As promised, here is my new spring 2015 setup. My deck is an 8.125 from a Naples-based company called Plaza Boards. They’re the only Italian board company that I’ve found, and they have a pretty decent team and a fun beer-is-food ethic. You can watch their team video here. (At 22:30 you can see Pietro Bontà, a Perugia-based skater who has my favorite part in the video.) The scuff marks in the photo are of two days’ – or three hours’ – skating. I’m now riding Independent Grant Taylor 139 hollow trucks (painted a nifty blue and red), 52mm ‘Fatty Loser’ Taste wheels, which are also of Italian provenance, Bones Reds bearings and anonymous griptape.
It was weird at first moving up from a 7.75 inch deck to an 8.125 – it felt so big! Also the wider trucks and larger wheels (the others had been worn down to around 50 mm) take some getting used to all at once. The new setup definitely feels more stable, and my feet no longer hang off the sides, which is a relief. And since I can’t do flip tricks yet anyway I’m not complaining that the wider board is more difficult to flip. As my friend Pat told me, “Adults skate 8-inch boards.” I thought of Rodney Mullen in Rubbish Heap (1989) when Jeremy Klein focuses his freestyle board. Mullen leaps on a street deck and says, “It feels so weird, it’s so big,” but then starts flipping it all over the place like a chopstick.
Here is a short video of me ollieing on a bank at the percorso verde in Perugia. This is the site of the ‘future skatepark’ which has apparently been approved by the local politicos although they are having trouble allocating funds to actually build it. For now it’s a roller rink, and it’s the best thing we’ve got.