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Rollerblading Equipment and Info

I see all kinds of equipment and gear, or lack of gear being worn while rollerblading.  Over the years my most significant falls have been twice when I was standing almost still, on a slope, and while distracted.  I am quite sure that on either of those occasions, had I not been wearing a helmet, I would no longer be rollerblading.

My normal gear consists of recreational skates:

  • Rollerblade Crossfire 6, with 90mm wheels, and TPS closure system.
  • At my last bearing change, I installed a set of Bones Super REDs.
  • Kneepads, wrist guards, and Helmet.
  • MP3 player with music at a beat to match my speed

Odd Stats:

  • Wheel rotation about every 200km
  • New set of wheels about every 700-800km, they are usually worn down to about 80mm by then.
  • Bearings removed and cleaned about every 2nd or 3rd wheel rotation
  • New brake pad at about every wheel set change
  • average blading speed: 21-23 km/hr (recreational skaters: 10-16 km/hr, typical speed skaters will pass me at about 25-27 km/hr)
  • typical distance per outing:  33 km
  • have replaced many boot rivets with Chicago fasteners over the last year due to rivet failures
  • the TPS tightening system, although excellent in use and concept, had to be replaced after about 1400km of use
  • my average summer skating distance based upon weather and time has been 1000-1200km
  • This set of Crossfire 6 rollerblades will like only last about 2200km
    • the TPS tightening mechanism is continuing to cut into the boot shell and will eventually split it (mostly cut through now)
    • the boot ankle tightener/fastener is plastic and will soon become unserviceable
    • most of the boot shell rivets have failed and have been replaced

Causes of Falls:

  • 2 occasions of standing still on a slope and having my feet slide out, resulting in landing on my back and head (years ago now).  Protected by my helmet.
  • 1 occasion where a small dog unexpectedly darted from a grassed area across the sidewalk to the boulevard in front of me.  Despite seeing me approach, the dog owner failed to lock the extension leash as a precaution.  The leash left a significant welt across my neck as I unsuccessfully tried to slide under it.
  • 1 occasion where light gravel buildup along the center of a T intersection resulted in a loss of control while navigating the curve.  Fortunately I landed/slid onto a grass boulevard, minimal loss of skin.
  • 1 occasion where a small piece of gravel on a sidewalk lodged in my left front wheel.  When your front wheel locks at over 18km/hr, there is only one place you are going to end up.  Lost most of the skin on my forearm that trip.
  • while approaching an intersection, the third car in line failed to signal his right turn.  I was approaching the same intersection via sidewalk and to stop in time, I reached my arm out to a lamp standard.  Rotator-cuffs do not like that kind of motion... several months before regaining full mobility in that joint.
  • 2 near misses - while rollerblading on roads in the summer, strict attention must be paid to crossing the tarred pavement cracks at perpendiculars.  On two occasions I have almost spilled by failing to cross these obstacles at the correct angle.
  • 1 occasion when I chose to skate with a friend, and not being used to pair skating, my skate made contact with his at just the wrong time resulting in tripping and sliding on the pavement.
  • 1 extremely painful (and lasting) injury resulting from late fall rollerblading and sliding on a small patch of wet leaves