Understanding What Size Bearing for Roller Hockey Skates

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Written By Mark

A seasoned inline hockey player with over a decade of experience, Mark has competed at the amateur level and has a wealth of knowledge to share.

Understanding what size bearing for roller hockey skates can be a challenging task.

The truth is, the performance of your skates hinges significantly on this seemingly small component.

Yet, many are clueless about how to determine the right bearing size for their roller hockey skates. No wonder!

If you’re one of them, don’t worry – we’ve got you covered in our comprehensive guide on what size bearing for roller hockey skates.

The Importance of Bearings in Roller Skates

Whether you’re a seasoned skater or just starting out, understanding the role of roller skate bearings is crucial to your inline skating experience.

Bearings are not merely small components tucked away inside your roller skates. They play an essential part in determining how smoothly and quickly you can glide across surfaces.

A Bearing’s Role: More Than Meets The Eye

In simple terms, these tiny marvels reduce friction between the wheel and axle making for a smoother roll. Each wheel on your quad skates or inline skates requires two bearings – one at each end.

This allows wheels to spin around the axle with less effort giving rise to that smooth ride we all love about roller skating.

Bearing Size And Performance

Bearing sizes, often overlooked by beginners, significantly impact performance.

  • An appropriate bearing size ensures optimal contact with the inner raceway allowing it to handle load better during turns and high-speed maneuvers.
  • Mismatched sizes may lead to unstable rides affecting overall control while skating.

No matter what style of outdoor skating interests you – from casual strolls through parks on sunny days right up until intense hockey matches under stadium lights – having correctly sized skate bearings will make all difference.

This section has given us some insight into why choosing correct standard size matters so much when selecting new ones for our beloved set-up. Next up let’s delve deeper into common sizes available today…

Size Matters: Understanding Bearing Sizes

The size of your skate bearings plays a crucial role in the performance of your roller skates or inline skates.

In general, there are two common sizes for skate bearings – 7mm and 8mm.

See also  Determining the Right Size of Inline Hockey Skates for You

Finding Your Bearing Size

If you’re wondering how to identify these sizes, it’s simple.

You can usually find “608” or “627” inscribed on the shield of your bearing which indicates its size. The standard size is often an ‘8’ denoting an 8mm (or 608) bearing while ‘7’ denotes a smaller, less commonly used 7mm (or 627) bearing.

Difference Between Standard And Non-Standard Bearings

Modern wheels, whether they be quad skates or inline wheels, typically use standard sized (8 mm) bearings as they offer more versatility and compatibility with various axle diameters.

  • An advantage that comes with using this common size is easier maintenance since finding replacement parts becomes straightforward due to their wide availability.

Choosing Between 7mm and 8mm Bearings

  1. If you prefer classic style roller skating then opting for non-standard sized (size = “smaller”) (i.e., “less than”) might make sense as many vintage-style quads still utilize them.

Material Choices for Skate Bearings

The material of your skate bearings plays a significant role in the performance and durability of your roller skates or inline skates.

Different materials cater to different skating styles, whether you’re an intermediate skater enjoying outdoor skating or an advanced player engaging in high-speed inline hockey games.

Steel vs Ceramic Bearings

Steel bearings, commonly used by beginners and intermediate players, are known for their affordability and decent performance.

They offer a smooth roll but require regular maintenance like cleaning with a bearing tool to prevent rusting.

In contrast, ceramic bearings, often preferred by seasoned skaters due to their ability to spin faster providing smoother rolls on modern wheels. These serviceable bearings encounter less friction compared with steel counterparts making them ideal even without frequent lubrication.

Ceramic doesn’t expand when heated through friction ensuring consistent performance throughout its lifespan which can be beneficial during intense gameplay situations where precision is key.

Now that we’ve explored how material choice impacts the functionality of skate bearings let’s delve into understanding ABEC ratings system – another crucial factor influencing your roller-skating experience.

