Small Bearing vs. Large Bearing


Hello everyone. I was looking at yoyos and saw that certain people have requested to have small bearings in their signature yoyos ( ie Takeshi Kamisato’s Exit 8). I am wondering what the perks of small bearings and the perks of large bearings are. Thank you:)

(DOGS) #2

Smaller bearings allow a less slippy throw and a tighter bind when paired with an appropriate gap width and response when compared to a similar yoyo with a larger bearing. Depending on the yoyo, they are aso much more stable because the string sits closer to the axis of rotation.

The trick is, most people quit small bearing yoyos out of frustration before realizing the benefits of playing them, under the excuse that they are worse than large bearings, instead of just harder and more rewarding.

D and A bearing player reporting in…


it’s true. If I can pull off a long combo that I can do with my large bearing yoyo on my stock FHZ I feel like king kong. THE MAN

and he’s right about the tighter binds. I can play so much more loosely and right up till the very end of spin time on small bearing yoyo (my FHZ at least), and that thing will bind right to my hand no problem… I also love responsiveness!! If I can bang a combo and still Tug the yoyo to my hand I love that!!! It’s what I strive for!

(DOGS) #4

Before this thread turns into what many have assumed before, smaller bearings absolutely don’t mean responsive play. I want to clarify that very very early before people take that as their main arguing point.

Small bearings are undoubtably better at responsive play than larger bearings, though!


I may be wrong but I thought small bearings spun at higher RPMs


Small bearings are great. I feel as though large bearings yield “average” spins times regardless of the model. And small bearings have better spins. That’s in my experiences at least. Also in regards to PatCondon’s comment, small bearings are great in unresponsive play especially when paired with the right specs. The Werrd Minute is the perfect example of this, I love mine its great.

(DOGS) #7

Please note that I mean small bearings are better than large bearings at responsive play, not that small bearings are better at responsive over unresponsive period.


Thank you for the information guys:)


Generally speaking small bearings with a narrower gap allow for tight binds even when the yo-yo is spinning at low RPM. However it requires that you are more precise when playing on the string and that you keep it well centered during play.
Large bearing is the more traditional gap width now and allows for more string layers. And there are definitely some yo-yos that feel ‘awkward’ with small bearings. YoYoFactory once made a Genesis and Yuuksta small bearing and both played awful… IMO.

Size D bearings used to be really popular too but eventually everyone just wanted to standardize so most manufactures went with Size C but Size D is generally easy to find as well.


I love my small bearing Genesis. If anyone has the blue one in mint condition, I’ll “offer big,” on it. Andre said, in his opinion, this is a collector. He enjoyed playing the small bearing Genesis too. I’d like to see it make a comeback. A photo of mine:
GenesisSB by The TotalArtist, on Flickr
GenesisSBb by The TotalArtist, on Flickr


I guess I have bad idea of small bearing spin times since the only small bearings I used are from 8+ years ago. Like Yomega’s Raiders, Saber Raider, HWW, and the latest I’ve used being Duncan FHZ. none of these spin that long.


Probably one of the best small bearing yo-yos to come out lately.




Some yoyos play much better with small bearings and some play better with large bearings. It does always come down to player and manufacturer preference, but I recently got a fantastic small bearing yoyo, so I’ll use it as an example.

The YoYoRecreation ClashCube uses a D bearing. It is a small yoyo, but it’s size would certainly allow for a large bearing if YYR decided to go that route. I like the D bearing in it because it allows such a small yoyo to behave more like a miniature version of a full-sized yoyo rather than just scaling down the dimensions and hoping for the best when it comes to the response and bearing.

Another example is the D bearing Skywalker from the now-defunct Vs. Newton. Compared to the large bearing model, I find the D bearing much more forgiving in regards to “high-class” mistakes, where the C bearing version is more forgiving of “low-class” mistakes. I think of “low-class” mistakes as letting string rub the gap or missing a rejection, whereas “high-class” mistakes include a slightly sloppy regen or an over-rotation.


^^^Well said.


That’s exactly what I was thinking. Do they spin for a shorter amount of time when paired with the right yoyo?


How about this.

Could someone make a comparison between a small bearing Bassalope and a large bearing Bassalope?

I only have experience with my LB Bassalopes.

(DOGS) #18

The small bearing Bassalope is a yoyo that I really enjoyed. Probably one of my favorite CLYW yoyos ever. It was initially designed as a small bearing yoyo, and that’s evident when comparing the two. The large bearing version felt pretty annoying to me. It’s very light, which doesn’t flatter the larger bearing because it becomes less stable. My description is based on my personal preference against C bearings, and having owned the original first.

Of course, with people being used to CLYW’s current offerings, they might be primed for disappointment or at the very least a bit of a surprise. You milage may vary.


I’m more of a large bearing fan. However, the small bearing bassalope, I’m completely in agreement with you over this. It was clear it was designed around having an A-bearing in there.

I also have a LB Bassalope, and it just isn’t working for me as well. I think you probably nailed it with the weight being not quite right. It’s like they just decided to tweak the bearing seat and recess, and along with those changes to change the response recess.

I also had the SB Bassalope first, and then got the LB Bassalope later on. Despite being biased towards large bearings, I feel the small bearing bassalope is much better than the large bearing.


Ok, so the LB Bassalope is in my top 3 CLYW along with the Chief and Avalanche. If what you guys say is right, I’ve been missing out on my favorite CLYW throw. Time to find a SB bassalope.