So I tried a whole bunch of 80mm wheels
by Joey McGarry

During the filming of BIG WHEELS 1 & 2 I experimented with every 80mm wheel I could try. Now that more people are opening up to 80mm wheels (and big wheels in general) I figured I should share my experiences. My bank account hurts because of it... but thankfully I got some support from Rollerblade, skatersplace.ca and of course Shop Task. Here are my findings:

Seba Deluxe

These were my favourite of the bunch. The core is super strong. Bearings lock into super tight. Right amount of slide, grip and bounce. Not too hard and not too soft. They wear fairly slow. I was able to frontside a 12 stair rail in these (!) and was able to slide things and bounce off things in a way the other wheels couldn't. These were the most "aggressive friendly" of the bunch. Would love to see them in a fat profile like Undercover offers. Two problems: They're expensive and they're hard to find in North America (I think that's changing soon?) Now that I'm on 100mm wheels I wish I could skate a 100mm Seba Deluxe wheel. Definitely try these wheels if you get the chance.

Hyper Concrete and Seba Street Invader

Since these wheels are basically the same I'm putting them together. The fat profile is really nice and stable, they're soft and cushy but a bit slower. Lots of colors to choose from (if that floats your boat) and a decent price. They wear a bit fast and the core might be a big stronger on the Hypers... but for a decent, cheaper wheel that's stable and colorful these are a good bet. I find I skate differently with the fat tire profile so I like to go back to these once and a while and see what happens. Would love to see some 90s and 100s with the fat tire like these.

Seba Stock

If you have no money and these come on your skates they'll work fine as your introductory 80mm wheel. Core is strong enough and they have decent speed. However they're too soft and lack grip. They're just very average... but a good wheel for smooth surfaces and slalom style skating. If you can get skates that come with the Street Invaders instead I would go with those instead for your stock wheel.

Rollerblade Hydrogen

You've probably heard about these wheels already. Everybody loves them (including myself). I use these in the 90mm, 100 and 110mm size as I haven't found anything better for big wheelin'. They grip amazing, are super fast, wear slowly, have a strong core and feel like they enhance your skates. They're widely available, have a good price and look nice and simple. I would love to see them offer a fat profile version in the future and maybe some harder versions. The urethane comes from the same place as Matter/Undercover (and those are some high quality wheels.) It's really nice to see an american boot company step up their wheel game. These are highly recommended. These will improve your skating experience.

Undercover

I'm pretty sure these are just Matter "superjuice" wheels under the UC brand. These wheels are FAST, have a strong core and have different profiles (speed and round) and hardnesses to try (86a, 88a, 94a.) I didn't try the round profile but did try the speed profile in a few different hardnesses (86a and 88a.) You can abuse these wheels a lot, they wear fairly slow and are very comparable to the Rollerblade Hydrogen (Core might be a bit stronger on these.) The big plus is you get a ride like the Hydrogen wheels but more profile and hardness options. I would love to see them eventually experiment with 90mm and 100mm sizes.

Gyro XG (Yellow and Orange)

Apparently the "XG" stands for "xtra grip" but I didn't find that at all. I used the yellow (softer version) on rough pavement and I could feel the wheel wearing away with every hard turn. I toasted them in one session. Todd fared a bit better in the orange ones (harder version) as they seemed faster and could take some impacts. But I would say only use these for slalom skating and on really smooth surfaces... Don't get too aggro on these bro...

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