The ball bearing is a type of rolling element bearing i.e. also known as the rolling bearing which carries the load by placing rolling elements between two bearing rings called races. The purpose of a ball bearing is to reduce rotational friction and support radial and axial loads.

Bearings had been developed since ancient times but the first modern recorded patent on ball bearings was awarded to Philip Vaughan. He is a Welsh inventor and ironmaster who created the first design for a ball bearing in Carmarthen in 1794. There are many construction types of ball bearings, some of them are-


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The Conrad-style ball bearing is named after the name of its inventor Robert Conrad who was awarded British patent 12,206 in 1903 and U.S. patent 822,723 in 1906. These bearings are assembled by placing the inner ring into an eccentric position relative to the outer ring with the two rings in contact at one point resulting in a large gap opposite the point of contact. This type of bearing construction style have the advantage to withstand both types of loads i.e. axial and radial.

Relieved race-

It is also named after its properties. It basically has either the OD of the inner ring reduced on one side or the ID of the outer ring increased on one side.


fill- In this construction type of ball bearing the inner and outer races are notched on one face so that when the notches are aligned so the balls can be slipped in the resulting slot for assembling the bearing.

Fractured race-

There is also one more way of fitting more balls into a radial ball bearing by radially fracturing one of the rings through loading the balls in, re-assembling the fractured portion, and then using a pair of steel bands to hold the fractured ring sections together in alignment.


There are two types of row designs i.e. single row bearings and double row bearings. Most of the ball bearings are a single-row design that means there is one row of bearing balls. This design works for types of loads like radial and thrust loads. A double-row design has two rows of bearing balls. The biggest disadvantage of double row bearing is that they need better alignment than single-row bearings.

Fully ceramic bearings-

This type of bearings make use of both ceramic balls and race. These types of bearings are always protected against corrosion and rarely requires lubrication. Due to the stiffness and hardness of the balls and race these bearings are quite noisy at very high speeds.

These are some of the different construction styles of ball bearings. You can take help from here to buy ball bearings.