The answer to this month’s trouble shooter is provided by Schaeffler (UK) Ltd. Q: What type of applications would benefit from using split rather than solid spherical roller bearings?

Published:  10 September, 2015


Replacing damaged or worn parts on heavy machinery that requires regular servicing or maintenance can be a costly problem, particularly for companies in heavy industries such as mining, quarrying, oil and gas, paper, and steel production, where the value of capital equipment and production machinery is high.

Repair and overhaul of components soaks up valuable time and resources, often resulting in costly production downtime, while the equipment or machinery is offline being repaired. Dismantling and assembly procedures are often complex and involve drives being disconnected, belts, pulleys, gears, bearings, couplings and shafts being disassembled or removed. Equipment such as screw conveyors, mixers, mills, crushers, rotary kilns, bucket wheel excavators, winch drums, fans, dust extractors, ventilators, drive and transmission shafts – all require regular maintenance, repair and overhaul.

Where solid spherical roller bearings are used, companies should consider the benefits of fitting the split type instead. With these bearings, the inner ring, outer ring and cage assembly are split. A cylindrical bore provides direct mounting onto the shaft, which means the bearings typically offer high thrust loads and dynamically compensate for any misalignment.

Mounting of split bearings normally leads to a reduction of machine downtime and maintenance costs. In many cases, split bearings can also reduce the cost of new designs, because the bearings simplify the assembly process and mounting procedure.

Split spherical roller bearings are particularly useful when several solid spherical roller bearings are being used to support a complex drive shaft, or where the bearing needs replacing but is located in a tight space on a machine, so access is restricted.

With split spherical roller bearings from Schaeffler, the outside diameter, outer ring width and shaft seat diameter are identical to the dimensions of the standard spherical roller bearings. This means customers can easily replace solid bearings with split versions by using an adapter sleeve.

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