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What do you do when a skateboard retires? When the layers of wood start separating and the decals are just plain worn out? It is toss in the trash pile. Then someone comes along and thinks hey I’ll buy that for my thrift store. That’s when I enter the picture. I spied this poor old decrepit skateboard at Stained Market Place in Ybor, which is in Tampa, Florida.
I have a soft heart for the unwanted and this board had seen better days. Ideas were swirling in my head and when I got home I had to check Pinterest for inspiration. I decided to make the retired skateboard into an industrial looking shelf. At first I considered making it into a bench but decided against it.
The edges were really rough. I used Elmer’s Wood Glue to glue down the top layer of wood to the next layer. To make sure the pieces adhered, I used clamps. The next thing I had to do was to fill in the gaps. I used my go to Elmer’s Pro Wood Filler. I think I need to buy a gallon of this stuff or maybe stock in the company. I started filling in the edge all around the skateboard. As each application dried I considered my options. Once the edge was filled in I sanded all around the skateboard, using The Mouse Sander and then hand sanding. I used a light hand when sanding.
When the edge looked smooth, I waxed it. I got out the dark wax and it was hardened so I salvaged what I could. I wanted to age the edge so it would look like it belonged to the rest of the skateboard. Since I didn’t have enough dark wax I used black shoe polish. Believe it or not it worked. I decided to keep the original patina of the skateboard. The bottom had a lot of decals that had worn off but it still looks interesting. I used three coats of Modge Podge to protect it.
The top part, where the grip tape is, was curling up around the edges. I yanked it off. There was a graphic of an arrow but it was sticky because of the grip tape. I sanded it very lightly and decided that is a bad move. I ended up using mineral spirits. It worked perfectly and removed all of the sticky residue. I waxed it several times using clear wax, buffing after each application.
Ok once I decided to go with an industrial style shelf my dilemma was what to do about the brackets for the shelf to attach to the wall. I had two Victorian wood brackets but they weren’t the right size and let’s face it Victorian doesn’t go with a retired skateboard, even if it is old and had seen better days. Plus it certainly isn’t industrial looking. I turned to my stash of wood, planning on making brackets but the more I thought about it I realized a retired skateboard deserves a new life with an up to date industrial look.
Home Depot to the rescue. I found black brackets that have a nice modern line to them and gives the shelf an industrial look. I also bought metal screws with a nut. I was able to use the front hole where the wheels were attached but the hole in the bracket was further back so I had to drill a new hole. To make sure it would line up I attached the bracket to the front and penciled in the back hole, moved the bracket so I could drill the hole and then moved it back and put in the screw and nut. I would have loved to use the screws that held the wheels on but they were so rusty and I ended up sawing them off. I didn’t fill the holes that couldn’t be used because I like the effect.
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