SKF has launched its new compact wire steering column bearing. These new preloaded column bearings are designed to replace existing thin section ball bearings with units that are compact, lightweight and easy to install.
The all-new steering bearings are a development of SKF’s existing range of preloaded bearings and share many of the same characteristics. They were developed in response to the industry trend towards low profile or thin section ball bearings (TSBB), addressing the requirement in many modern vehicles, where there is a need to minimize the size and weight of components.
The new SKF Compact Wire Steering Bearing is 15% smaller than previous bearings, with a section of just 6mm/ 0.24in. This allows car manufacturers to replace TSBBs with an identically sized product that offers a number of additional advantages. The design of the bearing eliminates all internal radial and axial clearances. This means that relatively low levels of friction torque can be achieved in all working conditions, while manufacturing tolerances in surrounding components can be relaxed; the total cost of each steering column may therefore be reduced.
“Our customers are increasingly demanding smaller, lighter and more efficient product solutions,” says Audrey Saussereau, business portfolio manager at SKF.
“The development of the preloaded SKF Compact Wire Steering Bearing is an important step forward for car manufacturers, SKF is the only company to offer this solution today.”