Cost Effective Quality of Ball BearingsFebruary 14, 2018
An inevitable progression pushes ball bearing design. Fabrication materials improve. Following close behind material developments, new bearing designs take advantage of innovative engineering technologies. Viewed from a cost savings perspective, a calculated production methodology ensures significant reductions in cost. Analyzed in such an objective manner, what form does this cost-effective production strategy take? Well, through heuristically defined manufacturing techniques, we arrive at the following engineering methods.
Incorporating Heuristic Rules
Proceeding from a clearly defined set of technical requirements, these rules identify the key mechanical systems used to determine the operational characteristics of a proposed engineering solution. In this case, a shaft-mounted ball bearing device requires dimensional stability. In other words, the rings employed in the design must pass each other without generating friction. The known constants here are the load, any angular vectors, and the intended application. From here, the angular contact zones, materials, and dimensional standards can now be decided.
Cost Effective Ball Bearing Designs
The manufacturing process locks in this procedural approach, so the cost-effective element crystalizes. Material assessments and supplementary heat treatment stages tally with dimensional constraints, noise limitations, and many other factors. Systematically planned, the fabrication stage keeps costs down by slicing all overhead from the final product. What factors facilitate parts-forming productivity? Well, the operating and environmental conditions play an important role here, as does the unique signature created by a described load.
Incorporating Supplementary Features
Up to now, the ball bearings charted in this feasibility study have been shaped by a standard set of engineering factors. There comes a time, however, when such conventional designs no longer fit our prototype model. It’s here that the cost-effective quality of ball bearings requires a new set of design parameters. The ball number/size and lubricant formulation act as the gateway to these supplemental features. From the ball materials and dimensions, we add flanged product lines and a possible need for a snap ring. Dictated by the seed idea, the affordable rings, cage and balls, the costing strategy incorporates these supplementary architectures until the design satisfies the original concept.
On a blank sheet of paper, although an empty computer monitor is more likely, the concept shaves costs by determining the base bearing envelope. The shaft diameter, coupling geometry, and housing requirements, all of these seed factors come first. After those fundamentals are decided, the cage type, housing type and material, and the ball configuration all enter the second-stage design plan. The culmination of the cost reducing strategy is near. All that’s left, before the machining operation can commence, is to design a ball bearing that’s fast, noise-free, and built to last.
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