Are Off-Road Skateboard Wheels Worth It? (Bought & Shredded)

By Billy | Updated: April 26, 2022 | Longboards

Are off-road skateboard wheels actually worth getting?

I’ve always been curious, so I bought a set of the MBS All-Terrain wheels. In this post, I’ll share my experience.

If you’d rather watch a video, check it out below. If not, keep scrolling.

Who Are They Best For?

I’d recommend it to someone who’s constantly riding in rougher conditions, wants something that’s a little more foolproof than your average wheel, and doesn’t mind the extra weight it’ll add to your setup.

Don’t get these if you’re planning on going completely off-road because you’ll be disappointed. They’re tough to ride in mushier conditions. If that’s what you’re going for, then look into actual pneumatic wheels.

Specs

Wheel Size: 100mm x 65mm
Wheel Durometer: 78a
Weight (1 wheel): 13.6oz

Keep in mind these all-terrain wheels are much heavier than your average longboard wheel since they’re so large. I weighed them and one wheel weighs 13.6oz, so it’s definitely gonna make your setup not as enjoyable to carry around.

From the online photos, I kind of assumed that these wheels were gonna be made of a harder urethane, but they’re actually 78a. Riding them on smooth pavement doesn’t feel noticeably slow in my opinion, so whatever urethane they use it seems solid.

Wheels

Are They Really All-Terrain?

These are marketed as All-Terrain wheels, which I think automatically makes you assume that you can use them on offroad dirt trails.

I tested them on pretty much every type of all-terrain scenario I could think of, so let’s start with dirt trails.

These wheels aren’t good for dirt trails where the dirt isn’t compact. So if you’re thinking of taking them on trails that are on the mushier side, I wouldn’t recommend them. They sink in and it’s pretty much impossible to gain any sort of momentum.

The conditions where these things thrived were on harder, compact surfaces. So stuff like gravel roads, rough asphalt that have rocks and sticks. My favorite thing to do with these was starting on pavement, picking up speed, and then briefly going offroad, throwing a slide in the dirt, and before losing momentum, transitioning back onto the pavement. That’s where I think these make a lot of sense.

I also think they would do really well on cobblestone roads and bike pump tracks that have compact dirt on them. That’s something I really want to try but didn’t get a chance to.

What’s Their Traction Like?

As far as traction goes, you can actually slide these wheels pretty easily, especially if there are some pebbles on the road. And I’d probably guess that’s because there’s less of a contact patch due to the raised-up pattern, but if you’re just cruising on rougher terrain they’re not gonna slide out.

If I had to simplify my description, I’d probably just say they’re a crossbreed of an all-terrain and regular longboard wheel. Heavier on the regular wheel side though.

As far as functionality goes, they almost remind me of the market that Shark Wheels fits into. They’re obviously not for complete off-road conditions, but they’re in-between.

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Pros & Cons

Below are the pros & cons I could think of.

Rough Compact Terrain

Off-road urethane wheels are solid for rough pavement, cobblestone, and anything else that’s compact. You definitely don’t want to use these for mushier conditions like dirt trails because they’ll sink in.

Urethane

The urethane that makes up the wheels seems to be decent. I was expecting it to be harder and not as responsive.

Weight

I’m not a huge fan of how heavy the wheels are, but there does have to be a trade-off. It doesn’t make it easy to carry for long distances.

Billy

I started skateboarding when I was 5 years old. Picked up surfing and snowboarding soon after. These days, if I'm not surfing, I'm trying to replicate it on land or snow. My goal is to shred, then share my thoughts in an honest and transparent way.
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