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Published Feb. 3, 2021

The hidden heroes of anything with wheels are the bearings. They work to smoothly move the wheels, reducing the friction coefficient by minimizing surface area contact. In longboards, they do the same thing, just with a smaller wheel. And since you’re balancing on your feet and can feel every bump in the road, the work bearings do is even more essential. 

While most bearings use the same technology to work — small balls inside a buffered casing — not all bearings are made alike. It all comes down to materials and design, but it can be tricky to pinpoint which longboard bearings will provide the best results. To help you find the best longboard bearings on the market, we’ve scoured the internet for the top options. Check out this breakdown to find longboard bearings that will help you get the smooth ride you deserve. 

The Best Longboard Bearings

If you are you focused on the thrill of the ride, the Heady Shake Pro Skateboard Bearings can help you reach rapid speeds without suffering from unpleasant vibrations. The bearings are designed with a stylish exterior, adding a slight metallic glean to your board. The package includes eight bearings and four spacers, which gives you enough to completely overhaul your longboard. Each of the bearings uses a series of chrome-heavy steel balls encased in a nylon wall. With a gold-colored titanium ring (both inside and outside the bearing), you benefit from the sturdy design and a smooth ride. Meant for a high spinning velocity, these bearings are pre-lubricated to enhance the overall longboarding experience.

While these bearings are handy, they can pose a moderate challenge during installation. Take your time during setup to make sure that they attach to your longboard correctly. Also, they can rust if exposed to moisture.

Key Features
  • Works on boards and skates
  • Reaches quick spinning speed
  • Comes pre-lubricated
  • Blend of titanium, nylon, and chrome
Specification
  • Brand Heady Shake
  • Model B07VTXT5HD
  • Weight N/A
PROS

Creates a quiet ride

Reduces ambient vibrations

Durably constructed interior

CONS

Can be tricky to install

Not design-specific to longboards

Can rust if exposed to moisture

Consider the Trixes Skateboard Bearings for their cost-effective price point coupled with a high-efficiency factor. This set of 16 bearings is designed for fast travel, meeting the ABEC-9 criteria. This means that the bearings can reach quick speeds without overheating or beginning to shake. Designed for both skateboards and longboards, a huge draw is that these bearings are compatible with any wheel size. They feature a tight seal with ball bearings meeting rubber components to prevent issues with dust and debris. Effective in all-weather circumstances, these bearings are both affordable and useful.

However, if the exterior incurs an impact, then the metal is likely to bend, and the system won’t work. Store the board properly to avoid this outcome. These bearings are also susceptible to damage from impact.

Key Features
  • Rated for ABEC-9 efficiency
  • 22 mm exterior with 7 mm width
  • Core of bearing is 8 mm
  • Comes as set of 16 bearings
Specification
  • Brand Trixes
  • Model Trixes
  • Weight 0.16 ounces
PROS

Sealed to offer waterproof benefits

Compatible with most rides

Includes two separate rubber seals

CONS

Metal exterior vulnerable to rust

Can result in moderate vibrations

Susceptible to impact damage

Take a look at the Yellow Jacket Premium Bearings, which are designed for high-performance and are a great value. Made in Germany, these precision bearings are made using top-quality steel. This, on its own, facilitates a reduction in friction necessary to offer a smooth travel experience. The steel is fortified by the colorful rubber seals, found both on the inside and outside of the bearing, preventing everything from stray dust to moisture from entering the bearing system. Since even a small bit of dust can cause issues and interfere with functionality, this feature is critical. Sleek in design and valuable on the road, these bearings are a premium option.

It’s worth noting that these bearings aren’t a universal design; rather, they fit specific models based on the size and structure. Be sure that your board is compatible before making your pick. Also, they are vulnerable to rust and corrosion.

