Storing and identifying bearings

Anyone have any good tips on keeping track of what bearing is what? Some of them I can identify by sight, like the YYF SPEC that says “YYF” on it and the Konkave and the Center Trac that have unique shapes. But I can’t tell a 10-ball from an AIGR from a YYJ SPEED bearing by sight.

I was thinking of putting a little dot of nail polish or hobby paint on the inside ring of the bearing, but I can imagine many ways this might go wrong.

What I’m doing now is trying to remember or write down what bearing is in what yoyo, and then storing all bearings of one kind together in a little labeled bag.

What do you do?

deshield them and put them in labeled bagies

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Yup. That’s what I do. Well, except for the deshielding part.

YYF bearings are marked, which helps. YYJ bearings are often marked on the shield. Konkaves and Center Tracks are kinds you can spot “on sight”. But how can you tell an OD 10 Ball from something else? What if that other bearing also has 10 balls? Best to label.

ALSO, I track in a database what yoyo has what bearing in it currently. In case I am curious, I know immediately.
(ZThis database also has stuff like specs, colors, pricing, response compatibility, other stuff, it’s meant to be an easy to use reference for tracking and comparing.)


I have a couple ways of being able to tell the difference between my bearings. The ten ball has a few key characteristics that tell it apart. The first and most obvious thing is taking the shield off and counting the individual balls. But, a couple ways to tell the difference just by sight and not messing with it is: The Ten ball is usually really shiny metal. I mean shinier than the dull color of most bearings like the AIGR and the YYF spec bearing., Even after you have used them for a while they still have a pretty good shine on them. Another thing is the edges. It seems alot of bearings have edges that are sharp and not beveled. What i mean is, if you have the bearing standing up facing you, you can see that the edges are a sharp 90 degree angle. Its not so with the Ten ball. It has beveled edges. Not every bearing that isn’t a ten ball has 90 degree angles, but once you see what i’m talking about you will be able to discern the ten ball from the rest. So those two things should help you be able to identify them. The shininess alone is enough for me.
I took some pictures to illustrate my point…

This one is a YYF spec on the left and an OD ten ball on the right. If you examine the edges closely you can see that the spec has sharp flat edges and the ten ball has beveled edges. See the rounded edge of the ten ball?

Now bear with me, i know it’s hard to tell because of the bad lighting, but if you really look you can tell the difference. In this one the Ten ball is on the left and the SPEC is on the right. Note the dull sheen on the Spec bearing versus the high shine on the Ten ball. Can you see the difference? Every ten ball i have ever had, has that shine. Even after months of use. No other bearing has that shine that i have tried. AIGR, YYF, CLYW, SPYY, none of those bearings have that shine on them. That’s the defining characteristic to me.

Now if you look out for those two things when sorting through your bearings you should be able to tell the difference. And if all else fails just take off the shields. Though you should avoid that if you can, unless you are cleaning them. It’s easy to lose pieces, AND its just a pain in the butt…

I hope i was of some help!!!


I keep mine in labeled baggies. But I can tell the difference between 10 ball and AIRG.

10 balls have a thicker inner race and the round edges.

AIRG have a very thin inner race and have a dull shield, almost looks bead blasted.

YYF have sharp edge and some have YYF on them.

Terrapin have red and green dots to tell them apart.

CLYW have round edges and a regular inner race. (hard to tell from spyy and other regular bearings.)

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Thanks everyone! I appreciate the tips on discerning differences by sight. I’ll keep mine in labeled baggies and use a database, since those are both great suggestions. And if I do try putting a dot on them, I’ll post here how it works for me.

Time to throw!

bringing this theme back, do you have photos of how you organize yoyo parts and accessories? I finally found something I was imagining.


Check out this thread: Yoyo supplies box / case

Why don’t you just label them as you get them? It’s not that hard, and a lot easier than trying to figure it out a year later… :nauseated_face:

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Oh man, I thought I was the only one doing the database thing!
Well, I use a spreadsheet, but same concept!

Edit: I gotta get better about looking at post timestamps…


I was thinking there should be a website “” or something that has every throw along with all of the statistics, colorways released, compatibility with parts etc. With your login you could check “owned” and have your collection stored, you could submit specs and pictures for throws not present in the db. Would make it easy to have a BST market as well.


@Killawatts1 I used to have something like that for my comics, wasn’t the most expensive service, however I think comics are a larger market so more users paying to keep the lights on and the upkeep.

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I have a bag or little box for each shape of bearing, but I don’t bother to try to keep track of which bearing is from which company. I subscribe to the “parts is parts” philosophy for the most part and if it spins gud, it spins gud. If it doesn’t spin gud, try another one.


I label and bag them, as others have mentioned. But I have also done the same with 20 year old LEGOs, keeping track of which lightsaber piece came with which minifigure, as if that matters. So take that as a measure of my sanity.


I just have a bag of “clean” bearings and a a second bag of “to be cleaned” bearings. Doesn’t really matter what type it is if it works well.


imo this is a really awsome idea. The only thing I hate is that I didn’t think of it first :stuck_out_tongue:

The way I’m thinking, itd’d be like the AniList or MAL of yoyos, right? Users make accounts to keep a digital record of there collection that they can share with others or use for the BST like you said. There’s a yoyo wiki that already acts like a yoyo database I think, but it’s limited to older yoyos if I remember correctly.

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I’m pretty new to the hobby (about 5 weeks in at this point), but this idea came to me almost instantly as I started to research and compare throws.

Having the ability to filter the DB by things like “shape” “width” “weight” “material” etc. would allow people who are looking for a throw that is similar to X to do their research, and just having the ability to quickly look up specs would be insanely helpful compared to having to go to each companies site and look up the model.

The other feature that would be amazing is a “reviews” section for each throw where any owner regardless of where they bought it could post their insights/opinions. I find that yoyoexpert has more reviews than most if not all other websites, but as soon as the throw is no longer listed for sale all of that review data is lost for research when you are looking at potentially buying that throw used or on another site. My purchasing is almost entirely review driven, so having a centralized place where users could easily write up quick reviews, or link to review videos and gain points to up their “cred” similar to other sites would be insanely hepful.

I’m no web developer… but I think this community/hobby deserves a site like this. I have lots of other ideas! haha

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Most yoyo retailers have a features like this, but usually it doesn’t have complete data or doesn’t work at all.

Got any sketches for what the website and pages would look like? I’ve got a bit of experience with website creation so I can do a bit of the visuals, but I’d have to completely teach myself how to do databases.

we should probably move this to dms or make a separate thread lol. rip I don’t have regular status anymore so I can’t move it myself lol

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The closest sites like this that exist are and


What! This is awesome. Thanks for linking throwdex…never seen it.

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