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Bearing Vendors - How do you rank them?

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Robert LaLonde

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#1
VXB is eh! They have a good stock of what they list on their website, but don't seem to have any ability to cross reference bearings. Atleast none of the times I have asked. Their prices tend to be good to ok.

BOCA is better, but recently they tried to cross reference a bearing and came up totally wrong. If you buy one or two bearings their prices are ok, but if you buy a bunch its pretty darn good as I found out a while back when repairing some machines.

Locate Bearings. Is well actually good at locating bearings, but they will also tell you what you want to hear to get your money and then give you whatever level of service they feel like. I ordered some bearings on Friday for a machine that is down. I was told they would ship priority mail on Friday from California. (2 days ship time usually for me). If they had done that I might have received them as early as Monday and worst case Tuesday (today). Instead they didn't even process the order until Monday when they shipped it UPS from Illinois. Ok... the machine is going to be down all week. I wouldn't be so annoyed if they had told me that, but I specifically asked where it was shipping from, when, and if I could get it shipped Priority Mail. I won't never do business with them, but I will ask to speak to somebody other than Larry Newberry if I do have to buy bearings from them in the future.

Kaman Bearing. I can't speak for the company as a whole, but the local store rarely has what I want in stock, and their price is always manufacturer's list. Atleast to me.

McMaster- Carr. A little higher than average, but not the highest. What they list they have, but if its not a modestly common bearing they won't have it. They consistently ship quick and their overall service has always been good for me. I've deep groove bearings, bushings, and thrust bearings from them. All in stock. All shipped same day. All arrived quickly.

I've never ordered a bearing from MSC. They have not listed the sizes I needed the last couple times I checked and their prices on good stuff was pretty darn high, and I am on a much lower price tier with them than average.
 

ch2co

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#2
I don't get many bearings, but when I need one/some I go to McMaster Carr. They have always had what I needed, at a decent (to me) price, but I haven't really shopped around enough to com[pare prices. There are a few bearing dealers in Denver, but in my kind of quantities (onesies and twosomes) the prices are significantly higher.
 

markba633csi

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#3
I've used JSB great bearings (they're on Ebay) a few times. Good experiences with them. Fast too.
Mark
 

4GSR

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#4
Locate Bearings buys the bulk surplus bearings that some of the eBay sellers sell like HGR. Then they segregate them and list on eBay for 10 times what they paid for them. I may be wrong, I don't believe they are a true bearing house as VBX or BOCA is. I have a couple of local bearing suppliers I'll buy from time to time from, but mostly buy from eBay if I'm not a big hurry for them. Also keep a pretty good supply of the common sizes on hand, too. I even keep a few spindle bearing sets on hand too. Never know when you will need a bearing.
I do have several of the old bearing interchange books that belong to my dad that are helpful on replacements for old bearings. I'm more than glad to help anyone out finding a cross reference for a old bearing.

Ken
 

CluelessNewB

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#5
The Good:
JSB has been good
McMaster-Carr has been good
Accurate Bearing is probably my favorite for service, selection, knowledge and price. http://www.accuratebearing.com/ but
please read this before calling: http://www.owwm.org/viewtopic.php?f=1&t=93322

The Ok:
VXB is ok but selection seems limited to real common sizes and some sizes all they have is junk from China
Locate Bearings has some hard to find bearings but you may end up with some very old stock.

The Bad:
"businessneedsinc" on Ebay lists stuff they don't even have in stock and cancels orders after waiting a few days.
"OnPoint Wares" on Amazon was another disaster, canceled one bearing type and shipped only 1 of the 2 I ordered
for the other. They keep listing the ones they canceled. I did get a full refund from Amazon but that wasted a few days also.

 

Ulma Doctor

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#6
honorable mention to Motion Industries, the local warehouse has just about everything i have needed, in stock.
the stuff they had to order shows up the next day :cool 2:
 

Robert LaLonde

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#7
honorable mention to Motion Industries, the local warehouse has just about everything i have needed, in stock.
the stuff they had to order shows up the next day :cool 2:
That SURE varies from one store to the next.
 