Key Features
  • Available in multiple colors
  • Comes in set of eight bearings
  • Made out of high-grade steel
  • Includes a handy carrying case
Specification
  • Brand Yellow Jacket
  • Model B08DF8P2WQ
  • Weight N/A
PROS

Relatively easy to install

Properly sealed bearings

Built to outspin other models

CONS

Vulnerable to rust and corrosion

Can get cracked or impacted

Won’t fit all types of wheels

If you want to use your longboard to commute and reach high speeds smoothly, take a look at the Kveni Ceramic Skateboard Bearings for their sturdy design and high compatibility. Relatively new to the market, these bearings use innovative materials to facilitate a reduction in friction. Ceramic is a tough material capable of withstanding all the elements, especially since it is naturally resistant to rust and corrosion. Paired with the nylon retaining walls on the system (and the rubber buffers), these longboard bearings can take quite a beating. With an incredibly low friction coefficient, the bearings are ideal for fast-paced travel on even ground.

While the bearings are excellent for long strides on the board, they aren’t as functional at sharp turns and tricks. Be sure that you are using them for downhill or racing purposes to get the best results.

Key Features
  • Comes with eight bearings
  • Includes 808rs balls
  • Compatible with any wheel
  • Meets ABEC standards
Specification
  • Brand Favor
  • Model B08DVFB 5VT
  • Weight 4.16 ounces
PROS

Easy to install and use

Reduces vibrations and noise

Made out of ceramic and steel

CONS

Vulnerable to damage from heat

Cannot be near extreme cold

Works better with longer spins

These precision bearings offer a smooth ride and are designed to help you achieve fast speeds without incurring an excess of vibrations. Compatible with the vast majority of longboard wheels, they work with the standard 8-millimeter axle to slide efficiently into place. Coming with spacers that are cut using precise machining technology, you can get a fine-tuned fit with these bearings—it’s calibrated to an exactness of 0.02 mm. The bearings are sealed effectively and work together to limit the friction amount without adding bulk or weight drastically. Powerful and reliable, these fast-travel bearings earn this honorable mention.

While the set comes with an installation tool, it might not be the best way to install the bearings. Also, keep in mind that if the rubber on the bearings is punctured, the whole bearing will fail.

Key Features
  • Comes in set of eight bearings
  • Includes installation tool
  • Size: 22m outer, 7 mm width
  • 8 mm inner axle diameter
Specification
  • Brand Bones
  • Model N/A
  • Weight N/A
PROS

Feature a stylish design

Come pre-lubricated

Calibrated for utter precision

CONS

Can be tricky to set up

Steel is susceptible to rust

If rubber is punctured, whole bearing fails

The Zealous Bearings for Longboards make a suitable replacement part for your board’s front or rear. Coming in a pair, you can efficiently swap out the bearings for these well-lubricated parts. And the lubrication is where they really shine: the bearings incorporate nanoceramic materials to drastically limit friction and give you a smooth ride. Sealed with a powerful and thick rubber material, these wheels aren’t vulnerable to weather damage. You can use the longboard rain or shine without fretting over whether the ambient humidity will damage the bearings. Reliable and durable, these bearings are a good way to go.

Keep in mind that these bearings only come in a set of two. Since it is better to replace all the bearings in your ride simultaneously, this can leave you short in terms of parts. Also, they are vulnerable to heat and old.

Key Features
  • Comes in a set of two
  • Pre lubricated internal bearings
  • Encased in steel and rubber
  • Designed for quick travel
Specification
  • Brand Zealous
  • Model B075 KPZQHF
  • Weight N/A
PROS

Evenly lubricated for good performance

Drastically reduces friction amount

Bright green and stylish design

CONS

Comes with a limited amount of bearings

Vulnerable to heat and cold

Exterior susceptible to impact

The Fireball Dragon Precision bearings are crafted using a lubricant specifically meant to keep working over lengthy periods. It creates a low friction point of contact between the bearings, facilitating a smooth ride. Also cutting down on wear and tear, these bearings fortify the interior with a tight seal and firm walls. Made out of high-grade steel, the exterior won’t get damaged in the event of an impact (like you jumping on the board). The seals on the bearings are precisely-fitted, meaning there is no entrance point for debris or water particles. Instead, the bearings perform consistently, giving you a smooth ride at fast or slow paces.

