Saving costs with plain bearings Part 4: The most cost-effective manufacturing process
Lars Butenschön | 17. November 2022
Whether the bearing is to be a special type or a standard plain bearing. Choose the most cost-effective manufacturing process, or the provider with the most cost-effective process. Plain bearings are manufactured in a wide variety of ways, depending on the material, number of pieces to be produced, and shape. For metal bearings, this primarily includes turning, milling, punching, and sintering.
For plastic bearings, large quantities are produced, primarily with injection moulding. Plastic bearings can also be printed with additive processes or sintered with lasers. Stock material is also often used in the form of bars or plates that are then milled or turned much like metallic bushings.
These processes affect not only the machining quality and material properties, but especially part price. In injection moulding or punching, this results in higher one-off costs for mould production, while the processing time per component is very short. For large quantities, component costs are therefore particularly well distributed and ultimately lower.
On the other hand, processes such as turning or milling are suitable for smaller quantities, although here, too, the set-up costs for the machines often account for a large proportion of the component costs for quantities of less than 100. Finally, 3D-printed parts represent the other end of the spectrum, with very low set-up costs, but relatively high processing costs per piece.
Manufacturers who have a particularly broad range of manufacturing processes can respond flexibly to the quantities and component variants you need and offer you the most cost-effective manufacturing process.
Beyond optimising manufacturing processes, there are of course many other ways to save costs. You can find more useful information on this in our white paper entitled “Seven tips for finding the hidden costs of your plain bearings and saving money easily”.