View Full Version : Help with Bearing Cleaning
12-09-2008, 01:28 PM
A quick search of threads didn't turn up any results, so hoping someone can help me out here. I just did a general search on google for cleaning bearings, and it appears based on the results that it would be a real pain for most sealed inline bearings. Does anyone perform cleanings routinely, and if so does it really make a difference in either performance or lifespan (keep in mind I'd being doing this for my 7 & 9 year olds who play travel out of Charlotte NC - not a pro level player)? For those who do it, what are your suggestions on how to do this?
12-09-2008, 02:56 PM
I just use an aerosol can of bearing lube I got from a hockey shop a long time ago. Im sure that type of thing is fairly easy to find. I just spray each side and let them sit for a minute and then wipe them off. Seems to help. You dont really need to open the bearings up. As I read in another thread on here, bearings dont really make much of a difference. As long as theyre halfway decent youll be fine.
12-09-2008, 06:03 PM
If you want thorough, try this suggestion. While yes, time consuming, it last for ages(seasons, years) seriously. I did it last week for the first time in a few years. Silent and quick once complete, no spin off to worry about. It comes up in a search on this site ;)
Just wanted to throw this out there. After years of indoor and outdoor roller hockey and cleaning bearings to maximize life, I have come up with the following process. After removing the shields, I clean them with Automotive Break Parts Cleaner(wear latex gloves, it burns)(the pressurized can with the cleaning power gets all the crap out). Once they are cleaned and dry, lubricate them with Mobil 1 Synthetic Bearing Grease(Also Automotive). Pack it in there well. It is thick and slippery and lasts, well, forever. If for some reason you decide to clean them once you have applied the Synthetic Grease, the Brake Parts Cleaner will remove it. But normally I would go a season (15 games) between cleaning/lubricating (using normal skate bearing lube/grease), but I have gone about 100 games(2+ years) on the current cleaning and still going strong. Just as quick and quiet as new. Just a suggestion.
12-09-2008, 08:20 PM
Im not sure what kind of financial situation your in. I play a lot of inline hockey in an outdoor rink. It is about the best way to ruin your bearings. Havent played indoor in a while so it might be worth it to clean them, but I would just buy new ones. It supports your bearing business, and your local vendor, and gives you new bearings at the same time. I have to buy new bearings and wheels at the beginning and halfway through each season though. Just my .02 Playing indoor is quite different from playing outdoors however.
12-10-2008, 01:35 AM
Glad to see you're getting good help from IHC's readers. Man, is your post ever a blast from the past for me...
I remember cleaning my bearings a LOT, because as regular readers of IHC know, I started inline hockey as a player at the beach parking lots in Santa Monica, and talk about grit and dirt and sand and oil and all sorts of gunk mucking up your bearings...
I remember having to clean those bearings constantly. As I've believed in recycling and being as green as possible for a long time, I didn't want to buy new bearings and throw the old ones away -- and I was typically pretty poor anyway, so I couldn't afford new ones. ;)
At first I'd take off the bearing shield, then soak the bearings in some caustic bearing-cleaning solution, let them dry out for a bit, and then use some sort of oil that I found around the house or got from a skate shop. Later, I'd use a biodegradeable, citrus-based cleaner from Sonic Sports (http://www.sonicsports.com), a company owned by a long-time inline hockey product manufacturer and friend of mine named Cliff Chi. Then I'd use his Super Oil and be good to go for a long time.
Thanks for bringing up those old memories. Have I ever told IHC's readers about the time I played at the beach with Luc Robitaille? ... ;)
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