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Ball Bearing Slides

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Ball bearing slides are a subcategory of linear slides used in areas where two surfaces move against each other to produce a very smooth and low-friction movement. The ball slides use metallic spheres made from durable materials like galvanized or regular steel and aluminum found in a confined rail system. Read More…

Ball Bearing Slides Ball bearing slides are the most commonly found type of linear slide or roller slide. Linear slides are used to produce smooth, low friction motion and ball bearing slides are a straightforward and low maintenance method of achieving this.
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Leading Manufacturers

Bethel, CT  |  203-778-2727

Del-Tron is a linear slide manufacturer/distributor of ball bearing slides, crossed roller tables, roller slides, multi-axis positioning stages, xy tables, motor-ready lead screw stages & crossed roller rail sets.

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Del-Tron Precision, Inc. $$$

Bethel, CT  |  800-447-2042

When describing Tusk Direct, a linear slide distributor, products such as linear motion components, roller tables, ball & crossed roller slides, dovetail slides, bushings, multi-axis positioners & motor ready lead screw actuators, come to mind.

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Tusk Direct, Inc. $$$

San Rafael, CA  |  415-924-7938

Modern Linear manufactures guide roller components and integrated slides for applications ranging from clean/vacuum environments to food processing/packaging, and heavy contamination.

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Modern Linear Incorporated $$$

Hatfield, PA  |  800-314-3332

Isotech is a distributor of precision linear motion components: air cylinders, linear actuators, linear slides, ball slide assemblies, crossed roller slide assemblies, re-circulating ball slide guides. We can supply standard or high precision products in either English or metric, all with the convenience of on-line ordering. Our parts are ready for installation right out of the box.

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Isotech, Inc. $$$

Bloomfield, NY  |  800-642-6446

Established in 1967, Velmex makes manual & motor driven dovetail slides, open frame tables, twin rail slides, rotary and XY stages. Choose hand, lead screw or belt drive.

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Velmex, Inc. $$$

Fort Mill, SC  |  800-284-9784

TPA Motion has been established to answer the ever-increasing demand for higher precision and lower costs. Our combined product offering provides designers with the widest variety of components for miniature automation tasks, and our ability to provide complete subassemblies answers the increasing demand for cost effective positioning solutions from a single source.

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TPA Motion $$$
placeholder image Del-Tron Precision, Inc. Tusk Direct, Inc. Modern Linear Incorporated Isotech, Inc. Velmex, Inc. TPA Motion

The moving component is attached to the rail system, and the balls enable smooth motion of the component.

Ball Bearing Slide

How do Ball Bearing Slides Function?

Ball bearing slides are used to reduce friction and allow smooth movement between moving bodies without damaging the object. They are commonly used in sliding drawers. In sliding drawers, the sliding balls move in the metallic tracks between the desk and drawer body, not allowing them to come into contact.

Profile of a Ball Bearing Slide

Upon reaching the endpoint of the drawer opening extent, the intermediate component slides until it fully opens and cannot open any further.

Ball Bearing Slides Considerations

Ball bearings are an important innovation, and careful consideration must be taken when deciding to use one. The weight of contents to be handled is a very important consideration.

Cabinets and desks use different slides because some are best suited for heavy filings and books, while others are small, simple, and meant for lightweight paperwork and office equipment.

The use of wrong slides results in easy jamming, sticking and even the wearing out of furniture, which results in further unplanned expenses.

Types of Ball Bearing Slides

There are several types of slides differentiated by the mechanism they use. Ball bearing slides are commonly used in drawers for desks and cabinets; the two most-used types are ball bearing drawer slides and soft close ball bearing slides.

Ball Bearing Drawer Slide

Ball bearing slides allow smooth movement through free-rolling ball bearings that allow lateral movement. They consist of a cabinet body component, an intermediate member, and the drawer. The drawer attaches to the intermediate member, which is attached to the cabinet or desk member.

Ball bearing Drawer Slide

The intermediate member interfaces with the ball bearings; one interfaces with the grooves of the cabinet, and the other in the grooves of the drawer. The drawer moves when in use, sliding over the ball bearings. When the limit is reached, the intermediate member slides along the ball bearings itself until the whole set is fully extended.

Soft Close Ball Bearing Slide

Soft close bearings are next-generation ball bearings that allow drawers to close silently and smoothly. They have a functionality similar to that of the ball bearing slide, but upon closing, another installed soft close mechanism automatically takes the drawer into its closing position.

Soft Close Bearing Slide

It uses hydraulics which controls the moving parts so they can move at a steady pace. The soft close mechanism is equipped with a spring and a piston (hydraulics system) that control the closing of the drawers. A gentle push on the drawer leaves it moving by itself until it closes without making any noise or damaging contents inside.

Applications and Benefits of Ball Bearing Slides

The applications and benefits of ball bearing slides include:

Applications of Ball Bearing Slides

Ball bearing slides are commonly used in a variety of day-to-day applications. Typical examples are in robotics and instrumentation constructions.

Extending parts and joints are made from smooth-moving ball bearings.

Desk drawer slides make use of ball bearings as they can be used to support heavy office workloads without failing.

Benefits of Ball Bearing Slides

The reduced friction on furniture and equipment through ball bearing slides greatly improves the general efficiency of machines. In addition, maintenance costs are greatly cut due to the smooth moving of parts which do not even harm the furniture. Ball bearing slides also promote a quieter workplace or kitchen as there is no noise of sliding and banging drawers.

Ball Bearing Slides Informational Video

 

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