost never stop cranking out laps)

The axles suck... kinda
Not in a way most would think though. Good matrial, strong, good OD as well BUT ..They have a small dip at the end of the threads. This is both good and bad, depending on how you look at it. If using 608 bearings, it's a non issue for the most part... but bont hubs use micros and space them out into that dip, which forces the inside bearing into misalignment, and really puts heavier than normal wear on them.

The advantage of this is wheels with a wider bearing spacing than. .270 for 608s or 11mm for micros, will find the outer bearing sitting in this dip. This allows the wheel to have additional play. This is BAD for traction, but good for slide control. This can be remedied with a correctly made set of spacers, so it is possible to augment your traction simply by tightening the nuts up. This also changes the way the plate steers and how well it rolls.

The gen 1 trucks and cushions are the best IMO. The platinum version, while they have more accurately made cushions, can't be modified as easily. The gen 1 cushions are usually too large, and need trimmed down in height which is pretty easy to do though. By trimming them a little slimmer, it gives room for the deflection of the cushion in the truck housing, greatly reducing the ramp up resistance. One could further change that by cutting the tips of the stabilization pins down a smidge and sanding them smooth again.

I have some laser cut shims made which does a couple things 1 guard the plate from wear/damage , 2 takes out the slop in the hinge which does A. It makes the plate respond faster, and B increases grip by decreasing slop. A 3rd thing is it does help reduce friction for the truck to swing easier, since the plastics would be sitting on a mirror like surface with a higher hardness. My current setup does not even use plastic axis pin sleeves anymore

After you really leverage the cushions over a few times they soften up a smidge and become more compliant, just like rubber bands do once they get stretched out a few times. This is true for any plate though, just some people miss it.

The reason you probably feel like the plate loses some of your push is because it is unforgiving. It will let you know when you have done a move the slightest bit incorrectly much faster than a traditional kingpin setup, But the power transfer is second to none with a good stride.

I started off with a size 12 plate and now have a size 11. I bent one of the frames on the size 12's.. well twisted it really. 6061 my ass...lol

My experience with Mag avengers..

heh, good plate for the money, but sometimes those damn pivots... they don't want to stay put! Seen a few truck yokes break(where the cushions sit) Axles can get pulled loose. 100lb kid did it before at my rink. Seen a few loose kingpins, but nothing some retaining compound like loctite 609 can't fix for the axles/kps.

Crazy Venus are known to have KP issues, heck a little 120lb kid at oour rink has already broken 2 in 6 months or so. There are a few people that have fixed this issue(AFAIK) but I cannot remember where they sourced parts from or what they did, maybe Doc will bring it up.

Nothing wrong with drop in kingpins. Find where you can get some better steel bolts for the Venus, little dap of 609 loctite in the plate , done.

Happy skating!
Home rink: Roll-A-Rama in Huntington Wv.
"Focus on form and speed is a byproduct, focus on speed and falling is a byproduct." - Matguy
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Old Today, 04:40 PM   #9
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Join Date: Oct 2006
Location: Arizona
Posts: 2,723
Default Broken Kingpins.

One huge problem that can arise with broken kingpins is the truck side leverage. If you are running your Truck adjustment so loose that the truck metal surface actually contacts the kingpin surface,you are creating a metal to metal shear effect. IE there is No cushion protecting the pin surface. Direct 170lbs Skater torque.

Very important to do a standing test. Adjust your trucks as you skate. Standing straight up feet side to side and your wheels on a surface where they can *articulate under your plate when YOU lean as hard as you can. You should be able to torque the truck over to see if it does contact the king pin surface. If< you cannot see or feel it,remove the truck and cushions,paint the king pin surface with a black marker and reassemble Try again,you would see the nick in the marker if they are touching.

If so,you will need to select cushions that will give you truck desired movement without touching the king pin surface with the truck metal.

*The most common king pin breakage is from the added leverage against the pin with>OUT any cushion between.
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20 degree plates

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