While these bearings should be reasonably straightforward to install, they don’t come with a tool to do the job. Another thing to keep in mind during installation is that the seal can rupture during the process, so be careful.

Key Features
  • Comes in set of eight bearings
  • Size: 22 mm exterior, 7 mm width
  • Meant for 8 mm axle
  • Works on skateboards and longboards
Specification
  • Brand Fireball
  • Model B07W6KZN19
  • Weight N/A
PROS

Uses a high-quality lubricant

Steel reinforced against impact

Precise machining for good fit

CONS

Doesn’t come with an install tool

Vulnerable to extreme temperature

Seal can rupture during install

Best Longboard Bearings Buying Guide & FAQ

Bearings for your longboard are, in essence, the same as the bearings in your vehicle. That gives you a jumping-off point for assessing the merit of the individual longboard bearings. As with selecting wheels for your car, a good starting point is to check the size and the fit. Familiarize yourself with the specs on your ride and make sure that the bearings match these metrics. 

Once you know that they are compatible, you can move on to the bearings’ different components themselves. What material makes up the inner and outer shells on the bearings? Is it hard enough to withstand some wear and tear? Think about the bearings themselves, are the balls lubricated to reduce friction? From the seal to case and everything in between, all parts of the bearing must work together to perform correctly. As you look for a set of bearings, keep in mind the benefits you expect so you can determine which longboard bearings are best for you. 

The longboard is prepared for changing a bearing
New bearings tend to be stylish and add aesthetic value to the board.

Benefits of Longboard Bearings

There’s no shortage of advantages to having quality longboard bearings, but the main one is that, without them, your longboard won’t work at all. The bearings are the component that lets you travel at fast speeds by reducing the coefficient of friction between parts. It prevents overheating, degradation of the materials and keeps your wheels moving smoothly. 

Smooth motion is necessary, particularly for long-distance riders. When you drive a car, the bearings’ benefit isn’t felt physically so much as it is seen in the vehicle’s responsiveness. With a longboard, good bearings cut down on the ambient vibrations you feel in your feet and legs. It reduces shakiness and cuts down on noise to give you an overall better riding experience. 

There are other benefits to longboard bearings, too, especially for those traveling at a fast pace. The key to most designs is enabling fast travel without causing premature damage to the structure. This way, you get long-lasting bearings that won’t impact your enjoyment of longboarding. 

  • High ABEC ratings help you travel at faster speeds more easily. 
  • New bearings tend to be stylish and add aesthetic value to the board. 
  • Bearings incorporate modern lubrication for optimal friction reduction. 
  • Quality bearings include precisely machined parts for an exact fit. 
  • Bearings have a firm seal to prevent the entrance of small particulates. 
  • Modern metals have at least small-scale rust protection. 
  • Replacing your bearings at the same time can extend your riding time. 

Different Kinds of Longboard Bearings

Sure, all bearings perform the same function, though they aren’t all made alike. There are different types, categorized based on the unique values offered by the bearings themselves. While a good metric to assess quality is the ABEC rating, it still helps to know what type of bearing you’re dealing with. 

Ceramic

The primary way to determine the type of longboard bearing is by looking inside of the shell. The material of the individual ball bearings inside of the casing will indicate the type of product. Ceramic is a more modern material used in the construction of bearings. Either made of silicon nitride, carbide, or a zirconium base, these bearings are tough, durable, and lightweight. 

While the ceramic material lends an edge, the remainder of the bearings is relatively standard. There is a steel casing (or race) both on the inside and the outside structure. The outside includes a rubber seal to prevent damage. 

Steel

The classic type of longboard bearing is made mainly out of steel, including all components except for the rubber seal. Between the inner and outer shell are small steel balls that reduce friction when paired with a good lubricant. The steel is made to be tough and withstand issues related to impact, pressure, and temperature. 

Not all steel is made alike. While, at one point, the industry leaned towards carbon-heavy steel, modern solutions favor chromium-heavy metals for the added durability. A balance between lightweight performance and toughness, steel bearings may indicate the type of product, though it is still worth checking the ABEC rating. 

