Product reviews

Bont's Electronic Bearing Cleaner:

A Power Tool for Cleaner Bearings

Aug. 16, 2011

Planet report

BontElectronicBearingCleanerTwelve thousand revolutions per minute.

Try shaking a jar at even a tenth that rate — 120 revs per minute — and you will get an idea of what makes Bont's Electronic Bearing Cleaner so effective.

The $50 (USD) device spins bearings at 12,600 revolutions per minute. At that speed, it spits dirt and grime out of your bearings with centrifugal force, way beyond anything you could manage with a manual bearing cleaner.

The result is cleaner bearings that are smoother rolling and longer lasting. And in the long run — heck, even in one season — that could save you lots of money on new bearings.

Adam's Inline bearing cleaner video

Bont’s device is simple and easy to use, especially if you are familiar with power tools. It's basically a motor, operated by four AA batteries, that spins a tapered axle that protrudes from one end.

To operate, you slide a bearing (standard 608 or micro 688) onto the axle and dip it into a jar of solvent. We used mineral spirits. But you can also substitute other solvents, including citrus cleaner or even water.

Then you start the motor by pressing a button and spin the bearings for five to ten seconds.

After a few bearings, the solvent will start to cloud up with dirt and grime. After a full set of 16 bearings, our solvent was starting to turn black. (We admit we are a little lax about cleaning our bearings.)

That's it. All that's left to do is to dry the bearings, lube them with a couple drops of racing oil and put them back in your wheels.

The cleaning process took us about 15 minutes — less time than we spent trying to find a jar. And the results were spectacular. The bearings spun long and quietly between our fingers and after we got them back on our skates, we seemed to go faster (or was that just wishful thinking?)

Bottom line: If you are comfortable with power tools, you will love the Bont Electronic Bearing Cleaner. It is by far the best thing we’ve found for cleaning bearings.

(Keep flammable solvents away from anything that can cause a spark.)

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