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10-25-2010

Ball bearings

Light Bearing – Smooth Sliding

Ball bearings

For professional sports bicycles, material features such as low friction coefficient, low weight and high specific strength, are of major importance. This is why Kunststofftechnik ROS GmbH Co. KG in Küps, Germany, uses a polyetheretherketone material (PEEK, manufacturer: Victrex Plc, Thornton Cleveleys, Great Britain) for the casings of their ball bearings. Casings made from this material link stiffness and elasticity in a way that enables good positioning of the balls. The good sliding properties between casing surface and balls reduces friction loss, thus minimizing wear in the bearing. Moreover, the PEEK’s low density keeps the casing’s inertia low, and enables fast acceleration. The bearings require no lubrication, while their service life is increased.

Having recently joined a partnership with ROS, CeramicSpeed based in Holstebro, Denmark, offers the PEEK-based casings for application in professional racing bicycles. They reduce the friction that takes place in the hubs, thus facilitating acceleration for the cyclist. Using them in bottom brackets enables the athlete to step up pedaling speed more easily. Even in a humid environment, there is no friction loss from swell in the casings. For the 2009 Tour de France, nine out of twenty teams had their bikes equipped with these bearing casings.

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