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Shark Wheel literally reinvents the wheel, at least for skateboards

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June 6, 2013

The Shark Wheel literally reinvents the skateboard wheel

The Shark Wheel literally reinvents the skateboard wheel

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A company called Shark Wheel is aiming to reinvent, well, the wheel. Instead of the conventional circular shape we're all familiar with, this new skateboard wheel is based around a cube shape. While this might seem illogical, the company claims its new wheels ride smoother, faster, and offer better grip than traditional skateboard wheels.

The wheels are based around a shape that fits inside a cube. They aren't quite a square, and aren't quite circular, but are made up of three strips, each of which create a helical shape when they roll. This forms a sine wave pattern where the wheels make contact with the ground.

The creators say this results in less friction points on the ground to allow the wheel to roll faster than a traditional skateboard wheel and also allows for better handling in rough and wet terrain, which causes problems for normal wheels.

The sine wave pattern also grants improved lateral grip, as the width of the wheel is able to be increased without adding any unnecessary friction, and thus, slowing down the board. It also provides three lips for stopping, where a traditional wheel only has one.

Another interesting application of Shark Wheels is the ability to mix different hardnesses in the same wheel. The hardness of a skateboard wheel is measured in terms of durometers, and the three interlocking pieces of this particular wheel allows the rider to choose three different ones in each wheel, which grants extra customization in terms of grip and slide.

Shark Wheel is seeking funding for its interesting new wheel design on Kickstarter and is offering a wide range of options for backers. Buyers looking to add the 70 mm wheels to an existing board can do so for a minimum pledge of $50 while the early bird special lasts. Once those are gone, the required pledge goes up to $55.

The team has already reached its funding goal, so deliveries should start rolling by September 2013.

The Kickstarter pitch below provides more information on the Shark Wheel and shows actual skateboarders trying them out.

Source: Shark Wheel and Kickstarter

About the Author
Dave LeClair Dave is an avid follower of all things mobile, gaming, and any kind of new technology he can get his hands on. Ever since he first played an NES as a child, he's been an absolute tech and gaming junkie.   All articles by Dave LeClair
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17 Comments

Hey if it works, get them rolling! :D

Edgar Castelo
7th June, 2013 @ 04:09 am PDT

From one who rode, abeit breifly, on clay wheels back in the day, this looks like jumping from the Flintstones to the Jetsons.

Bruce H. Anderson
7th June, 2013 @ 09:19 am PDT

It's not really a square wheel. It's basically a round wheel with wavy treads and sidewalls.

Michael Logue
7th June, 2013 @ 09:22 am PDT

Cool i want one of those to my daughter down hill skateboard

Liz Feliciano
7th June, 2013 @ 09:34 am PDT

Square, I don't think so. Gets your attention so I'll think of it as valid for marketing reasons. Interesting, hell yes I'm now in for two sets. For my uses they probably are no better than any normal skateboard wheel. If you apply a lot of side force on your wheels and better control would be welcome, I think it would be good for you to try a set.

If you don't bother with intalling the metal spacers between the bearings in your wheels, I doubt these will be better for you than regular flat wheels. I view them as a stack of 3 inline wheels, the wave and depth of the tread may displace to the side some occasional small stones rather than go up over them.

Dave B13
7th June, 2013 @ 09:35 am PDT

Surely triple donuts would give all the benefits (less contact area and multiple materials) without the sine wave. I'm not sure what 'three lips for stopping' means when there is no braking mechanism. The so-called 'square' shape (when viewed from a certain angle) will make it a hit in a scene that thrives on uniqueness and innovation. Years ago a car tyre manufacturer invented twin tyres on each rim to aid water dispersion and allow greater width with the same contact area.

RodD
7th June, 2013 @ 03:30 pm PDT

Seems like the wavy sidewalls would be more likely to catch on cracks and the such, but on the other hand might give you the control to launch. I don't know, but if you can make these as wide as you want the kids will go nuts for them, remember when you dreamed of tires, the WIDER the better. this is a cool idea, good luck with it.

Jay Finke
7th June, 2013 @ 06:44 pm PDT

I wonder if they will make some for rollerblades?

Rkt9
7th June, 2013 @ 06:55 pm PDT

I do like them, but skeptical as I can't help being, I wonder if extra stability is just due to extra width...

I suppose there are many ways of making wide wheels lighter... One is taking material off the sides with a fancy shape, but there are more.

Regarding the question to rollerblades, if they are In-line I have my doubts, as you change the angle when you turn, and the contact area would be uneven... causing vibrations.

If they run flat I suppose they can be used for other stuff.

Anyway... again, nice idea that could work even if just for the looks of it!

Mrk White
7th June, 2013 @ 09:09 pm PDT

All it is is a tread pattern on a wheel.

Watch the video and he says he discovered a way to take a set of curved shapes and make a "perfect square". But what he shows is NOT a square at all.

Then he takes that "shape" and applies it to a wheel and comers up with a conventional round wheel that has a tread with a sine wave pattern. Big whoop. He claims all sorts of things, including that it is faster than a regular wheel. I don't believe it.

If anything that sine wave is going to induce lateral vibrations in the wheel and to the skateboard or whatever it's mounted on.

And as for reduced surface contact, sure it may do that. But you don't need a fancy wavy tread pattern to do that. Just make a really narrow wheel. But what's the advantage? You'll have more pressure on the part that contacts the ground and therefore more wear on the wheel.

Roger Garrett
8th June, 2013 @ 02:20 pm PDT

I find it rather weird. But if it works I'll be interested to see if tyre manufacturers adopt the idea.

Julian Siuksta
8th June, 2013 @ 07:54 pm PDT

The problem with this business venture is this.....

It's for Skateboards, so you're dealing with "kids".

And the problem for you there is this... "Kids are not stuuuupiiiiiiidddd"

Chris Winter
9th June, 2013 @ 08:09 pm PDT

When he discovered this wavy shape, and rolled across the ground, maybe he should have put a similar sized regular hoop and compared the distance that they rolled. Surely a regular wheel has more frictional grip than one with a ridged surface.

Car tyres only have a tread pattern to disperse water.Think about F1 racing. Their tyres are completely smooth, for dry surfaces. I don't suppose many people go skateboarding in the rain.

David Colton Clarke
10th June, 2013 @ 05:51 am PDT

Its a wave tread pattern?? Its not that complicated. I am interested to if it performs well but I don't consider this revolutionary. Maybe the customization part is slightly revolutionary but still.

Michael Mantion
10th June, 2013 @ 09:58 am PDT

What's with these 3 foot long skateboards?

Now, do they manufacture each section individually and mate them together in a single wheel? Or do they just pour the polyurethane into a mold of that shape and call it a wheel?

Ed
6th May, 2014 @ 12:16 pm PDT

F1 cars, with smooth wheels for dry conditions, drive on perfectly smooth pavement. If skateboards, and other wheeled objects, worked great on all surfaces, that would be a major improvement.

Cliff Lapp
28th May, 2014 @ 03:54 pm PDT

How about a triangular wheel of the same material. It should offer all the same performance characteristics,,,,with one less sine wave oscillation spike, per revolution. :) Feel free to use the idea,,,there is no patent yet.

LX
18th September, 2014 @ 06:36 am PDT
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