Monday, January 21, 2008

Ceramic

I was going to post about how wonderful fenders are... but that will have to wait for a more rainy day.

Rather than go on about the joys of full fender-ship, I thought I'd pass on a press release I just received from Boca Bearing.

You've never heard of Boca Bearing?

For some time now, they have been supplying ceramic bearings for most anything bicycle related -- wheels, bottom brackets, etc... anywhere you find sealed cartridge bearings. Normally these are hybrid bearings, meaning that the balls are ceramic, but the races are metal. These have the benefit of very round bearings, but still require grease. This is the type of bearing found in nearly all of the "ceramic bearing" labeled parts on the market, like those used by FSA.

This is about to change, according to Boca. From the release:

FULL CERAMIC, SEALED BIKE BEARINGS!
The Boca Bearings Company is proud to announce their new line of Full Ceramic Zirconia bearings for bicycles. Boca Bearings is fast becoming the industry leader in ceramic bearing technology and has been working hard to develop a Full Ceramic bike bearing solution with protective Teflon seals. Now that the seals are available, Full Ceramic bearings are perfect for both competitive road and velodrome applications.

Full Ceramics will provide the absolute least amount of resistance of any bearing on the market. They are far lighter than standard steel or hybrid bearings by about 2/3 the weight, and require absolutely no lubrication at all. Because ceramic is non-porous with almost zero rolling resistance, the ceramic ball and race combination makes for the slickest ride around. Please visit our website for a list of the common bike sizes that are available or search by any bicycle brand to see if we are supplying a bearing kit for your component.
So, not only are they lighter, they have less rolling resistance and no lubrication is required. Pricing, however, is a tad prohibitive. Their normal hybrid ceramic bearing for a CrossMax SL Disc wheelset is about $50. The same bearing in Full Ceramic style is $160, or more than three times the price.

They should last a very long time, though.

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