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A fancy word for wheel hardness is durometer. Wheels are also made out of a man-made polymer called polyurethane, which is graded with an "a" at the end (or sometimes "d" depending on what part of the world you live in or if it is a slightly different kind of material).
When ordering wheels, always make sure you're ordering the right hardness... or let's use that fancy new word, durometer. Wheels operate on a durometer scale that works like this:
The closer the wheel is to the number 70, the more likely it is to be used outside.
The closer the wheel is to the number 100, the more likely it is to be used inside.
The typical hardness that you will see wheels made out of are 78a-103a. The wheels we want to wear or use outside are 78a. 78a provides a smooth feeling while your roll and absorbs the shock of rough terrain.
Something else you may want to consider when making a wheel purchase is the height and shape of the wheel. Usually, most outdoor wheels are a 78a hardness and on the taller side, anywhere from 59mm-65mm. This will help you skate smarter by being faster! More mass means more roll per stride. The perfect outdoor wheels in our opinion are the Moxi Outdoor Wheel, the Energy Wheel from Radar and the Boardwalk Wheel from Sure Grip. We also like the Rollerbones Miami wheels.
The smaller the wheel the more agility and control you'll have over your wheels... but you might notice a significant decrease in your speed. If your wheels feel clunky or tricky to control, choosing a smaller wheel might be a good remedy or choice for you. Try the Energy Wheels in the 57mm height from Radar.
Check out our full collection of outdoor wheels here!