Steel Vs. Ceramic: Bearings

I know that there has been a debate between steel and ceramic bearings for a while, but I have wondered how it effects the esk8 world as well. I am currently considering buying some ceramic bearings for my DIY board, especially after taking a look at this video: I was wondering though, do you guys have any thoughts? Is the extra money for ceramic worth it?

I have been a big fan of bones reds for a long time now, they are great bearings, they don’t last forever, but are fully serviceable and cheap to replace…

however recently a mate of mine got some amphetamine ceramics on his board and I have got to say that I am impressed. they roll very smooth and fast and have had no maintenance at all. if you are doing kick flips and large drops that will destroy bearings then I would probably go reds, but if you are not dropping 20 sets then ceramics will probably suit you better and roll smoother longer.

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What i think ,… I think it’s a total scam what Skate Shops charge for bearings !!

Save your money, don’t even buy Bearing at a Skate shop , buy them directly online.

I had bought Abec11 built-in bearings for around $40.00 now 2-3 don"t run well after just a few months ??

Just bought these (6 ball) bearings for 30 cents each , yes 30 cents each , got 24 for 7 dollars!! . i’m pretty sure they are just as good of not better with there 6 bigger balls rather than 7 smaller ones .

Link :


I do agree that skate board rated bearings are full of shit and marketing. But i do have a soft side for those that have an intergrated bushing, just seems so convenient.

I noticed the difference between regular ABEC 5-7-9-11 and Ceramic bearings.

On my non-electric one, I have this ones and they spin forever . You just have to be careful with huge drops because they are really fragile

Covienient maybe, but mine allready had 2 or 3 not running well, these linked (6 ball) bearings i bought are also much quieter !

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Ceramics are the best, hands down. They don’t rust like steel balled bearings. I have had the same pair bone Swiss Ceramics on my regular board, and they have lasted 4 years of high impacts, and high speeds. I used to get a month tops out of reds. Swiss ceramic are the best. They’ll cost you a fortune, but you don’t need to clean them and they last a very long time, even with daily abuse. They still spin as fast as the day I bought them.


Zealous bearings are great they have built in spacer so you can torque down the axle nut and they have ceramic as well although I haven’t tried ceramic specifically they’re a good price

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Zealous bearings are great because of their built in spacer, and their nanoceramic lubricant which helps protect against corrosion. If not getting Zealous I get my bearings from the price you pay there goes towards the product, not marketing hype. I’ve bought in bulk there and they’re great.


I’d suggest Oust bearings. There isn’t a lot of hype surrounding them, but they are the only 608 style bearing that is purpose built for the rigors of skating. I use the MOC9 AIRR, but the other ones in the lineup are probably just fine. MOC stands for “Machined Optimum Clearance”. Just a little oil every so often and they keep rolling strong…Check em’ out.


How often are we talking?

I usually go about once a week and check out my bearings and bushings. Sometimes, two weeks. Depends on how much ride time you put in. The buna seals keep the lube in really well, so it’s usually not an issue.


i just bought the MOC9 AIRR bearings and im excited to try them out! they come with a shit ton of oil on them though you have to wipe some of it off lol. i have been using bones reds as long as i have been longboarding.

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You’ll like em’!! They really are premium quality and easy to keep rolling nice with minimal maintenance.

i bought their speed oil, and i will say that it is faster than bones speed cream. bones speed cream is a little thicker than oust speed oil.

Ive got about 500 miles on my Bones Super Reds bearings since I last cleaned them and no signs of oxidation and they still roll for ever. Stock oil that came with the bearings caused them to get gunked up really quick, I cleaned them with alcohol and lubed them with Remmington teflon gun oil and they spin super fast the lube sticks to the metal and doesn’t wash out with water easily.

I’ve tested the oil on a 9mm pistol that fired 13 rounds underwater, when the gun was taken apart I found oil still on the slide rails the barrel and the trigger group. I was very impressed and find it works amazing for bearings.


This Glidex II stuff is the fastest/best lube I have ever used.

Glide more with Glidex S7-405 Glidex and S7-426 GlidexII is a new synthetic lubricant used by the U.S. military and Canadian Air Force in their high speed turbines. These oils are designed for high temperature, and ultra high RPM, yet maintain a very high film strength. Glidex -S7-405 is very light in viscosity, and works wonders on ball bearings, S7-426 GlidexII is the same compound as Glidex except it has additives to increase it’s viscosity and work it’s magic on oilite bushings, specially Slick 7 bushings which are so temperamental on what lubricant you use… no question now — GLIDEX II

That said I have some bones speed cream I use on my bones ceramics, but it is slower and breaks down faster being organic. But my bearing seem to last forever, yet to throw a set of swiss ceramics out :exploding_head:

I know evoheyax has a set that is like 10 years old too…

Ok here’s the deal with bearings and Eskate.

Bearings in general… Don’t matter that much through all disciplines of skating. I mean, they matter. But they’re all 95% the same. And the cheap Chinese vbx bearings you can buy by the hundreds aren’t really going to be distinguishable from bones swiss without taking them off and reading the shields.

Most of the differences are invented to create marketing hype.

One such difference is free spin. Free spin may matter in a teeny tiny minority of incidences but one instance where it 100% does not matter is when you have a motor attached to your board doing the work for you.

Lots of skate specific bearings come with oil and thats to give them lower rolling resistance, because we’ve been become accustomed to think that is what feels better.

Eskate you don’t want that. It is SO easy to heap on tons of miles on an eskate that a normal skater will never see. So basically the only purchase consideration for eskate builders, apart from cost, should be durability and longevity.

As far a ceramic is concerned, that difference is a matter of performance. Performance that is completely non-applicable when you’ve got a motor. And as far as I’m aware there is no lifetime or durability benefits to ceramic.

What you’re probably going to want to focus on instead is the bearing Lube. Lube is what keeps the bearing working, free of rust, free of wear, and its the thing that will keep your bearing rolling for many miles.

Oil gives lower rolling resistance, at the cost of not being as good at protecting the bearings, being more susceptible to washout, and needing to be replaced semi-frequently.

What you want is aluminum complex greases, mostly for their incredibly high water resistance. Water damages the bearings directly by rust, but it can also wash out your lube causing them to go bad through wear.

Sounds like you’ve been watching Rat Vison. Pretty sure he works for oust or something.


Cheap steel bearings rust fast & don’t like being ridden in the rain.

Unless you’re interested in having a efficient drive train.

We are not accustomed to think it is better, it is. With less rolling resistance you go further with any given energy input.

It sounds like you are lazy. If you are happy to sacrifice performance for reduced maintenance then just use sealed bearings?

Yes there is, they don’t rust & require less lube. So practically their serviceable life is much longer. For another opinion @evoheyax how old is your set of ceramic bearings bro?

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Everything you said. Cobber… But I don’t do ceramics

I only run Bronson g3. The oust moc 7 and moc9 bearing cages disintegrated on me. G3s :heart_eyes::heart_eyes::heart_eyes:

Also 150 miles,for bearing service…ie clean and lube…

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