Posts in:April, 2016

Bearing Lubrication 201- The Differences Between Oil & Grease

Posted April 26, 2016 by admin

In our post Lubrication 101 we took a brief overview of bearing lubrication and quickly outlined the importance that proper lubrication plays in promoting bearing life and performance. Now we are going to get a little more in depth and discuss some of the differences in properties and performance characteristics associated with both oil and grease.

 

Lubricant Type- Oil

Oil is going to be the best choice in the following circumstances/applications:

-applications that require extremely low torque or a narrow range of torque variation
-applications that exhibit high speeds and high operating temperatures

 

Lubricant Type- Grease

Grease is a mixture of fluid lubricant and a thickener dispersed in oil. As a lubricant for bearings, grease is going to be the best choice in the following circumstances/applications:

-systems or applications where an oil product would not be retained
-applications with slower operating speeds
-applications that require an added seal of protection from contamination and moisture

The composition of grease and its counterparts can be found in any arrangement of the following percentages.

Thickener        4- 20%

Base Oil           75- 96%

Additives         0- 8%

 

In order to decide which additive is right for your application or system, consider the following:

Additive Type              Capabilities

Antioxidant                  Prolongs life of base oil

Antiwear (EP)              Chemically active protection of loaded metal surfaces

Antirust                         Slows rusting of iron alloys

Anticorrosion               Slows corrosion of non-noble metals

Filler                              Thermal/electrical conductivity, special physical properties

Fortifier (EP)                Solids burnish into loaded surface under extreme pressures

Lubricity                        Reduces coefficient of friction, starting torque or stick/slip

Pour Point                    Improves lower temperature limit

Dye                                 Visual/UV markers as inspection/assembly aids

Viscosity Index            Reduces rate of change of viscosity with temperature

 

Advantages of Grease over Oil

There will be instances when oil will be a better choice of lubricant for your application. We discussed those circumstances at the beginning of the post. However, at VNC, we find that grease tends to be a better fit for an application due to the following reasons:

1. Ease of retention – stays in place
2. Minimal application – reduced maintenance cost
3. High reliability – historical reliability in electric motors
4. Protection – helps keep out moisture and contaminants
5. Clean – minimal leaking/dripping
6. Greased for life – ideal for inaccessible bearing applications

 

Whatever lubricant you choose, make sure you’ve considered all of the characteristics of your application and how it will need to perform. Bearings that are properly lubricated will have increased immunity to contamination, overloading, and premature failure.

If you have questions about what lubrication to use, contact us today! Our engineers can help you choose the right type and amount of lubrication for your application.

What We’ve Learned About Quality Management Systems

Posted April 12, 2016 by admin

When you’re in charge of manufacturing bearings for companies who have put their confidence in your product’s reliability, there is a lot of weight on your shoulders. These companies have essentially put their brand reputation on the line by trusting that our bearings will do what they are supposed to do. That’s a responsibility that we do not take lightly. And no matter what product you manufacture, neither should you.

So how are we so confident in the products we manufacture and how do we instill that same confidence in our customers? Three simple words: Quality Management Systems.

Any product that is manufactured in high quantities runs the potential to have a faulty product somewhere in the batch. It’s inevitable. But faulty products are not acceptable. Over the past 23 years, we have built a reputation for manufacturing high quality bearings that are built to last. In the process, this is what we have learned about Quality Management Systems.

 

  • They Create Loyal Customers

Customers expect a high quality product. No one buys a product with the expectation that the product will fail to meet their needs. Quality Management Systems help companies catch the faulty products before they ever find their way to the customer. In the long run, this translates into more loyal customers.

When customers know that they can rely on your product, they start to build trust in your brand. If your product comes through for your customer when they need it to, that’s a point in the bucket for your brand. Over time, those points add up and before you know it, you’ve created a strong relationship with a loyal customer.

The value of loyal customers cannot be overstated. It costs your brand much less to retain a customer than to gain a new customer. Quality Management Systems keep your customers coming back because they know they can rely on a quality product.

 

  • They Increase Efficiency & Lower Costs

No matter the type, systems and processes are built with one goal in mind; to increase efficiency and to streamline workflows. Quality Management Systems are no different. When you put the time and effort into creating a product, you want it to be right the first time. It will only cost you in the long term if you rush to produce your product without paying attention to the small details.

Yes, these systems take time to put into place but once they are up and running they will save you time and money. You won’t have to worry about replacing faulty products or losing top paying clients due to unreliable product.

 

  • They Back Up Your Brand Promise

Having Quality Management Systems in place helps you to deliver your brand promise to your customer. However, if you want to take it one step further, certifications can amplify the priority you place on those systems and validate them to the customer.

Certifications are important for a few reasons. One, they prove that outside parties have examined your Quality Management System(s) and have found them acceptable for the standards deemed  important by regulatory organizations. Secondly, certifications show your customers that you prioritize quality work and have taken the time to ensure the processes in place are truly for their benefit.

For example, VNC holds the ISO 9001:2008 Certification for Quality Management Systems. This means that we have proven our ability to consistently provide a product that meets both customer requirements as well as regulatory requirements. It also means that we use our Quality Management System to enhance customer satisfaction and are continually looking for ways to improve our system.

We manufacture high quality bearings and believe that quality is important for any product. If you have questions about our Quality Management System or would like ideas on how you can enhance the quality of your own product through the use of VNC Bearings, call us today at 800-862-3211!