Skaters know that every part of the board is essential, unless you’re into some kind of trampoline skating or whatever else is trending right now. So besides the board and the wheels there are other things to consider if you’re going to skate around the city. Although they seem pretty simple, boards have all these little and unnoticeable accessories that provide an ideal adrenaline-filled ride and a great deal of safety. One of these important accessories are the skate bearings – the unsung heroes of any skater’s setup.
Skate bearings were first introduced to the skating market in the ’70s, which is not too long ago, however today there are lots of different brands and types to choose from. Bearings are actually the small tool that allows your board wheels to spin properly. They are the ultimate purposeful accessory that won’t let metal grinding on the metal within the wheel. So if you were wondering whether it’s of high importance to add them to your list of skating necessities, yeah, they are really beneficial to the whole experience.
Skate bearings are circular and their shape features flat sides. Steel bearings have seven or eight lubricated balls while ceramic bearings have nine. They are designed to disperse the weight of a load and ease tension between the wheels. Normally those made of steel are more economic, but they have long durability. However, skate companies recognized the need of their costumers for skate bearings that were less affected by heat energy, so they thought of a new way of making bearings: with ceramics. Ceramic bearings are made from a compound called silicon nitride and are smoother and harder than their steel counterparts. With ceramic bearings you get higher performance but also a higher price. However, many skaters will tell you that they are definitely worth the money.
An interesting fact to mention is that skate bearings are rated on a formal scale, the AEBC or the Annular Bearing Engineering Committee scale. Most skaters aim for bearings that score within the range of three to five as these bearings are usually smooth enough to preform precisely while providing enough durability. These mechanical devices that permit motion between two or more moving parts are really important for a real feel of the skateboarding way of life, so don’t just leave them out. They will provide you a better, smoother ride and you’ll be thankful for taking the time to invest in them.