Bronze Bearings: Design Elements

If you want to reduce the friction between rotating shafts and supporting components, you need a bearing or a bushing. Although manufacturers can produce these using various metallic and non-metallic materials, metal remains a constant. Among the possibilities, many professionals prefer bronze. Bearings made from this metal provide some desirable qualities.


Bronze is a full-gold colored alloy of copper and tin. It may also contain other metals. Popular combinations are bronze and manganese, bronze and zinc and, of course, bronze and lead. The addition of each metal or non-metal will add or enhance a specific property.

Before selecting the right type of bronze, it is important to know the qualities each type possesses. This will help you make the right decision. In all cases, the selected alloy must match the specific application in terms of

* Purpose

* Location/environment

* Longevity

Bronzes, because of their versatility offer you a wide selection from which to choose, including leaded and lead free bronze

Bronze Bearing Design Elements

Material choice is one element of design. When considering the design for bronze bearings, it is imperative to consider this together with two other essential elements. These are:

1. The environment or application/service conditions: This includes such things as

* Load

* Speed

* Whether there are corrosive elements, dirt or grime as part of the environment

* Oscillating motion

* Temperature

* Rate of frequency of the start-stop operation

2. The proper level of lubrication required – usually relates to the intended purpose and its environment

Fortunately, bronzes offer a wide array of desirable properties from which to choose. This helps to simplify the selection of the material for the requested bronze bearing.

Bronze Bearings

Bronze is truly a versatile metal. It is attractive but functional. It possesses solid anti-friction properties as well as good hardness and strength. It is adequately ductile and enjoys excellent machinability. This makes it ideal for the production of general, all-purpose bronze bearings.

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