Re: Friction Bearings


In my RRing career (switchman to ops mgt), I may have heard the term "solid" or "plain" bearing two or three times.  Car dept and C&Es called them friction bearings pretty much exclusively. "Friction bearing" was/is in extensive use. (but what do real railroaders know?)

Unless the car dept was ordering parts from a vendor, I can't think of why they would say "solid bearing".

Why should we "stick to the CBD" & a railfan term?  Who made them "official" arbiters of railroad terminology?

If you went to work as a newbie carman and used the term "solid bearing", they would suspect you of being a foamer.  (Same with turnout / switch), but that's for another thread).

I'm sure my comment will have no effect, most railfans will keep using the term "solid bearings".

Robert Simpson

ex-UP, Amtrak California, AC&J, PAR

---In STMFC@..., <tony@...> wrote :

Any take on this?

      No one has seriously argued that railroaders did not use the term "friction bearing," only that it was not in extensive use (and was NEVER in the Car Builders' Dictionary, the official glossary of railroad terms). There were lots of everyday "railroaders' slang terms" that are not in the CBD, and many researchers, including me, feels that rather than try to make use of sometimes inaccurate or even confusing slang, let's stick to the CBD.
      The "friction" term was naturally hammered by Timken, and no doubt many picked up on it. But regardless of occasional usage Ed has found, the CBD never included it, even as a synonym. Since there is friction in both kinds of bearings, it's a silly term anyway, and doesn't really distinguish the two kinds. Roller and plain (or solid) are simple and clear terms.

Tony Thompson

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