What to Look for When Buying Longboard Bearings

When buying a longboard, there are a few important things to keep in mind to help you get the ride you desire. Whether you’re just starting as a beginner rider or are well-seasoned in the world of longboards, you need to look at the same criteria. First, check the bearings’ size: ensure that they will fit on your ride and be certain that you won’t run into installation issues. 

Next, take a look at the ABEC rating on the bearings themselves. The higher the rating, the better-equipped the bearings will be to travel at rapid paces. This consideration is especially important for downhill riders, racers, or commuters. With this in mind, you’ll want to look at the lubricant on the bearings to make sure that it can withstand heat from the friction it faces. It needs to be held by a rubber or metal seal, preventing debris and particulates from getting into the inner structure and compromising performance. 

The final criteria show up in the actual shell and seal of the bearing itself. The shell needs to consist of a strong interior wall and a tough exterior wall. Both should be able to withstand the force of impact. Just think about how much stress goes on the wheels on your dolly when moving—while your longboard may not face the same thing, the weight pressure is similar, so be sure the bearings can keep up. 

Care and Maintenance for Longboard Bearings

The key to success with your longboard bearings all comes down to proper installation and upkeep. Tires on your cars need rotating and maintenance, so why would your longboard be any different? Sure, you can relate the upkeep needs more to those of a penny board, but it matters all the same. The first thing is proper storage if you plan to wait before you install them. Keep the bearings in a dry, cool, and safe space until it’s time to put them on the board. 

Once you go to install the bearings, it comes time to check the lubrication. Some models come equipped with lubricant, though others require additional coverage. If the bearings need extra lubrication, be sure that you add some before you clean them. It’s helpful to add a bit of lubrication every once in a while to optimize performance. 

Finally, it all comes down to cleaning. Move a chemical-stripping solution (like mineral alcohol) on your bearing to clean the surface. Remove the rubber seal and clean the bearings individually. Dry them thoroughly using aerosol air spray. Lubricate the bearings and swap out the seal to ensure a good fit. Replace the bearings on the wheels. Your maintenance is now complete, and the board ready to ride. 

  • Rotate the wheels on your longboard to prevent uneven wear and tear.
  • Avoid a serious impact on the bearings and wheels to avoid damage. 
  • Store your longboard indoors to prevent damage from the environment. 
  • Clean your wheels frequently to keep full control over the lubrication levels. 
  • Check on the bearings during maintenance to look for wear and tear.
  • If the seal on your bearing is broken, you’ll need to replace the whole unit. 
Changing the longboard bearings
Bearings work to smoothly move the wheels reducing the friction coefficient by minimizing surface area contact.

Best Longboard Bearings FAQs:

Especially since the practical parts of longboard bearings are inside the structure and out of sight, it’s only natural to have questions. To lend a hand, we’ve addressed the most common inquiries below. 

Q: Do bearings make a difference on a longboard?

Bearings drastically cut down on friction, helping you move smoothly and prevent wear and tear.

Q: What are the fastest longboard bearings?

The fastest longboard bearings have a high ABEC rating. A good example is the Heady Shake Pro Longboard Bearings

Q: Are ceramic bearings better than steel?

Ceramic bearings are durable, lightweight, and long-lasting. While there are many effective ceramic models, steel is still the most prevalent material for bearings. 

Our Top Pick

After careful consideration, we’ve named the Heady Shake Pro Longboard Bearings as our top pick. Not only are these bearings compatible with most boards on the market, but they also enable riders to travel at high speeds safely. Made for durability, the bearings are well-lubricated and effectively sealed to prevent premature wear. 

Final Thoughts

Now that you know the ins and outs of longboard bearings, you can make your selection. It could be the Heady Shake Pro Longboard Bearings or the affordability of Trixies Longboard Bearings. There’s a set of bearings to enhance every longboard.

Sources:

  1. How to Get Bearings out of Skateboard Wheels – Wikipedia
  2. Longboard – Wikipedia
  3. Longboarding – Wikipedia

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