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Inline Planet Skate Forum • View topic - [Review] ILQ-9 Pro Skate Bearings

[Review] ILQ-9 Pro Skate Bearings

Skater reviews of skates and skate gear and links to reviews posted elsewhere.

[Review] ILQ-9 Pro Skate Bearings

Postby Robert on Thu Oct 25, 2007 1:30 am

Here's the Planet review of Twincam's ILQ-9 Pro bearings:
http://www.inlineplanet.com/2007-10/ilq-pro.html

Post your comments and questions here.
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Postby chaosdsm on Fri Oct 26, 2007 4:44 am

I FULLY agree with the review.

I'd add, that for the ultimate in race bearings, the Twin-Cam ILQ-9 BCB ceramic bearings (BCB stands for Black Ceramic Ball) are absolutely top notch, & come with a lifetime "re-new" plan in which for $10 you can mail in your bearings after they get dirty & Twin-Cam will clean &/or replace dirty/worn parts (retainers, contact surfaces, etc...) as necessary. Oh, & I would also add that a set of 16 ILQ-9 BCB Ceramics weigh in at 154 Grams (+/- 1 gram) making them lighter than even the Bones Swiss Ceramics, & both my Classics & Pro’s weigh in within 1 gram per set of the weight listed in the review so I’m pretty sure that weight is accurate.

I actually have all 3 varieties of Twin-Cam ILQ-9 bearings, classic, pro, & ceramic. I primarily use the classics for training, ceramics for races, & the pro's are backups for races in case I forget to return the ceramics for cleaning in time for a race. I keep the classics packed in 100% Teflon grease for maximum protection from the elements which keeps them rolling far longer than the lube that they ship with, while providing increased rolling resistance to make me work harder. I’ve put probably 700 miles on them & they’re still going strong. I've probably put about 200 miles on the Pro's so they should have lots of miles left in them & I've put 2 marathons, a half marathon & 2 10K races on the ceramics & send them in about twice a year for renewing.

I’ve tried dozens of different brands & ratings of bearings, & Twin-Cam will probably be my primary bearings for a long time to come.
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Postby sk8indy on Fri Oct 26, 2007 6:17 pm

My trainers have the ILQ9 Pros in them and they are terrific. I'm a rookie at bearing maintenance, but if what Mr. Ramirez says is true about the open side staying on the inside of your wheel, that would mean that I have to flip the bearings when I rotate the wheels (which is often...).

Sorry if I am missing something but I just looked at my skates and sure enough the open side is pointing out since I rotated the wheels not long ago. Can anyone help me understand this?

Also, if you have Classics, they are also the 6 bearing set up but they come from the factory slopped with grease in them for lube. I broke them in (which is necessary as the article suggests) and then took them apart and scooped out the grease and lubed them with 3-in-1 oil (by recommendation of my coach/mentor). They are great back ups, fast and durable without the grease.
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Postby Bill in Houston on Fri Oct 26, 2007 9:43 pm

sk8indy wrote:Sorry if I am missing something but I just looked at my skates and sure enough the open side is pointing out since I rotated the wheels not long ago. Can anyone help me understand this?
The open side faces the inside of the WHEEL not the inside of the SKATE. See what I mean? On each wheel, when you hold it in your hands, you will only see the shields.
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Postby Mikeyb on Sat Oct 27, 2007 2:09 pm

Wish I felt the same as all of you about these bearings. I recently bought a K2 Rad Pro as a back up boot for my speed skates. They come equipped w ILQ9 Pro bearings. Admittedly I use my speed boot 90% of the time and probably have put less than 25 miles on the K2's. However, the bearings simply feel sluggish. They're also noisy. Keep in mind my speed skates have BSB Swiss bearings.

You could argue these need to be broken in but I've repeatedly heard that the Pros are fast out of the box. Both my skates have 2x110/2x100 frames so it's not a geometry difference. Maybe when these break in they free up a bit. For right now they are undeniably sluggish and clearly slower....alot slower!
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Postby chaosdsm on Sat Oct 27, 2007 8:55 pm

Mikeyb wrote:Wish I felt the same as all of you about these bearings. I recently bought a K2 Rad Pro as a back up boot for my speed skates. They come equipped w ILQ9 Pro bearings. Admittedly I use my speed boot 90% of the time and probably have put less than 25 miles on the K2's. However, the bearings simply feel sluggish. They're also noisy. Keep in mind my speed skates have BSB Swiss bearings.

You could argue these need to be broken in but I've repeatedly heard that the Pros are fast out of the box. Both my skates have 2x110/2x100 frames so it's not a geometry difference. Maybe when these break in they free up a bit. For right now they are undeniably sluggish and clearly slower....alot slower!


Are you sure those are ILQ-9 Pro's ??? From your description, they sound like ILQ-9 classics, & AFAIK, the K2 Rad Pro's are supposed to ship with standard ILQ-9's, not even sure that they are TwinCam brand.

See pic below for identification. Moving clockwise from top left are TwinCam ILQ-9 Classic (metal shields on both sides), TwinCam ILQ-9 Pro (Orange Nylon shield on one side), & TwinCam ILQ-9 BCB Ceramics (Purple Nylon shield on one side).
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Postby DROID on Sun Oct 28, 2007 1:09 am

A little clarification is needed.

