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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 15th, 2017, 01:49 AM   #1
D_STreet
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Default My first pair of sk8s!

Hello DocSk8!

I've read through many of your threads, and found lots of useful information. Thanks for answering so many questions on here! I hope you might be willing to help me out with some advice on buying my first pair.

I skated as a child back in the 80s and 90s. My parents did fancy artistic figure skating together. I hadn't been skating for 20 years, but started going again a few months ago. I've been into swing dancing, and I'm finding that knowing how to bounce to the music, and knowing how to put your weight on one foot or another has vastly improved my skating above where it was when I was a kid. Even skating backward -- which always made me uneasy -- seems easy now!

I love it but I'm hitting a plateau on the rentals. (Cool thing about the size 15 -- it seems like I'm the only one who's ever used them! ) The owner of the rink skated up to me last week when I was goofing off and dancing and told me I shouldn't be on rentals, that they're holding me back. I've never known anything but rentals. Super X plates on a heeled boot. After reading other people's accounts of the 'heaven's gate' moment, I wanna get a pair of my own!

I'm 200 and 6'5". 14 or 15 shoe size, depending on the brand (working on visiting a proper shoe store with a Brannock device)...

I don't care too much about speed skating par se; I'm more interested in around boogying around. Shuffling and spinning and fancy footwork. Trying to look cool Learning to move smoothly on the skates.

I'm intrigued by the Sure-Grip Avenger DA45 plates. I'm seeing them in a package with the Rebel boot and some Titan 62mm 95a wheels for ~$240. I like this deal because it looks like this leather boot with a velcro strap should be durable and help with heel lift (I hate heel lift!), and the package is less expensive than it would be buying just the boot ($115) and plates ($135) separately. But I wonder if I can dance well with no heel -- I've never been on skates with no heel. I also wonder if the DA45s would be great or terrible for dancing around. I keep seeing conflicting opinions, and I may just have to plunk down the cash to get the answer, but I'd very much appreciate your insight.

I'm also nervous after seeing threads where you've mentioned that manufacturers often don't know what they're doing when it comes to mounting the plates just so.

Finally, on the wheels: I don't know if those Titans are any good; if not I could maybe use them when I'm outdoors but get some good ones for inside. My rink has a good smooth floor. Any thoughts on wheel size / durometer for a guy my size who's not going crazy fast?

I apologize for the long post. I'm grateful for any info you have time to throw at me. Thanks!

Last edited by D_STreet; August 15th, 2017 at 02:58 AM.
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Old August 15th, 2017, 06:30 AM   #2
Doc Sk8
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Default This will be fun.

Quote:
Originally Posted by D_STreet View Post
Hello DocSk8!

Hello yourself...

I've read through many of your threads, and found lots of useful information. Thanks for answering so many questions on here! I hope you might be willing to help me out with some advice on buying my first pair.

Be careful what you ask for, you may get it.....

I skated as a child back in the 80s and 90s. My parents did fancy artistic figure skating together. I hadn't been skating for 20 years, but started going again a few months ago. I've been into swing dancing, and I'm finding that knowing how to bounce to the music, and knowing how to put your weight on one foot or another has vastly improved my skating above where it was when I was a kid. Even skating backward -- which always made me uneasy -- seems easy now!

Good. Making progress....

I love it but I'm hitting a plateau on the rentals. (Cool thing about the size 15 -- it seems like I'm the only one who's ever used them! )

Quite likely.

The owner of the rink skated up to me last week when I was goofing off and dancing and told me I shouldn't be on rentals, that they're holding me back. I've never known anything but rentals. Super X plates on a heeled boot. After reading other people's accounts of the 'heaven's gate' moment, I wanna get a pair of my own!

So now it starts......


I'm 200 and 6'5". 14 or 15 shoe size, depending on the brand (working on visiting a proper shoe store with a Brannock device)...

Good idea. Now let me warn you. NOTHING currently available in an inexpensive package sk8 will work properly for you especially if you really are a 15. You aren't going up-size because of a wide foot are you?? That throws a real curve ball.


I don't care too much about speed skating par se; I'm more interested in around boogying around. Shuffling and spinning and fancy footwork. Trying to look cool Learning to move smoothly on the skates.

I'm intrigued by the Sure-Grip Avenger DA45 plates.

Yeah those are pretty cool aren't they?? I love mine, have 3 or 4 pair of them, including the first set of pre production plates...

I'm seeing them in a package with the Rebel boot and some Titan 62mm 95a wheels for ~$240. I like this deal because it looks like this leather boot with a velcro strap should be durable and help with heel lift (I hate heel lift!),

Lets hit the pause button here. The Rebel is heavily padded and if it is used hard, it will "grow" on your foot as the padding shrinks.

and the package is less expensive than it would be buying just the boot ($115) and plates ($135) separately.

But it is also put together by??? Who knows. I don't sell package sk8s to adults, period. They can get them almost any where, and I prefer they don't associate me with any subsequent issues that develop.

Now as far as a Rebel w/ a DA45. I had pair, but it was before the Avenger. I have a Da45 converted NTS Cyclone. If your feet are not wide, Rebels are not a good choice.

But I wonder if I can dance well with no heel -- I've never been on skates with no heel.

Not that hard to learn.. On the other hand I am not fond of heels. After goofing around on a pair for about a month, I went back to flats.. This was a matter of me not wanting to put the energy into learning the shift in balance.

I also wonder if the DA45s would be great or terrible for dancing around.

That will be up to you... I have seen some awesome sk8rs on DA45s. The real big shots like the Snyder Royal though, assuming they actually like their sk8s to turn.

I keep seeing conflicting opinions, and I may just have to plunk down the cash to get the answer, but I'd very much appreciate your insight.

Most opinions about sk8s come from very limited viewpoints. As in "I love these and you will too.. Oh no don't get those!!" (I have never sk8ed on those plates and would hate to find out my best ever most awesome sk8s were mediocre @ best.) I have ~ 50 pair I keep around to get a feel for what is going on. I am in the process of building a Bont Hybrid w/ the new Bont Athena plate. Gotta stay up with the new stuff....


I'm also nervous after seeing threads where you've mentioned that manufacturers often don't know what they're doing when it comes to mounting the plates just so.

Like I said, ya don't know who mounted a package sk8...

Finally, on the wheels: I don't know if those Titans are any good; if not I could maybe use them when I'm outdoors but get some good ones for inside. My rink has a good smooth floor. Any thoughts on wheel size / durometer for a guy my size who's not going crazy fast?

Wheel questions fall into the "How high is up??" category... I have wheels that cost around 240.00 after I shipped them in. Kinda shows the spread between what is basic vs the good stuff. I don't even try to predict what will work. There is way more to rolling than just the wheel. Some of the really hard ones I roll will grip like death, until I tighten the action 1/4 to 1/2 turn. Then the put me into the wall. Fortunately for me, I run them soft so I have lots of grip.

I apologize for the long post. I'm grateful for any info you have time to throw at me. Thanks!
So get on the Brannock. I need length width and arch length, both feet. Shoot me a PM, then maybe I can point ya to where ya really want to go.

One last thing, as an adult, I would not try to go cheap on any part of this. I have a pair of 14s I am in the middle of rebuilding since the owner beat the crap out of them for several years. Even a Riedell 395 is not indestructible..
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Old August 16th, 2017, 12:59 AM   #3
D_STreet
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Default

Got the Brannock numbers. PM incoming!
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Old August 16th, 2017, 01:20 AM   #4
Doc Sk8
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Default Got it

& replied.
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