Join Date: Dec 2004
Location: austin/san antonio corridor
Bikes: a dozen or more at any given time. currently: pro concept pro, badd 24", hutch trickstar, looptail pk ripper, reynolds quad, 82 hutch pro racer, yamaha "a" model, matthews monoshock, and several more.
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personally, i don't mess with cup/cone anymore. i currently race bmx on a set of bullseye hubs i bought new in 1980. i replaced the bearings in about 1992 because i thought that was a good idea since i had been riding them almost daily all that time. i pretty much wasted my money on bearings. i pulled the seals off of the old bearings and the grease was still there, looking clean. the old bearings were rolling just fine, i just figured since it had been 12 years or so i should just replace them. i was wrong. as long as the hubs have good quality sealed cartridge japanese bearings, they should last and last. some of the chinese bearings are ok, but as far as i can tell, they're not quite up to par with the japanese versions. you can always upgrade cartridge bearings if you can locate a industrial bearing supply store. just take in the bearing, and tell them you want a better quality bearing of the same size.
you could look at it this way...if you want zero maintenance (at least 12 years in my case), go with sealed cartridge, if you want a _possibly_ ever so slightly quicker accelerating hub but you're willing to do *regular* maintenance, go with cup/cone.