How To Lubricant Or Grease Longboard Bearings

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Are your longboard bearings feeling a bit sluggish? Do you wish you could glide effortlessly down the street like you used to? Well, I have good news for you! By properly lubricating or greasing your longboard bearings, you can restore them to their former smoothness and speed.

Longboard bearings are an essential component of your ride, and keeping them well-lubricated is crucial for optimal performance. Whether you’re a beginner or a seasoned rider, learning how to properly lubricate or grease your bearings is a valuable skill that can enhance your longboarding experience.

In this article, I will guide you through the step-by-step process of lubricating or greasing your longboard bearings, ensuring that you can enjoy a smooth and fast ride every time you hop on your board.

How To Lubricant Or Grease Longboard Bearings

Clean and Grease Your Longboard Bearings

Longboard bearings can easily get dirty and gritty due to riding in wet and salty conditions. Cleaning and greasing your bearings regularly will help maintain their optimal performance and prolong their lifespan. Follow these simple steps to clean and grease your longboard bearings:

Step 1: Gather the necessary tools

  • Dirty longboard bearings
  • Acetone or 97% isopropyl alcohol
  • Bowl or cup
  • Small pin or straightened staple to remove bearing shields

Step 2: Pop the seals

  • Use the pin or staple to remove the rubber seals or metal shields from the bearings.
  • For metal shields, remove the circlip around the edge before popping out the shield.

Step 3: Soak and clean

  • Fill a bowl with 1/2″ of acetone or isopropyl alcohol.
  • Place the bearings (balls down) in the solution and let them soak for a minute.
  • Tap them on the bottom of the bowl and spin them in your hand to remove any grit.
  • Spin the cleaned bearings dry and place them on a clean paper towel to dry.
  • Clean the seals gently in the acetone without bending the inner metal ring.
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Step 4: Optional – Filter and save the acetone

  • Filter the acetone to remove grit and save it for future use if desired.

Step 5: Grease and re-seal

  • Add grease to the spaces in between the balls.
  • Use enough grease to lightly fill three pockets, ensuring all the balls are lubricated.
  • Bike grease, marine grease, silicone, lithium grease, or compatible lubricating oils can be used.
  • Use your finger to apply grease evenly on all the balls of the bearing by rolling it back and forth.
  • Gently place the seal back on until it snaps into place.
  • Run your greasy finger around the outside of the rubber seal to keep it moistened.
  • Apply some grease to the metal surfaces to prevent rust.
  • If using oil instead of grease, use 1-2 drops and spread it by spinning the bearing.

Step 6: Finish up

  • Greased bearings need less frequent maintenance than oiled ones.
  • Consider switching to oil when the weather improves and the roads are dry.
  • The frequency of cleaning and greasing depends on your riding habits and the conditions.
  • Greased bearings may require maintenance every month or more often in wet conditions.
  • Oiled bearings should be cleaned every couple of weeks, especially after riding in the rain.

Regularly cleaning and greasing your longboard bearings will significantly improve their performance and durability, ensuring a smoother and more enjoyable skating experience.

How To Lube Longboard Bearings: A Step-By-Step Guide

Lubricating your longboard bearings is essential for ensuring optimal performance and extending their lifespan. By following these simple steps, you can learn how to properly lube your longboard bearings and keep them in great condition:

Step 1: Remove the wheels from your longboard

To remove the wheels, use a skate tool or an adjustable wrench to unscrew the nuts on your trucks.

  • Set aside the nuts and washers for later use.
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Step 2: Remove the bearings and shields

Remove the bearings from your wheels by using the axle of your truck.

  • Use a sharp object like a razor blade or safety pin to carefully pop off the bearing shields.
  • Be cautious not to deform the shields, as it can affect the speed of your bearings.
  • If your wheels have bearing spacers, keep track of them for later use.

Step 3: Soak the bearings in a cleaner

  • Choose a non-water-based cleaner such as acetone, isopropyl alcohol, or mineral spirits.
  • Place the bearings in a container with a wide opening, such as a bottle or mason jar, and let them soak for approximately 10 to 15 minutes, stirring occasionally.
  • Scrub the bearings with a rag or old toothbrush to remove dirt and debris.

Step 4: Dry and lubricate the bearings

  • Remove the bearings from the cleaner and dry them quickly using a paper towel, rag, or a hairdryer.
  • Apply a skate-specific bearing lubricant, like Bones Speed Cream, by adding 1 to 2 drops to each bearing.
  • Spin the bearings to evenly distribute the lubricant.
  • Avoid using WD-40 as it dries quickly and leaves bearings susceptible to rust.

Step 5: Replace shields and insert bearings

  • Place the bearing shields back onto the bearings, gently pressing from the center until they snap back on.
  • Insert each bearing back into the wheels, making sure to replace any bearing spacers and speed washers.

Step 6: Put the wheels back on your longboard

  • Simply reattach the wheels to your longboard and tighten the axle nuts.
  • Ensure the wheels are tight enough to prevent wiggling on the axle but loose enough to spin easily with your hand.

By regularly lubricating your longboard bearings using these steps, you can maintain their optimal performance and enjoy a smoother riding experience. Remember to adjust the frequency of cleaning and lubing based on your riding habits and the conditions you ride in.

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FAQs

Why Is It Important To Lubricate Longboard Bearings?

Lubricating longboard bearings is crucial for optimal performance and longevity. It helps reduce friction between the moving parts, ensuring smooth and effortless rides.

What Is The Best Lubricant For Longboard Bearings?

Bearing oil is the most effective lubricant for longboard bearings. It is specifically designed to withstand the high speeds and stresses of skateboarding, providing long-lasting and reliable performance.

Do I Need To Clean My Bearings Before Lubricating?

Yes, it is important to clean your bearings before lubricating them. This ensures that any dirt, debris, or old lubricant is removed, allowing the new lubricant to work effectively.

How Often Should I Lubricate My Longboard Bearings?

The frequency of lubricating your longboard bearings depends on how frequently you ride and the conditions you ride in. As a general rule, it is recommended to lubricate them every few months or whenever you notice a decrease in performance.

How Do I Lubricate My Longboard Bearings?

To lubricate your longboard bearings, start by cleaning them thoroughly. Once cleaned, apply a few drops of bearing oil to each bearing, ensuring that the oil reaches the innermost part. Rotate the bearings to distribute the oil evenly. Wipe off any excess oil, reassemble the bearings, and you’re ready to ride!

Conclusion:

Taking the time to lubricate or grease your longboard bearings is a simple yet essential step in ensuring a smooth and enjoyable ride. By following these easy steps, you’ll not only extend the lifespan of your bearings but also enhance your overall longboarding experience.

So don’t let your ride be a squeaky one – keep those bearings well-lubricated and keep on rolling!

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