When learning about tricone drill bits, it is important to note that when the cones of a tricone turn, the bearings act as a buffer. The bearings allow you to drill for longer and deeper by pushing the tricone drill bit to its full potential. There are four main kinds of bearings that allow the tricone to function. They different types of tricone drill bit bearings we go over are open roller bearings, air-cooled roller bearings, sealed roller bearings, and sealed journal bearings. This article should help shed some light on what tricone bearing to use for your drilling project.
OPEN ROLLER BEARINGS
The main difference that open roller bearings have from other tricone bearings is that they don’t have a seal. This open tricone design allows rock and mud particles to enter into the cone. Once the particles have entered and plugged up the tricone, the bit must be pulled up and cleaned. Open roller bearings are mainly used to dig shallow holes; they can be used for deeper holes but the tricone bit will need to be pulled up and cleaned approximately every hundred feet. The cost to manufacture the open roller bearing tricone drill bit is less than other tricone bits because of the simpler design.
AIR-COOLED ROLLER BEARINGS
When researching air-cooled roller bearings they can only be found on air circulation tricone drill bits. These drill bits employ high pressure air that travels down the air passages into the tricone bearing helping to lubricate, cool and remove pieces of particles from the tricone. The ability to self-clean, lubricate and cool the Tricone bit is a strong competitive advantage for the air-cooled roller bearings. This tricone drill bit gives your drilling project added efficiency because of it’s ability to dig further and faster than ordinary tricone drill bits.
SEALED ROLLER BEARINGS
When looking into sealed roller bearings you will notice that they have very similar characteristics as open roller bearings. However, the one main difference is that these tricone bearings are sealed with an o-ring. This seal helps extend the life of the tricone bit and its bearings because of the extra protection an o-ring provides. This tricone bit is equipped with a lubrication and compensator system which gives it the ability to control and stop grease from leaking into the bearing. This system makes it easier for the tricone drill bit to drill deeper into the formation without the need to be pulled up as frequently as other tricone drill bits. This helps improve the efficiency of your drilling project without added man-power.
SEALED JOURNAL BEARINGS
Sealed journal tricone bearings help by reducing friction and supporting loads, making it durable and wear resistant. These tricone bearings were designed by using two races to hold balls and spread the load throughout them. As the bearing race spins, it causes the bearing balls to rotate and create less friction. A sealed journal tricone is a fully sealed system with a floating bushing. The benefit of a floating bushing is that it keeps particles free from the bearing allowing the cones in the tricone bit to spin. The floating bushing is usually made out of silver plated beryllium copper which acts as a self lubricant helping to reduce friction, and dissipate heat under heavy load conditions. The sealed journal tricone helps to improve drilling performance and will help your drilling project run smoothly.
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