An inner ring with a spherical convex OD and an outer ring with a similar spherical concave inside surface accommodates misalignment between shaft and housing, oscillating, or recurrent tilting or slewing movements at slow sliding speeds.

Several types are available in metric and inch dimensions with or without seals. The bearings can be specified with various sliding contact-surface combinations including steel-on-steel and several low-friction combinations where relubrication is unnecessary. Spherical plain bearings can integrate within various housing configurations, such as those used on the ends of piston rods and hydraulic or pneumatic cylinders.

Angular contact spherical plain bearings handle combined radial and axial loads, while spherical plain thrust bearings carry thrust loads. They incorporate steel/PTFE sliding contact surfaces for essentially maintenancefree operation. Both angular contact and thrust bearings may be used in combination with a radial spherical plain bearing if needed.

SKF USA Inc., 1510 Gehman Rd., Kulpsville, PA 19443, (800) 440-4SKF,