August 2001

Engineering Case Histories

Case 4: The wrong bearing in the right place

Calculate B10 life to ensure reliable operation

Sofronas, A., Consulting Engineer

Ball bearings are precision components. They will give years of trouble-free operation as long as they are properly assembled and lubricated, kept clean and at the correct temperature, and operated within design conditions. When they don't achieve their design life, one of the above essentials has usually been violated. Previous case histories in this series have shown that incorrect belt tensioning or misalignment can cause high loads on shafts and bearings. This case history illustrates how some quick calculations can be used to screen a new design. When discussing design life of antifriction bearings, the term used is the B10 life. This is a statistical term and represents the life th

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