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best 3D-printable bearing

by Bribro12 May 27, 2017
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I made the small bearings with the recommended settings. The outcome was no different.

I then printed the large bearings. That was even worse - looser! The problem is not that the distance between walls is too much, the problem is that the circumference of the raceway is too long. For the large bearings, there is enough slop to allow at least another half of a bearing. Therefore there is little incentive for the bearing to stay upright.

It is almost as if the designer were paranoid about people not being able to print these and left too much room. Or maybe they were first designed when printers were less capable then is now typical.

Comments deleted.

I just printed the small tighter one. It came out very loose and the bearings tend to want to tilt - as mentioned in a couple of posts below. If the other one is looser, it will really be troublesome. I am using PLA and a .4mm nozzle. I uses layers of .1mm and 25% infill. Perhaps if I use .2mm and 100%, like the instructions say, everything will be fatter and tighter just a wee bit. I will try that and post the results. I slice with Cura 4, and I have an Anycubic I3 Mega.

Any idea what the gap between the wall and bearing is in the easy print model? I'd like to use that distance to adjust my cura's horizontal expansion setting

This is great, big thx!

3D Printing Nerd needs that for his car. His car failed because of the lack of bearings. You should contact him.

haha yes I know I saw the video too. I commented about my bearing model on his video, but didn't get any response. He probably receives tons of comments every day so I understand he doesn't read all of them. It's also possible my comment didn't get through the spam filter because of the link to my model.

This is a very cool design and gives me a lot of ideas for how to design my own bearings. Thank you for taking the time to post this! I was struggling to understand how bearings are typically designed with 3d printers, but your half-sliced pic really clears up the details :)

Glad to hear that Colemangrill!

Can I re scale this to have an 8mm inner diam?

I would suggest not to scale the bearings to smaller sizes because the tolerances are very tight and will just get tighter so everything will probably fuse together. You are of course free to try for yourself.

In studying this design I agree with Bribro12. I re-made it in OpenSCAD (just trying to teach myself stuff) and my first print ended up with those little spinning things all wiggly wobbly... They wouldn't stay put! The reason is that in order for them to not fall out or wobble all around you need really tight tolerances. Enough so that when two of those spinners start leaning every which way they don't have enough room to fall out or go sideways.

I've actually got a working (parametric) version of this design that acts as a one-way bearing. Still working out the kinks though with those tolerances!

I could not get the small bearing to work (haven't tried the bigger one). I calibrated the XY compensation in order to get the best clearance (smallest but all the pieces not stuck). The problem is that the "wheels" inside the bearing are too far away one from each other (and very close to the 2 rings) and when I rotate the bearing they rotate out of their place and block the movement..

I'm having trouble slicing this model (using slic3r with default settings), the slicer deliberately combines the "balls" and "rings" for some reasone (see attached image), spliting the model helps but it messes up the raft.
Did some one run into this problem?

nozzle: 0.4 mm
layer height: 0.3 mm
external perimiter extrusion width: 0.4 mm

Thats because of the print settings.
I am more then positive issue here is the nozzle size you have VS the nozzle size the designer of this thing has.
For example, if your nozzle is larger, your slicer will most likely to join small gaps.
Developers nozzle is probably smaller, so ....... go figure.

Hello Tonycstech. I also used a 0.4mm nozzle to print my bearing. I don’t print with nozzles smaller then 0.4mm because I’ve experianced they clog way faster then a 0.4mm nozzle.

I'm sorry to hear that yuv18650. I've heard some other people had problems slicing this model with slic3er. Did you try slicing it with another slicer like curaengine for example?

Hi Bribro12, I haven't tested other slicers yet.
Object > Split solves the problem (as shown in the attached image), but I had to give up on Raft.
If anyone knows a better solution for using slic3r I would be happy to know.

yuv18650 happy to hear that. And yes I also thought that the raft wasn't that of a great idee when I saw the picture because it would be really hard to get it removed cleanly so the balls would rotate freely. I would suggest printing the V3 first (wich has more space between the "balls" and the inner and outer ring) and if you printed it succesfull and think there's to much slob in the bearing you can go ahead and try printing the V2. Just a suggestion you are ofcourse free to do whatever you want ;-)

Comments deleted.

just printed the most updated version 9 16 17 it does not work at all. what a disappointment it looked so good but it has to much slop or something. the inner little ball cylinder type bearings just go sideways and lock i think do to spacing. balls for bearings would work best.

