Scooters are somewhat simple and straightforward in how they’re designed. But an appreciation of the parts and how everything comes together is an important part of appreciating how to make sure everything stays in great condition so you’re scooter can continue to give you space to do tricks safely.
The parts that should all be there for a decent scooter:
1 deck – what you stand on when riding. It includes the headtube that holds the bar, and the axle. So basically, the deck holds everything together, just like the frame of a bicycle.
1 fork – this connects the wheels and the steering tube. Two-piece forks will break down faster, and aluminum will be lighter then steel, which is easier for performing tricks, but less durable.
1 steering tube and handlebar– for steering. The bar’s width should be around the length of your shoulders, and go with something narrower for technical spins, something wider for no-hands tricks in the air. The height of the tube should be low (up to your thighs and hip), to allow for better stability and control.
1 headset – a small but significant connecting piece that goes between the deck and the tube, enabling it to spin around freely and give you flexibility of movement.
One of several types of compression systems – a series of bolts and clamps that connect everything together, and keep things from going slack and remaining tight and easy to control.
2 grips – rough rubber that goes over each of the handlebars, to give your hands a firmer grasp and more control over how you steer.
2 wheels – each of which will also need bearings, spacers, and bolts to hold it into the deck firmly. Flat profile wheels are better for getting a strong grip, and narrow profile wheels are better for speed.
Breaks – That can either be a foot break attached to the deck over the back wheel, or hand breaks attached to the handlebars.
In light of all this, some ways to keep your scooter working well over time:
1) When performing a flip or other trick, land with your weight evenly on the deck, so that parts of the deck don’t take on excess weight and wear out faster. Especially avoid landing too much on the front, as this can mess up the headset, bar, and fork.
2) Every time before you ride, check the spacing between the tube, headset, and fork. If things are too loose, adjust and tighten them. Otherwise the scooter could be both dangerous to ride and likely to break down.
3) Be careful to make sure the wheels’ bearings are completely aligned with the core (the wheel center), so everything moves together like it’s designed.
4) Keep bearings lubricated often, to prevent the wheels from melting. Oil will gives a higher speed then grease, but grease needs to be applied less often. Water removes all lubrication, so reapply if things ever get wet.
5) In general, pay attention to all the parts, and replace with an identical match once they get worn down or loose smoothness of movement.
6) When thinking about your options for parts (such as aluminum verses steel, or solid or hollow core wheels), remember that things that weight less will make tricks easier, but also decrease durability, so they’ll have to be replaced more often.