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Since mass production began at the beginning of the 20th century, global demand for bearings has been insatiable. Bearing production is recognized as a key component of every modernized economy, fueling growth in production, jobs, and revenues. Countries that are net bearing exporters can expect to remain atop global economic rankings for the foreseeable future.

As new markets emerge – Central Europe, Southeast Asia, West Africa, South America – and older markets continue to develop & become more sophisticated – China, Russia, Brazil, India – the demand for quality bearings will only grow, and the need for new technologies to further refine bearing technology will become more pronounced. These markets will continue to power steady demand for bearings, and some will become bearings exporters themselves and lead a new wave of growth.

Counterfeit Bearings

Counterfeit bearings are a persistent problem affecting the bearing manufacturing company industry and businesses all around the world, and engineers are constantly under pressure to identify them before fitting. Counterfeit ball bearings can have disastrous consequences on quality and safety, and yearly losses worldwide run into the billions of dollars.

When heavy or high-speed equipment suffers a bearing failure, the results can be catastrophic – damage to the primary machinery, damage to nearby equipment, injury to workers, lost time, and more. Counterfeit bearings are much more likely to suffer a failure... in many cases, counterfeit bearings have been known to fail less than an hour after fitting.

Counterfeit bearings can be extremely difficult to detect, and may take one of several forms:

Exact copies of genuine bearings, include bearing manufacturing company markings and branding.
Used bearings that are re-conditioned and passed off as new.
Substandard bearings that have been polished and machined to look acceptable.
Bearings mislabeled with higher tolerances or altered clearance.
After market vendors are a common point of entry for counterfeit bearings – these businesses are generally not sophisticated enough to recognize fakes, or may not care if price is their primary consideration.

The most effective solution is to make certain that you purchase bearings only from an authorized bearing manufacturing company or dealer... anything less, and it is only a matter of time until you suffer a disaster that costs you time, money, and potential injury.