Manufacturing Today - January/February 2014 - 35

Barnes Industries Inc.

ness within a half-a-thousandth of an
inch over the length of the screw,
even within three-thousandths overall on a 40-foot screw. There is a
noticeable difference when aligning a
Barnes ball screw in a machine tool
compared to any other manufacturers' screws."
Barnes Industries' warranty
encourages customers to stock up on
ball screws. "We have some of the
longest warranties in the business,"
Farr maintains. "Our reconditioned
ball screws have an 18-month warranty from the date of installation in the
machine. So if it sat on their shelf for
four years, the warranty doesn't start
until the day they install it. The same
is true with a new screw. It has a twoyear warranty from the date of installation. That encourages people to buy
spares and keep them on the shelf."

In the Database
Even if Barnes Industries did not produce a customer's particular ball
screw, it can recondition it from its
massive database. Farr cites a recent
example of that. "It wasn't a Barnes
assembly - it was somebody else's -
but we had reconditioned it before,"
he recalls. "We had the package drawn
out and designed from 16 years ago all
in our permanent CAD file. Even
though the machines may go obsolete
or may be adapted with CNC controls, the screw is still the same. So
our files don't ever become obsolete.
We can make a ball screw for any
application in the world."
Barnes' troubleshooting can
improve a customer's entire manufacturing process. "One of the challenges in the machine tool industry is
people want to go faster and faster,"
Farr observes. "There are limitations
to how fast you can rotate that shaft.
"Sometimes, we'll take applications where they have a vibration
problem because they have too slender of a shaft running too fast. It tears
up the ball nut, or the vibrations may

Midwest

in this operation, threads
in a ball screw are ground
with high precision .

be such that they can't even machine
parts properly."
By manufacturing a new screw with
a longer lead or pitch (fewer threads
further apart in the same length), the
screw can rotate at a slower rate but
travel the same distance in the same
amount of time. Not only is the
machine repaired, but so is the cause
of its failure, Farr points out.

Ball Bearings
Ball bearings are one of the key components of ball screws because they
actually handle the entire load on the
nut. Barnes Industries uses up to 20
suppliers and inspects the ball bearings closely before incorporating
them into their products. The company keeps thousands of sizes of ball
bearings in stock at all times. In order
to expedite emergency repairs, Barnes
stocks ball bearings in every metric
and English size for any ball screw
ever made. When analyzing a ball
screw being refurbished, Barnes engineers examine how the ball bearings
are returned in the ball nut, which can
use an internal or external path.
"In every single job, we go through
and analyze the ball nut design to
make sure we have the maximum
amount of load in each ball nut

assembly," Farr relates. "We increase
the life of the screw by doing that,
even if they don't ask us to. That's
been our policy for over 30 years. We
build longevity into every screw we
produce." He says one extra row of
ball bearings can increase the load
capacity of a ball screw by up to 25
percent or more.
Besides aerospace companies,
other industries that rely on Barnes
are the automotive and furniture
industries. The furniture industry
uses Barnes' products in its wood
routers and textile applications that
use very fast-moving screws, some of
which are very long and need to withstand contamination by sawdust.
Farr attributes Barnes Industries'
success to its high quality and short
delivery, along with the proper training of its customers in the use and
care of ball screws. Barnes Industries
invests a good portion of time into
educating its customers through ball
screw seminars and an informative
web site. The company's products are
distributed to the United States and
Canada, Mexico, China, Singapore,
South Africa and Europe.
"We've been holding our own
pretty well these last couple years,"
Farr concludes. mt
JANUARY/FEBRUARY 2014 manufacturing-today.com

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Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Manufacturing Today - January/February 2014

Table of Contents
Manufacturing Today - January/February 2014 - Cover1
Manufacturing Today - January/February 2014 - Cover2
Manufacturing Today - January/February 2014 - 1
Manufacturing Today - January/February 2014 - 2
Manufacturing Today - January/February 2014 - Table of Contents
Manufacturing Today - January/February 2014 - 4
Manufacturing Today - January/February 2014 - 5
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