Ceramic Bearings ??

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gchin954
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by gchin954

I just got a set of Lightweight Gen 3 Tubular wheels.

I am considering putting in Ceramic Bearings......just because.....

Should I and if so which brand. There are so many out there.

I mostly ride group rides, flats, 40 - 75 miles each ride.

Thanks for any feedback much appreciated.

by Weenie


sungod
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by sungod


bm0p700f
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by bm0p700f

Ponitless sidegrade. Ceramic bearings make sense if they have a ceramic race but only the very expensive hard to find ones do. Most ceramic bearings are a hybrid of steel races and ceramic balls. Grade 10 chrome or stainless ball is all anyone ever needs in a bearing. There is no power saving for using ceramic bearings, those that claim that are lying or comparing to a nrelaisticly draggy hub. Any decent hub will be absorbing less than 1W at high speed. The weight saving is small too. Not really worth it unless you are bored and have some spare cash. I have done plenty of thing for those too reasons alone.

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Zen Cyclery
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by Zen Cyclery

Ceramic bearings are only practical in applications with high rpms, with extreme heat. Like for aerospace applications.

In the bicycle industry, they should be called Placebo Bearings.

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kavitator
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by kavitator

Also they are useful in elecrtic motor where rotor must be isolated from stator; they are used where magnetic field must not be distrurbed - in cycling it is just bad thing (maintance after eaxch mud/dirt ride) - and good marketing

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WMW
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by WMW

I usually slam ceramic bearings because the extreme over-hyping is annoying... but the way this thread is running, I feel like I need to take the other side.

There can be a benefit. Just know that it is very tiny. The difference between simply a change from steel balls to ceramic is on the order of 0.1W for bike hubs. If they use lighter grease and seals (and they almost always do) then you might save a few more tenths of a watt, depending on what you have now. Maybe if super hard races are used (that would be deluxe ceramic bearings) you can also get improved longevity in addition to slightly less drag. So for most of us they aren't worth it... but if you have loads of cash and want the best, they are it.

Sorry... I can't tell you which ones to get, though.
formerly rruff...

fdegrove
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by fdegrove

Hi,

Here we go again for the umpteenth time.

When every detail counts then ceramic bearings are an advantage. Full ceramic bearings are out as the races will likely shatter to pieces whilst mounting them.
Anyhow, consider ceramic hybrids as a relatively cheap alternative to have access to the same benefits of running steel bearings on oil based lube.

There are many more benefits, too many to sum up. My major gripe with ceramic bearings and cycling is that they're not applied wisely.
For example: what's the point in having ceramic super duper what have you bearings in a rear hub if you're going to have a set a plain vanilla steel bearings in the freewheel? None.

Are there any benefits of using steel bearings over ceramic hybrids?

I didn't think so either.

Ciao, ;)
Being a snob is an expensive hobby.

KLabs
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by KLabs

fdegrove wrote:Hi,
... Are there any benefits of using steel bearings over ceramic hybrids?
Ciao, ;)

Hi fdegrove, actually there are a couple, especially if you use ABEC5 or higher sealed bearings. SS bearings are simply more robust and as such more reliable.

If we were talking about BB's then I would use ceramic bearings although they are not essential there either :)

thanks KL :)

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sugarkane
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by sugarkane

I use ceramics all round and I like them.. HSC are the brand I have in my wheelsets and cranks
Speed ceramics are the money is no object brand found in the pro peloton.. They are not cheep though costing $400-500 for a wheelset and 2-300 for a crankset

ticou
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by ticou

I've got Cults in my RD and it does make a difference. Perhaps the BB will be next.

fdegrove
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by fdegrove

Hi,

Hi fdegrove, actually there are a couple, especially if you use ABEC5 or higher sealed bearings. SS bearings are simply more robust and as such more reliable.


I honestly don't see why. Of course not all ceramic hybrid bearings are of equal quality but once you have a decent set of hybrid bearings I can only see advantages.

Steel bearings are certainly not more robust, quite the contrary, actually. The advantages of using hybrids are manifold yet as said in previous posts these advantages are still not used to their full potential.

The tech is out there for everyone to take advantage of it, better lubrication, much lower friction losses, much longer life span, etc. Why miss the gravy train?

There are lubricants out there that can even reduce friction in ceramic hybrids, imagine that. DLC treated chains are out. Admittedly not very wisely applied and so on.

There's a world of possibilities out there to make anyone faster, to make bikes faster. Think about it.

Best regards, ;)
Being a snob is an expensive hobby.

gchin954
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by gchin954

Does anyone know the bearing size of the front hub ?

I know the rears are DT Swiss 240s which comes with 2 x 6902 & 2 x 6802..................

sungod
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by sungod

front hub is lw's own version, maybe adapted from another?

if you look in the service section of their website it says...

Can I change the bearing on my Lightweight front wheel myself?

No. The bearing of the Lightweight front wheel hub can lose its ease of movement over time. In this case, send us the affected wheel. The Lightweight front wheel hub may only be worked on by us.

Furthermore, you will put your rights in respect of defects in quality and the warranty at risk by incorrectly carried out assembly and maintenance work!


see this thread for some discussion that mentions the front hub...

viewtopic.php?f=3&t=82785

bm0p700f
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by bm0p700f

Friction losses in hubs for example at 25mph are in the region of 1W or lower. Ceramic bearing will not make any noticeable difference. BB bearing show similarlly low losses so nothing to be saved really. I really do not believe some of the claims made about ceramic bearings as the test claim power savings but relative to what a cheap BSO cup and cone BB with no grease in it and worn bearings?
I maybe wrong but I take claims with a pinch of salt if they sond tall.

Drive train losses for a new chain with lube are in region 3% for a 250 W out put that 7.2W. Fancy chains may shave a fraction of a % of that loss. All these changes may make 1-2W to you delivered power. Will you really notice.

If I am wrong can someone please prove it with actual verified numbers.

by Weenie


fdegrove
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by fdegrove

Hi,

If I am wrong can someone please prove it with actual verified numbers.


Does grease add or distract to friction?

The advantages of using ceramic hybrids are so blatantly obvious. Less friction is less friction. Add less maintenance , no rust and no going to the LBS for no good reason. Yeah, I'm a happy bunny.

Unless I'd enjoy having my bearings swapped out every other 3k km and bloody well pay through the nose for a job most likely not well done?

Oh, and I'll explain in no time the superiority of ceramic balls running against hardened steel surfaces.

Ciao, ;)
Being a snob is an expensive hobby.

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