Skate trucks can be classified by two main groups: TKP trucks and RKP trucks. In this article we are going to explain you the difference between TKP skate trucks and RKP skate trucks, we want you to buy with knowledge and choosing the trucks you really need for your skateboard.
The first thing you should know is that TKP means “Traditional Kinping” and RKP means “Reverse Kingpin”. Everybody use to use TKP trucks on regular skateboards and RKP on longboards and longskates. But there are different ways to combine your hardware to get different results.
Skate trucks geometry
Geometry is the most important thing in a skate truck, it defines its turn and lean.
There are two angles that are essentials for the turn, the first one is the kingpin angle, the second one is the pivot cup angle.
The main difference between a TKP skate truck and a RKP skate truck is the kingpin angle.
TKP skate trucks geometry
TKP skate trucks have the kingpin almost vertical, so it holds behind the hanger.
RKP skate trucks geometry
RKP skate trucks have the kingpin crossing through the hanger, so on bushing is behind the hanger, and the other one is in front of the hanger.
This difference makes the truck working different, the leaning angle is different so it turns the most.
Skateboard trucks turn
The main function of skateboard trucks is turning, the turn depends on the geometry of the truck. For this reason TKP and RKP skate trucks are totally different.
TKP skate trucks turn
The vertical kingpin makes the lean vertical instead of horizontal, so it turns a little less.
By the way TKP trucks are lower and stronger and its design is specially made to grind and jump.
Each brand is different and the TKP trucks from a brand are totally different of the TKP trucks from another. For example Venture, Independent and Tracker are totally different but all of them are TKP skate trucks.
So there’s a bit of personal taste and the special needs of each skater.
RKP skate trucks turn
Kingpin and pivot cup both are totally angled, so they have a wider lean and a closer turn.
RKP trucks are higher and heavier than TKP trucks, and its design is specially designed for turns and slides, not grinds.
Again, each brand and each truck is totally different and it changes the turn and stability both.
Which trucks should I use with which board?
Generally, a TKP truck is used on a classic skateboard and a RKP truck is used on a longboard, but it doesn’t need to be always on that way. More over, we strongly recommend to test and try different options and feelings.
So in this article we are just going to mention some setups that probably are making not sense at all and we don’t recommend.
Setting up a TKP trucks in an over 18″ wheelbase board
The wheelbase and the turn have a really close relationship. It turns less when the wheelbase is longer and it turns more when it is shorter.
Obviously you can use a TKP trucks wherever you want, but from 18″ you will feel a better performance using a RKP truck.
Setting up a TKP trucks in a Drop Through board
It is a set up that has no sense, probably you could set it up but drop through boards are long and they have a long wheelbase too. They are specially designed for pushing, long distance or sliding, a board like this should perform RKP trucks.
Setting up a RKP trucks in a skateboard
That’s the last set up we don’t recommend at all. The narrowest RKP trucks in the market use to be 150mm, this is too wide for a 7.75″, 8.0″, 8.25″… boards.
In a pool board with 15″ wheelbase and 9″ or 10″ wide you could use RKP trucks but this kind of boards are working perfect with TKP trucks, if the problem is that you are looking for more turn you should buy a better trucks or using angled risers.