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BEARING REMOVAL AND CLEANING PROCEDURE

We were discussing ball bearing basics and types of ball bearings in our previous post. We have also seen earlier the roller bearing basics and its types. Today we will discuss here the procedure of bearing removing from shaft and also the desired procedure for cleaning the bearing. Correct procedure of removing a bearing from shaft protects the bearing, bearing housing and shaft from getting damage. 

So first let us see the various procedure and favorable tools for safe bearing removing process.
  1. Hydraulic press
  2. Mechanical or hydraulic jaw puller
  3. Mechanical or hydraulic push puller
I have seen in some cases, where crew team members remove bearing by hammering the inner ring of bearing or also by heating it via gas flame, but this method is very dangerous for bearing and shaft also as there will be large possibilities of damaging of shaft and bearing in this process of removing a bearing from shaft.

So let us see the above mentioned processes (one by one) of removing a bearing, those are widely used these days in various industries by maintenance team.

Bearing removal with the help of hydraulic press

Hydraulic press will exert the large force and hence we will not require large number of manpower for removing a bearing from shaft. There are two concepts here for removing a bearing from shaft. First one, where bearing will be supported and hydraulic press will exert the force over shaft and shaft will start to move out of the bearing. Second one, where shaft will be supported and hydraulic press will exert the force to the inner ring of bearing and bearing will start to move out of shaft.

We will consider here the first concept only, however second concept could also be used depending upon the favorable situations.

 
Before using this process, we must have to be assuring that length of shaft is not bigger than the available space below the cylinder end plate of hydraulic press. We will support the bearing inner ring with hydraulic press base plate and after that we will use hydraulic force of press for exerting the force slowly over the shaft. Once the desired force will be applied over the shaft, shaft will start to move out of the bearing.

Figure displayed here indicates the bearing removing task with the help of hydraulic press.

Mechanical or hydraulic jaw puller

Mechanical or hydraulic jaw pullers could be used for removing a bearing from shaft in a case when shaft is much large, bearing is not feasible for removing with the help of hydraulic press or we do not have facility of hydraulic press system for bearing removing process.


Jaw puller will have two or three jaw and each jaw of puller must be able to grip the bearing inner ring. Before applying the force, jaw of puller must be properly supported with inner ring of bearing to avoid any accident. Safety policies must be followed before starting the work.

Mechanical or hydraulic push puller

Mechanical or hydraulic push pullers could also be used as the safe procedure for removing bearings from shaft. We have already discussed hydraulic or mechanical push and jaw puller in our post “hydraulic jaw puller”, where we have discussed the basics, various components and accessories and operating principle of jaw or push puller.

Bearing cleaning procedure

After removing a bearing, we must have to clean the bearing properly. We will have to use one clean container containing with recommended bearing cleaning solvent. We will have to suspend the bearings in container, containing with recommended bearing cleaning solvent, with the help of wire. We should not directly place the bearing over the bottom of container as in this situation bearings will not be cleaned properly.

After removing the old grease and dirt from bearing with the help of recommended bearing cleaning solvent, we will have to use natural air or compressed air without moisture for drying the bearings.
Once bearing is cleaned and dried, we will inspect each component of bearing for any hair crack, heat mark, corrosion, clearance of bearing and its physical condition. 

We can use bearing once again with consultation of our superior with recording the data in our history card for respective equipment.

Recommended bearing cleaning solvents could be secured with guidance of SKF or respective bearing manufacturer.

We will see the basic procedure of bearing installation in our next post

Do you have suggestions? Please write in comment box.

Reference: SKF bearing maintenance manual
Image Courtesy: Google 

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