First skate purchase

Everything you need to know about skates and their components.
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Everything you need to know about skates and their components.
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Chick Dastardly
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First skate purchase

Postby Chick Dastardly » 16 Mar 2015, 15:03

Right, so the first question after realising that skaters at drop in are keen enough to want their own skates is: what / where / how much?

Add your opinions here! How much should they expect to pay, where can different skates be tried on, thoughts about sizings etc. Maybe start a separate thread for *wheels* (thinking about the floors at Drop In compared to the venue in Withywood)


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Re: First skate purchase

Postby Barbaric Acid » 16 Mar 2015, 17:31

I skated my first two months on rookie disco skates (think they were £40 brand new)...NO ONE DO THIS

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Rip Tease
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Re: First skate purchase

Postby Rip Tease » 16 Mar 2015, 17:34

I'd say first port of call would be to join this group and keep an eye out for second hand r3's:

You can get decent pairs including upgraded toe stops and wheels for around £60 :)

ps I skated on my r3s for almost 3 years. I upgraded the plates when I became part of a travel team to avengers and they suited me absolutely fine so were a solid investment. I've only just upgraded my boots to Bonts! (Which I absolutely love by the way)
Last edited by Rip Tease on 17 Mar 2015, 11:26, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: First skate purchase

Postby Wolverine Bruise » 16 Mar 2015, 17:51

When I was looking I quickly decided that I shouldn't be looking at anything of a lower level than Riedell R3s or Sure Grip GT-50s. These were the skates in most of the fresh meat packages, so quite handy. I ordered online and got a pair too small first, oops, but got a free exchange. I've only recently moved onto new skates, after more than two years, so they're probably good enough until you decide you're REALLY serious.

I think the only places that had these locally were Get Inline (top floor of the Galleries), although there is a place in Downend that does skates, I don't know if they just do mail order (

Both of these are around the £100 mark new.

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Tilly Latimer
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Re: First skate purchase

Postby Tilly Latimer » 17 Mar 2015, 11:11

I skated on R3s until I was a regular A team player. Then Thorn took me aside and said she had to tell me something which would really help my skating. I was waiting to hear the secret of being awesome from her, thinking this was the key to glory, and all I had to do was follow her tip and I would instantly skate like Bonnie Thunders.

Then she told me to buy new skates because mine were not helping me.

I went to Double Threat and tried on lots of pairs of boots, then spent an obscene amount of money on boots, plates and wheels.

So R3s are definitely good enough.

Oh, and it turned out I'd snapped the plate on my R3s, which might have been part of the issue with them not helping me ;)

Wheels: I started on Poisons (84a) and gradually worked my way up the hardness scale until I now skate at Withywood on 97s. I rarely go below 97 these days, though the poisons have made a couple of outings recently on slippy floors. Grippy wheels make you feel more secure, but are slower and if you can't plow or hockey stop, try loosening your trucks and/or harder wheels.

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Re: First skate purchase

Postby Luklear Blast » 17 Mar 2015, 11:57

I bought a pair of Anarchy Havocs new before I showed up at drop-in for the first time. They cost around £70.00 and back then I thought that was quite expensive for roller skates (how naive I was). I would not recommend anyone do that; generally speaking if you buy skates from new and they cost less than £100.00 they're not going to be fit for derby.

I now skate in Riedell Blue Streaks on Avenger plates which I also got fitted for at double threat and also cost a silly amount of money, but they are an absolute dream. I kept my old Havocs to skate outdoors in and it's almost funny to me now how terrible they are in comparison, the plates are off centre and the trucks aren't properly aligned, the cushions and the pivot cups warp easily, and they're very cushioned, so your foot rolls around inside them.

I'm just going to echo what others are saying, if you're on a limited budget, go second hand! You can get a perfectly good pair of second hand R3s for less than the cost of a terrible pair of new skates.

If you've got a bit of cash to spare I'd recommend getting something higher end, look for metal plates over nylon plates and brand names you can trust, bont, riedell, crazy skates, suregrip etc.

If you spend £200.00 on a pair of skates, and you decide derby's not for you, you'll be able to sell them for £160.00 or so second hand. If you spend £80.00 on a pair of skates, you'll be lucky to get £20.00 for them, because no one will want them. So realistically you're better off investing a bit more even if you're not fully committed.

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