It depends on what you’re using them for. Both plastic bearings and steel bearings have their pros and cons depending on the application.

Plastic bearings are ideal if you need corrosion resistant, non-magnetic or non-conductive bearings. However, due to the softer material compared with steel, these bearings have limitations when it comes to load handling, speed and precision.

Steel bearings are the traditional option and many sizes are available in stainless steel, offering different levels of corrosion resistance depending on the grade of stainless steel. Check out our marine grade 316 stainless steel ball bearings which have similar load and speed ratings to plastic bearings and similar corrosion resistance. Our 440 grade stainless steel bearings are precision grade, which have much tighter inner and outer ring tolerances compared with plastic. This makes them better for high precision or high load/speed applications.

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Our determination to remain specialised gives us a high level of product knowledge, providing bearing and lubrication solutions to existing or potential customers, whether individuals or large corporations. We don’t just sell bearings, we help to solve your problems. - Chris Johnson, managing director of SMB Bearings.