At CBR, our main focus is the people working in the industrial electric motor repair industry. They are the ones who rebuild large industrial electric motors and generators used to power factories and most types of machinery, including conveyor systems, pumps, oil wells, etc. This industry is constantly looking for ways to increase electrical efficiency and decrease the amount of maintenance needed on their equipment. Ceramic ball bearings can help do both.
More and more industrial electric motors are being controlled by variable frequency drives (VFD), which work very efficiently to control speed. However, VFDs are not without their drawbacks. They often cause stray electrical charges to travel through the motor bearings. These stray charges cause electrical arcing, which damages bearings and severely shortens their functional life and performance. The solution to this problem is ceramic hybrid ball bearings, which are electrically non-conductive, and vital to extending functional peak performance.
While CBR isn’t the only source of high-end ball bearings on the market, we do offer some advantages over our competitors. First, all standard bearing sizes are continuously on the shelf and ready for immediate sale and same-day shipping. Our competitors rarely have stock on hand, and will often quote lead times of several months. Even for custom orders, CBR is equipped to build almost any size bearing in a matter of hours, not months.
Second, we offer competitive pricing, even on small orders. Other companies making high-end ball bearings are geared for large batch production for new machinery (such as wind generators), yet the demand by motor rebuilders is often for small quantities. At CBR, we sell directly to electric motor rebuilders, offering wholesale prices by eliminating the middleman costs associated with traditional bearing distributors.
Third, our bearings are at least as good (and probably better) than the factory-made ceramic bearings produced by our competitors. How can we make that claim? Our bearing rings are made by a top-name Japanese bearing factory from the same industry-standard 52100 bearing steel. They are beautifully ground and first-rate quality. The silicon nitride ceramic balls we use are the exact same as those used by the big, name brand ceramic bearing factories in the USA, Japan, and Germany.
What really sets the CBR Pro-Series bearings apart from the rest is our multi-step process. We micro-polish the raceways to a mirror finish, virtually eliminating break-in time and assuring the bearings will run smoothly from the start. Plus, before assembly, the raceway surfaces, as well as the inner surfaces of the cage, are coated with grease. This ensures that 100% of every moving surface is completely lubricated. By pre-packing with grease before assembly, the steel cage is able to act as an additional grease reserve, storing grease in the voids between the stamped ball pocket and the rivet plane. All combined, the volume of grease that’s stored in these otherwise empty voids is substantial, and the proximity to the moving balls is ideal for longevity. We finish by adding the remaining grease requirement (to spec) and installing precision, Japanese-made rubber seals. When bearings are polished and lubed in this way, it produces a product that is longer lasting because 100% of the moving surfaces are properly grease coated.
At CBR, we’ve spent more than 20 years in the bearing business, developing, testing, and utilizing the finest shop equipment and building processes available to give our customers the quality bearing products they need to repair their industrial electrical motors. So whether you’re searching for one of our standard series bearings, or need a fast turnaround on a custom-sized bearing, we are interested in talking with you today about supplying you with what you need.
CBR Bearing Inc. was founded in 1994 with the goal of providing name brand bearings and oil seal kits for the motorcycle industry. The company later branched out into industrial markets.
Fascinated by the inception of the ceramic hybrid ball bearing and how it was used to solve major issues with the 25,000 horsepower turbo pumps used on the Space Shuttle, CBR founder Charlie Rowlett began researching, learning about, and assembling ceramic test bearings for himself.
It became clear to Charlie that special tooling and fixtures would be needed to do the job right, but none were available. With the help of a master tool maker and engineer with 35 years of aerospace experience, CBR developed and built an impressive array of dedicated bearing tools. Still today, if an additional specialty tool or fixture is needed, it is built in the CBR Bearing machine shop, located on the premises. Since 1997, CBR has worked from the same location—a 2,000 sq. foot facility that houses both the bearing lab and machine shop. Shipping and administrative offices are on site as well.
CBR sold its first ceramic hybrid bearing in 2002, and since then, the company has assembled and sold more than 50,000 ceramic hybrid bearings. Sales have increased every year and today, about 75% of CBR’s business is from repeat customers.