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Artistic Skating Forum Discussions about any topic related to artistic roller skating including quad artistic skating, inline figure skating, pairs, dance, synchronized skating, and show skating.

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Old February 25th, 2018, 01:31 AM   #1
tookieskates
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Default outdoor wheel recommendations for artistic skating

Hello! First time posting. I've been reading all I can here for the past few weeks and have learned so much, thank you all. I'm posting because I need help picking out wheels for practicing artistic basics outdoors on concrete (not super smooth parking garage concrete but more like driveway concrete).

I tried to keep this from being too long! TL;DR: I have a figure skating background, please recommend some outdoor wheels that I can use on concrete to learn artistic skating in.

Iíve been a figure skater (on ice) for 21 years, but currently don't live close to an ice rink. Since I enjoyed roller skating when I was younger, and I live near a very flat trail, I decided that I wanted to start roller skating. (No roller rink here either.) I'm very active and just love trying new things!

Trail skating is really fun but I have goals of learning some artistic skating basics. I have low expectations for how many of my ice skating skills I can transfer to roller skates, especially skating outdoors, but of course Iíd like to try to slowly learn a few things. After practicing a lot, if I could eventually learn a few single jumps and learn to spin on roller skates, that would be my biggest dream...I just canít help myself from thinking of these things when wearing skates! For now though, my expectations are realistic and Iím focusing on the basics.

Hereís my set-up (please donít judge my choices too harshly! I got what I could afford for my first pair, I tried not to be too cheap):
Riedell Model 120 Boots
PowerDyne Thrust Nylon Plate
KwiK Zenith Bearings
PowerDyne Magic Cushions - Universal - 82A Medium
Sonar Zen 62mm x 32mm Wheels - 85A (I now know these are not right at all for what I want to do!)

I ended up buying skates from Riedell since Iíve worn their ice skates for about 18 years now. I tried to do as much research as I could before getting them, but I now know those wheels aren't even a good starting point for anything I want to learn. I feel extremely comfortable already just doing straight skating and can also do scissors (I think thatís what roller skaters call what we call swizzles on ice), dips, glide on one foot, skate backwards, etc. Iíve tried a few mohawks, crossovers, and edges but unstable and like my wheels are stuck in place when I do anything needing to be on an edge, like my shoulder and arm position and how I'm leaning affects absolutely nothing happening with the skate and I have to actually adjust my ankle to make anything happen, which feels really wrong. The scissors do feel like a bit of a struggle too, I think Iím able to force them because I donít have to lean into the edge at all since both feet are going out and in simultaneously.

Iím happy with the boots, and am slowly learning to adjust the rest of the skate parts properly. Iíve played with the tightness of the wheels and trucks and from everything Iíve read, I think theyíre now at a good starting point for me. The trucks feel pretty loose now that Iíve adjusted them.

I wanted to get some advice on what wheels I should try next since I realistically canít just try a bunch of wheels and see what works.

I was considering Roll-Line Magnum wheels in 55 or 57 mm and 49D durometer, but someone told me those only do well on really super smooth concrete. They recommended Radar Energy 57 mm in 87A. I'd just like to hear a few more opinions before ordering anything.

Thoughts or suggestions?

Thanks!!
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Old February 25th, 2018, 04:16 AM   #2
Ancient1
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Hi Tookieskates,

Since you came to roller instead of ice, you might consider if you are so inclined to get a PIC SKATE. They are made for dance figures and freestyle. There use to be a member here and I think she was on PIC Skates and was a former Ice skater.

Maybe this would be of use. It is not just wheels, but everything from this company.

http://www.picskate.com/products.htm#Professional994
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Old February 25th, 2018, 04:58 AM   #3
tookieskates
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ancient1 View Post
Hi Tookieskates,

Since you came to roller instead of ice, you might consider if you are so inclined to get a PIC SKATE. They are made for dance figures and freestyle. There use to be a member here and I think she was on PIC Skates and was a former Ice skater.

Maybe this would be of use. It is not just wheels, but everything from this company.

http://www.picskate.com/products.htm#Professional994
Jim,

Thanks for the idea and the link!

I did know about inline figure skates (first heard about them maybe 14 years ago in a figure skating magazine! I remember begging my mom for a pair so I could practice at home) and considered those and Snow Whites when deciding what skates to get. They're not off the table for a future purchase for sure.

