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If ABEC 5 or 7 Ceramic Bearings Have Tighter Tolerance and Less Friction How Can they Make More Noise?

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This defies the laws of physics. Tighter tolerances and less friction should equal less noise. 

 

Stock bearings are are usually heavier than hybrids and should make more noise if they are specked lower and have less tolerance. Hearing more noise from supposedly tighter toleranced lower friction bearings should not happen.

 

This has me thinking, that stock bearings are lower ABEC rated, heavier materials, but have tighter tolerances between the balls, races and cages. You almost never hear vibration from quality stock reel bearings, wet or dry.

 

Can anyone with knowledge explain this phenomenon?

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So your making assumptions.  Are they lubricated the same.  Are they made of the same materials.  Are they spinning at the same speed.

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Like everything mfd quality control of materials and process makes a difference. 

There isn't a baitcasting reel made that has spool shaft speeds fast enough to take advantage of ABEC 7 bearings. Anything over ABEC 5 is like putting 200 mph tires on a car driven under 100 mph, waste of money.

Ceramic bearings are will make high pitched sounds and doesn't indicate they need oil, most are designed to run dry.

Tom

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Ceramic bearings are noisier because they are harder and generally use a less viscous (or in some cases dry) lube out of the package. The noise isn't coming from rattling around as the OP's question (and some answers) imply. 

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You're probably using Boca Orange seals. They're notoriously loud and, in my opinion, junk. Not all ceramics are loud. If you want a high end ceramic bearing, get some ZPI's while you can from the TackleTrap. Best bearings I've used. Super smooth and very quiet. 

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I don’t know. Sounds like vibration to me. I use the same oil 99% of the time, I get better casts with oil (but not until throwing about 10 casts or so). The orange seals still make noise. Others not as much. I actually just tried Boca ABEC 5 Ceramic Lightening bearings. I actually think they are better than the 7’s, quiet and smooth. That’s why I’m wondering why 7’s are noisier? And not just Bocas. 

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You are probably hearing ceramic bearings breaking in.  They are designed to run dry.  In time, the sound usually will go away.  But with that said, not every ABEC 5 or 7 is the same from brand to brand.  Generally you get what you pay for when comes to these bearings but most reels today come with pretty good bearings on their own.   Upgrading is a personal choice.  You might get a smoother reel and longer casts but it's depends on the reel and it's somewhat subjective.  I put some ABEC 5 and ABEC 7's from Boca in a few of my reels with mixed results. Personally I did not care for the Orange Seal Bearings from Boca but the regular shielded bearings were great and went beyond my expectations.   

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The orange seal bearings are good but you need to remove the seals and run them open. They’re meant to be “non contact “ seals but aren’t always. As for the sound, there is some but “loud” is an overstatement in my experience. If you’re going to oil ceramic bearings because of the sound , save the $ and stick to ABEC5 stainless. Properly clean and lubricated, the difference between them and ceramics is much less noticeable on the water. 

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Had orange Boca's in my Chronarch MGL - had good casting distance but couldn't handle the noise. Took em' out and reinserted the originals. 

 

Unless someone can convince me otherwise, they'll continue to stay in my parts box

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While I have upgraded many reels to Boca orange seals or Boca Lightnings, I don't find them to be a worthwhile upgrade for most fishermen.  Most decent/good reels out of the factory use ABEC 3 bearings and they are fine for the vast majority of fishermen unless you're a surf fisherman or competition caster.  My advice, before you decide to upgrade, give your factory bearings a good cleaning and add one drop of oil and see how they perform.  After that, you may want to upgrade if you feel the performance isn't to your liking.  

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5 hours ago, Preytorien said:

Had orange Boca's in my Chronarch MGL - had good casting distance but couldn't handle the noise. Took em' out and reinserted the originals. 

 

Unless someone can convince me otherwise, they'll continue to stay in my parts box

I don’t know. Oiled, they aren’t bad. They help to the extent that you can hear the spool speed. And they get quieter over time.

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Seems nobody's talking about the 13 polymer bushings anymore. Just out of curiosity I bought two pairs and put them in a Chronarch MGL and a Scorpion 200. Not exaggerating but the difference was dramatic. Everybody blew them off as hype. I can't speak about durability because I actually baitcast very little. But as far as distance and smoothness goes they have been a real eye opener. Contrary to claims they do work better with a little oil. I'm using TSI 321. One word of advice, though. They don't stand up to any of the usual tactics to get them out of the brake sideplate. Once you put them in don't try to take them out unless you intend on changing them. They deform very easily.

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ABEC only grades tolerances not materials, hardness or smoothness of components. Higher ABEC ratings don’t necessarily equate to longer/faster spin speeds. True ABEC 9 bearings are intended for critical applications such as NASA would require and are expensive. There’s a lot of mislabeling and misinformation in the bearing market. The flip side of the coin is that a bearing can still be quality without the manufacturer jumping through the hoops and expense of being rated. This is another topic that’s largely misunderstood and way over thought. 

5 minutes ago, The Bassman said:

Seems nobody's talking about the 13 polymer bushings anymore. Just out of curiosity I bought two pairs and put them in a Chronarch MGL and a Scorpion 200. Not exaggerating but the difference was dramatic. Everybody blew them off as hype. I can't speak about durability because I actually baitcast very little. But as far as distance and smoothness goes they have been a real eye opener. Contrary to claims they do work better with a little oil. I'm using TSI 321. One word of advice, though. They don't stand up to any of the usual tactics to get them out of the brake sideplate. Once you put them in don't try to take them out unless you intend on changing them. They deform very easily.

Bushing isn’t the dirty word it’s made out to be. There’s lots of cool technology and materials in the world and it’s changing rapidly. 

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If it ain't broke, don't fix it.

 

I presume everyone who is upgrading bearings is not adding any friction with the cast control features of the reels.  That would seem to be counterproductive.

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On 4/7/2019 at 3:36 PM, iabass8 said:

You're probably using Boca Orange seals. They're notoriously loud and, in my opinion, junk. Not all ceramics are loud. If you want a high end ceramic bearing, get some ZPI's while you can from the TackleTrap. Best bearings I've used. Super smooth and very quiet. 

Funny how Boca O/S bearings went from being the ones to have to junk.....

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