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Ask DocSk8 (Expert Indoor Skate Building Advice) This forum is different then the other SkateLog forums in that it is not a discussion forum, but rather a place you can ask skate building expert Fred "DocSk8" Benjamin about building and repairing indoor speed, derby, and jamskate quad roller skates. Please start a new thread for each new question.

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Old August 9th, 2014, 07:53 PM   #1
Mort
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Default Straightening axles

So, I was servicing a friends skates the other day and had the whole tuck assembly off, wheels and all, I spun the axle with the assembly standing straight up and MY GOD did that damn thing wobble everywhere.

It had my RBT's on it with machined spacers and all so the wheel is pretty straight, that axle was ALL OVER THE PLACE.

I watched some "How its made" before and saw how they straighten crankshafts, using a wedge like piece of metal and a hammer.

Now I'd like to get/develop for myself some kind of fixture to hold the truck still. I experimented with a cynder block , some larger wrenches and a sunlite truck that was fairly wobbly, got descent results... Though I'd like to try to keep the nose/bushig area and the axle on the alignment they should have. these trucks/axles I have been messing with are not abused, and likely were just bent from pressing them in when they were made. So far I have not found 1 truck that wasn't pretty far off.

My Arius trucks are very straight, I've had them off the skate multiple times with the whole assembly together and never seen that happen.

I guess I have a new task to conquer. what a headache! Though I think I'll just get 4 trucks and finish them first, then completely swap out my friends hangers and see how it goes as grip is and how speed wobles go when he rides fast forwards on his toes.

I have a micromete/caliper if you got any ideas on how to measure the warp so I can know which way I need to bend/strike the truck in a strategic fashion.
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Old August 9th, 2014, 09:35 PM   #2
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Originally Posted by Mort View Post
So, I was servicing a friends skates the other day and had the whole tuck assembly off, wheels and all, I spun the axle with the assembly standing straight up and MY GOD did that damn thing wobble everywhere.

It had my RBT's on it with machined spacers and all so the wheel is pretty straight, that axle was ALL OVER THE PLACE.

I watched some "How its made" before and saw how they straighten crankshafts, using a wedge like piece of metal and a hammer.

Now I'd like to get/develop for myself some kind of fixture to hold the truck still. I experimented with a cynder block , some larger wrenches and a sunlite truck that was fairly wobbly, got descent results... Though I'd like to try to keep the nose/bushig area and the axle on the alignment they should have. these trucks/axles I have been messing with are not abused, and likely were just bent from pressing them in when they were made. So far I have not found 1 truck that wasn't pretty far off.

My Arius trucks are very straight, I've had them off the skate multiple times with the whole assembly together and never seen that happen.

I guess I have a new task to conquer. what a headache! Though I think I'll just get 4 trucks and finish them first, then completely swap out my friends hangers and see how it goes as grip is and how speed wobles go when he rides fast forwards on his toes.

I have a micromete/caliper if you got any ideas on how to measure the warp so I can know which way I need to bend/strike the truck in a strategic fashion.
tried that in the past, you can use a vice or an arbor press also. but to be honest it doesnt really work well as they are weakened and bend easily after that. best to replace the whole axle or buy a new truck.
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Old August 10th, 2014, 04:26 AM   #3
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Thumbs up Thanks Rick!!

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tried that in the past, you can use a vice or an arbor press also. but to be honest it doesnt really work well as they are weakened and bend easily after that. best to replace the whole axle or buy a new truck.

Ya beat me to it. I second the motion wholeheartedly. The only time I even attempt it is if I am dealing with something that is essentially irreplaceable and then caution the user NOT to beat them.

Mort, most of what you are working on is dirt cheap to replace. No need to try to sort of fix something that will cost you more in time to accomplish than the item is worth new. The fact that the item is no where near as strong as it was new just adds insult to injury.
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Old August 10th, 2014, 04:57 AM   #4
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I know its cheap to replace, but the issue here is that I know some of the parts have NOT been beat on, but still have considerable wobble to them. I straightened some earlier today with some wrenches, a hammer and axle nuts put on to protect the threads, took me about 2 hours for 4 trucks to get them near straight, still wasn't true, but its way better than it was.

Alignment was checked by spinning the axle on my RBT wheels and inspecting for wobble.

I have an idea of what to do but I'll need some substantially long pipe with a tight slip fit. The pipe at the end of its length will show the errors in its shape, well so long as its straight itself.

The way I plan on testing the effectiveness of this little project is one of my friends has a Vanilla Diamond walker skate, it uses the same SG trucks I have extras of. His are pretty bent- loads of crashes with them. so I'm not suprised -, so I'll straighten some up and then have him change to a harder than normal wheel for a bit so it has less grip than hes used to- right now hes on my RBT 88A's and I have a set of 98A zombie mid's, they feel really close to each other, but obviously the zombies are substantially harder and lack the grip of the RBTs. let him skate it for about 1 hour, then change the trucks to the straight ones and see how his grip goes. Gotta be done on the same night tho :/

If I put some thought into it, I should be able to straighten them to almost true in a very short time span. say 4 trucks per hour or so. thats way better than buying new one jsut to have them come in wobbling just the same as what I fixed.

It'll take some planning/pondering I'm sure but I don't have a whole lot to think about at work. just run some machines and day dream. The straightening wont weaken the axles much if at all, they aren't being bent alot, the deformation they have from being true realy isnt alot, but its enough where it kinda bothers me and I really think they could benefit from the work.

