The History of Gullwing
In October of 1976, two young skaters named Mike Williams and Joe Lynch approached a company called High Precision grinding and manufacturing, inquiring if they were interested in the production of new product for skateboarding, specifically skateboard trucks. Precision designer Bill Brawner and CEO Walter Teidge teamed up with Mike and Joe to form what is now known as Gullwing Truck Company. The debut product from Gullwing was the Split Axle. Intended for slalom and downhill, this was the first ever skateboard truck to feature a split axle design. This truck was hugely successful due to its fast turning action and stability at high speeds. Following the Split Axle was the Phoenix. The Phoenix had the same geometric style as the Split Axle but was built to withstand the abuse from Pool and Vert skating.
The 80's saw skateboarding become a force to be reckoned with and, with its growth, Gullwing was fueling its demand for quality skateboard trucks. The early 80â€™s saw an explosion of progression in Vert skatingthat began to incorporate more grinding than previous years and skateboards were being manufactured to be wider. Prior to progressive grinding in the 80's, Gullwing introduced the PRO model, a truck with a peculiar yet unique design. This truck featured a groove in the center of the hangar, which was later recognized for its ability to assist with locking into grinds after the advent of PVC/steel pipe copings along with the increase of grinding in the industry. This feature was to be known as the Gullwing Groove and was featured in the majority of Gullwing models for many years to come. In the Mid 80â€™s, Gullwing Introduced the PRO III. The PRO III was quite possibly the most popular and most successful truck of the 80â€™s. Many legendary riders rode for Gullwing at this time and some continue to ride them to this day. Ben Schroeder, Chris Miller, Tony Magnusson, Jason Jesse, Jeff Kendal, Lee Ralph, David Hackett and Ray Underhill are just a few names who graced the Gullwing team roster. To compliment the PRO III further was the release of the magnesium edition. This was the only 100% magnesium skateboard truck and featured a titanium axle that made for the lightest skateboard truck of its time. Following the success of the PRO III was The Phoenix, The Sidewinder and The Mach IV (the first graphite skateboard truck). Each of these trucks offered unique design features that complimented every type of rider from this era.
The Early 90â€™s saw a decrease in the popularity of skateboarding. While Vert was dying out, Street skating was alive and well. Gullwingâ€™s answer to the underground street skating scene was the Street Shadow. This truck was piloted by household pro names such as Matt Hensley, Ronnie Creager, Chad Knight and Chet Thomas, and continued to keep Gullwing a force in the marketplace. Street skating progressed tricks were becoming more and more technical, which led to skateboards getting smaller and more nimble. The introduction of the Little G model offered a truck that was as narrow as 7 inches and was the answer many skaters were looking for. The latter half of the 90â€™s saw the release of the Spectra. Gullwing also unveiled Hurricane Trucks, a subsidiary of Gullwing. Hurricane was 100% street based and featured top name pros such as Willy Santos and Dayne Brummet . Also around this time, Gullwing opened its doors and production to multiple upstart truck companies. Acting as a manufacturer, Gullwing produced trucks for many companies who would remain a force in the industry today.
The new millennium saw an explosion in the Longboard market and a chance for Gullwing to get back to its roots. Gullwing looked no further than some of their earliest models and introduced the Charger. This model featured a reverse kingpin design that was reminiscent of its ancestor, the Split Axle. This truck was designed for deep carves, deep turning, and stability at high speeds. Following the Charger was the Stalker. The Stalker featured the same advantages as the Charger but with a feature that puts it leaps and bounds ahead of its competition. The Stalker features a bushing system around the axle that dampens vibrations from rough surfaces which results in a smooth ride no matter how bad the pavement is. Always innovative, Gullwing debuted an oddity of a model called the Sidewinder. Not to be confused with the Sidewinder of the late 80â€™s, this Sidewinder featured a design that has two pivot points and a double stacked bushing system resulting in the ability to turn and carve unlike any other truck on the market. Even skeptics and the most traditionalist core riders are swayed once they ride them due to their insanely fun ride.
In 2011, Gullwing seized the opportunity to be the only company to offer products that compliment all forms of skateboarding. With the longboard boom in full swing, riders began riding faster, innovating new tricks, and demanding more from their trucks. Gullwing answered these demands with the Charger II. Stripped down to the bare essentials, the Charger II is a modern yet fully functional truck that allows rider progression to the fullest extent. The Shadow DLX is Gullwingâ€™s latest offering to the street and core skateboarding market. This conventional truck is reminiscent of its precursors the Street Shadow and Little G and is already become a favorite among street and vert skaters abroad. Last but not least, and due to overwhelming demand, is the re-release of the Gullwing classic: the PRO III. Whether you rode these when you were a kid or you just want that old school truck for your retro setup, the PRO III will possess you to go slappy a red curb or throw a big slash grind at your local skate park.
For over 35 years, Gullwing has produced the best trucks available on the market and we have no plans of slowing down. Whether you rode our trucks as a kid or you just bought your first set, you can always count on Gullwing being innovative, progressive, and offering the best trucks available on the market. If you donâ€™t believe us, ask someone who is riding a set. The Gullwing Army is out there and ready to make you a believer.