SCOOTER WHEEL BEARINGS
If you want to learn something about wheel bearings for freestyle scooters, you must first of all be willing to do a now almost forgotten activity - reading.
Wheel bearings for freestyle scooters have a standardized dimension. This goes for most wheels on the market.
Recently a new bearing standard appeared called the 12 standard. 12STD bearings have a larger dimension. The axle (hence the bearing hole) has a diameter of 12 mm (hence the name 12STD).
How do I know if it is a 12STD bearing? This is always stated in the product name (12 standard or 12 STD) or in the product specification.
The vast majority of wheels come with bearings pre-installed. When replacing the bearings, the old bearings must be removed and the new ones installed.
For wheels with nylon cores, bearing replacement is easy. One finger is all you need. Use this finger to squeeze out the old bearings and then use the same finger to squeeze the new bearings in.
For wheels with aluminium cores, replacing the bearings is more difficult. The correct procedure, including the installation of the spacers, can be seen in this video:
Most bearing sets include spacers, which are absolutely necessary for the correct functioning of the bearings. If you don't use spacers, then when the wheel is tightened the bearings get squashed, do not spin and quickly end up destroyed. It is always a good idea to keep the wheels’ original spacers (see chapter Wheels for more information).
ABEC (ANNULAR BEARING ENGINEERING COMMITTEE)
This acronym says nothing about the actual impact resistance of the bearings. The ABEC value indicates the precision of the manufacturing. The higher the number, the more precise the ball bearings are, there is less friction inside the unit, and the spinning is faster. But it does not mean that an ABEC9 will be stronger than an ABEC7. This is why some manufacturers do not use the ABEC parameter at all.
The bearing is protected on the sides with a nylon dust cap. The nylon cap can be found either on one side only = RS or on both sides = 2RS.
Most bearings have an outer diameter of 22 mm and an axle diameter of 8 mm = type 608. 12 standard bearings have an outer diameter of 28 mm and an axle diameter of 12 mm = type 6001.
HOW TO EXTEND BEARING LIFESPAN
a) Avoid contact with water. Do not ride in wet conditions.
b) Do not ride on dirt roads.
HOW TO SELECT BEARINGS CORRECTLY
- Avoid buying bearings from shops that sell inline skates. Inline skates have 4 times more wheels than a freestyle scooter and are designed primarily for fast, smooth riding on a flat track. They are definitely not built for the hard landings that come with riding scooters. The ABEC11 ceramic bearings, which cost a lot of money, can break very easily after just single jump.
- It is advisable, but not always feasible, to select bearings by manufacturer / brand. If you have Ethic wheels, select Ethic bearings. The point being, that the spacers supplied with the bearings sometimes vary (+- 0.1 mm) depending on the width of the wheel hub. If you choose the same manufacturer / brand for both wheels and bearings, you are guaranteed to get the correct size spacers.