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Frequently Asked Questions

General Company FAQs

What does Auburn Bearing & Manufacturing do? What are your specialties?

With over 120 years’ experience, Auburn Bearing is a manufacturer of a full line of standard thrust ball and roller bearings. Currently, we offer 13 different bearing series which are available across a wide size range, including IDs from 5/64” to 6-1/2″ and ODs from 15/64” to 13-3/4”.

In addition, we also make custom, made-to-order thrust bearings and precision bearing components that aren’t shown on our website or catalog. We have quoted items per print, per sample, and as interchanges for other manufacturer’s products. Our custom bearings are available up to 6” OD and can be made in a variety of material, including carbon steel, stainless steel, and engineered polymers. Additionally, in the event that you do not need a complete custom bearing assembly, we perform bearing modification and manufacture other precision parts and components.

What types and styles of bearings do you make?

We make a variety of bearing types, including thrust ball bearings, cylindrical thrust roller bearings, radial thrust bearings, combination radial & thrust bearings, self-aligning thrust bearings, custom thrust bearing assemblies and components, and more.

Moreover, we can make bearings in many styles and configurations, including single direction, double direction, caged, banded, separated, open, enclosed, full ball complement, etc.

Do you offer any unique secondary services?

Besides bearings, we offer a variety of secondary services to our contract manufacturing customers. Our diverse manufacturing capabilities include CNC turning and machining, manual turning and machining, CNC milling, lapping, superfinishing, induction welding, laser marking of finished parts, automatic saw cutting, reverse engineering, and CNC grinding, including ID grinding, OD grinding, cylindrical grinding, centerless grinding, surface grinding, and double disk grinding. Please see our Custom Manufacturing Services and our article entitled “Beyond Bearings: Manufacturing is a Broad Topic” for more information.

What services separate Auburn Bearing from other suppliers?

Unlike Auburn Bearing, some bearing suppliers do not manufacture their own products. Many of them purchase Chinese bearings, and quite often, these suppliers will change their source of supply without informing customers, resulting in quality issues. Auburn Bearing’s products are manufactured in the USA in our Upstate New York manufacturing facility.

In addition, we hold a unique spot in the industry because we are able to combine the capabilities of a large bearing manufacturer with the precision and attention to detail of a small bearing shop. This allows us to offer personalized service, short lead times, on-time delivery, trusted bearing expertise, innovative solutions, top quality products, and more.

Do you have any industry certifications?

Yes. Upon request, we can provide Certificates of Conformance (C of C), NAFTA certs, material certs, inspection reports, and information on DFARS compliance, RoHS compliance, and material traceability. In addition, we are certified by Weir Valve, and we are a Wesco Approved Supplier. Please include all certifications you require along with your RFQ, if any.

What is your privacy policy, return policy, and terms & conditions? Is there a warranty?

We do offer a warranty that says all products are free of manufacturing defects, and depending on the circumstances, we may allow returns with a 25% restocking fee. You can find our other policies here:

What is your manufacturing process?

  1. All materials are sourced domestically (i.e., chrome steel, stainless steel, bronze, brass, etc.).
  2. Individual components for the bearings are machined in-house on our CNC lathes.
  3. Machined pieces are sent out locally for heat treating (hardening).
  4. Upon return, the pieces are precision machined, washed, and assembled into finished bearings.
  5. Bearings are laser marked and either stocked or packaged for shipping.

Bearing FAQs

What is the Auburn “V” Groove?

Auburn Bearing is well known for its exclusive line of thrust bearings that incorporate a “V” groove raceway, historically known as the “Auburn Groove.” The Auburn “V” Groove eliminates the need for a bearing retainer and helps to reduce rolling friction by containing the balls between four points of contact. This unique design results in cooler operating temperatures and longer bearing life, as well as the ability to carry radial loads equal to 25% of their thrust load capacity. Experience the Auburn Advantage today.

In which field of applications are Auburn thrust bearings used?

The fields of applications are extensive. Some selected applications are power tools, medical devices, electronic devices, and more. Industries include aerospace, agriculture, oil and gas, heavy equipment, medical, and more.

What kind of maintenance do bearings require?

Maintenance depends on the type of enclosures and lubricants your bearings have. Traditional steel bearings and metal shielded bearings that use either grease or oil should be maintained to ensure a long life. The frequency of maintenance will vary depending on RPM, operating temperature, operating environment and set up. Our bearings are shipped with a light rust preventative and must be lubricated to your requirements before installation. To learn more, please see our article entitled “The Importance of Correct Bearing Lubrication.”

Custom FAQs

What types of custom bearings do you specialize in?

Our specialty in the realm of custom bearings is manufacturing hard-to-find, discontinued, and obsolete thrust bearings and components that are made in the USA in low to medium production quantities and with short lead times. Our custom work ranges from simple modification of an existing standard bearing to complete “designed from scratch” bearings that are tailored for you specific application. Whether smaller or larger, with special attributes, or made of special materials, we have the experience to design and produce the optimum solution all the way from the prototype stage to production. For more information, see Custom Bearings.

