The History Of Bearings 2

Timeline of Bearings History

Bearings Create Better Life — SuperTembo


2600 BC – The Ancient Egyptians use a form of roller bearings to help move stone pieces during the construction of the Pyramids


40 BC – Early example of a wooden ball bearing supporting a rotating table was retrieved from the remains of a Roman ship in Lake Nemi, Italy

1500 AD – Leonardo da Vinci described a type of ball bearing

1794 – First patent for ball race by Philip Vaughn of Carmarthen, Wales

1839 Isaac Babbit invented an anti-friction alloy with a low melt temperature

1883 – FAG begins grinding balls of equal size and roundness forming the creation of an independent bearing industry

1898 – First patent issued for Timken Tapered roller bearings

1907 – Sven Wingquist of SKF invents the modern self-aligning ball bearing

1917 – U.S. Bearing Manufacturers create an informal group to aid bearing manufacturing for World War I, which led to the founding of ABMA

1934 – AFBMA is incorporated as an organization in the State of New York

1960 – Elasto-hydrodynamic theory explains the mechanism of why bearings and gears work led to advances in grindings precision and ultrasonic equipment

1970– Intel invents the microprocessor and consistent precision control of machine tools impacting both size and life of bearings

In the early 1980s,  Pacific Bearing’s founder, Robert Schroeder, invented the first bi-material plain bearing which was size interchangeable with linear ball bearings. This bearing had a metal shell (aluminium, steel or stainless steel) and a layer of Teflon-based material connected by a thin adhesive layer.

History of the Ball Bushing® Bearing
In 1945 the Ball Bushing bearing was invented by John Thomson Sr.  The bushing was the solution to the stick-slip problem in the linkage used to change the pitch of propeller blades in aircraft.  Ball bearings eliminated the stick-slip, binding, and chatter of plain bearing.  Ball re-circulation virtually eliminates wear and provides a constant coefficient of friction as low as 0.001. The Steel ‘A’ bearing was released in 1953.  The ‘A’ bearing design is still being produced today.
For more than 70 years, Thomson has been a leader in product development and innovation of linear motion technology.

The History Of Bearings -1

Bearings Create Better Life –From SuperTembo

The history of bearings 1

The invention of the rolling bearing, in the form of wooden rollers supporting, or bearing, an object being moved is of great antiquity, and may predate the invention of the wheel.

Though it is often claimed that the Egyptians used roller bearings in the form of tree trunks under sleds, this is modern speculation. They are depicted in their own drawings in the tomb of Djehutihotep  as moving massive stone blocks on sledges with liquid-lubricated runners which would constitute a plain bearing. There are also Egyptian drawings of bearings used with hand drills

The earliest recovered example of a rolling element bearing is a wooden ball bearing supporting a rotating table from the remains of the Roman Nemi ships in Lake NemiItaly. The wrecks were dated to 40 BC.

Leonardo da Vinci incorporated drawings of ball bearings in his design for a helicopter around the year 1500. This is the first recorded use of bearings in an aerospace design. However, Agostino Ramelli is the first to have published sketches of roller and thrust bearings. An issue with ball and roller bearings is that the balls or rollers rub against each other causing additional friction which can be reduced by enclosing the balls or rollers within a cage. The captured, or caged, ball bearing was originally described by Galileo in the 17th century.

The first practical caged-roller bearing was invented in the mid-1740s by horologist John Harrison for his H3 marine timekeeper. This uses the bearing for a very limited oscillating motion but Harrison also used a similar bearing in a truly rotary application in a contemporaneous regulator clock.

Bearings Create Better Life –SuperTembo

Bearings Create Better Life –SuperTembo

A bearing is a machine element that constrains relative motion to only the desired motion and reduces friction between moving parts. The design of the bearing may, for example, provide for free linear movement of the moving part or for free rotation around a fixed axis; or, it may prevent a motion by controlling the vectors of normal forces that bear on the moving parts. Most bearings facilitate the desired motion by minimizing friction. Bearings are classified broadly according to the type of operation, the motions allowed, or to the directions of the loads (forces) applied to the parts.

The term “bearing” is derived from the verb “to bear”; a bearing being a machine element that allows one part to bear (i.e., to support) another. The simplest bearings are bearing surfaces, cut or formed into a part, with varying degrees of control over the form, size, roughness and location of the surface. Other bearings are separate devices installed into a machine or machine part. The most sophisticated bearings for the most demanding applications are very precise devices; their manufacture requires some of the highest standards of current technology.