The ABEC Rating System Explained

When it comes to roller skate bearings, the Annular Bearing Engineering Council (ABEC) rating system is a crucial factor.

This system, developed by an industry-leading council, grades bearings on their precision and efficiency.

Understanding ABEC Ratings

Bearings are rated from 1 to 9 in this system.

An ABEC 1 bearing offers basic performance suitable for beginner or intermediate skaters while an ABEC 9 provides high-speed capabilities ideal for advanced skaters seeking a smoother roll and faster spins.

Decoding The Numbers: What Does Each Rating Mean?

  1. An ABEC 1: Standard size bearing with decent speed but lower smoothness. Ideal for beginners practicing inline skating techniques.
  2. A mid-range option like ABEC 5 or ABAC7: Provides more balance between durability and speed making them common choices among seasoned skater circles.
  3. The top-tier choice – AnABCEC9: Designed specifically keeping professional-level outdoor skating requirements in mind offering maximum spin speeds along with ultra-smooth rolls even under extreme pressure conditions.

Remember that higher ratings don’t always mean better performance as your personal style of roller skating also plays a vital role.

Investing in Quality Skate Bearings

The quality of your skate bearings can significantly impact your roller skating experience.

See also  Ultimate Guide: How to Clean Inline Hockey Bearings for Peak Performance

Advanced skaters who strive to maximize their performance on modern wheels should be aware that the quality of skate bearings can have a significant impact.

Picking Trusted Brands

Avoid falling into the trap of choosing bearings solely based on price.

Inexpensive options may seem attractive initially but could lead to poor performance and frequent replacements – not ideal for any skating style.

  • An excellent choice offering high-quality sealed bearings that are serviceable and durable.
  • Known for their smooth roll, they cater well to both intermediate skaters looking for improvement and seasoned professionals demanding top-notch equipment.
  • Specially designed skate rated specifications ensure optimal spin faster capabilities enhancing overall speed and control during outdoor skating sessions.

Making The Right Investment For Your Skating Needs

You don’t want subpar steel bearings hindering your ability to glide smoothly across surfaces. Investing in reliable brands like Bones Reds ensures that every stride delivers maximum power transfer with minimal friction resistance, providing a smoother ride even under intensive use conditions such as competitive inline hockey games.

The right investment now will save you from bearing maintenance headaches down the line while elevating your roller skating skills regardless if it’s just leisurely gliding around town or engaging in adrenaline-pumping races against fellow enthusiasts.

As we move forward let’s delve deeper into why more experienced players might opt specifically Swiss or Ceramic bearing types over others.

Advanced Skating Needs Advanced Bearings

If you’re an advanced skater, your skating style demands more from your equipment.

You’ll likely benefit from Swiss or Ceramic bearings which spin faster and provide a smoother roll for inline hockey players.

Swiss Bearings – A Seasoned Skater’s Choice

Why do seasoned skaters often prefer Swiss bearings?

The answer lies in their precision manufacturing process that results in superior speed and longevity compared to standard size steel bearings.

This makes them ideal for those who demand the best performance out of their roller skate wheels, whether they are involved in competitive inline skating or outdoor recreational activities.

Ceramic Bearings – For Smoother Roll And Faster Speeds

Ceramic bearings are another favorite among experienced riders.

These high-tech alternatives offer less friction than traditional materials leading to a smooth roll even at high speeds.

Their heat resistance ensures consistent performance during intense sessions making them perfect for both indoor rinks and outdoor surfaces.

Maintaining Your Skate Bearings

Skate bearings, whether they’re for inline skates or quad skates, require regular maintenance to ensure a smooth roll and longevity.

This includes cleaning your roller skate bearings after each use – especially important if you’ve been outdoor skating where dirt can easily get into the components.

When To Replace Your Skate Bearings

Bearing maintenance isn’t just about keeping your bearings clean. It may be time to get new bearings if you notice an odd sound when skating, your wheels don’t spin quickly on even surfaces, or there is visible rust.

