First Derby Skates?

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Mimi K
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First Derby Skates?

Postby Mimi K » 06 Nov 2012, 20:22

I've no idea what any of this means! Do these sound okay?

SURE GRIP GT-50
Boot:
• Rock GT-50 Black
Chassis:
• Rock Nylon
Wheel:
• Sure Grip GT-50 62mm Black/White Swirl
Bearing:
• Sure Grip ABEC-5 Speed


Does anyone know how to explain what different bearings/wheel sizes/plates do differently? That might be a really complicated answer, is there a 'dummies guide'? Haha :) Thank you!

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Adele Linquent
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Re: First Derby Skates?

Postby Adele Linquent » 06 Nov 2012, 21:09

Hi MimiK,

I'll try. Other people will probably add stuff.

Sure-Grip GT-50 are the equivalent "serious-roller-derby-beginner" skates to the Riedell R3. The difference between those 2 is mostly that Sure-Grips are generally better for people with normal to wide feet and Riedells are generally better for people with normal to narrow feet.
The whole package will get you through one to 2 years of Derby. Some of our girls still skate with their R3s after (what is it, by now...?) 2 and a half years, almost 3. Granted, their skates really need replacing now. ;)

The nylon plate is basic, but the whole skates being made for the keen beginner by a serious Derby brand, you're safe.

Wheels: 62mm is standard. If they are the wheels I am thinking about, they are wide (more stable which is good for a beginner) and hard. Now, the hardness is always a big subject. Some people like hard wheels, some like soft wheels on one given floor. Then the floor itself can be more or less hard/soft. Then the weight of the person acts on the hardness/softness.
There are endless threads on skating forums, but if I want to keep this short: the floor we practice at in Bristol is fairly soft, so having a soft wheel on top of that makes it more sluggish and makes stuff like T-stops more difficult because it grips and doesn't slide as well. Having hard wheels makes rolling less effortless. BUT, it's a balance to find because a wheel that is too hard will not grip the floor in corners and will make you slide out and in the wall. So it's all about the grip Vs roll ratio.
Then, on top of that, the lighter you are, the less weigh you apply on the wheels, therefore you can afford having softer wheels than a heavier person. If you are heavy, you would want to consider going for harder wheels than a wee mosquito team-mate of yours.
The wheels I *think* you're getting with this Sure-Grip package are hard wheels. On a scale from 78-odd, which is soft, to 98-odd, which is hard, these wheels are 95.
I would say, put them on, skate with them, if you're sliding all over the place, you may want to consider buying softer (grippier) wheels. But before going grippy, try to lower your centre of gravity into a low Derby stance first! :mrgreen:

Bearings: same as the plate, nothing to write home about, but it's fine to start with. On the ABEC scale, the higher the number (9, I think), the most roll (=speed).

I hope it helps, and I hope I didn't make any blatant mistakes. Someone is bound to correct me if I did. :)

EDIT: This is all assuming that you don't have sh*t-tons of money to spare and that you are one of our successful new Fresh Meat skater and therefore will skate in Bristol with us! :D

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Re: First Derby Skates?

Postby Thundercat Ho! » 06 Nov 2012, 21:21

Hi mimi k,

I'm selling a pair of gt-50's in a size 7, if this is by chance your size, you can try them out and if you like them, buy them (selling for £50)

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Re: First Derby Skates?

Postby Black Thorn » 07 Nov 2012, 09:34

As above, but mine are a size 6 :)

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Re: First Derby Skates?

Postby Power Kraut » 07 Nov 2012, 09:37

Mimi, this is a question that can have a really long answer! The package you are looking at is fine - it would be worth trying on someone's R3s or SureGrip GT-50s before you buy, to see if the fit is ok for you. I think people didn't really like the wheels that come with these skates but that applies for most beginner packages.

The truth is that you won't really know the difference for the first few months. As you get better, you'll figure out what you will need and then you can start saving up for something fancier. I'd say buying some second hand skates now would be absolutely fine.

What IS important is that the boots fit you properly so your feet are firmly and securely attached to your wheels! My first skates had a really unstructured boot so that it felt like they were just dangling off the end of my legs.

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Re: First Derby Skates?

Postby White Riot » 07 Nov 2012, 11:27

As above too, mine are also a 7 but would probably fit a 6 as the GT-50s are quite padded inside. Mine are currently with the hire kit at WW (they have black gaffer tape over the toes)

Any Freshies wanting to try them at sessions feel free, if you'd like to buy them let me know :)

x

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Re: First Derby Skates?

Postby Mimi K » 08 Nov 2012, 20:46

Wow thank you so much for all the info! It does all seem that experience will tell me what I like, I didn't realise it would be so varied depending on the person! I weigh next to nothing... So I should be looking at a softer wheel. Adele I don't think I'd be able to tell right now if I was sliding all over the place because of the wheel... I am anyway!! :D
I've messaged Black Thirn about her skates for sale, I'm a size 5 but I can always try them and see :)
If I just concentrate on getting the boot right for now, bearings and wheels can be altered to my taste later down the line can't they?
Oh god you're all so helpful I might cry haha :)

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Adele Linquent
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Re: First Derby Skates?

