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Your Guide to Bearing Units

Bearing units are made up of a bearing housing and an insert. Their shapes can vary from: 2 Bolt Hole Pillow Block, 2 Bolt Flange (Oval), 3 Bolt Flange (Triangular), 4 Bolt Flange (Square). Materials include: Grey Cast Iron, Sheet Metal, Stainless Steel and Glass Fibre Reinforced Polyamide. The wide range of bearing units available provides effective solutions for a vast range of applications. The fact that they are easy to assemble, reduce maintenance costs and are robust, means they are easy to install and can be relied upon to last, makes them a popular choice for moderate loads. Check out the different types of bearing units below...

Flanged Bearings

Originally used in the Agricultural Industry, Flanged Bearing Units are equally at home in Food and Beverage Processing, Packaging Machinery, Construction Equipment, Conveyor Systems, Textiles and Fans. They offer a low maintenance solution which is perfect for tough environments. Flanged bearing units accommodate moderate initial alignment from mounting errors, are available in a range of styles compatible with either heavy or light applications and are available in metric and imperial sizes. Popular manufacturers of flange bearings include RHP Self Lube Units, FS Bearing Units and SKF’s Y-bearing range.

Pillow Block Bearings

Pillow block bearing units can be used in a variety of different industry sectors - the most common ones being the food, construction and agriculture industries, as the machinery in these industries tends to require regular maintenance. Pillow block bearings are available in imperial and metric units and are an affordable, high quality choice. The FS range of pillow block bearing units are an extremely cost effective choice, with corrosion resistant version also available in FS manufacture. RHP also produce pillow block bearing units which combine steel, stainless steel or plastic inserts with castings to suit your application.

Disc Harrow Bearings

Disc harrow bearings are commonly used for the agricultural industry, as the insert contains a triple labyrinth seal which protects against dirt and contamination. They are available in round, hexagonal and square bores.

Bearing Unit Insert

Bearing unit inserts are used in mounted housings such as pillow block or flanged housings. There are a range of manufacturers which offer bearing unit inserts including RHP Self Lube, FS Bearing Inserts and SKF with their Y-bearing range. They can be used for a range of applications, most commonly used in construction equipment, forestry machinery and agriculture.

Depending on the nature of the application there are 3 main styles of mounting the Bearing unit inserts onto a shaft. The main method is via grub screws, which locate onto the shaft at 180 degrees to each other. Secondly, an eccentric locking collar – this gives a fuller location between the shaft and the bearing unit insert. Finally, via an adapter sleeve, this, similar to the eccentric locking collar, allows for a taper bored bearing insert to be mounted onto a parallel shaft.

Bearing unit inserts, together with whichever style of bearing housing unit is chosen, are capable of carrying light to medium loadings and can travel at high speeds without excessive maintenance being required. Indeed, the smaller sizes of the Flanged and Pillow Block range are better left unmaintained, to protect the all-important seals, which serve to keep at bay the working environment and retain the original grease inside the bearing unit insert.

In most applications these days the cleaning process following production is the main contributor to premature bearing failure. Additional protection inside the bearing unit insert can be achieved by using SKF’s Solid Oil, and Stainless Steel or Zinc Phosphate coatings which can protect the bearing unit insert from premature corrosion.