Stainless Steel Ball Bearings vs. Other Types of Ball Bearings

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There are no ball bearings without balls and races, but the type of parts you will find in a ball bearing with respect to the materials used will vary. All bearings must be made primarily of a very strong, rust-resistant substance like steel, but full stainless steel ball bearings are not the only kind you will encounter. Here are the different types of ball bearings you can expect to see.

High Carbon Chromium Steel Ball Bearings

These steel ball bearings are very strong and, when hardened, can bear heavy loads and provide long bearing life. They also have very good noise resistance characteristics for noise-sensitive applications. Because they do have some percentage of chromium, they are not quite as corrosion-resistant as stainless steel ball bearings; however, they are cost effective. With lubricated ball bearings, there is a good chance that corrosion will virtually never be an issue. If there is no risk of corrosion concern in your application, then In this case, you will probably want to be working with high carbon chromium steel ball bearings from NMB.

Ceramic Hybrid Ball Bearings

Although it can be quite expensive, some ball bearings use ceramic balls instead of steel balls because they are lighter, allowing the bearing to spin faster. They are called hybrid ball bearings because the inner and outer rings are made of steel even though the balls are ceramic, so they are a hybrid of ceramic and steel.

Stainless Steel Ball Bearings

NMB stainless steel ball bearings are made of a proprietary DD400 martensitic stainless steel. This means in addition to hardness, load capacity, and bearing life that is competitive with other types of ball bearing stainless steel, NMB stainless steel has noise characteristics that are competitive with high carbon chromium. NMB stainless steel ball bearings DD material, give you the best of both worlds and are a standard of quality when it comes to ball bearings.

More on Ball Bearing Materials

If you want the most complete protection from corrosion that we can offer for your ball bearings, NMB recommends the DD4400 stainless steel ball bearings. If your ball bearings are consistently lubricated or you are not particularly concerned about corrosion due to the nature of your applications, you may wish to work with the high carbon chromium steel ball bearings. If you’re not quite sure which ball bearing materials are right for you and your applications, you can contact NMB about obtaining some samples so that you can see the different types of ball bearings up close. No matter what ball bearings you order, you’ll be getting some of the highest quality, most expertly designed ball bearings in the industry, bearings designed to handle whatever kind of loads your application requires and to provide long life and low noise and vibration for those noise-sensitive applications.