Other than that, at least its a nice skill to have heh. I don't fret much about it, its like a rainy day thing to do. tweak on the skate gear. Also most of the kids that do have their own skates realy dont have the money for newer/better/replacement gear, so if I can fix it for them.. well you get the idea.
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Old August 10th, 2014, 02:10 PM   #5
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I know its cheap to replace, but the issue here is that I know some of the parts have NOT been beat on, but still have considerable wobble to them. I straightened some earlier today with some wrenches, a hammer and axle nuts put on to protect the threads, took me about 2 hours for 4 trucks to get them near straight, still wasn't true, but its way better than it was.

Alignment was checked by spinning the axle on my RBT wheels and inspecting for wobble.

Check for straight in a serviceable (not one with shot bearings) lathe or drill press chuck, spinning by hand or in a variable speed drill spinning very slowly. That way there is NO chance of wobble in one end of the axle. Then you will know for certain how much actual run out there is in the axle. Your current fixture is less than adequate to ensure the axle is straight. Do you have any idea how much of your run out @ the other end is due to less than perfect fit between axles and bearings, or slop in the bearings themselves??


I have an idea of what to do but I'll need some substantially long pipe with a tight slip fit. The pipe at the end of its length will show the errors in its shape, well so long as its straight itself.

The way I plan on testing the effectiveness of this little project is one of my friends has a Vanilla Diamond walker skate, it uses the same SG trucks I have extras of. His are pretty bent- loads of crashes with them. so I'm not suprised -, so I'll straighten some up and then have him change to a harder than normal wheel for a bit so it has less grip than hes used to- right now hes on my RBT 88A's and I have a set of 98A zombie mid's, they feel really close to each other, but obviously the zombies are substantially harder and lack the grip of the RBTs. let him skate it for about 1 hour, then change the trucks to the straight ones and see how his grip goes. Gotta be done on the same night tho :/

This is the price you pay for being the go to guy @ the rink. Get used to it.

If I put some thought into it, I should be able to straighten them to almost true in a very short time span. say 4 trucks per hour or so. thats way better than buying new one jsut to have them come in wobbling just the same as what I fixed.

So you are using SG 8mm trucks? I have a few of those myself of various age and use levels. I'll spin a few in the lathe and see how straight (or not ) they are.

It'll take some planning/pondering I'm sure but I don't have a whole lot to think about at work. just run some machines and day dream.

Keep your body parts out of the machine's moving parts when day dreaming, OK??

The straightening wont weaken the axles much if at all, they aren't being bent alot, the deformation they have from being true realy isnt alot, but its enough where it kinda bothers me and I really think they could benefit from the work.

Since I have no examples of what you are attempting to straighten in front of me, I have no way to quantify your "really isn't a lot".


Other than that, at least its a nice skill to have heh. I don't fret much about it, its like a rainy day thing to do. tweak on the skate gear. Also most of the kids that do have their own skates realy dont have the money for newer/better/replacement gear, so if I can fix it for them.. well you get the idea.

Yeah I get the idea. Been there done that. Not straighten axles for the kids, I just gave 'em replacement trucks. However, I had liability and time issues to deal with.
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Old August 10th, 2014, 05:28 PM   #6
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I spin the axles real slow, with 1 wheel down on the table, the axle is perpendicular to the floor. The RBT'S have a spacer setup and those qube 8balls have very little axial or radial play. About the only thing that would really be better would be a nice lathe.

I spin the top wheel up real fast by hand and hold everything else still then I let go of the truck while still holding the wheel thats on my table. The truck will start to spin real slow. This shows me how bad it is. The end that is showing the wapr is the one pointing to the table or "chucked" if you would. It just happends to be chucked up in a wheel. Im not worried about getting them super straight with this method. Just better.

The other way I can tell where to start working them if they are bad is put 2 RBT'S on there and push down on the top wheel with my thumb anywhere on the rim/lip. The truck will spin to the lowest point if its bent. Normally you couldn't do that but I machined the truck faces true to each side. The axle being the guide as the counterbore slides down the axle to cut the trucks face. I can only use this method once though as every time I tap that axle to straighten each side if it were bent evenly the faces would have to be recut for it to work correctly again.

Yea all these are SG axles I believe. They are stamped SG. I believe "sunlite" are also made by SG, axles and everything looks identical, save for the truck having "sunlite" cast into it.


Nah wont get stuck in the machines. They're slow -big hydraulic press- and only move about 4 times per hour between the 2 of them since they have to cook rubber for 30 mins or so. Pull the stuff out put new slabs in send it back up. . Everyhing else is lots of running around moving and pulling racks around with a fork lift, and prepping for a new load. Lol couldnt fall asleep/day dream in the press. Its 300 lol

Need any thin foam rubber for relining skate boots? Say neoprene or memory foam? I'll pick some up before the eight wheels event.
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Old August 10th, 2014, 10:51 PM   #7
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OK I get your drift. Interesting technique. Try the drill. I expect you could check a half dozen before you got your rig set up.

Need any thin foam rubber for relining skate boots? Say neoprene or memory foam? I'll pick some up before the eight wheels event.
Sure, either or both. Remind me and I'll bring ya some spare trucks.
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Old August 10th, 2014, 11:27 PM   #8
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Ill have a bunch when we come up for EWNB. Ill bring some goodies.
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Old August 11th, 2014, 04:16 AM   #9
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Default Cool beans.

Look forward to the visit.
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