Today’s topic is bearings. Bearings are used
to limit the radial and axial movement of rotating and reciprocating equipment. Now,
radial movement would be anything 90 degrees from the center of the shaft and axial movement
would be anything parallel or in line with the shaft. There are two general categories
of bearings. There are friction bearings or sliding surface bearings, and anti-friction
bearings or roller bearings. In this case we have some examples of anti-friction bearings.
As we talked about we have anti-friction bearings here that either use a cylindrical roller
that rides on a race or we can use a ball bearing which uses balls that slide inside
of a spherical bearing race. Now, a ball bearing will provide a great deal of load support
in the radial direction but can only handle small amounts of thrust load in an axial direction.
Whereas with this tapered roller bearing because of the style and the nature of the
bearing it can handle a quite significant amount of axial thrust. Now, the most important
thing to understand about bearings is lubrication. They need the proper lubricant and in this
case most anti-friction bearings are lubricated by grease but not just any type of grease
you must select the right type of grease for the proper bearing and the load that’s being
put onto the bearing itself. Over lubrication is a major problem. It’s probably the number
one cause of bearing related failures due to lubrication. If you put too much lubrication
into the bearing housing the balls will not ride and the rollers will not ride in the
races properly and they will overheat and they will eventually fail. So remember always
check with your manufacturer’s manual and make sure you have the right amount of lubrication
and the right type of lubrication. We hope you’ve found this both informative and enjoyable.