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Simple way to discover the forgery
When customer buys a famous brand’s bearings from unauthorized dealer the following question arises: “Could it be fake?” There are some very simple and reliable methods allowing to answer this question and preserve bearing's view at the same time that might be very important if it will be necessary to return it and get the money back.
Noise during bearing’s rotation
Take the bearing and rotate its rings. If it does not rotate smoothly, there is noise and foreign body feel, then obviously this bearing is made using simple and inexpensive manufacturing processes. Quality bearing is produced to exacting standards, the surface is well treated and has a low surface roughness, it’s well cleaned and does not contain any debris (swarf, dust etc). Therefore it is not noisy at work and rotates smoothly, its surface is smooth to the touch. Most of the counterfeit bearings are made in poor production conditions.
Rotate the bearing’s rings relatively each other. Are there noise and jamming? Do they rotate smoothly?
Gasoline and perfume smell
For bearing’s cost reduction conservation and flushing of bearings is often made using gasoline or liquids on its basis. Smell of gasoline is one of the signs that the bearing is most likely cheap and its quality may have a claim. However, sellers can make a trick disguising the smell of gasoline using deodorant. High-quality conservation or washing materials and lubricants have no sharp smell.
Smell the bearing. High-quality conservation materials and lubricants almost have no smell.
Check the basic dimensions
Dimensions of the main elements is a sensitive subject for counterfeit bearings, especially for inch-size models. Inch-size bearings are often used in American, British and Japanese technique. However, due to the metric measuring system dominates in the world including China which produces the bulk of counterfeits, to make a copy and produce such bearings is relatively difficult in poorly prepared manufacturing. If the bearing is not very popular and hence the production technology is not debugged, then it is almost always one or more items of counterfeit bearing will have dimensions that differ from the original.
Therefore, when buying it is recommended to take a small caliper with assigned error, remeasure all the main dimensions of the purchased bearing (external and internal diameters, the width of the rings and the bearing assembly, the diameter of the clamps) and compare. If in spite of the bulleted bearing number, size, considering the errors of the measuring instrument, differs by more than 0.5-0.7 mm from claimed by the manufacturer (you can see in the catalog or remeasure the old bearing), then it is either a flaw or a fake.
Measure the bearing using a vernier calipers with assigned error and compare with the official data.
If price of bearing is significantly low in relation to other similar proposals, the question about its quality naturally arises. However at prices it becomes hard to define a forgery. Traders of counterfeit products have become more careful in pricing and can sell at average prices, so as not to attract attention.
Contact the official manufacturer representative
The most correct, but not the fastest method. Make a contact with official manufacturer representative (by phone or through the Internet) to confirm the authenticity of the bearings is the most reliable way. However it may take some time. It will be necessary to prepare photos of bearings and packaging especially those parts which bear identification codes.