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Pete,

The San Val wheels do NOT roll nearly as freely as the LGB ball bearing wheels.  You can easily see this by simply spinning one of the wheels (it stops pretty quickly unlike the LGB wheels).  Most of the time the axles actually turn in the journal.  If they fit too tight in the journal, the car will not roll well.  The ball bearings will help some..particularly in curves when the wheels are trying to turn at different speeds.   That's been my experience.
 
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