The rotational characteristics of the cageless, hollow roller radial bearing are investigated. The preloading of the hollow rolling elements in the annular space between the inner and the outer races in such a bearing provides a well controlled and consistent shaft rotational pattern. This pattern is determined by the dimensional and geometrical features of the rollers’ external and internal diameters and roundnesses, the outer and inner ring raceway roundnesses and the eccentricity of the inner race with respect to the shaft axis. The various patterns of shaft runout associated with these causes are identified and the sensitivity of the shaft runout to these factors is examined qualitatively and quantitively. The shaft runout in the present context is not merely the initial static offset of the shaft axis, but is a dynamic, cyclic pattern consisting of certain frequencies resulting from the geometrical features of the bearing components. The somewhat elusive, complex and dynamic nature of this apparent shaft runout makes it difficult to be measured. In addition, the importance of the need to control the circumferential clearance to a minimum is demonstrated. It is thus shown that through the proper control of the component geometry and certain design parameters, the hollow roller bearing can provide an extremely accurate bearing for precision applications.

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