4GSR

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#8
Mike, I started to mention Motion Industries. I figured they were too big for us tinkers. :blue:
 

projectnut

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#9
In November I purchased bearings from Locate Bearings for the Worthington Drive on my Sheldon lathe. The transaction couldn't have been smoother, and the price was far better than any of the other vendors mentioned. I had to call them to be sure the ones I was considering would be a direct fit. The originals were from Norma Bearing Company which is long out of business. They confirmed the SKF ones I was considering were a direct fit, with even better shielding than the originals. When they found out I needed 10 they lowered the price 20% as a courtesy. I ordered them on November 20th and received them the 23rd. In the future they will be high on my list for return business

In the past I've done business with Motion Industries and BOCA. Both had higher prices and longer delivery times for the items I wanted. I agree With Bob about availability from Motion Industries. I worked for a large manufacturing company in our area for over 20 years. At that time Motion Industries was buying up all the local vendors. We regularly did business with an outfit called Wisconsin Bearing. They had everything we ever needed in stock and would have it available for pickup or delivery the same day. When Motion Industries bought them out the prices went up by 50%, the inventory shrank to nearly nothing, and delivery times were usually in the 2-3 day time frame.
 

aliva

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#10
Next time you need bearings ask Adam Booth he works for Motion maybe he can swing an employee discount:)
 

Robert LaLonde

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#11
In November I purchased bearings from Locate Bearings for the Worthington Drive on my Sheldon lathe. The transaction couldn't have been smoother, and the price was far better than any of the other vendors mentioned. I had to call them to be sure the ones I was considering would be a direct fit. The originals were from Norma Bearing Company which is long out of business. They confirmed the SKF ones I was considering were a direct fit, with even better shielding than the originals. When they found out I needed 10 they lowered the price 20% as a courtesy. I ordered them on November 20th and received them the 23rd. In the future they will be high on my list for return business
I imagine most of their sales people are decent to most of their customers or they wouldn't be in business anymore. I'm not fond of being lied to. I "might" call them again, but I'll sure spend a little more time calling around elsewhere first.

In the past I've done business with Motion Industries and BOCA. Both had higher prices and longer delivery times for the items I wanted. I agree With Bob about availability from Motion Industries. I worked for a large manufacturing company in our area for over 20 years. At that time Motion Industries was buying up all the local vendors. We regularly did business with an outfit called Wisconsin Bearing. They had everything we ever needed in stock and would have it available for pickup or delivery the same day. When Motion Industries bought them out the prices went up by 50%, the inventory shrank to nearly nothing, and delivery times were usually in the 2-3 day time frame.
On occasion I've stopped by the local Motion Industries store. To this day I still do not know what they DO stock locally. They tried to get me some Carr-Lane lock down clamps once, but told me they had to pay the same price I did for them so I'd be better off to buy them elsewhere. They are listed as a Carr-Lane distributor, but I guess only one store in the country can actually order as a distributor. I came in and gave them a couple 12packs of soda to say thanks for the effort a few days later. Another time they got me an old ball tab locking washer for a milling machine. Had it in a few days. They did struggle to order it at first even though I came in armed with the stock number and the part number. They were the only place I could find it. 50:50 I guess. A week or so ago I called them and asked what end mills they stock. The person who answered obvious didn't know what an end mill was. I asked if they stocked any end mills, and was told no. Well Motion does show them on their website, but they don't want to sell any in Yuma. I've called a couple other times about things they list on their website and they didn't stock those either. Like I said. To this day I still do not know what the do stock locally.
 

Bob Korves

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#12
My experience with Motion Industries was decades ago, but in those days I bought mostly lots of hydraulic supplies and components from them. They had lots of stuff in stock, and nothing else was more than a day away, no freight charges. Of course, this is in a bigger city where there are also a lot of other hydraulic vendors and rebuilders. I was ordering things by industry part numbers, and buying hundreds if not thousands of dollars worth of parts every week. They were way above most of their competition, who could not hit their butts with both hands tied behind their backs. I also bought bearings from them.
 

Fabrickator

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#13
I can just stop by VBX, Kaman or Mc Master and they generally have what I need on the shelf. Seams like it takes me a half hour to get out of VXB though, pretty slow for direct purchases. McMaster, I choose and place an order and they ALWAYS have what I need ready in Will Call by the time I get there.
 

Robert LaLonde

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#14
I have no real issue with McMaster-Carr. They tend to by higher than the median price on a lot of things, but not always. I buy phenolic handles from them by the hundred count. I get a fair amount of teflon rod stock from them too. The recycled teflon rod makes excellent core pins for lead casting molds. They didn't have a bearing that met my spec this time or I probably would have ordered from them just because they are fast. I've had my big milling machine (big for me) down all week.
 
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