What aspects of the bearings are custom?

Various aspects of a bearing can be customized, including dimensions, materials, closure devices and materials, lubricants, and coatings.

Do you offer interchanges for other manufacturers’ bearings?

Yes, we do offer interchanges for bearings that other manufacturers have discontinued. Two popular interchanges of ours are the 2900 metric thrust ball bearing series and the INA B1 banded thrust bearing. For more examples of interchanges we’ve made in the past, see Bearing Interchanges. Please contact us with your particular requirement to see if we can help.

Can your standard bearings be modified to meet the requirements of my application?

Yes, modifying one of our standard, off-the-shelf bearings is often our first route of attack when it comes to customized bearings. Modifications can include anti-rotation holes/grooves/slots, non-standard bore sizes, oil holes and grooves, special width requirements, seal/shield additions and replacements, snap ring grooving, and special marking.

What materials do you use in the manufacturing of custom bearings?

We can use most materials specified by the customer. Typical materials include 52100 chrome steel, 440C stainless steel, 300 series stainless steel, aluminum, titanium, bronze, plastic, phenolic resin, nylon, and more.

What are some examples of custom parts you make?

Thrust washers, ball retainers, modified balls, bearing housings, rubber molded parts, rubber coated rollers, and more. Please refer to our Custom Bearings and Custom Manufacturing pages for more examples.

Ordering FAQs

Do you offer any kind of customer assistance?

We provide customer assistance through our sales and customer service department. Moreover, our engineering department is readily available to discuss application requirements with both distributors and end-users alike. When a custom bearing is needed, our engineering department will work directly with distributor, end-user, and OEM customers alike to ensure your application requirements are fulfilled. With over 120 years’ experience, our team of design engineers and industry experts are committed to helping you find the right solution for your bearing application. Experience the Auburn Advantage today.

Where can I find pricing and availability?

We identify which of our bearings are normally stocked in our catalog and on our website. Information on availability for non-stocked bearings and pricing on all standard bearings can be obtained via our Sales Inquiry form or by phone or email.

For custom, non-stock items, we develop prices for each unique opportunity based upon internal costs, current material costs, and project size (unit price will change based upon volume and project size). Generally, as the order quantity goes up, the unit price of each piece goes down. Please see our article about the custom manufacturing cost comparison based on volume post to learn more about this.

Do you sell direct or do I have to purchase through a distributor?

We are happy to service OEM customers directory as well as through our trusted network of industrial distributors. For maintenance and repair parts, please contact us and we can refer you to a distributor in your area. We have a non-exclusive distribution network, so you may order through your preferred distributor, if any. You can request a quote online via our Online Catalog (for our standard bearings) or our Sales Inquiry form, as well as directly via phone or email, and we’ll get back to you with more information on how to proceed with placing your order.

Are there any minimum order requirements (i.e., price and quantity)?

We can take orders via phone, fax, email, mail, and online. For both standard bearing and custom bearing orders alike, we do not impose minimum order quantity requirements. We can accommodate one- or two-piece production runs as well as larger lots. Additionally, for domestic customers, there are no minimum order billing requirements. For international customers, our minimum billing per order is $250 USD.

Where can I find specifications, literature, and part model downloads?

We provide bearing specifications, literature, and part model downloads in our online thrust bearing catalog. On each series page, you’ll find installation instructions and downloadable datasheets. For select bearing series (T-100, T-114RG, AE, and 2900 series), you will also find downloadable bearing part models (PDF, DXF, and STEP files). These downloads can be found on the top right or bottom left of the bearing details page. We also offer a PDF copy of the Auburn Bearing Catalog. Upon request, we can mail hard copies of our catalog. For more information, please see our Engineering Guide or contact us.

What payment methods do you accept? What are the payment terms?

We accept checks and electronic fund transfers. All orders must have a company purchase order. We do not accept credit cards. Our general payment terms for domestic customers are net 30 days after approval of your credit application. For international customers, we require payment in advance. The costs shown on our paperwork are in USD.

How long are your quotes valid?

In most cases, our quotes are good for 6 months.

Shipping FAQs

What is your typical lead time?

We offer same day shipping on orders received before 3:00pm EST for our in-stock standard bearings. Conversely, our lead time for custom bearings varies depending on the scope of supply, size, and complexity of the part. Most special bearing orders ship 4 to 6 weeks after the order is received, however, orders for exotic materials and forgings may take longer than our standard 4 to 6 weeks to ship. For more information, please contact us.

How does shipping work?

For domestic customers, we typically ship via UPS on the customer’s account or pre-paid & add (PP&A). For international customers, we typically ship UPS Worldwide Expedited, but can ship with other major carriers if needed. The customer is responsible for all fees, duties, taxes, etc.

Did we miss something? If you have another question, please contact us via our contact us form, phone, or email.