I've always wondered about Destructo trucks. They don't have the market saturation that the other truck companies do. People who skate Destructos pretty much stay with Destructos - kind of like Ventures. I took a look at some Destructo models, and decided to get the D2 with improved geometry. I got them in sizes 6.25 (9" axle) and 5.75 (8.5" axle). The nominal sizes were, as normal, rounded up. The 6.25 is pretty close, about 8.85". The 5.75's axle is 8.25". I had two sets of the 6.25 and one set of the 5.75 to test.
The first thing I noticed is that the trucks have impeccable build quality. The casting is absolutely perfect on every truck. The silver color is definitely the way to go to show off the manufacturing excellence. The size is clearly casted into the hanger, along with "mid", indicating the truck's height. The baseplate is mostly hollow - like Venture trucks - and has a kind of badge on the bottom that has a serial number and says "Designed in California. Assembled in PRC" (That's the People's Republic of China.) There are some modest graphics on the hanger, kind of a bar code thing and the Destructo trefoil in the center. The bushings are "Bones Licensed Technology"; from what I can see, they are medium hardness, taller than Bones bushings, and have an all around thinner core insert. They are mounted with no bottom washer and a thin, flat top washer. More about these bushings in the ride portion of this review. The axle nuts were fully threaded on the axle, which actually might not be such a great idea, because the loctite in the axle nuts were already kind of loose. There wasn't that tightness that comes when you first tighten up the axle nuts on new trucks. This will cause you to need new axle nuts earlier than with most trucks. The axle washers are too thick: the axle nut doesn't snug up on the loctite with both washers. Choose one washer, outside or inside. I chose outside on the 6.25 when I mounted them on an 8.5" deck, and inside when I mounted them on a 9" deck. I chose inside when I mounted the 5.75 on an 8.25" deck. Choosing to put your washers outside or inside pushes the track (distance between wheel centers) of your wheels in or out, respectively. Or, if you still want 2 washers, get some aftermarket ones like Khiro or Black Panthers. They're thinner and will allow washers on both sides.The build quality of the Destructos is such that there are no casting marks on the hanger, and the face to the wheel is flawless, so washers are, actually, only necessary if you want to protect your axle threads. With many other trucks, you have to use washers on the inside because otherwise the casting marks or paint blobs interfere with your bearings.
The second thing I noticed about the Destructos is that they were very lightweight. Eerily light for such wide trucks. The 6.25 weighed 361.5 grams per truck. The 5.75 weighed 350 grams per truck. That's a 9" truck that weighs less than an Independent 139 low (369 grams). And the 8.5" truck weighs less than the Theeve TiAX 5.85 (355 grams) - not too surprising since the Theeve actual axle is 8.6" compared to the Destructo's 8.25. But the Destructo 5.75 also weighs less than 8" Venture Superlights (which weigh 355 grams).
The reverse kingpin on the D2 has both hex and socket options for adjustment. The nut insert in the baseplate is 3 times as long as a normal kingpin nut - that thing is securely fastened in there. This makes it easy to take the hanger off without having to worry about the nut falling down and then having to remove the whole truck - like with Krux trucks - to get the kingpin assembly back together. The downside to reverse kingpins is that steel ones, even grade 8 as mounted in the D2, flex when turning. I don't notice it when I'm riding, but I can see it flex when I pivot the trucks with my hands. This will, no doubt, eventually wear away the nut insert in the aluminum baseplate. If you want to keep the Destructos for a while, be sure to replace the kingpins at some point with standard kingpins. (I intend to do this with some Theeve TiKING kingpins soon. Stay tuned.)
The ride of the trucks is fantastic, but in a certain way. I skate Venture Lows on flatland because they're highly stable and turn very quickly with Bones Bushings in them. Venture axles are pushed out along the wheelbase so that they're more over the truck bolts nearest the ends of the board. Destructos feel a lot like bigger Ventures. Destructos have the same quick turning, the same high stability, as Ventures with Bones Bushings. They're like higher quality Ventures that are available in larger sizes. Nice. In spite of the market trends, there are no current signs that Venture will produce anything larger than their 5.2 wide. Probably suits them, though, as Venture specializes in offering less-expensive trucks that are strongly favored by people who skate smaller boards in the 7.6" - 8.1" range.
Back to the Destructos, however. The D2 geometry is, like I said, reminiscent of Venture low geometry. The trucks are a mid height, and that is an accurate designation. My board felt poppier with these trucks because of the reduced height, but it didn't feel flat like the effect some low trucks have. The stability is highly appreciated in flatland tricks. The trucks are predictable and turn the way I want them to without hesitation. They don't turn surfy and carvy like Theeves, but they turn in a different controlled way: a quick, highly stable turn that imparts much confidence on flatland tricks. The bushings break in in minutes, just like Bones Bushings, and don't pop out, bulge, or anything else. Tighten your trucks to your preferred setting and go skate. The trucks grind well, nice and smooth, as most silver trucks do. They are predictable and stable on the grind and are easy to grind functional locks into. Smith grinds are a breeze because the kingpin is so tucked in and the top washer, being flat and low-profile, doesn't get in the way.
All in all, the Destructos are great, great trucks. Along with Theeve trucks, they have extremely high build quality. They're a different game from Theeve, though, much better suited to flatland and street courses. If you've upped your flatground and street course board to the 8.25" - 8.75" range, and you skated Ventures before, you might want to consider Destructos now.
I liked Destructo trucks enough to get a pair of 5.75 for my personal flatland/street board, an 8.25" Creature Frozen Beasts. They fit perfectly and give me all the confidence I need for learning more ballerina flatland tricks.