The penny board vs nickel board debate is interesting. 22 vs 27 inches?
Does an extra 5 inches make a big difference?
Unfortunately they’re a lot more different than you think, so let’s look at everything you need to know before buying one.
Penny Board vs Nickel Board
The main difference between a 22 inch penny board and 27 inch nickel board is the length. Not only is a nickel board longer but it’s also 1.5 inches wider. 22 penny boards hold an advantage doing tight turns, whereas 27 penny nickel boards are a bit more stable at high speeds.
Penny vs Nickel Board: Physical Differences
Although the penny board and nickel board look almost identical there are a few physical differences between the two. Here are the most obvious ones you’ll realize once you hold each board in your hands:
Penny Board Length vs Nickel Board Length
The classic penny board is 22 inches long, so it’s shorter than an average skateboard. Once you ride one for the first time you’ll appreciate how small it is.
The penny nickel board is 27 inches long, so it’s around the same size as a skateboard. A 27 inch penny board is much more comfortable to stand on for most people.
Penny Board Width vs Nickel Board Width
The 22 inch penny board is only 5 inches wide. It also comes with 3 inch high grade aluminum trucks, which are wide enough to accommodate the deck width.
The nickel board 27 inch model comes with a 6.5 inch wide deck, so it’s a bit easier to stand on. The trucks on the 27 inch penny board are a little wider at 4 inches.
Penny Board Weight vs Nickel Board Weight
Original penny boards weigh 1.93 kilos which is light enough to carry around anywhere with you. Penny gives the board a maximum weight limit of 100 kg (220 pounds)
A 27 nickel board weighs a little more coming in at 2 kilos. Even though there is more distance between the trucks 27 nickel boards still have a 100 kg (220 pounds) weight limit.
Please Note: Some penny board copycats mention slightly lower weight limits, but the ultimate flex strong plastic is hard to break. If you are much bigger you could check out the best longboards for heavy riders, but they’re wooden as opposed to plastic.
Next we’re going to discuss the individual strengths of the 22 penny board vs 27 nickel board, but first we’re going to look at the similarities between each board. Aside from the main physical differences we’ve looked at these ones are the exact same:
Deck = secret formula (flexible + strong plastic + waffle non slip deck)
Trucks = high quality aluminum trucks
Wheels = 59mm 83A wheels
Bearings = Abec 7 stainless steel (lightweight + high speed)
Penny Board 22 vs 27: Different Strengths
22 inch penny boards are better for some things, whereas longer 27 inch nickel boards are better for others. I guess the best penny board for you will depend on what you’re going to use it for. Here are some of the important differences you’ll need to know first:
- Portability and storage
- Commuting around town
- Going at high speed
- Doing tricks
- Smoother rides
- Better for beginners
1 Portability and storage – A 22 original penny board can be transported around everywhere because it’s so small. The size and weight mean it’s not going to cause you any problems to carry under your arm. If you don’t want to carry it you can squeeze the penny board into a backpack.
Once you reach your destination it’s easy to store the 22 penny board anywhere. Here is a quick example of places you’ll be able to keep the board when you want to put it away:
- Gym locker
- Work station
- School desk
And due to the fact it’s so small you’ll be able to hide it at home. In fact, you better remember where you put it down because you might lose it.
It’s important to note the 27 nickel board isn’t exactly much bigger, so it’s still easy to transport around and store away. I don’t think you’ll be able to carry it around in a backpack, but it’s not going to cause you hassle to throw it under your desk when you’re at school or work.
2 Commuting around town – One of the big reasons why people choose cruiser boards like the 22 inch penny board is because they want to commute around town. If you live somewhere busy it might involve whizzing in and out of crowds trying not to hit anyone along the way.
A 22 inch penny board has exceptional maneuverability because it’s so small, so it means very sharp turns. Although it might take you a while to get highly skilled on a penny board 22 inch models will always be more favorable in large crowds, but 27 inch penny boards excel:
- In hilly conditions
- Over long distances
If you’re going to be commuting in hilly areas and covering long distances it might be worth stepping up to the 27 inch penny nickel board. It’s just going to be a more comfortable ride overall, which will make a bigger difference than how sharp you can turn.
3 Going at high speed – It’s not very easy to stand up on a 22 penny board due to the fact it’s only 22 inches long and 5 inches wide. Bigger riders with larger feet will find it more difficult. When you add speed into the equation things get worse because it’s hard to keep your balance.
Things aren’t so difficult on the 27 inch penny nickel board because those extra inches make a big difference. It’s why you’ll be able to go a lot faster on a 27 nickel board. When you’re riding at higher speeds it’s easy to be confident when you don’t feel like you’ll fall off.
22 inch penny boards still have the ability to go fast thanks to the great wheels and abec bearings. It’s just easier to lose your balance, so if you do choose the original penny board be extra careful when going fast.
4 Doing tricks – Are penny boards good for tricks? No, but that doesn’t mean you won’t be able to do them. There are a large selection of tricks you’ll be able to do on any penny board. Here are a few examples to show what’s possible with tough plastic:
- Hippie jump
- Staple gun
We could go on for ages but just realize tricks are possible. Plus penny board tricks on a 27 inch penny board are much easier thanks to the overall size. You should be able to keep yourself busy for a long time before you need to go out and buy a traditional skateboard.
You’ll even be able to use your penny nickel board at skateparks although you’ll be limited in what you can do.
Penny board tricks on a 22 inch board are on a whole different level. The board is just too small to do almost any trick easily. That might be a bonus to those who enjoy big challenges, but to the average person the 27 nickel board comes out on top in the trick department.
5 Smoother rides – While you’re skating you’ll be able to maneuver around objects faster on the 22 inch penny board, but what about the obstacles you have to go over? Here are a couple of things I’m sure you’ll come up against during your adventures:
Cracks in the ground
I know both penny boards have the exact same wheels, but you’ll be able to feel everything a lot more on the original 22 penny board. When you’re skating around on the nickel 27 inch board you’ll run over objects much easier leading to a smoother overall ride.
It’s important to note both these boards are only going to take you so far. Neither can match the best longboard for beginners when it comes to smooth rides. But the nickel board still holds a slight advantage.
6 Better for beginners – A nickel board is much better for beginners. If you’ve never skated before it’s going to be hard to learn how to go fast, perform sharp turns, and do tricks on a 22 inch long penny board. It’s a lot easier to pick up if you’ve skated in the past.
Nickel penny boards have a much easier learning curve thanks to the extra length and width. Unless you really want a 22 inch board every beginner will progress quicker on a 27 inch nickel board.
7 Affordability – Original penny boards are going to cost a little less than nickel boards because they’re smaller. When everything is the same except size the board that uses more materials is going to cost more money to manufacture.
Is the difference huge? Not really, because they’re so similar.
Remember penny boards were created by a company called Penny, but they’re basically just small cruiser boards. And now every company that releases similar models calls them penny boards. So if you buy cheap penny boards from other companies you could save a lot of money.
Cool Fact: While we’re on the subject of price you might be surprised to know they’re not called penny boards because they’re cheap. The founder of the skate company had a sister called Penny.
Penny Board vs Nickel Board
You know the main differences so now you just need to decide which one to buy. Lots of people might say you should buy the penny nickel board because it’s easier to get started and it has more benefits. If that’s the case shouldn’t you just buy a traditional longboard?
Penny boards are still popular today because people continue to enjoy 22 inch lightweight plastic cruiser boards. Whichever one you choose I’m sure you’ll be more than happy with your final decision.