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An oilube bearing, also known as an oil-impregnated bearing or a sintered bronze bearing, is a type of self-lubricating bearing made from porous materials, typically bronze or iron, that are impregnated with lubricating oil. These bearings are commonly used in applications where regular maintenance is difficult or not feasible, as they are designed to provide a long service life with minimal maintenance.

Oilube Bearings vs. Traditional Bearings

Oilube bearings offer several advantages over traditional bearings, such as reduced maintenance, longer service life, and improved performance in harsh environments. However, they may not be suitable for all applications, so when selecting the right Oilube bearing for your application, consider the following factors:

  • Load capacity: ensure the bearing can handle the required load
  • Operating speed: choose a bearing suitable for the application’s speed
  • Operating temperature: select a bearing that can withstand the temperature range of your application
  • Environment: consider the presence of contaminants, moisture, and corrosive elements
Oilube Bearings

How Do High-Performance Oilube Bearings Works?

In the realm of oilube bearing fabrication, the artistry of powder metallurgy takes center stage. Picture fine grains of metal – perhaps bronze or iron – meticulously pressed into a distinct form, followed by exposure to scorching heat, melding the minute particles into a porous yet cohesive structure.

Imagine, if you will, the porous bearing as it undergoes a vacuum impregnation, submerging its inner recesses with a generous coating of lubricating oil. As this mechanical marvel springs into action, the whirring of moving parts generates both warmth and pressure, coaxing the oil to seep from its porous dwelling, bestowing unceasing lubrication.

In a symphony of cooling and diminishing pressure, the oil retreats, nestling itself back into the pores, biding its time until the cycle begins anew and it once again answers the call for seamless, well-oiled motion.

What Is Oilube Bearings?

Bearings are essential components in machines and equipment, ensuring smooth, efficient movement with reduced friction. In recent years, there has been a growing demand for self-lubricating bearings, also known as Oilube bearings.

Oilube bearings are also known as oil-impregnated bearings. Oil-impregnated bearings are in a non-operating state, and lubricating oil fills their pores. During operation, the shaft rotates and generates heat due to friction, and the thermal expansion of the bearing bush reduces the pores. Therefore, the lubricating oil overflows and enters the bearing gap. When the shaft stops rotating, the bearing bush cools, the pores recover, and the lubricating oil is sucked back into the pores.

This built-in lubrication system eliminates the need for external lubrication, reducing maintenance costs and extending the bearing’s life span. These bearings can be made from various materials, including metals and polymers.

Oilube Bearings
Oilube Bearings

Types Of Oilube Bearings

There are several types of Oilube bearings, each offering unique properties and benefits. Here are the three most common types:

  1. Sintered bronze bearings are made from powdered metal, which is pressed and heated to form a solid, porous structure. The pores are then filled with oil, providing continuous lubrication throughout the bearing’s life. These bearings are known for their high load-carrying capacity and excellent wear resistance.
  2. Sintered iron bearings follow a similar manufacturing process as bronze bearings, but they are made from iron instead. They offer higher strength and load-carrying capacity than bronze bearings but may have slightly lower wear resistance.

Polymer Oilube bearings are made from plastic materials, such as PTFE, which have natural lubricating properties. They are lightweight, corrosion-resistant, and provide excellent performance in high-speed applications.

The Advantage Of Oilube Bearings

Oilube bronze bushings have the characteristics of low cost, vibration absorption, low noise, and no need to add lubricating oil in a long working time, and are especially suitable for working environments where lubrication is not easy or oil is not allowed to be dirty. Porosity is an important parameter for oil-impregnated bearings. Oil-impregnated bearings that work at high speeds and light loads require more oil content and high porosity; oil-impregnated bearings that work at low speeds and large loads require high strength and low porosity.

Oilube Powdered Metal Bronze SAE841 Bearings

Some of the key benefits of using Oilube bearings include:

  • Oilube Powder metallurgy bearings do not need to add lubricating oil for a long time.
  • Longer service life: continuous lubrication prevents premature wear
  • This type of bearing is often in a mixed lubrication state, and sometimes it can also form thin film lubrication, which is often used for difficult-to-replenish lubricating oil and light loads and low speeds.
  • Improved reliability: less chance of lubrication failure
  • Better performance in harsh environments: resistant to dirt, dust, and moisture
  • Environmentally friendly: less waste generated from used lubricants
Oilube Bearings
Oilube Bearings

Oilube Bearings | Application | VIIPLUS

Oil-impregnated bearings are widely used in the motor industry, automobile and motorcycle industry, home appliance industry, digital products, office equipment, power tools, textile machinery, packaging machinery, and other mechanical equipment.
Oilube bearings are generally made of raw material powder through pressing, sintering, shaping, and oil immersion. Most machines are highly automated. The daily output is relatively large.
Generally speaking, Oilube powder metallurgy oil-impregnated bearings can be formed at one time, basically without cutting. The cost is lighter than machining, and there is less material waste, so the price is cheaper. It is also in line with the national policy of promoting energy conservation, so it is considered a technology that will not be outdated.