How to Put in Skateboard Bearings

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When putting in skateboard bearings, be sure to consider the quality of the bearings that you want. Learn to put bearings in a skateboard with help from a professional skateboarder in this free video on skateboard maintenance.

Part of the Video Series: Skateboard Maintenance
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Video Transcript

You just put the skateboard bearing on and then you're able to just press it in like that. Hi my name is Shawn Connelly. I live in San Francisco, California. I skate for Circle-A Skateboards and I'm co-founder of the San Francisco Skate Club, a skateboarding program for youth. Today I'm here to show you how to put in skateboard bearings and also how to put the wheels in too. What you want to do is you want to get your wheels together that you want to skate, you want to get the trucks that you're going to skate and you want to pick a good type of bearing. The better the bearing the more that you pay probably the better the bearing is going to be and the longer it's going to last. You're going to take your skateboard bearing and this is just personal preference. I like to take the shield off from the bearing so that it's nice and dry and it's got a loud sound to it. It's kind of like a hollow sound. I don't like my skateboard to be really quiet. I like it to be loud so you take our razor blade like this, a pretty new one with a good edge on it and you just wedge it in here and you pop that thing off there. And skateboard bearings come in two different kinds where there is shields, there is usually a plastic or a rubber cover or there is a metal shield. The metal shield is a little harder to get off but it does pop off. It looks like it doesn't come off but you can get it off and so the next thing you want to do is there is really two ways that you can put a skateboard bearing on a wheel and the easiest one for me is just to put the skateboard bearing on to the actual axle and just put the skateboard bearing on and then you are able to just press it in like that. And this wheel went on pretty easily. I don't know if it's sort of a soft wheel but every wheel is different. So when you find some skateboard wheels have trouble getting them in there, you might have to take it vertically and really just press down on it. So that's one way that you can put the bearing in there. The other way is if you have access to a tool you can use a bearing press and what this does is gives you a chance to be able to have the wheel flat on the table or any hard surface and then be able to like vertically put your weight on this thing. Skateboard shops sometimes have their own bearing press and it's some sort of, an arm that pushes down and it vertically pushes the bearing in hydraulically but for the most part you can just use your own strength and you take your wheel and you decide what side you want to face out. These are blank wheels so they don't have any graphics on them but a lot of times you'll either decide oh I'm going to put the graphic out or I'm going to put the graphic in and I always put the graphic in. I don't know why I just do it that way. I like the look of a clean white wheel on the outside. So but in this case they're blank so just throw them on and they're also evenly shaped on both sides so it doesn't really matter what side is in or out. You also want to put your bushings on there if you can. It's not absolutely necessary but a bushing in there, I'm sorry, a washer in there will actually work really well. Put one on either side and then you take your axle nut and you always want to use a new axle nut when you're putting a board together if you can. I think these things are 30 cents a piece or so so it's just a good thing to always change these when you are changing your axle nut because there is nothing worse than having a mushroomed axle and not being able to put your truck on. And you've got it on there and you tighten it and my technique is I tighten as far as it will go like that until the wheel can't move at all. And the reason for doing this is I lock the two bearings together as tight as I can and then I know that there is no extra space in there and then from there I loosen it up and I like my truck wheel, my wheel to be really loose like this. It just makes it loose, you don't have to worry about it. And also if you notice the closer the bolt is to the axle end, means that you have less threads on the end that can be damaged. So you'll definitely be able to get your axle nut on and off and not have to worry about it being stripped. So you just go like that and then you continue the same for all four of the wheels. So that's how you put skateboard bearings into your wheels. My name is Shawn Connelly. I live in San Francisco, California and I skate for Circle-A Skateboards and co-founder of SF Skate Club, a skateboard program for youth and you can find out more information about that at


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