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Bearing Shoulder Dimensions
Miniature and instrument ball bearings are used in high-precision applications to mate parts, control movement, and provide rotational and oscillating functionality. Aircraft, medical instruments, computers, flow meters, and pick-and-place robots are just some of the challenging applications they are found in. For example, some high-speed instrument bearings travel at speeds approaching 500,000 rpm. Flow meter bearings travel at slower speeds but face a unique set of pressure, corrosion, and environmental challenges. Finally, many miniature bearings are used in pulling and stressing manmade vacuums and the natural vacuum of space.
Within the assembled mechanism, the fit of the ball bearing on its mating components is vital to maximizing bearing life. If the fit is too loose, the bearings slide around on the shaft, eliminating the advantages gained by selecting a ball bearing in the first place. If the fit is too tight, the bearing integrity may be compromised by reduction of radial play in the assembly. The perfect fit enables bearings to run at peak performance for maximized end-product life.