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Leading Woodshops Behind Your Favorite Skateboard Decks

Have you ever wondered how your favorite Baker or Primitive deck is manufactured? Have you noticed the woodshop’s name laser engraved or their logo on small stickers on the deck? Today, we focus on the top woodshops in skateboarding.

In skateboarding, deck quality is crucial to any brand’s success. Top woodshops produce high-quality decks, offering unique advantages and influencing brand partnerships. Big skateboard companies source their decks from the best wood shops, leveraging specialized technology and manufacturing processes. Brands often switch woodshops for better technology, pricing, or strategic benefits. Here’s a closer look at some of the top wood shops that manufacture decks for major skateboard brands.

  1. BBS MFGOne of the well known woodshops by skateboarders in the world. Established in 1996 and based in the USA, BBS MFG is renowned for its high-quality manufacturing processes. It has become a preferred partner for many top skateboard brands, including Baker, Deathwish, Anti-Hero, Alien Workshop, and Real. Their commitment to quality and innovation has earned them a reputation as one of the best woodshops in the industry. In my personal opinion, BBS-manufactured decks are the best out there. After years of using Real decks, nothing comes close to the quality of these skateboards coming from their woodshop.
  2. PS Stix – Founded by the legendary Professor Schmitt in 1987, PS Stix has been a cornerstone in skateboard manufacturing for nearly four decades. Known for their innovative designs and craftsmanship, PS Stix caters to brands such as WKND, Welcome Skateboards, Fantasy, and New Deal, prioritizing both quality and performance. 
  1. HLC – Established in 2000 by the Iraola Brothers in Spain, HLC is one of the largest woodshops outside the USA. They provide decks to prominent brands like Jart Skateboards, Plan B, Sk8Mafia, Flip, and Player. Their global reach and efficient production capabilities make them a key player in the industry, offering high-quality decks at competitive prices. Aside from manufacturing skateboard decks, they also manufacture wheels, bearings, and other skateboard components.
  1. DSM Woodshop – This is Dwindle Distribution‘s woodshop, based in China.  DSM Woodshop is known for its technological innovations, such as uber light, impact support and impact light. They produce durable and high-performance decks for brands like Almost, Enjoi, Monarch, Blind, and Darkstar. Their focus on advanced technology ensures they remain a favorite among brands that emphasize cutting-edge designs. 
  1. Skate One – Established in 1976 in California by George Powell and Stacey Peralta, Skate One exclusively manufactures for its own brands, Powell Peralta and Mini Logo. Their long-standing presence in the industry and focus on quality control make them a trusted name in skateboard manufacturing. 
  1. Woodchuck Laminates – Founded in 1996 by Max Dufour in Canada, Woodchuck Laminates combines experience and innovation to provide decks for a variety of skateboard brands, including Finesse, Nomad, Revive, and Premium Skateboards. Their commitment to quality and customer satisfaction makes them a reliable partner in the industry. In my personal experience using Woodchuck Laminates decks (Premium Skateboards, to be exact), I noticed a significant difference in quality compared to price-point decks. The Woodchuck-manufactured deck lasted much longer than the lower-priced one.
  1. Watson Laminates – Established in 1975 by Charles Watson and currently owned by Tod Swank, Watson Laminates is based in San Diego, California. They produce decks for both legendary and modern brands, such as Caster, G&S, Sims, Z-Flex, Zero, Toy Machine, Foundation, and Pig. Their extensive experience and dedication to quality have cemented their place as a top woodshop in the skateboarding world. 

If you’re inspired by the woodshops mentioned above and want to start your own skateboard brand, there are several economic factors to consider when partnering with a woodshop. Each woodshop has its own minimum order quantities (MOQs) and pricing structures, which can significantly impact your brand’s budgeting and planning.

  • Minimum Order Quantities (MOQ): Typically, woodshops require a minimum order of 50-100 decks. This MOQ can vary based on specific requirements and customization needs.
  • Cost per Deck: Deck prices range from $15 to $30, depending on the woodshop and customization options. For a minimum order of 50 decks, the total cost can start from $750 to $1500.
  • Customization: Additional customization, such as unique graphics or specialized materials, can increase the cost per deck.

Woodshops generate income through various channels, each catering to different market needs:

  • OEM Manufacturing: This is the primary income source for woodshops, where they produce quality skateboard decks for top skateboard brands that sell the decks under their own names.
  • Private Label Production: Many woodshops offer private label services, ideal for startup brands entering the skateboard market without their own manufacturing facilities. A prime example of this is Sk8factory based in California, which offers this service.
  • Custom and Specialty Decks: Woodshops often produce custom decks for brands with unique identities, including re-issue or shaped boards. A perfect example is the Contra Anniversary skateboard deck, a collaboration with the classic Nintendo video game series.
  • Upcycling: Scrap skateboard wood from the manufacturing process is often sold as furniture or small items, providing an additional revenue stream. This is definitely cool, and we have been seeing some of these creations on the PS Stix website.

Understanding the strengths and offerings of each woodshop helps skateboard brands make informed decisions that align with their quality standards and business goals. As the skateboarding industry continues to grow, these woodshops remain pivotal in shaping the future of skateboarding, one deck at a time.

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