Customizing an old or simple skateboard is a fairly simple, easy, and inexpensive process. If you are a happy parent of fun-loving kids, you can save your extra bucks by turning an old or inexpensive skateboard into a beautifully painted cool skateboard.
How to Customize Your Skateboard?
You may also want to customize your skateboard if you don’t find your favorite color scheme or theme on the market. We have shared the easiest ways through which you can customize your skateboard & get better at skateboarding.
Plan the Design
This entire process is of your choice. You can choose from various designs. For example, a galaxy theme is a hot dog these days. You can go for a sports theme, a nature theme, a collage, your favorite picture, or anything you want to paint on your skateboard.
It also depends on your skills. As a beginner, when you don’t know the complex painting techniques, you will have to rely on relatively simpler and easier patterns. Don’t worry; some simple and easy designs look extremely elegant and pretty cool.
There are various techniques through which you can print your design idea on your skateboard. For instance, you can use a spray paint technique if you are good at that. If you trust your hand painting skills, you can go for that as well. You can use acrylic paints and chalk paints.
However, some newest techniques are easier and relatively straightforward. For example, you can use vinyl decals for customization of your skateboard. These are the stickers, available in various shapes, alphabet, and signs. It will help you a lot if you are a tattoo lover.
Photo transfer is another amazing way of applying your design to the skateboard/deck. This is an easy way of transferring your design on the deck. The best thing about his technique is that you can choose any design, no matter complex or simple.
Tips for Buying a Skateboard
If you want to buy a new skateboard for this project you should consider some important things. You are lucky enough if you find a blank deck at a reasonable price.
However, in most cases, you will find a skateboard with a design on it, and you have to sand off the previous design. There are many simple tricks and ways through which you can easily turn it into a blank deck.
Since the design is not your preference, you should focus on other features of the skateboard. For instance, focus on the color of wheels and trucks and choose those that go with your planned design color scheme. Moreover, it would help if you focused on quality and price. Customer reviews will help you a lot in this regard.
Following are the steps you can follow to customize your skateboard.
Disassemble the Skateboard
Whether you want to customize a used keyboard or buy a new complete longboard, the first step is to disassemble its part. For this purpose, you need screwdrivers to unscrew the screws, pliers, or socket wrench to remove the bolts.
Remove the wheels, trucks, and other hardware and put them in a bag, carefully, so that you don’t lose any part, screw, or nut. Before you disassemble, you can take a picture of the previous setup. It will help you a lot in reassembling the hardware.
Remove the Previous Design
To sand-of the previous design, you will need an electric sander with 40-grit sandpaper.
- Wear all the protective gear, like a face mask, protective goggles, since the small paint and wood particles can cause eye irritation or lungs and throat issues if you breathe them in
- Perform all this process outside the house, like in a garage. If you don’t have a garage, cover your floor and furniture with od plastic sheets
- Initially, use the 40-grit sandpaper with your electric sander
- Be patient, and wait until the whole design is removed; sometimes, it may take as long as 30 minutes to remove the entire design
- Do not apply extra pressure or imbalanced force to remove the design quickly; it can damage your skateboard surface
- Use 120-grit sandpaper for the finishing process; the finishing process will help get a smooth surface, ready to accept a new design
- If your skateboard’s surface is damaged, you can use a wood repair paste; It will help you fill-up the gaps and defects on the deck’s surface
- The deck is ready for new design
Please follow these steps if you are applying the spray paint technique on your skateboard
Draw a skateboard shape on your paper, sketch your design inside the shape, and label the design parts according to the color scheme. For instance, parts with base color should be labeled as “1” and so on; it will help you apply the colors in the correct order
If your desired design is in two colors, you will have to apply two layers, and so on
- Apply the primer
- Starting with the base color, and follow the order as you have decided in the rough design of your skateboard
- If your design is relatively simple, you can use tape to draw the design on your skateboard
- However, in most cases, you need to create stencils; stencils can be made of cardboard, paper, or rigid card stock
- The next step to apply the spray color
- Carefully spray an even layer of the paint on the whole smooth surface f your skateboard
- Make sure you apply paint on the corners also
- Wait until the base color is perfectly dried; you can use a dryer with gentle air pressure to speed up the drying process
- Now you can layer the stencils of your design or create your design by attaching the tape to the surface
- Spray the second layer of paint carefully
- Wait until this layer is perfectly dry
- Gently remove the tape or stencils
- If your design has more layers, repeat the process
- Wait until the paint is completely dry
- You can again use a sander with 120-grit sandpaper to give a final finish to the design
This whole process may take more than 24 hours
If you are still wondering, How to customize your skateboard, use this amazing yet simple technique
- Search an image or design of your choice on Google, and download it to your PC
- You may need to edit the design to bring it into the desired shape You can edit the design in a simple “paint” app on your computer
- Print the image in the desired size
- Attach this template design to the vinyl paper, using the scotch tape
- Use a sharp knobby knife to cut your template design over the vinyl paper
- Carefully carve out Decals and remove all the extra spaces in the designs
- Secure the design on the skateboard with a scotch tape
- Apply the adhesive laminate and peel off the paper backing
- Use a heat gun or torch to heat the vinyl; it will help the vinyl to hold its desired form
If you are applying this technique for the first time, it is advised to watch some Youtube videos before the process, it would help you a lot
This is the third technique you can apply to customize your skateboard
For photo transfer technique, please follow these steps
- Print the photo you want to transfer in a desirable size.
- Remember, you will need a laser printer’s print for the photo transfer technique.
- Carve out the desired part of the image or design you want to transfer on the deck.
- Apply a thin layer of a photo transfer liquid on the skateboard surface and at the printed side of the photo.
- Photo transfer liquids are available at any hardware store, and they usually cost less than $10 for each 8-10 oz packaging.
- Stick the photo on the skateboard.
- Carefully apply the whole design, make sure all the parts are stuck, and there are no bubbles between the wood and paper.
- Wipe away excessive liquid and wait for around eight hours, until the paper is completely dry.
- Use a gentle water spray to damp the paper, wet your fingers, and gently rub to remove the paper.
- Use soft hand motions and avoid using any force as you may end up peeling off the ink from the board.
How do you heat transfer graphics to a skateboard?
You can use a laser print of your desired photo and a photo transfer liquid to transfer the graphic on your skateboard.
How can I make my skateboard look cool?
You can paint the skateboard in cool and bright colors. You can also transfer photos or use vinyl decals to apply your favorite theme to the skateboard.
How much does it cost to customize a skateboard?
If you buy an inexpensive skateboard, it may cost you less than $200, including customization. But if you buy an expensive, professional skateboard, it may cost you between $400 to $500, including the customization cost.
Can you spray paint your skateboard?
Yes, you can spray paint your skateboard.