Reprinted from the January 2003 issue of Maritime Reporter & Engineering News Special Advertising Section for
Craft Bearing Company ~

Manufacturing Better Bearings for the Marine Industry

In the last few decades, the maritime industry has faced increasing pressures to perform with less and still earn a profit. Fuel costs have skyrocketed. Labor costs have risen dramatically. Down time for repairs has cut into profit margins. Marine engineers and maritime operators have been looking for ways to make repairs more efficiently so they can streamline their operations and maximize their personnel and equipment.

Craft Bearing Company, Inc. has an answer.

 Craft Developed A Better Bearing Design

Craft Bearing was founded with one goal in mind: to make world class split cylindrical roller bearings. Through American ingenuity, craftsmanship and pride in service, Craft Bearing has accomplished that goal.

Before Craft went into production, it spent years of exhaustive research and development to create a superior split bearing design. First, it made sure that its roller bearings had all the inherent features of conventional anti-friction cylindrical bearings; it then took the next important step of engineering and precision machined the entire bearing, seals and housing assembly into halves. All bearing parts can be easily separated and installed or removed from the shaft with-out removing the other components. Repair cost and down time is greatly reduced. The result is a better bearing for the maritime industry that is answering today's marine engineering needs.

Craft Builds Many Improvements Into Its Bearing

Craft's external self-aligning cartridges and pedestal/flange housings are machined from ductile iron for greater tensile and yield strength. Craft then uses a baked-on powder
coating instead of a painted coating for a greater resistance to the elements and chemicals.  Their innovative and patented roller cage assembly (made out of bronze on large and heavy duty sizes) has a fitted pocket for the rollers. This design assures the precise radial alignment of the rollers is maintained for maximum load characteristics and durability. In addition, the cage pro-vides lubrication pockets, which further improve the bearing life. Featuring a black oxide finish, each clamp collar fits with precision forming the roller track. For sealing, Craft provides an aluminum triple labyrinth design that clamps to the shaft using a double "O" ring in the bore. The seal rotates with the shaft pro-viding positive seal against the elements while not causing shaft or seal wear.

Craft's Product Line Continues to Expand

Craft Bearings are available in three duty ratings (S1, S2, S3) to best suit load, speed, and life requirements. Bearings are available from 1 7/16 to 32" bore and metric equivalent. Craft pro-vides its customers with same day ship-ping on bearings through 12"/300 mm for its S1 and S2 series and prompt responses on larger sizes and special custom orders. Introduced early in 2002, Craft's Stainless Steel Split Pillow Blocks are manufactured with stainless steel housings, cartridge and hardware for use in harsh conditions that other bearings could not withstand. Craft's continued dedication to product improvement through research development and testing keeps it a leader in bearing design.

Craft Flange Bearings Prove Highly Effective in Marine Industries

The Marine Industry not only needs bearings that are both highly reliable and easily maintained, it needs bearings that can be installed in a variety of mounting situations.

To meet that need, Craft engineers have developed Flange Housings that are proving themselves to be valuable on propulsion shafting for such vessels as high-speed ferries, passenger car ferries, tow boats, and many other applications where flanges allow more efficient mounting than pillow blocks.

Over the past few years, the company has produced flange bearings across all product sizes from 2 3/16" thru 12" and they are increasing their stock on a regular basis.

Craft's Clients Realize Immediate Benefits

Craft's American-made split roller bearings are built to last longer, making them extremely reliable bearings for marine propulsion shafting, conveyors, deck machinery and fans. America's pilots appreciate Craft's dependability under heavy use in all sorts of weather and sea conditions. Engineers value the ease of maintenance and at sea repair. Craft's split roller bearings have greatly simplified and expedited both bearing inspection and bearing change out. Also, the bearing can be left in place for easier inspection and far easier replacement without disturbing ancillary equipment or shaft alignment. As a result, ship owners and captains benefit from the savings in reduced downtime between repairs.

Craft Takes Customer Service To A Whole New Level

Another important difference with Craft is its absolute commitment to customer service. While some companies may not be responsive to their customers' needs, Craft is committed to providing technical support and customer service that is second to none. Through careful inventory control, its employees ensure same-day shipping for standard bearings at no extra charge and rapid response for special applications and custom bearings. In addition, Craft's experts are always available so customers who need assistance can talk to a human being, not a machine.

The Experts Pick Craft

Over the years, Craft has received important recognition for its American made split bearings. Their split roller bearings are approved by the Department of Defense and is the only split roller bearing that is Lloyds Register Type Approved. Also, their bearings are directly interchangeable with foreign split bearings.

Craft Forges Ahead With American Craftsmanship

Relying on American know-how, Craft Bearing has staffed its facility in Newport News, Virginia, with top American engineers, machinists and workers who take great pride in their work. After setting high standards for excellence, it has rigorously trained all of its employees to meet these standards. As a result, Craft consistently delivers high quality split bearings on time. The American-made Craft Split Roller Bearings are fast becoming the industry standard in marine applications worldwide. Over the years, Craft Bearings have proved their reliability and dependability time and time again.

For more information on specific applications, visit or call 757-247-6000 or

Circle 199 on Reader Service Card.