Ground Control Camber/Caster Plate Bearing Overview.

Ground Control Camber/Caster Plate Bearing Overview.

The Ground Control camber/caster plate uses an unconventional method for supporting the car. Every other camber plate, both US and Chinese (Japanese and Australian are usually made in China), uses a single bearing to support the side loads and the weight of the car. The Ground Control camber/caster plate uses one articulating bearing to locate the strut shaft only, and a completely seperate bearing to support the weight of the car around the central bearing, and having no contact or influence on the rating of the central bearing.

Therefore, comparisons must be done honestly, carefully and are probably not apples to apples.

The central bearing on GC camber/caster plates is a proprietary bearing, and is made specifically for Ground Control by a US manufacturer. The load rating is 30,500 pounds, and only supports the side load of the shaft. The center bearing DOES NOT support the weight of the car, which is an original and exclusive GC feature. Therfore the load rating of the GC center bearing is incredibly overbuilt for the intended use.

The seperate bearing for the actual weight of the car, at the top of the spring, is a needle bearing that is specifically designed and manufactured in the US for axial load. This bearing, which has no other purpose than to support the weight of the car is also very overbuilt by design. The AXIAL load rating of this bearing is 12,100 pounds.

Axial load is the load across the axis of a bearing, against the grain so to speak, rather than with the grain.

Be very, very, careful not to be sucked into a comparison with the RADIAL load rating of a bearing used for the load of the spring. Using the radial load rating, instead of the more realistic axial load rating, of the bearing is a common trick to make one companies bearings sound better than another companies bearings. The only rating that should be used, is the rating that applies to how the bearing is used. In the case of a bearing supporting the spring, the load is axial.

An example of a radial load rating being used to mislead consumers is a common Chinese axle bearing called a 5205RS. This is a bearing designed for use in a radial application, such as an axle, but when used on a camber plate is loaded axially. This is like rating the axle bearing of a car, with car on its side. The bearing naturally has a lower rating when the car is on its side. In the case of a 5205RS, the radial load is 15,100 pounds, but when loaded axially as in a camber plate, the load is 3100 pounds. Obviously it sounds better to quote the inapplicable specs of radial load. As an aside, the needle bearings used in the GC camber plates are so purposefully manufactured, that they have no radial rating at all, just the axial load rating of 12,100 pounds.

James Morris

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