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Bearing Kinetics Inc.
3410 Irving Blvd.
Dallas, Texas 75247

P.  972-241-5869
F.  972- 241-5683

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Angular Contact Ball Bearings

An angular contact ball bearing uses axially asymmetric races. An axial load passes in a straight line through the bearing, whereas a radial load takes an oblique path that tends to want to separate the races axially. So the angle of contact on the inner race is the same as that on the outer race. Angular contact bearings better support "combined loads" (loading in both the radial and axial directions) and the contact angle of the bearing should be matched to the relative proportions of each. The larger the contact angle (typically in the range 10 to 45 degrees), the higher the axial load supported, but the lower the radial load. In high speed applications, such as turbines, jet engines, dentistry equipment, the centrifugal forces generated by the balls will change the contact angle at the inner and outer race. Ceramics such as silicon nitride are now regularly used in such applications due to its low density (40% of steel - and so significantly reduced centrifugal force), its ability to function in high temperature environments, and the fact that it tends to wear in a similar way to bearing steel (rather than cracking or shattering like glass or porcelain).

Most bicycles use angular-contact bearings in the headsets because the forces on these bearings are in both the radial and axial direction.




  
 
 
 
 
 
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