SAE Racer Gets Maintenance Free Solution with PBC Sleeve Bearings
Formula SAE is an automotive design and racing competition organized by Society of Automotive Engineers International (SAE) where teams of collegiate designers are “contracted” to represent a fictional manufacturing company in designing and developing a small (450 lbs.) Formula style racer. The Rochester Institute of Technology needed an economical linear guide solution for their rack and pinion style steering system. The linear guide needed to be lightweight and low maintenance, since when the competition begins there would be little opportunity to make design refinements or perform maintenance.
The PBC Linear solution
To ensure long-lasting operation, the team installed PBC Linear’s Simplicity® sleeve bearings and ceramic coated shafting to provide reliable linear guidance of the steering mechanism. Previously, the design team had worked with Simplicity products and sought to bring the bearings’ benefits into their racer design. Simplicity products are equipped with a proprietary Frelon® liner that ensures smooth, quiet and maintenance-free linear motion for intermittent or continuous use. Lightweight and low cost, these bearings thrive in high shock vibration, extreme temperatures (-400°F-+400°F) and heavy contamination. These features contributed to the design team’s choice when selecting a linear bearing product as a viable addition to the steering system.
Results / ROI
The design team installed four lightweight bushings and one length of ceramic coated shafting to operate the linear guidance of the steering system. During performance, the sleeve bearings held in multiple races without any additional maintenance or replacement.