SKF redesigns linear ball bearings for higher load ratings

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SKF redesigns linear ball bearings for higher load ratingsSKF has redesigned its linear ball bearings to create a longer lasting, more robust set of products. The LBC, D-series boasts several advantages and refinements compared with the earlier LBC series. These include: higher load ratings; extended lifetimes; reduced friction; capability for self-alignment; and is fully interchangeable with other ISO Series 3 linear ball bearings.

The new series is available for shaft diameters of 12 to 40mm, with a choice of double-lip seals. There are stainless steel versions for harsh applications, which can be combined with stainless steel guiding shafts.

Phil Nicholas, Channel and Platform Development Manager Mechatronics at SKF says: “SKF linear ball bearings are already best in class throughout the industry – but the new generation takes this a step further.”

Like its predecessor, the new design allows linear speeds up to 5m/s and accelerations up to 100m/s2. Reliable operation is maintained at temperatures from -20 to +80degC, so the bearing is suitable for applications under many challenging conditions. The new bearings can be used in a wide variety of applications, including automation machinery, pick and place machines, filling machines and screen doors for trains.

By redesigning the bearing cage to have fewer overall components, SKF has created optimised ball tracks and larger rolling elements. This has improved load-carrying capacity by up to 15 per cent (depending on bearing size), which helps product designers to downsize their designs or increase loading. At the same time, bearing lifetimes can be 50 per cent longer than before.

The bearings are manufactured according to ISO 10285 dimensions and tolerances, so are interchangeable with previous LBC or ISO Series 3 bearings – making them a drop-in replacement for existing designs.

The LBCD self-aligning variant can accommodate tilting of the whole bearing through an angle of +/- 30 minutes of arc, compensating for misalignment caused by fitting or manufacturing tolerances, or by bending of an unsupported shaft.

LBC, D-series bearings are pre-lubricated with the optimum amount of SKF LGEP2 grease. This makes them ‘shaft ready’ – which reduces assembly time and mounting mistakes. The addition of two indicator marks on the front side – one for main load direction, the second for lubrication port position – helps to simplify mounting procedures.

To learn more about the redesigned linear ball bearings please visit

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