A skateboard requires 8 bearings to run smoothly. Each skateboard wheel requires two bearings. For a safer and better skateboarding experience, you should have the same wheels and the same bearings. Avoid mixing and matching wheels and bearings. If you are trying to cut your expenses on your skateboard, do not compromise your wheels and bearings. Better yet, just purchase from the different best skate bearings and wheels that you can find online.
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Can You Make Your Own Skateboard Bearing?
If you are a professional and you have the right experience and tools, yes you can make your own bearings. Remember though that your bearings can dictate how your skateboard will run. A defective bearing can even cause an accident.
A set of skateboard bearings (8 pieces) costs around $15 to $30 depending on the brand. If you have the budget, it is best to just pick your bearings from a trusted store online or near you.
Skateboard Bearings Buying Guide
As you purchase your skateboard bearings, here are the things that you can consider.
Annular Bearing Engineering Committee or ABEC measures a bearing’s precision and accuracy.
This rating means that the bearing is made of steel of low quality. This is often given to cheap bearings.
These are cheap bearings that you can find on skateboards for beginners.
If you have a budget, an ABEC 5 rated bearings are good. These are intended for skateboards that are used for tricks and sick moves.
Bearings with this rating mean high-quality bearings. It also means expensive bearings.
This is the highest ABEC rating and it if you need speed, you should look for bearings with this rating.
There are two different types of bearings, steel, and ceramic.
Most bearings are made of steel. Popular brands of skateboards use steel bearings. However, the difference lies in the type of steel used, the sealing, and the interior ball bearings used. Remember that when it comes to bearings, the higher the price, the higher the quality. If you want quality steel bearings for your skateboard, you have to pay for it.
How would you know if you skateboard has cheap bearings? When you suddenly stop, you can hear a screeching sound, or your wheels feel like it becomes rigid.
Steel bearings expand over time. When used in a hot condition, it expands and breaks easily. This is something that ceramic bearings can save you from. Ceramic bearings are more durable yet more expensive.
Each wheel comes with two bearings. To distribute the weight on each bearing, a spacer is needed. It is placed between the two bearings. With a good spacer, the life of your bearing is longer. Your run is also smoother. A good spacer and credible bearings can help you have a smoother run.
If you find a good skateboard that comes with a not-so-good spacer, don’t worry. You can easily replace spacers at home.
Speed washers are also known as bearing washers. It is located between the bearing and the nut. The purpose of a speed washer is to make the wheel move and turn faster. While making a trick like rotating around on one wheel, the speed washer of your wheel will protect the bearings from being damaged.
Because of the crucial role of bearings when skateboarding, it is important to use quality bearings only. If you are not a certified bearing maker, it is best to purchase bearings for your skateboard. Do not attempt to repair any damaged bearing. Remember that precaution is better than cure hence it is best to spend $30 on a bearing than hundred of dollars in the hospital in case an accident happens.