Jam Plugs for Roller Skates

In 2021 I developed a new design of jam plugs for roller skates. Jam plugs are used by roller dancers instead of toe stops.

I found that there are no jam plugs on the market that are the right size for my needs, which were: deeper plugs for skaters on 62 mm wheels, with short plate and long toe on the boot, and with good toughness and the right friction. So I created my own and used the project to learn about resin casting, which is something I have wanted to do since 2001 when I was at the RCA.

I went through a couple of iterations of the designs of the plugs, here is the 3D printed template before clean up next to a standard Powerdyne Jam plug.

I smoothed out the 3D printed templates, including using a die to refine the precision thread on the 3D print (and for the skater nerds that tool on the right is a Shore A Scale Durometer).

Learning how to make a silicone moulds with a vacuum pot (thank you Georgie).

Learning how to cast resin with a pressure pot.

There was a lot of experimenting to find a resin with the best combination of strength, friction and wear resistance, and lots of fun product testing by me and several other skate dancers in Bristol. 🙂

I learned about mould shrinkage the hard way, having made a 4 impression mould and 24 jam plugs that all had to go in the bin because the thread were too small. Doh!

July 2021 – I have made about 20 prototypes and have finalised the design, I’m calling this project done for the moment.