Saint-Gobain Bearings

Simplified Assembly

Assembly Solutions


There are conventional engineering solutions to various assemblies in both NORGLIDE® bearing and RENCOL® tolerance ring applications. The product solutions offered from Saint-Gobain Performance Plastics provide for simpler, cost effective, better performance and even safer and easier assembly -- improving your bottom line.



Simplified assembly solutions are found with the following:







Assembly Examples

Ball Sleeves, Steering, Anti-Theft Steering, EPAS

One conventional approach to steering assemblies is to use energy-absorbing straps designed to yield at a pre-determined force when pulled over a set of pins. This arrangement is, however, complicated to fit and involves numerous components. In addition, the performance of an individual assembly can never be totally verified, as testing necessarily destroys the strap.


Another commonly encountered approach is the use of ball sleeves. These are plastic sleeves with ball bearings pressed around their circumference. Compressed between the mating components, the ball bearings slide at a pre-determined force. Unfortunately, ball sleeves are difficult to assemble and the mating components have to be tightly controlled in order to achieve the correct collapse force.


RENCOL® tolerance rings address all of the shortcomings of these traditional solutions and are, therefore, being used more and more widely. They form the basis of an elegant three-component solution which incorporates a RENCOL® tolerance ring fitted between an outer jacket and an inner tube. The whole assembly is integrated into the steering column.


Should the driver strike the steering column in the course of an accident, the inner tube is driven forward. The RENCOL® tolerance ring provides controlled resistance to this movement, and absorbs energy as the tube moves through the outer jacket. This simple and effective solution provides constant energy absorption characteristics throughout the whole of the collapse cycle.


The benefits over traditional solutions include simpler assembly, reduced component count and lower scrap costs. Further, the RENCOL® tolerance ring solution uses low-cost components, and it is possible to verify the collapse force of any assembly during the assembly process, without damaging that assembly.



Hard Disk Drive

A major percentage of the scrap costs incurred during the assembly process in hard disk drives occurs by having to throw away crucial – and expensive – items such as the head, arm and bearing pivot if the overall drive fails.  When a RENCOL® tolerance ring is used, it is possible to isolate the failed component, remove, reassemble and then re-clean and ready to go into another drive.  This ability to remove the bearing pivot and re-install allows the OEM to realise these savings. 


Simply put, there is no extra reworking, and there is less tooling and curing.  In addition, disassembly is just as seamless.


Automated Assembly

We form partnerships with companies to develop improved equipment automation.  Automatic assembly produces high savings, and we offer a robust process which can be adapted on manufacturing equipment, worldwide.


We also offer per part tray packaging -- ask us for details.



» For more details on how our products improve assembly, or how we can help with automated equipment, please visit  Sales and Support  for regional contact information or Email Us directly with your enquiry.