Standard Active Last Updated: Jul 16, 2018 Track Document
ASTM G182-13(2018)

Standard Test Method for Determination of the Breakaway Friction Characteristics of Rolling Element Bearings

Standard Test Method for Determination of the Breakaway Friction Characteristics of Rolling Element Bearings G0182-13R18 ASTM|G0182-13R18|en-US Standard Test Method for Determination of the Breakaway Friction Characteristics of Rolling Element Bearings Standard new BOS Vol. 03.02 Committee G02
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Significance and Use

5.1 This test is a simple, effective way of determining the ability of bearings to roll freely. Most bearing manufacturers do not supply information on the breakaway friction coefficient of their products and if this is a design factor, users often buy candidate bearings and try them until they find one that appears to operate freer than the others. This test allows quantification of the breakaway friction characteristics of bearings. This test assesses the friction of a bearing as a tribosystem which includes its construction and lubrication. It has shown to correlate with use. If a bearing has a low breakaway angle in this test, its breakaway friction will be lower in service than the same size bearings that displayed a higher breakaway angle in this test.

5.2 Breakaway friction of bearings is important in instruments where forces are light and the bearings are used as pivots rather than for continued rotation. Low friction is often imperative for proper device operation.

5.3 Bearings with low breakaway friction are often sought for web handling rollers. Many rollers are driven only by tangential web contact and slippage can often damage the web. Low friction bearings are required.

5.4 This test is useful for screening bearings for any applications where breakaway friction is a design concern.


1.1 This test method is an extension of Test Method G164 and uses an inclined plane and a paperclip rider to detect the presence or absence of lubricants on the surfaces of flexible webs. A study to identify free spinning or low rolling friction bearings indicated that the paperclip friction test could be used for rolling friction by simply replacing the paperclip with a rolling element bearing on an axle. The angle of the inclined plane at initiation of rolling is the breakaway angle. This test method can be used to measure the angle at breakaway of small diameter (up to 100 mm outside diameter) rolling element bearings. The bearings that have been tested in the development of this method are conventional ball bearings with different separators, seals, and different conditions of lubrication (none, oil, greases, and so forth), but there is no technical reason why this test method would not work with bearings of other design, including plain bearings. Rolling element bearings like any sliding system can have friction characteristics at breakaway that are different than rolling continuously. As is the case with most inclined plane friction tests, the test only produces the friction characteristic at the onset of measurable rolling, using the angle (θ) when measurable rolling commences. The objective of this test is an assessment of breakaway rolling friction characteristics to assist machine designers in the selection of rolling element bearings for instrument pivots and the like where breakaway friction is a concern.

1.2 The values stated in SI units are to be regarded as standard. No other units of measurement are included in this standard.

1.3 This standard does not purport to address all of the safety concerns, if any, associated with its use. It is the responsibility of the user of this standard to establish appropriate safety, health, and environmental practices and determine the applicability of regulatory limitations prior to use.

1.4 This international standard was developed in accordance with internationally recognized principles on standardization established in the Decision on Principles for the Development of International Standards, Guides and Recommendations issued by the World Trade Organization Technical Barriers to Trade (TBT) Committee.

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Book of Standards Volume: 03.02
Developed by Subcommittee: G02.50
Pages: 5
DOI: 10.1520/G0182-13R18
ICS Code: 21.100.20