Nylon plates are sometimes referred to as plastic. They are lightweight, which is why some skaters prefer to use them their entire derby career. The sometimes drawback to nylon plates is they will flex if the skater is larger or skates particularly hard (digs deep in strides). Aluminum also referred to as metal plates will not flex like a nylon plate, so effort is not lost pushing out only to have it absorbed by the flex of the plate. Lower priced aluminum plates tend to be heavier which can be cumbersome to some skaters especially smaller skaters. The more expensive plates tend to be lighter and are usually preferred. With the evolution of roller derby, plates have evolved and the number of choices are endless. New
Single action is when there is just one cushion between the chassis and the truck. Very simply, double action has two! There is a cushion on each side of the truck. Many skaters will then customize what hardness the of the cushions, for the super picky you can even have different hardnesses on each side of the truck. Cushions differ between manufacturers, but we’ve put together some information to help you decide which cushions are best for you.
This is the size of the axle in diameter. 7mm is what is commonly referred to as the more “old school” axle. The 7mm was preferred by speed skaters who were looking to reduce weight, so they would go with a the smaller 7mm. 8mm is now the more common axle size on skates today.
In the world of skating there are two basic types of skating plates, 10 degree and 45 degree, each has its advantages and disadvantages. Most companies derive this number by what angle the kingpin is drilled on, in many cases this kingpin is not drilled on this angles but the standard still stands at 10 degree and 45 degree. Although there are many manufactures that have developed plates in the past; these two simple designs still represent the industry standard. Aside from 10 degree and 45 degree, we have toe stop or no toe stop, light and heavy plates, adjustable pivots and nonadjustable pivots, rubber or urethane cushions, special mounting, and exotic lightweight materials such as titanium or magnesium. A 10 degree skating plate is designed to place the skater over the kingpin and cushions, creating a more stable skating feel. This type of plate has also been called a Free-Skating plate as it was one of the original designs and allows a skater to be confident and under control in any skating situation. The truck design on a 10 degree plate is typically a more vertical approach which will help keep a skater more upright, typically a less aggressive setup. Looking back in history we can see many uses of this simple design, probably why it has remained the industry standard in skate design. The 45 degree skating plate is designed to place the skater over the pivot pin creating a more aggressive stance and feel. For many years this plate has been referred to as a figure plate as it got its humble beginnings on the skating floor doing figure loops. The truck design on the 45 degree skate is designed with a horizontal approach in relation to the skating floor, typically more sensitive to the skaters movement allowing him or her to change direction faster but still under control. Kingpin angle information quoted from Suregrip.com