Trucks & Kingpins
Truck Agility and Kingpin Angles
Not sure if we're talking about vehicles, cartels, or roller skates anymore? Head on over to Anatomy 101 to study up on parts and pieces.
Truck agility refers to the angle of the kingpin. You can find kingpins at 5-, 10-, 12-, 16-, 20-, 33-degree angles (and more!) - these angles are measured from the vertical. The different angles have distinct feels and lend themselves to a wide variety of skating styles.
As the kingpin angle gets steeper (lower degrees), it takes a stronger force to tilt it and turn the wheels. Lower degree plates feel more stable, less responsive, better for speed where you're just blasting straight forward. If that's your goal, you don't want subtle movements to drastically shift your weight and balance.
Higher degree plates (technically 33-degrees but referred to as 45's) take less force to tilt. The plate has more leverage for agile, lateral movements. These feel more responsive, more squirrelly, more "turn-y."
Which is "better" is purely skater preference and there are plenty of incredible skaters who do all things on all plates. Of course, there are million more variables to add into all this, from plate length, to the mount position, the wheelbase, and more. But that's a lesson for another day.