Some signs that it’s time to replace your skate bearings include an unusual noise during rides, slow spin speed of wheels even on smooth surfaces, and visible rusting.

Tools Required For Replacing Skate Wheels’ Bearing

You might be wondering: do I need a special bearing tool? The answer depends on the type of skate wheel you have. 

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Some modern wheels allow easy removal of standard size 608 (8mm) or 627 (7mm) serviceable bearings without any tools while others may require one for ease in removing old ones with new inline skate bearings efficiently. Here are some tips regarding this process.

In our next section we’ll delve deeper into different types of roller skate bearing designs focusing specifically on sealed vs shielded versions ensuring readers choose the right type based on their needs.

Sealed Vs Shielded Roller Skate Bearings

The choice between sealed and shielded roller skate bearings can significantly impact your skating experience.

Shielded bearings, often used in inline skates, have a metal or plastic shield to keep out dirt while allowing for easy cleaning. 

They’re typically more affordable than their counterparts but require regular maintenance to ensure optimal performance.

Pros And Cons Of Shielded Bearings

In terms of benefits, these types of bearings clean easily, which is crucial when it comes to bearing maintenance. However, they may not offer the same level of protection against debris as sealed versions do.

About Sealed Bearings For Inline Skating

If you are an advanced skater who prefers outdoor skating on rough terrains like streets and parks where dust particles could enter into the wheels’ interior damaging them over time then sealed bearings would be a better option. 

These provide superior resistance against external elements due to their non-serviceable design that keeps lubricant in and contaminants out resulting in smoother roll with less friction compared to standard size ones making them perfect for modern wheels. 

But remember – once worn down they cannot be serviced; instead need complete replacement hence costlier upfront investment required.

Making The Right Choice: Your Skating Style Matters Most.

Your decision should ultimately align with your specific needs based on factors such as frequency & style of use (casual vs competitive), terrain type (indoor rink vs street) etc., rather than simply opting for what seems most popular or economical at first glance because both options come with unique sets pros cons catering different user requirements effectively.

FAQs in Relation to What Size Bearing for Roller Hockey Skates

How do you know what bearings to get for roller skates?

You should consider the type of skating, your skill level, and budget. For beginners, steel ABEC-rated bearings are sufficient. Advanced skaters might prefer Swiss or Ceramic bearings for smoother roll and faster speeds.

How do I know what size bearings I need?

Bearing sizes are typically 7mm or 8mm (608). Check the number on your current bearing shield; “608” indicates an 8mm bearing while “627” denotes a 7mm one.

What is an SG5 bearing?

An SG5 bearing is a specific model from Rollerblade that offers good performance at a reasonable price point. It’s suitable for casual to intermediate inline skating activities.

What are SG7 bearings?

SG7 Bearings are another Rollerblade model designed to provide smooth rides with less friction compared to lower-end models. They’re ideal for more experienced skaters seeking better speed and performance.


Skate bearings are the unsung heroes of your roller hockey experience. They determine the smoothness and speed of your ride, making them an essential component to consider.

The size matters – most commonly you’ll find 7mm or 8mm (the latter being more prevalent).

Materials make a difference too; steel is sturdy while ceramic offers less friction and heat expansion.

You’ve also learned about the ABEC rating system, which helps define bearing quality for skating purposes.

Investing in reputable brands like Bones Reds Bearings can elevate your skating performance dramatically.

Advanced skaters might lean towards Swiss or Ceramic bearings due to their superior spin speeds and smoother roll capabilities.

If you’re ready to take your inline hockey skills up a notch, knowing what size bearing for roller hockey skates is just one piece of the puzzle. 

At World Inline Hockey, we provide information on all aspects of this exhilarating sport – from basic tips for beginners to advanced strategies for seasoned players. Let’s enhance your inline hockey journey together!