Bearing Cleaning


#1

Okay, so I know that you can use Mineral Spirits, lighter fluids, etc. to clean bearings. Is there any household item that could be used as well.

Also, I heard Andre talking about the fact that you could ruin a plastic yoyo by cleaning a bearing with the above items. What should I use? My YYJ Surge’s bearing could use a good cleaning.

Another thing, does lubing a bearing afterwards make a yoyo better or worse than if you didn’t? If nothing, it does help the bearing though right?

I am obviously sort of new to yoyo-ing. I have only been going for 3 month so if somebody could help me, that would be great. Thanks in advance. :slight_smile:


#2

You could try nail polish remover, but make sure there is no water listed in the contents. As long as you clean all the chemicals before replacing the bearing, you should be fine. A yoyo should not be run dry, because it will shorten its lifespan unless if it is a Terrapin X bearing(great but noisy bearings) or if you have treated it with Terrapin Dry lube kit. As for the lube, thin lube is used for unresponsive play and thick lube for looping/responsive play. If you have any questions feel free to ask or PM me :slight_smile:


#3

Those are generally considered household items. However yes they can damage plastic throws. You can also use electric contact cleaner. Using any solvents should be done with adult supervision. If the bearing is dried well before replacing it into your throw there won’t be any solvents left to damage the throw. Using lube will help your bearing live longer, but it will slightly decrease spin time. Use a small amount of thin lube applied to the tip of a needle. A tiny barely visible drop is all you need.


#4

I’m not sure how you would damage a plastic yoyo since the bearing will need to be taken off the yoyo in order to be cleaned.


#5

You can definitely run bearings dry. Many people do exactly this-- they are noisier and have a theoretically shorter lifespan (due in part to increased chance of galling)… however, it’s not like the bearing’s life is shortened to a few weeks or months. People run dry bearings for years.

However, I prefer a drop of lube.

Unresponsive Yoyos: If there is an air compressor or canned air handy, one full drop, distributed throughout the bearing, and then the excess blown out with the compressor or air can. If there is no air handy, make a smaller drop by dipping a pin into the lube or putting a drop onto a pin up higher and letting a smaller drop pool at the tip.

Anything more than a small amount (either applied in a tiny amount or in small amounts with the excess blown out) will make the bearing responsive and you’ll get accidental binds.

Responsive Yoyos: a full drop of lube. That’s it. No other mucking around.


#6

By not completely drying the bearing before putting it back into the throw.


#7

The bearing won’t hold enough to damage a yoyo.


#8

Totally can, I’ve seen it happen.


#9

Oh, if you say so.


#10

It’s true. I haven’t seen it happen in any of my yoyos, but I’ve gotten stuff like acetone on other plastics and a little can do enough damage to really hose things up. What you don’t notice immediately might take a bit of time to reveal itself and by then it’s too late.

Your advice to let the bearing completely dry before re-installing is sound advice, regardless of the choice of solvent used. I practice this on all my bearings, even if I’m putting them back into a metal yoyo.


#11

Neither mineral spirits nor lighter fluid (zippo) will harm a modern, quality plastic yoyo (polycarb, delrin etc). Acetone will melt polycarb plastic however. (Acetone melts a lot of stuff.)


#12

So far, this is only a little bit helpful. :frowning:

So far, this post has been the most helpful. But exactly how do I clean a bearing with nail polish cleaner?


(⛷ Noisy Lurker) #13

In the modification and maintenance section, there is a sticky, you know the permanent threads at the top of the page. It has a link to bearing cleaning, axle sizes, all kinds of good stuff. Check it out!

Sticky- A thread so good that it gains a permanent place at the top, but never gets read again.


#14

You can’t ruin your plastic yoyos if let the bearing to dry completely before putting it in your yoyo.

Lubing will make your bearing last longer but it also means less spin time. So, choose whatever you like. But personally prefer lube. ;D
Hope i helped you. :slight_smile:


#15

Terrapin X S/C ceramics make some sound at first, it’s the nature of dry ceramic balls.
They do run in with a bit of time, and spin and last forever.
The 10 ball DryPlay treated steel ones are quiet and need no “break in”.

There is no such thing as too much spin time


#16

While even a minuscule amount of acetone left in a bearing, replaced into a plastic throw, may cause damage you may not immediately notice, it will cause a slight misshape of whichever area(s) the acetone came in contact with. Which again, doesn’t sound like a big deal, but we’re talking about finely tuned well engineered round object spinning at very high rpms. You’ll notice it then.


#17

This is easily resolved by simply letting the bearing sit out for 30 minutes, as acetone tends to evaporate fairly fast. I blow out the excess acetone from my bearings, so they are often good to go within 2 minutes. If I Dry Play treat, then 5 minutes.


#18

Agreed. That was my initial statement, which can’t be stressed enough to beginners or young children. I’d also like to again stress that any use of these solvents should be done with adult supervision should you be young and what not.


#19

I use a little sewing machine oil and acetone cause we have it in out dads barn.


#20

I completely agree. The use of solvents to clean bearings should be monitored and supervised by adults. I clean my kid’s bearings. He’ll be able to clean them on his own soon, but I’ll still supervise.