Industrial Motors

Custom bearings eliminate root causes


Nov 17, 2005

SKF’s Made-To-Order (MTO) program specializes in custom ball bearing products, manufacturing and rework/modification capabilities. MTO resources offer high levels of dedicated technical expertise and application support typically unavailable from small machine shops or rework facilities.

In one recent example, two $720 bearings on a paper mill wet-end felt roll were lasting less than a year at a cost of more than $40,000 per shutdown. MTO recommended custom spherical roller bearings of high-nitrogen stainless steel at a cost of $2,200 each. The custom bearings have run more than three years without failure, giving a savings to date of more than $80,000.

MTO specialists can help identify and source discontinued, hard to find or special ball bearing products in almost any design configuration and size range. Product solutions can be engineered to remedy difficult applications, insufficient bearing service life or poor performance. Particular lubrication, material or design requirements can be accommodated.

Capabilities in manufacture and rework/modification can be tapped to resize or otherwise reengineer ball bearing bores, OD, faces and widths; add or remove seals/shields; replace cage materials; apply high-performance coatings; incorporate heat treatment and re-lubricate ball bearings using special greases, custom fills or solid oil.

MTO bearings are available through the company’s MRC Bearing Services ( Whether custom-made or modified stock products, all are manufactured to exacting specifications under the strictest quality standards using factory-specified components and processes. Unlike ball bearing products modified in local machine shops or rework facilities, MTO products carry the full MRC manufacturer warranty.

The MTO program can deliver quick service turnaround with most inquiries for routine modifications of stock product or repeat inquiries for custom product receiving one-day response.