To counteract confusion over the many steel bearing variations available, specialist bearing supplier, SMB Bearings has published a new materials guide to provide a helpful resource. The guide, Steel bearings: an essential guide to this essential workhorse, also provides practical application advice when choosing a steel bearing, which can be downloaded for free on the SMB Bearings website.
To ensure design engineers understand the technical capabilities of the different steel bearings available, SMB Bearings’ guide simplifies the decision-making process with clear, comparable information. Common questions are addressed, such as ‘what’s the difference between stainless steel and chrome steel bearings?’ along with other common customer queries.
“With materials science constantly evolving, particularly with new developments in the lubricant and bearing coatings fields — choosing a humble bearing can feel like a colossal decision,” explained Chris Johnson, managing director at SMB Bearings. “This steel bearings guide is our final guide in our bearing materials miniseries, which also encompasses our ceramic and plastic bearings guides.
“Bearing failure can have a devastating effect, resulting in overall equipment failure and costly downtime. If a bearing material and design are correctly matched to its application in the first instance, this shouldn’t be a problem.
“A common question we get asked by our customers is, ‘when is it worth investing in stainless steel bearings?’ This guide breaks down specific operating conditions including load, speed, corrosion resistance, and temperature requirements, allowing design engineers to make an informed decision, and not splurge if they don’t need to.
“Corrosion is often known as the natural enemy of bearings, often caused when bearings are not properly matched to their operating conditions. In fact, it is estimated that the global cost of corrosion is US$2.5 trillion globally. Chrome steel bearings will rust easily so in the presence of moisture or chemicals, for example in the food and beverage industry, we’d recommend opting for stainless steel.”