Linear Bearings: What You Need to Know
Linear bearings are rolling-element and fluid-film devices that reduce friction in motion systems where the motion acts along a straight — or sometimes curved — pathway. They are distinguished from radial bearings in which motion is rotary. Linear bearings are used in machine tool applications such as sliding doors, 3D printers, and automation settings where reducing friction and guiding linear motion is needed. They can be loosely grouped as ball and roller types that use the rolling motion of rolling elements and sliding types that rely on lubricant and low-friction surfaces. This article will discuss the distinct forms that linear bearings take and highlight some general applications.

Sometimes called linear bushings, linear bearings are manufactured in sintered aluminum bronze, metal/polymer composites, carbon insert styles, polymer-lined sleeves, etc. and rely on a lubricating film to form between the bearing and the shaft while the two are in relative motion. Powdered-metal bronze bushings have been used for many years as die-post bushings. Their porous constructions, often with carbon plug inserts, are vacuum impregnated with oil that flows to and from the bearing under the frictional heat developed as the shaft moves and stops, providing a film of oil between the bearing and the shaft.

  • Created: 11-03-22
  • Last Login: 11-03-22

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