Deep-Groove Ball Bearings

Deep Groove Ball Bearing


Deep Groove Ball Bearings (DGBB)

are the most common form of rolling bearings and are used in a variety of applications; particularly those where high speeds and low power loss are required. Supertembo DGBB can handle not only radial forces but also moderate axial loads in both directions. They are easy to install and can be deployed in a variety of configurations.







Product Features:

  • Cages – Variety of cage types to suit your application needs: steel, solid brass or polymer
  • High-Quality Steel – Ultra clean steel made to extend bearing life by up to 80%
  • Advanced Grease Technology – NSK lubricants made to extend grease life and improve bearing performance
  • Super Finished Raceways – Specially honed to minimize noise and improve the grease distribution
  • Patented Seals – Provide a barrier to contamination in tough environments.
  • Electrically insulated ball bearings available
  • Outer diameters up to 2500 mm

Product Benefits:

  • High-Grade Balls – Quiet and smooth operation even at high speed
  • Quality Assured – 100% testing ensures total product quality
  • Low to medium radial loads

We offer a full range of deep groove ball bearings that extend machine life and provide maintenance-free service:

Single Row Deep Groove Ball Bearings, Magneto Bearings,

Miniature Ball Bearings, LNG Pump Bearings and  Sensor Bearings.


Please follow this link for a detailed description of Supertembo  products

Angular Contact Ball Bearings


Supertembo offers one of the most comprehensive ranges of Angular Contact Ball Bearings designed to meet OE manufacturers’ demanding requirements.

These bearings have a contact angle that enables them to withstand significant axial loads in one direction together with radial loads. They are generally used in pairs, triplex sets, quadruplex sets, or multiplex sets since an axial component is generated when a radial load is applied.





Product Features and Benefits:

  • High-Quality Steel – Bearing life extended by up to 80% with Ultra clean steel.
  • Advanced Grease Technology – Special lubricants can extend grease life and increase performance.
  • High-Grade Balls – Smooth and quiet operation even at high speeds.
  • Super Finished Raceways – Specially refined to reduce noise and improve lubricant distribution.
  • Contact Angle – Available in 15, 25, 30 and 40-degree angles.
  • Patented Seals – Prevent contamination in the toughest environments.
  • Cages – Available in a range of polyamide, steel and brass cage assemblies.

Supertembo’s range of  Angular Contact Ball Bearings includes double row angular contact ball bearings, four-point contact ball bearings, single row angular contact ball bearings, sealed angular contact ball bearings, duplex angular contact ball bearings.


Please follow this link for a detailed description of our products

Self-Aligning Ball Bearings


Self-Aligning Ball Bearings

are ideal when the alignment of the shaft and housing is problematic and the shaft may bend. The outer ring has a spherical raceway with its centre of curvature coinciding with the bearing.

This allows the axis of the inner ring, balls and cage to deflect to some extent around the centre of the bearing. The axial load capacity is low since the contact angle is small. Under normal loads, the permissible dynamic misalignment is approximately 0.07 to 0.12 radian (4 to 7 degrees).



Product Features and Benefits:

  • High-quality steel – Ultra clean steel helps extend bearing life extended up to 80%
  • Pressed steel and polyamide cages available
  • Advanced Grease Technology – Lubricants that can extend grease life and performance
  • High-grade balls – Smooth and quiet operation even at high speeds
  • Super Finished Raceways – Refined to minimize noise and improve lubricant life and distribution
  • Sealed versions are available

Self-Aligning Ball Bearings



Thrust Ball Bearings are composed of a “washer-like” bearing ring with raceway grooves for the balls and are classified into flat seats or aligning seats. Designed to handle thrust loads while operating at high speeds, these ball bearings are able to sustain axial loads but no radial loads.


Available in two designs:  single direction and double direction. Single direction design includes two rings, referred to as shaft and housing washers and a single ball and cage assembly. Double direction design, on the other hand, includes three washers and two ball and cage assemblies. The ball and cage assemblies of the double direction type are separated by the shaft washer.