Ultimately quad skates seemed like such a classic choice for my first pair of roller skates. I hope I didn't make the wrong choice!
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Old February 25th, 2018, 11:42 AM   #4
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I am sure you made a good decision.
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Old February 26th, 2018, 10:56 PM   #5
Oicusk82huh
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I tried the Radar Energy for outside rhythm and dancing and it was WAY to sticky. I felt like I was gonna break my ankle anytime I tried a one footed spin (the foot stayed stationary). I haven't been outside since then, so I'm also looking for a good outdoor wheel. Glad you posted this, hoping to get some good advice.
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Old February 27th, 2018, 11:38 AM   #6
tookieskates
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Originally Posted by Oicusk82huh View Post
I tried the Radar Energy for outside rhythm and dancing and it was WAY to sticky. I felt like I was gonna break my ankle anytime I tried a one footed spin (the foot stayed stationary). I haven't been outside since then, so I'm also looking for a good outdoor wheel. Glad you posted this, hoping to get some good advice.
Thank you for posting your experience with the Radar Energy wheels! Since you said they feel too sticky, may I ask what your outdoor skating surface is like?

This skater I follow on Instagram has the Radar Energy wheels and posted this video recently. They definitely look more able to turn easily than my current wheels but the spin at the end maybe seems forced to get one rotation? Or maybe that's what she wanted. I don't know...she's a really awesome skater, this is just me trying to evaluate the wheels themselves...

https://www.instagram.com/p/BfcOozwjhe1/


I hope some others will post wheel recommendations for us! Thank you
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Old February 28th, 2018, 08:28 PM   #7
tookieskates
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Thanks to those who commented!

After some more digging around on Instagram to see what others are using, I've decided to abandon the idea of the Radar Energy wheels for now (since they're not made specifically for artistic freestyle skating), and try a Roll-Line wheel. Worst case scenario, hopefully I can sell them after one or two uses if they absolutely won't roll on the surfaces I have access to. Best case scenario, all of my roller skating dreams will be within reach.

I contacted a distributor, who recommended I try Magnum or Giotto in 57mm in either 57D or 60D for skating on the concrete I described. So now I am just deciding which hardness to try and whether it's going to make a difference to me as a beginner to splurge for the Giotto.
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Old March 21st, 2018, 09:22 PM   #8
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If anyone is following this thread, I just wanted to post an update. Maybe you're genuinely interested or maybe just rolling your eyes at me! Either way is fine.

Ok, so after speaking with a second distributor who also recommended Magnum 57D to me (she said she did not think I would notice a difference with Giotto given my skating surface), I bought a set of them to try. Roll-Line wheels also required the purchase of a bearing press. The Roll-Line bearing press is really expensive, so I went with the Owlsome press for $30 on Amazon and that worked perfectly for me. It seems to be well made and should be fine for light use.

I tried the Magnum wheels out on three surfaces, so let me tell you how it went. First was my hardwood kitchen floor, it's my control subject because it's always available and consistent. The wheels were super slippery and fish tailed on the wood floor. Even though they were slippery, I could turn really easily and they felt very reactive to my movements, which was a big change from my previous wheels.

The other 2 surfaces were smooth asphalt (a newer basketball court) and a concrete parking lot (about the texture of a typical sidewalk).

I would not skate again on these wheels on asphalt. That's about all I have to say about it. It's too textured (even the smoothest asphalt) and they don't want to roll. Someone more advanced might handle it better than I did. Someone more advanced would probably know not to even try!

On concrete, they were ok. I felt nervous going over even the smallest seams in the concrete but they handled them. I felt more unstable than usual and had to work a lot harder than usual to build up any speed. If I practiced more, I think I could learn a few things on this surface, but it would definitely be a lot of work. It wasn't a very fun skating experience. I would have to be really dedicated to improving on this surface just to get used to it.

I'm itching to try them out on a tennis court...I go by one every day and stare at it longingly thinking it would honestly be a great surface for these wheels. But, signs are posted and I'm a chicken. I don't want to get yelled at by tennis players or security. And it's on the premises of my employer so that makes it worse! So, I don't know if I ever will have the chance. But maybe sometime.

All in all, it was an expensive experiment but I'm glad I did it because I would have always wondered if those magical Roll-Line wheels would be my ticket to outdoor artistic skating. For now, I'm reassessing my roller skating goals. Once I have more skating experience, I'll try the Roll-Line wheels again (Unless anyone wants to buy them from me? Let me know!) and see how they feel. My final conclusion is that it would be really hard for a more beginner level roller skater to learn in them though.

As a result of this experiment, I got so frustrated by not being able to skate the way I wanted to, that I decided to get back into ice skating (after a 3 year break) even though my rink is far away. I found a session that works for me and I'm going to go a few times a month, so that makes me really happy. And now that I scratched that particular skating itch, I think I'm just going to enjoy trail skating on my roller skates for awhile and build up my basic skating skills more before I try other stuff. I just ordered a set of Moxi Gummy wheels (hopefully my last skating purchase for awhile), and I'm super excited to try them out when they arrive.

