Looking for SK8CAD FAQ? Click here.
What is Open Source Skateboards?
Open Source Skateboards (OSS) is a skateboard and longboard design/build studio on a mission to make skateboarding more accessible and sustainable. We build tools (software and hardware) to help people make boards, and provide R&D services and low volume production for independent brands and individuals.
What is "open source"?
"Open source" is a term that means the "source" content of a subject is provided for free, and may be reused and/or modified by others. An "open source" skateboard is a skateboard whose design is freely available. We created SK8CAD as a platform for more easily designing and sharing open source skateboards, so skateboards can be built more easily around the world, and so skaters could better understand and improve their boards' designs.
Do you offer printing?
We don't print on decks at this time.
Do you have a minimum deck order?
There is no minimum order for custom boards. OSS is not a factory or optimized for high volume production; rather, we specialize in prototyping and custom work. You can prototype with us, then take your design to a another vendor for production.
Can you replicate a board if I give you one?
Board replication or "cloning" is not offered unless the design being cloned is your own. We can, however, take aspects of a board you provide to create a new design with subtle or major tweaks.
I can't make my board design in SK8CAD, can you help?
Yes! If you cannot get your ideal design using SK8CAD, please contact us for design assistance. (This will likely require a custom design quote.)
Can you make wheels?
Do you make custom grip tape?
Where are you based?
OSS is based in San Diego, California, USA.
What sustainability practices do you implement?
Wood: we seek the most sustainable sources for our veneer and look for wood that is certified FSC and/or SFI, and is processed as close to the source as possible. Boards on this site are made from 7 layers of 1/16" hard rock maple unless noted otherwise.
Glue: we use non-toxic water-based adhesives over harsh epoxy resins.
Clear-coats: we use water-based clear-coats over oil-based.
Packaging: we minimize use of single-use plastics in our packaging, and don't shrink-wrap our boards (we do, however, wrap our boards in plastic bubble wrap to prevent scratches during shipping).
Please consider reusing and/or recycling any shipping materials and products you receive from us. Remember that a board that's too worn down for you may be perfect for someone else.
What are your molds made from?
Our foam molds are made from EPS foam. Our wood molds are typically made from vertically laminated Baltic Birch plywood using Titebond III wood glue. Our 3D printed molds are made from PLA plastic. Please contact us if you are interested in other materials.
Are you hiring?
If you are driven and excited but what we're doing and believe you can bring value to OSS and our customers, please get in touch.
What type of files can SK8CAD export?
3D files: SK8CAD can export STL files of skateboards, molds, and inverted molds.
2D files: SK8CAD can export SVG files of skateboard profiles. These profiles are based on a projected view of your board. (If a SK8CAD profile is laid flat along a curved surface of a board, expect the board profile to be slightly shorter than shown in SK8CAD.)
Data: SK8CAD can also export CSV files as a "snapshot" of your design. Paid subscribers can also save their designs (TXT file), which can be reloaded into SK8CAD later.
Can I save my designs?
Only paid subscribers can save/download their designs for reloading later. Check out the SK8CAD subscription options here.
Can you help me design my board/mold? What does [X parameter] do?
Please use the "Help" menu option in SK8CAD to find answers to your design questions, or inquire in our Discord community. If you are a paying subscriber, please contact us per the activation confirmation email you received for support.
I exported my model and it's not the right size, what's wrong?
The software you are viewing your model in did not assign the correct units when you imported it. It's common that millimeters are assigned as the units for SK8CAD files, while boards designed in SK8CAD are based on inches. To fix this, scale your model uniformly* by 25.4 (or 2540%). (25.4mm = 1 inch)
If you are using SK8CAD to design fingerboards, your model should be based on centimeters (not inches). In this case, if it looks too small, you likely need to scale your model uniformly* by 10 (or 1000%). (10mm = 1cm)
*It is very important that you scale the model uniformly, otherwise your model will not be accurate.
Do you have any examples I can use for my design, or as a starting point?
Yes, please check the Shape Library for a growing collection of designs, including designs for skateboards, longboards, fingerboards, and more.
I am an educator, how can I best leverage SK8CAD?
We offer an educator SK8CAD subscription that includes a training/consulting session and a no-email based sign in for students! Please contact us for more info.
How can I start making skateboards?
There are many resources for getting started making boards on this website. The most direct way would be to purchase a workshop (there's both a video workshop you can start immediately from anywhere and in-person workshops offered in San Diego).