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December 2017
2017-12-15T18:30:05+00:00

Independent Trucks are some of the most famous but unfortunately also some of the heaviest skateboard trucks on the market. With the Forged Titanium models the brand from NHS now presents real lightweight trucks. I did the skate test to check whether the light version can keep up with the classics.

The Independent Stage 11 Standard Forged Titanium trucks - Unboxing

The Independent Stage 11 Standard Forged Titanium truck after unboxing.

Weight

It’s nothing new, that everybody wants lighter and stronger skateboard trucks. After all, the trucks make up the heaviest part of the skateboard with about 350 – 400 g per truck. The Forged Titanium trucks are the lightest trucks of Independent’s assortment. This is due to the titanium axles and hollow kingpins. In combination with the forged Baseplate, those features make those trucks even a bit stronger.

“You can notice the weight reduction only by lifting the setup.”

There are also other lightweight models from Independent but with roughly 56 Grams loss of weight per truck (on the 149 version), the Forged Titaniums are the featherweights amongst all Indys:

Model Weight
Standard 149 400 g
Hollow 149 ~368 g (7-8 % lighter)
Forged Hollow 149 ~358 g (10 % lighter)
Forged Titanium 149 ~344 g (14-15 % lighter)

So much for the weight issue. But what about the question that probably everybody has in mind: is it worth to invest in Independent Forged Titanium trucks or have the savings been made in the wrong spot?

Performance

One thing is clear: at least since Stage 11, Independent trucks have an excellent geometry that you can hardly complain about. Deep turns, quick response, stability and no hang-ups are core characteristics of the trucks. Problems like bushings that are squeezed out of their bushing seats of broken kingpins are no issue at all or merely a rarity.

The Independent Stage 11 Standard Forged Titanium truck during the first sessions

The Independent Stage 11 Standard Forged Titanium truck during the first sessions.

Talking about bushings – I had the feeling that Independent did something with their stock bushings. While years ago, I had the tendency to directly exchange new Indy bushings, I now liked the performance of the included 90A Bushings. Of course, they took some time to break in but after a few sessions, I already got used to the little buddies. Nevertheless, after six months and some gaps, I got some fresh ones.

The Independent Stage 11 Standard Forged Titanium truck after 9 months

The Independent Stage 11 Standard Forged Titanium truck after nine months skateboarding.

Even my “Never Change a Winning Team”-sort of friends, who ride Standard Indys since forever, were pleasantly surprised by the Forged Titaniums and their weight. You can notice the weight reduction only by lifting the setup. If those trucks will help you doing your tricks higher or better is nothing that I want to discuss here. Anyway, I had the impression that even with tired legs I could skate powerful to some extent. I guess, the titanium Indys might have something to do with that.

When it comes to manoeuvrability and grindability the light version can totally keep up with the standard models. Thanks to the hanger’s design there is plenty of room to grind on without impairing the kingpin or receiving early greetings from the axle.

Rating: 9/10

Durability

By now, the Forged Titanium Indys are part of my setup for nine months and I wouldn’t want to part ways with them. As you can see in the pictures, the trucks have lost quite a bit of material due to rough street curbs in that time. But it’s still a long way down to the axle. If you are primarily skating parks, you can probably skate these trucks forever. Accordingly, with the Forged Titanium models you’ll get incredibly light Independent trucks that are just as strong and durable as the famous standard variations.

Rating: 10/10

After nine months testing: the Forged Titanium Indys.

Conclusion

If you still think that Independent trucks are too heavy for technical skateboarding like street or flatground, I would like to invite you to let the Stage 11 Forged Titanium trucks convince you of the opposite (alternatively get convinced by this Switch Frontside 540). Even though there are much lighter trucks on the market, the Forged Titanium Indys are some of the longest-lasting trucks in the game that will do your tired bones a favour. Clear recommendation!

+

  • Reduced weight
  • All Stage XI benefits
  • High durability

  • If there is a con at all, I would name the break-in period of the bushings

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Just skate for fun, don’t pick up a skateboard because you want to be a pro one day. Don’t forget why you started skating in the first place. – Steve Caballero