In Francisco's review he mentioned a rubber shiled,..... not a nylon shiled,.....


in the photo of the ILQ-9 bearings,.... let me ask about the BLUE bearing shiled (BCB)
...... is the BLUE shiled NYLON or RUBBER ???
...... Does the Blue shield face the inside of the wheel???
......With the BCB's (blue shield) is there a removable rubber shield on the inside???.......("inside" = faces the inside of the wheel ???)

I am very interested in these wheels, and I want to understand how they work and how I can maintain them.

I raced in the St. Gallen 111 Km race this past summer in ILQ- classics and after 10 miles in the rain they started squeeking and squeeling and my race was basically over at that point because it was as though I was dragging a cement brick ......... and I suffered like a big dog for a long time as rec skaters breezed past me.Needless to say,.... I can NEVER afford to have a repeat of that experience,.......

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Postby NWGlenn on Sun Oct 28, 2007 2:52 am

Received my Rad Pro's ~3 wks ago. They came stock with Star Grip wheels 85a loaded with Twin Cam ILQ-9 Pro SCRS bearings, orange shields one side only. The same as shown in <chaosdsm> photo @ upper right.
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Postby chaosdsm on Sun Oct 28, 2007 6:33 am

DROID wrote:A little clarification is needed.

In Francisco's review he mentioned a rubber shiled,..... not a nylon shiled,.....


in the photo of the ILQ-9 bearings,.... let me ask about the BLUE bearing shiled (BCB)
...... is the BLUE shiled NYLON or RUBBER ???
...... Does the Blue shield face the inside of the wheel???
......With the BCB's (blue shield) is there a removable rubber shield on the inside???.......("inside" = faces the inside of the wheel ???)

I am very interested in these wheels, and I want to understand how they work and how I can maintain them.

I raced in the St. Gallen 111 Km race this past summer in ILQ- classics and after 10 miles in the rain they started squeeking and squeeling and my race was basically over at that point because it was as though I was dragging a cement brick ......... and I suffered like a big dog for a long time as rec skaters breezed past me.Needless to say,.... I can NEVER afford to have a repeat of that experience,.......

DROID


Just a little tidbit I learned on Modern Marvels (History Channel), 90% of all "Rubber" products used in the world today are actualy some form of plastic!

Anyway, the BCB bearings (Purple shields) are listed on the TwinCam spec sheet as SCRS rubber shields, it's not specified what material the rubber is made from. :oops: I guess I got "Nylon" from the retainers which on both the Pro & BCB bearings are made of Nylon according to the same spec sheet.

The colored side of the shields faces outwards, the back side of the shields have a metal backing to make them rigid. Both the Pro & BCB bearings have just one shield per bearing, the inside is open but this is not a big deal because the shields on the outside almost completely seal the bearings from foreign debris, far better than all c-ring retained shields & even better than most other "rubber" shield bearings. :oops:

As they come from TwinCam, the ILQ-9 Classics are definitely not very good for wet conditions. Steel bearings + Steel retainers + moisture = bad news, which is one of the reasons why I removed the stock lube & packed the classics with thick 100% Teflon grease. Not an issue with the Pro's since they come with Nylon retainers, & the balls themselves seem to be a more water resistant steel.
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Postby DROID on Sun Oct 28, 2007 2:58 pm

Thanks for all the great info !!!!!!!!!!

I wish I would have known that before going ALL the way to Switzerland and screwing up a cool race that I really trained hard for.

I actually asked around quite a bit,... and the advice I got was that the ILQ-9 SEALED bearings would be perfect in ANY condition wet or dry because theya re sealed. I was told that I should race on them right out the container becasue theya re sealed and pre-lubed so they are the MOST reliable. That is why I took them to Europe to a race where there is frequently rain, .... and dry conditions at different times during the race.

I feel so used...........not too happy with those ILQ's (rhymes)

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Postby online inline on Sun Oct 28, 2007 6:14 pm

DROID wrote:I wish I would have known that before going ALL the way to Switzerland and screwing up a cool race that I really trained hard for...


For rain, i would go with a bearing that has the rubber seal on the outside, lubed with grease (i prefer white lithium), not oil. I have also been advised that it helps to smear a thin film of vaseline over the outside of the bearing just before starting out. I have tried this and though i can;t swear that it did any good, it does tend to make a mess of things over time, but if it saves a race for you, it's worth it.

Immediately afterwards, open up the bearing to the extent that you can douse them with WD40 which will repel all the water out and save the bearing from seizing. Spin it a few times to get it worked in. Then service (clean and re-lube) before using again. WD40 is not a lube, and will mess up your bearings if you use it as such.

Make sure you break in a greased bearing for at least 100 miles before racing on it.

I've tried some brands of rain bearings (like titanium) and didn't find that they had any advantage over what i laid out above.
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Postby sk8indy on Sun Oct 28, 2007 8:23 pm

[/quote]The open side faces the inside of the WHEEL not the inside of the SKATE. See what I mean? On each wheel, when you hold it in your hands, you will only see the shields.[/quote]

:oops: 10-4, Thanks.

Off subject a little...I have a set of new BSB swiss racing bearings. I want to open them up and see how they are lubed at the factory when delivered to me. If any grease is present, I take it out and lube with light oil. I can not for the life of me find the end of the C clip to dissassemble them. Never had this problem before. Any tips on how to get them apart?
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