Thanks to a great email from Matt, and other skaters that have asked us to give more details on some of our goods, I thought it might be time to do a quick review on Churchill RKP trucks. First off, riders always ask us, “why are these trucks so good”? Being that we sell them for about half the price of their name brand brethren, they should be about half as good. The truth being, that they are made as good as some of the best cast trucks on the market. What could make them as good as the $40-$80 reverse kingpin trucks, you ask? Fact is that these are gravity cast in sand rather than die cast. It’s much cheaper in the long run to die cast. What’s the difference? When you cast in sand, the aluminum gets to cool properly and therefor the truck has no bubbles inside the structure, otherwise known as porosity. This is how they make engine blocks, so you can see how when performance is key, you sand cast. To die cast, hot aluminum is injected into a steel mold which shocks the material and traps in gasses which have to go somewhere, which go inside the aluminum and turn into voids. You could see this if you cut a truck in half. There would be a lot pits and bubbles on the inside which could be the cause of most truck failures and the reason for hanger bending. So why die cast if gravity casting is better? Because in the end, with a steel mold used in die casting, versus a sand cast mold, the part from the die cast mold comes out almost smooth and ready for paint. The gravity cast part is more rough around the edges from imperfections in the sand and requires more laborious grinding and polishing to make it pretty. You could say that every gravity cast RKP truck is almost one of a kind, like a piece of art! How can you tell a gravity cast over a die cast truck? Look at the finish, the prettier it is, the more likely it’s die cast.
In addition to the superior gravity cast process that is used to make Churhcill’s RKP trucks, and other high end trucks like Indy and Randal, they are engineered with extra squared trussing at the structural intersections, plus they have a re-enforced circular bushing seat, unique in the industry, which tightly hugs the bushings and reduces side shifting (speed wobbles due to hanger slop) making them perform more like a precision truck with rear hanger support. So with all the thinking and engineering built into Churchill RKP’s, why would Churchill want to retail a set for half price? Does it cost less to produce than other high end trucks? The answer is NO! In fact we pay a little more to make this truck than the big brands do. Plus we left off the name, so if you don’t know the RKP, it just seems like some cheapo offering by a half rate board builder. But in the end, once you ride it, you might have a hard time finding a better preforming setup for your longboard.
So how did the RKP come to life and why? First off we used Randals and Trackers on all LAX and Churchill boards for a long time. Both of those are gravity cast and made in the USA, two pluses in my book. But those two brands where always running out and we had a hard time getting completes built without trucks. So we needed something to fill in the gap. Instead of trying to create another truck company in a sea of endless brands and offerings, we just left the name off and sold them for a bit less. Plus we didn’t want to compete with our friends like Max from Tracker and Michael from Gravity (former Randal owner). So we left the name off and used the RKP as our fill in. But then skateboarders started buying them and saying, dam, these are really good. Why don’t you guys put a name on it? Oh boy, now we’ve got a pickle! If we brand it and sell it for 1/2 price, everyone will hate it, if we raise the price, it would have a great reputation, but no one would buy it. So what to do? Just leave it alone and let riders figure it out. The RKP is just another unsung creation under Churchill that will never see the height for it’s engineering or quality but for those in the know, we are here for ya. Thanks for reading. We will try to review and hype up some more of the junk we sell as time goes by