Thanks to everyone who commented! In hindsight, I was trying too hard to make outdoor artistic skating happen, but I don't think I would have come to the conclusions I did without trying the Roll-Line wheels (or something similar) on my own. Someone with more experience may be able to find other solutions for outdoor artistic skating. So, if that's you, and you're reading this, don't let my post keep you from trying. I have by no means tried or experienced enough to tell anyone that it isn't possible. I personally just don't want to spend the money to keep trying other products that may or may not work.
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Old March 22nd, 2018, 01:10 AM   #9
ursle
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Roll-line 57d are plastic not urethane, pity you suffered them.
Ancient1 is right on, get some inline skates, and just continue skating ice but outdoors.
Outdoor wheels should be 79-89a durometer, the 58d are 100+ on the a scale, making them indoor art wheels on a perfect floor.

Google inline cone skating, or slalom skating, the boots and wheels will be what you want.

Or, get some 79-89 roller skate wheels, not 100a plastic wheels.
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Old March 22nd, 2018, 01:55 PM   #10
tookieskates
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Originally Posted by ursle View Post
Roll-line 57d are plastic not urethane, pity you suffered them.
Ancient1 is right on, get some inline skates, and just continue skating ice but outdoors.
Outdoor wheels should be 79-89a durometer, the 58d are 100+ on the a scale, making them indoor art wheels on a perfect floor.

Google inline cone skating, or slalom skating, the boots and wheels will be what you want.

Or, get some 79-89 roller skate wheels, not 100a plastic wheels.
Thanks for your comments. I see what you're saying, and I understand durometer. However, I contacted two different Roll-Line distributors and described my skating surfaces, and both got back to me with the same suggestion. I asked the first one that got back to me, "Are you sure? A harder wheel for this surface?" And they assured me that was correct. The only downfall they described was that the wheels would wear out more quickly on that surface. Having never skated on plastic wheels before, I took their word for it.

Roll-Line also writes about the Magnum wheels, "The Magnum is less expensive (than the Giotto and Urethane counterparts), yet, very high quality wheel, which is used on many types of skating surfaces including standard wood floors coated with plastic or poly urethane, but also unusual surfaces like, tile type basketball and volleyball courts, tennis courts (Indoor or outdoor), and concrete or terrazzo surfaces that are more common around the World. The Magnum FreeStyle Wheels are used a great deal internationally, where there are few indoor skating centers like there are here in the USA. The Magnum FreeStyle wheels are most often used on abusive surfaces where the life expectancy of the wheels on these tough surfaces are not very long, but very High Skating Quality both Grip and Roll are required."

So...all that to say....if anyone reading wants to really help out beginning skaters choose wheels and other skate parts, please write detailed reviews of products you buy online. Most of the websites I looked at had no reviews for the majority of their wheels, and reviews I did read were not very detailed. I stressed over this decision for weeks. Obviously I made the wrong choice in the end, but I was guided in this direction by people who sounded like they knew what they were talking about.

And yes, my 78A wheels are on the way, and I'm excited. (My other outdoor wheels are 85A. I'm going in the total opposite direction of the Roll-Lines now and getting something super soft for a steady and comfortable outdoor skating experience.)

Additionally, I was just given an old pair of inline skates in good condition 2 days ago from a friend, but I haven't had a chance to skate in them yet. They're just a recreational pair probably bought at a sporting goods store many years ago, nothing fancy, but they seem pretty nice quality. I'm not sure about the wheel quality straight out of the box but I'll look into it.
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Old March 29th, 2018, 12:04 AM   #11
Sir Aaron
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I'm tinkering with skating outside and may pick up a pair of Roll Line Helium wheels which were made for outdoors. Seems soft and grippy to me. If that doesn't work we will have to resort to soft dance wheels like the 92. The problem with outdoors is that you don't need the grip but you need the softness to keep from hitting a small pebble and coming to an instant stop.
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Old March 29th, 2018, 12:30 AM   #12
ursle
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I only skate outdoors and I use the Heliums, on the fifth set, bought them for cheap (45$) off ebay, I suspect they are some sort of faux copy, the hubs seem softer and I get bearing seizure or wheel bite for the first ten minutes, then either my body loosens and I have better balance and don't edge as hard (not a dance skater, a hockey skater keeping all 8 wheels down), after flexion and exercise) or ?

64mm tall, 82a not 79a, very thin urethane, I love them. Well the first 4 sets, extremly light weight, my advice, buy them from the us dealer$.
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