A more sophisticated waterjet cut bearing block

In yesterday’s post, we saw one simple way to make a custom bearing block using waterjet cutting.
Now let’s take a look at a different bearing block system, this one from MattyCiii of the Endless Sphere Technology forums. He needed a special bearing block for a custom electric bicycle he was building for himself. He designed a bearing block to be made in two pieces, each 0.625 inches thick. When stacked together, they are exactly the width of the 1.25 inch thick tube that they mount to. An aluminum tube fits in the large hole in the blocks, and a ball bearing fits inside that, which supports the shaft. You may notice that there is a small gap at the bottom of the bearing blocks. According to MattyCiii, this allows the bearing block to grip the aluminum tube tightly when the bearing block is clamped in place.

A stacked bearing block before mounting. Photo courtesy of MattyCiii from http://endless-sphere.com/forums/memberlist.php?mode=viewprofile&u=567 .

A stacked bearing block before mounting. Photo courtesy of MattyCiii from http://endless-sphere.com/forums/memberlist.php?mode=viewprofile&u=567 .

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The bearing block from the previous photo mounted in place on the electric bike. Photo courtesy of MattyCiii from http://endless-sphere.com/forums/memberlist.php?mode=viewprofile&u=567 .

The bearing block from the previous photo mounted in place on the electric bike. Photo courtesy of MattyCiii from http://endless-sphere.com/forums/memberlist.php?mode=viewprofile&u=567 .

 

 

Note that if you are base mounting this type of bearing block (mounting along the cut edge),  you will want to use low-taper waterjet cutting in order to keep your driveline straight. For face mounting, you might be able to get away with using regular cutting if you can drill or ream the hole where the shaft passes through in order to give it an even diameter all the way through the material.

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One thought on “A more sophisticated waterjet cut bearing block

  1. “You may notice that there is a small gap at the bottom of the bearing blocks. According to MattyCiii, this allows the bearing block to grip the aluminum tube tightly when the bearing block is clamped in place.”

    The gripping capability is actually a combination of two things: First the gap, and second, the flat plane you see on either side of the gap is not fully flat – it’s angled in slightly. So take for example that last picture: imagine only one of the hose clamps is clamped down tight. There would be about about a 1 degree angle between the other flat part of the mount and the square tube it’s mounted on. As you tighten the second hose clamp, it pulls the piece tight against the flat and slightly shrinks the diameter of the hole. I’m not an engineer by trade, I didn’t do any calculations to find a ‘best’ angle for this purpose – but it works as designed (miraculously!)

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