Product Features and Benefits:

  • Two designs available:  single direction and double direction.
  • To accommodate initial misalignments in an assembly both design are available with spherical aligning seats or aligning seat washers.
  • High-quality steel – Ultra clean steel extends bearing life by up to 80%.
  • Advanced grease technology – Special lubricants that can extend grease life and performance.
  • High-grade balls – Smooth and quiet operation even at high speeds
  • Optional seating rings take initial misalignment.

Supertembo’s range of Thrust Ball Bearings includes angular contact thrust ball bearing, single direction thrust ball bearings, double direction thrust ball bearings.


Please follow this link for a detailed description of our products

Thrust Roller Bearings

Thrust Roller Bearings


Supertembo Thrust Roller Bearings

are available with cylindrical or spherical rollers. Thrust bearings sustain only axial loads but have high axial rigidity which is suitable for heavy loads. They contain convex rollers, have a self-aligning capability and are free of any influence of shaft deflection or mounting error. Machined brass cage with the E-type offered are standard with a pressed cage for high load capacity.


Product Features and Benefits:

  • The high axial load carrying capacity
  • High-quality steel – ultra clean steel to extend bearing life up to 80%
  • Spherical thrust bearings can accommodate misalignment
  • High capacity E design available



Supertembo’s range of Thrust Roller Bearings includes

thrust needle roller bearing, spherical thrust roller bearings and more.

Spherical Thrust Roller Bearings

Offer a spherical raceway in the housing washer and

barrel-shaped rollers obliquely arranged around it.




Needle Thrust Roller Bearings

Used in automotive applications such as

integrated races for compressors, power train, and torque converters.




Please follow this link for a detailed description of our products

Spherical Roller Bearings

Spherical Roller Bearings

Supertembo Spherical Roller Bearings withstand the most demanding conditions by resisting seizure and wear in spite of constant vibration, misalignment and shock loads. They maintain dimensional stability and can support high radial loads and moderate axial loads. Their performance enhancements include extremely tight radial clearance tolerance, extra precision on the bore and outside diameter & super-finished, heat-treated rollers with superior shock load capacity.

Product Features and Benefits: 

  • Design: Elimination of the guide ring allowing for a design change that improves cage balance and strength.
  • Material Technology: NSKHPS series made by high-cleanliness Z steel.
  • Special surface treatment increases wear resistance.
  • Supertembo also offers advanced material options: Super TF and TL steel, for specific application requirements.
  • Bearings are available with oil groove and holes in the outer ring for ease of re-lubrication. An optional inner ring oil groove and holes are also available.
  • Seal Technology: STB offers a variety of sealing materials for various operating temperatures.
  • Cage Materials: Available in steel, brass or polyamide for various applications.
  • Manufacturing Technology:  Advanced production system guarantees outstanding quality control.
  • Operating Life: Increases up to 2 times that of standard bearings.
  • Reduced maintenance costs: downsizing to smaller bearings while improving performance and extending equipment operating life.
  • Limiting speed: up to 20% higher.

Spherical Roller Bearings includes

HPS series, Molded-Oil bearings, sealed spherical roller bearings, quiet & low-vibration series, ultra-large split bearings, Spherical roller bearings with CAM cage and more.


Please follow this link for a detailed description of our products


Cylindrical Roller Bearings

Supertembo Cylindrical Roller Bearings

are available with a high strength cage design in pressed steel, machined brass or polyamide.  Special materials are available for more arduous applications. Cylindrical bearings offer low noise and low heat generation, and by virtue of the line contact between rolling elements and raceways, have high radial load capacity which is suited for high-speed applications.

Product Features and Benefits:

  • Supertembo offers a complete range, both metric and sizes ranging from ½” to 1320 mm.
  • High radial load capacity makes them suitable for high-speed applications.
  • Designs: NU, NJ, NUP, N or NF for single-row bearings and NNU or NN for double row types
  • Cages:  Available with pressed steel, machined brass and polyamide cages
  • Special designs: STB manufactures a range of four-row cylindrical roller bearings,                                                                         primarily designed for use in steel mill roll-neck bearings.
  • Bearings are also available with both lubrication holes and a machined lubrication groove on the outside surface of the outer ring.

Supertembo range of Cylindrical Roller Bearings includes:

sealed-clean roller bearings, cylindrical roller bearings, self‐aligning roller bearings,

single row cylindrical roller bearings, double row cylindrical roller bearings and more.


Please follow this link for a detailed description of our products