Help rescuing dodgy bearings

As most people in Britain will know on Thursday it snowed a fair bit, something of a rare occurence. As school was closed I decided I’d go for a snow ride. After gadding about a fair bit in the woods I decided to call it a day and take my snow encrusted uni home. I put it in the garage to thaw out over night. Next morning I went out to get the uni to ride to school only to find the tyre (tyre/tire?) completely flat. Not a big problem, it was an old tube and I have a spare anyway. With a bit of further prodding I found something a little more ominous. The bearings now don’t turn nice and smoothly like they used to but make nasty grinding noise.

I figure this is because of all the water that probably melted into them. Not a big surprise really when you see how much snow was on the thing:

I tried attacking them with WD-40 then some cycle lubricant I found but to no avail. They still grind and dont run smoothly. I’m guessing they probably need replacing but I have neither the tools nor the know-how to do it and I doubt my LBS would be any help. Is there any way which I can rescue them from their grinding, soul wrenching state?

Also, if they are beyond repair, will it damage the rest of the uni (24" Qu-ax splined Muni) if I keep riding on them until such a time as I can get them replaced?

Thanks

Anthony

p.s. Apologies if this is in the wrong forum and in case there is another thread on this, sorry again, but I did use the search thing and couldnt find anything

I’m not sure of an answer but I’m fairly positive you would be more likely to get responses in the rec.sport.unicycling forum and I wouldn’t say it would be off topic there.

I have looked at mine and they look to be about the same as skateboard bearings, that said. I would take them off, clean them of any visible crap, soak them in some bottled water or tap water if you trust it (I would trust mine here but some people are paranoid), clean it again, then soak them in some form of lubricant that won’t attract dust and dirt. I used to use special skateboard lubricant, but that was when I was young and easily pulled in by marketing gimmicks, I would just go to a hardware store and say you need to relube some bearings and need to keep them from attracting too much dirt.

Once they have been soaked overnight or so, I would then clean them off with a q-tip to get most of the grease off, then maybe with a wet towel or something to get as much off as possible, then you should be set and the bearings should run good as new assuming they didn’t get too badly damaged.

I have actualy heard of skateboarders showering with their skateboards to remove the grease because they like the feeling of dry bearings. Its possible that if you were to stick the bearings at the bottom of the shower like by the drain or something while you shower, then rinse and soak in clean water might help clean them better, but that is just speculation.

Also most of what I said is not to be taken as a complete fact, its possible I’m wrong but from the sounds of it as long as you are just doing this to the bearings they won’t be in any worse condition in the end.