Re: Friction Bearings

Tony Thompson

Randy Hees wrote:

Before the invention and marketing of roller bearings, the bearing on a railroad car axle was a "journal bearing" ... which did not specific what kind of bearing since there was only one style in use…

      Actually, Randy, the term "journal bearing" simply refers to any bearing that rides on an axle journal (as you can find defined not only in the CBD but in any mechanical engineering reference). Since that is how most railroad wheel bearings are arranged, BOTH plain and roller bearings are journal bearings. So you are right that before roller bearings, plain bearings were called "journal bearings," but in later years they continued to be so described, as were roller bearings. The name refers to the place the bearing works, not to the bearing itself.

Tony Thompson             Editor, Signature Press, Berkeley, CA
2906 Forest Ave., Berkeley, CA 94705
(510) 540-6538; e-mail, tony@...
Publishers of books on railroad history

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