Industrial Rod Ends & Their Essential Role in Your Operations

By IBT Inc

November 17, 2021

Power Transmission, Bearings

Although motors and belts often steal the spotlight in industrial operations, there are many smaller, equally essential parts working behind the scenes to ensure precision performance and smooth operation—rod ends, among them.

industrial rod endWhat purpose do rod ends serve?

Rod ends consist of a spherically-shaped inner ring and a cylindrical bore for mounting on the ends of cylinders, linkages, rods, and shafts. And, similarly to plain spherical bearings, rod ends are designed for linkage applications to accommodate significant misalignment.

When does it make more sense to use a rod end over a spherical bearing—or vise versa?

While plain spherical bearings offer greater flexibility in housing and mounting design, the user is responsible for housing design and the cost of housing manufacture. 

On the other hand, rod ends offer greater mounting convenience and provide a compact, lightweight, economical design alternative to the spherical plain bearing. 

Comparing Rod End Grades

Rod ends are offered in four grades—precision, commercial, aircraft, and military—and come in various sliding layer contact surface combinations to suit their application and environment: steel-on-steel, steel-on-bronze, steel-on-PTFE composite material, steel-on-PTFE fabric, steel-on-PTFE plastic. 

In industrial applications, precision and commercial rod ends are standard. 👇

When should I use Precision Rod Ends?

Precision Rod Ends are manufactured to tight tolerances for applications requiring a more precise rod end; for example, a linkage where positioning accuracy is essential.

They typically use brass race inserts for lubricity & clearance control and have end bodies & balls plated for corrosion resistance. 

Applications include precision machinery, industrial equipment, farm equipment, truck/bus/off-highway vehicle, and recreational vehicles.

The Tritan precision rod ends HF series three-piece construction provides steel on bronze contact for lubricity, smoother operation, and long dynamic life.

Tritan’s metric rod ends SA(L) SI(L) series are also available where a precision rod end is required in a metric size. The construction offers the added benefit of high strength for high loads. Precision, two-piece construction offers the added benefit of high strength for high loads and provides steel on steel contact for lubricity, smoother operation, and long dynamic life.

When should I use Commercial Rod Ends?

Produced using standard materials and manufacturing methods, commercial rod ends are an economical choice for industrial applications. 

Plated for corrosion resistance, with brass race, inserts designed for lubricity and clearance control, these rod ends are preferred for dynamic applications.

Applications include construction machinery, industrial equipment, lawn & garden applications, truck/bus/off-highway vehicle, recreational vehicles.

Tritan commercial rod ends two-piece, metal-on-metal construction offers the most economical design for a wide range of light to heavy-duty motion transfer applications.

To learn more about how Tritan Rod Ends can increase efficiency in your workplace, Contact your local IBT sales rep today!