Decathlon Carve 540 Surfskate Review
Bottom Line Up Front
Although a lot of people like the Decathlon surfskate, I’m not a fan at all. The Decathlon surfskate truck is a poor Carver CX clone with a much more limited range of motion than the CX. The deck is completely flat and uses coarse grip tape, which means your front foot slides around a lot as you pump. The wheels are small and hard, which limits their use.
Personally, I think you shouldn’t waste money on the Decathlon surfskate and get something from the top 10 surfskates instead.
Watch My YouTube Review of the Decathlon Carve 540 Surfskate
Decathlon is a global sporting goods company that sells products for more than 80 sports. Their Carve 540 surfskate is popular in Thailand and other Asian countries, and is less well-known in the US.
Obviously, at $129, this is a case of you get what you pay for. But the big question is, is it worth it for beginners to start on a Decathlon Carve 540 surfskate and then upgrade to a better surfskate as you progress? Or would it be better for you to just spend more up front on a better surfskate and save the money you would have spent on the Carve 540?
In this Carve 540 surfskate review, I’ll do my best to answer that question for you.
And if you want help choosing the best surfskate for you, get my free Surfskate Selector app now. In just 8 questions, I’ll reveal the perfect surfskate for you and your riding style.
Let’s analyze all the component parts on the Decathlon Carve 540 surfskate, starting with the surfskate truck:
The Carve 540 surfskate truck is a Carver CX surfskate truck clone, which means it looks and performs similar to the Carver CX.
It is a bushing-based system, rather than a spring-based system. This means that it feels tighter and snappier than spring-based surfskate truck systems, such as the Carver C7, Smoothstar Thruster, or YOW Meraki. It also has a narrower range of motion than these other spring-based surfkate trucks.
However, there is a big difference between the Decathlon Carve 540 surfskate truck and the Carver CX surfskate truck.
In contrast to the Carver CX, the pivot arm on the Carve 540 has a thicker piece of metal, which hits the baseplate. This means that the Carve 540 surfskate truck has a much more limited range of motion than the Carver CX.
This makes a very big difference in how the Carve 540 feels and functions compared to the CX. When you pump the Carve 540 surfskate side to side, you feel the metal pieces knock together. When you hit a certain point to the side, it stops your pump cold and it is jarring. It has far less rail-to-rail lean and range of motion than the Carver CX.
This means you can’t pump as aggressively or carve as tightly as the Carver CX surfskate truck, and it just doesn’t feel nearly as smooth.
In short, the Decathlon Carve 540 surfskate truck is functional, but the Carver CX surfskate truck it is designed after functions and feels much better.
The Decathlon Carve 540 surfskate deck is 32.6” long and 9.76” wide at the widest part. It has multiple holes on the front of the deck for adjustable wheelbase options of 19.75”, 20.5”, and 21.25”. It is suitable for riders with a stance width of anywhere between 16” and 21”, although it is better for riders with a stance width of 17” or wider.
It features a foam traction pad on the back, like you see on surfboards. The grip tape is also very coarse. This means that the Carve 540 feels nice to ride barefoot. But when I ride the Carve 540 surfksate with shoes, I find that my feet slide around on both the traction pad on back and coarse grip tape on front.
The Carve 540 surfskate deck is very flat and has very little concave. This, combined with the course grip tape, means that you don’t feel super locked in when you drive through aggressive carving maneuvers.
The wheels on the Carve 540 surfskate are 65mm in diameter, 44mm contact patch, and 78a durometer. Typical surfskate wheels are 68-70mm in diameter and 47-49mm contact patch.
This means that the Carve 540 is not suitable for riding over rough surfaces or pebbles or for long distances. The smaller wheels make it better for training in smaller spaces with smoother surfaces.
The Carve 540 surfskate wheels are also stoneground and they have a rounded lip, which makes them better for sliding and not as good for gripping.
- Cheapest surfskate on the market.
- Functional surfskate for beginners.
- Good for riding barefoot.
- Adjustable wheelbase options to fit a wide range of stance widths.
- Low quality.
- The surfskate truck has a limited range of motion and feels jarring when you pump it.
- Between the lack of concave, course grip tape, and foam traction pad, your feel slide around on the deck in shoes.
- Only good for basic pumping and carving on smooth surfaces in small areas. Not suitable for a wide range of applications.
- Not as fun to ride as other surfskate trucks.
The Carve 540 surfskate is best for beginners who plan on using it for basic surfskate pumping, carving, and maneuvers in small areas.
If you’re an intermediate or advanced rider, I guarantee you will not like the Decathlon Carve 540 surfskate. You will want a surfskate that performs more equally to your abilities. Use my Ultimate Surfskate Selector to choose the ideal surfskate for you and your riding style and abilities.
I have tried the Carve 540 for surfskate bowl riding and I don’t like it at all. Your feet are not locked in at all, the wheelbase is too wide, and the surfskate truck is too tight.
All in all, my take on the Decathlon Carve 540 surfskate is that if you intend to surfskate a lot, it may work for you to start with, but you will quickly outgrow it and will want to upgrade to something better. In this case, you’ll have wasted $129 that could have gone to a better board from the beginning.
However, there are many riders who like the Carve 540 surfskate, and it may be great for you.
For more help choosing the best surfskate for you, get my free Surfskate Selector app now. In just 8 questions, I’ll reveal the perfect surfskate for you and your riding style.