Postby Adele Linquent » 08 Nov 2012, 22:29

MimiK wrote:If I just concentrate on getting the boot right for now, bearings and wheels can be altered to my taste later down the line can't they?

Absolutely! :)

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Re: First Derby Skates?

Postby Mr Incredibrawl » 09 Nov 2012, 08:36

Nah! Head straight for the top! Get some Antiks or Riedell 195s! Even better, get a custom setup like with some Bont boots and Roll-Line plates or something. Don't forget the Bones Swiss Ceramic bearings!

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Re: First Derby Skates?

Postby Delta Strike » 09 Nov 2012, 09:29

Nothing wrong with a bont and roll line plate setup! Though maybe if your feet get ripped apart by the bont boot.... darn it.... (nothing actually wrong with the bont boot itself, the problem is my awkward feet)

The lesson here is to be honest you don't know whats good for you till you actually try it. You can research the hell out of it and it can still go horribly wrong. I'm off to cry in a corner now.... ;-)

xx

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the Blizzard
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Re: First Derby Skates?

Postby the Blizzard » 09 Nov 2012, 09:49

Mimi
You can try my Bont boot + Avenger plate set-up in size 5ish (Bonts come semi-custom) at Sunday's Fresh Meat if you like. I'm coaching.
Blizz

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the Blizzard
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Re: First Derby Skates?

Postby the Blizzard » 09 Nov 2012, 10:18

Some skate advice that comes to mind based on my preferences/experience:
* I would not go for a soft wheel, I'd go hard as I can. Learning stops is much easier with a little slide, and having a little slide when skating around the track forces you to learn control.
* Bearings don't matter as much as wheels, plates or boot. As long as they spin - fine! Don't tighten the wheel nuts too much, leave a tiny bit of slack between the nut and the wheel for a good roll.
* Good boot is so important! Blisters and calluses make training agony. It's not easy to find the best fit though. I've gone through 3 boots and there's still a little adjustments that could be made, but I'm happy as there's no rubbing etc. It takes a while before you know if the boot is for you, they may start rubbing after a week or get better after a month, so even extensive research (as Delta points out) or trying people's skates may not get you your perfect boot. Leather boots take a while to break in, but after that, they're normally great. I don't like padded boot or man-made materials in boot (had Sure-Grip Rock skates) as I prefer the boot be an extension of my foot. I went for Bont as I needed a strong sole (bent the leather sole and aluminium plate of my Riedell's).
* Plate you can tinker with to make it a little better for you. You can try different cushions (about £1 each, you need 8.) They come in different hardnesses as wheels do. You may get more bounce, better turning. You can also try to loosen your trucks, to get you turn better. If you loosen the trucks, only do 1/4 turn at the time. It makes a difference!

Tips and tricks for making your boot & feet feel better:
* try all kinds of different insoles
* thin sock with thick sock
* thin neoprene ankle sleeve (ask Goldie!)
* vaseline on your feet (great!)
* two laces, different lacing, a gap in lacing etc (mad shoelace site)
* fill toe space with lamb wool (antibacterial as well!)
* tape around your ankle over the boot, not on skin (locks heel in, I used to do this, Ruby does it)

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Adele Linquent
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Re: First Derby Skates?

Postby Adele Linquent » 09 Nov 2012, 10:51

Good tips, Blizz!
Not all leather boots need breaking in. I haven't heard of anyone needing a break-in period with Antiks.

Talking of which, Green monster are going to launch their beginners Antiks, named Spider, I think.

Edit: oh and about soft wheels, I'm the same as Blizz and I think harder wheels are easier, but 95 may be that tiny bit too hard for a small skater, so going down in hardeness by one notch may give Mimi more confidence in corners without affecting her slides.
It's all pretty subtle this hardness business. Even after 2 and 1/2 years, I haven't found my perfect wheels...

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Re: First Derby Skates?

Postby Acid Drop » 09 Nov 2012, 12:45

Adele Linquent wrote:Not all leather boots need breaking in. I haven't heard of anyone needing a break-in period with Antiks.

Talking of which, Green monster are going to launch their beginners Antiks, named Spider, I think.


Once i got the right size boot, my Antiks were comfy out of the box. They just get more comfy as they are broken in.

The Spyder is the new Antik boot. Sadly, they have chosen to mount it on a Triton plate which is a great shame as that plate is a heavy unresponsive hunk of junk (imho)

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Adele Linquent
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Re: First Derby Skates?

Postby Adele Linquent » 09 Nov 2012, 14:42

I guess skaters with not much money could buy the boot only and ask the shop to fit another plate on, from that cheaper end...


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