I'm really sorry to hear that tommy2toes. As I said before, I made the updated version for people who had problems printing the original versions. This version has indeed a lot more space between the inner ring, the balls and the outer ring. This to compensate for the people their printer who can't print the first version. I would suggest to fine tune your printer (for example: the amount of filament extruded must be perfect in order to get good results with this model, little to much and everything welds together) and try printing the original versions, because if you have that much slop in the updated version, you should be able to print the original one. When you print these, the balls will always be stuck (don't expect it to roll of right from the printbed) and you have to put some effort into it to get it moving. And if you want to get it to rotate as souple as in my youtube video, you really have to turn the bearing a lot. So all the rough edges from the balls are gone. I personally didn't have any good experiances printing the bearings with round balls. The balls tend to be not round enough and block when rotated. It was the reason I designed these bearings in the first place.

do you have the design of 608 bearing?

No I'm sorry KarlsonC. I don't know what you mean with 608 bearing. Could you explain this to me?

Just kidding KarlsonC. No I don't have the design of the 608 one row deep groove ball bearing with dimensions d= 8, D= 22, B= 7. I may make some standardized ball bearings in the feature. Hope this helps.

That can be due to the license that's on my 3D models. The 'creative commons non commercial non derivative' license. Here's the link to a website that explains the license: https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-nd/3.0/

You Don't have a removal tool! I got one for you!

How do I remove the removal tool without a removal tool though?


Hahaha very nice! Thank you very much PuffThehamster!

Any chance this could be customised as I'm looking to print a bearing that's 8mm inner, 16mm outer and 5mm thick.

I hope you can advise if this can be done through the slicer or meshmixer.


Hello nscxp2005, I don't have any experiance with custumised things. I'm going to take a look at it. Someone made a costumizable version of my bearing. You can find it under the tab "remix" on this page.

I can't get these bearings to print, the top of the rollers keep getting "potato chip" shaped with the sides curling up as they print, and then the nozzle eventually knocks them over. Anyone else have that problem?

60C bed
210C extruder

Tried both fan on and off.



is it possible for you to post a picture so I can see what you mean?

This photo is from Torleifs remix, but I have the same issue with this one:

I've tried various infill/wall settings and it doesn't help.

It seems like it tacks down to the races, then the sides lift up.


Sorry Ttait_vantim for the late reply. I didn't get a notification from your reply. It seems to me that It's printer issue (I could be wrong). I would suggest callibrating your printer. Run some callibration test (you can find a lot of them here on thingiverse). And just keep on trying. Best of luck!

I printed the small one with 8 bearings, it came off my bed moving freely right away which was impressive, but the tolerances are too loose so the bearings flop around and sometimes one of them will get jammed sideways.

I wonder if adding a V groove around the center of all the bearings and a matching V around the outter bearing surface (and maybe the inner) will hold them in place better. Just thinking out loud.

yeah indeed that would be a possibility. I'm currently working on a new design wich has a cage inside that separates the cillinders from each other and keeps them upright. In the new design the contact area between the cillinders and the rings will be reduced. This way there is even less friction. But I've got mixed results up till now with this design. If you follow me you get a notification when I upload a new model.

Just popped this Small V3 off my Anycubic I3 mega. Sliced in cura with default “fine” settings. Works really well and I’m very impressed! Thank you!

happy to hear that. And you're welcome !

I added a video of the bearing.

I added a new 3D model of the small bearing to the file section. With this model there is more space between the inner ring, the balls and the outer ring. This model should print more easy then the previous model but there will be more play between the inner and outer ring. This model is made for people who have trouble printing the first version. I'm sorry for this but I made the first version so my printer could print it without any problems. I didn't anticipate for the use of other printers. Hope this new model will be printable on most other 3D-printers.

Thanks for this model! It'd be great if the readme/description mentioned what the v3/easy one is compared to the v2 (basically your comment here). I had to dig around until I found this comment.


I will add a new model of the larger bearing soon.

Thank you for posting this. I see some folks gave you some negative comments and I'm sorry for that. I appreciate all who contribute their hard work. Thanks again!

Thank you very much captainsparky. I really appreciate comments like yours. Reactions like yours are where I’m doing it for. Thanks again.

Hi there, just want to add to the wild discussion. I printed the larger bearing on a TAZ5 with HIPS, using the medium quality HIPS settings and Cura. Yes, everything stuck together, and it took me probably 3-4 hours to get it moving. I took a cutter (XACTO knife) and cut between every ball and inner/outer rim, both sides. I also went between the balls and there was a little bit of movement! Played with the bearing a lot and bruised my fingers (btw this is a great fidgeting toy). Then went into the garage: I will not go into the WD40 discussion but the first thing I found was a silicone lubricant of some sort. Now the bearing is running fine. Amazing design, just takes a little bit of patience. Unfortunately I found out I need a bigger bearing, so I will look at the customizable ones.

I am verry happy to hear that. Thank you Wghuemme!

I was houing this would work - looks very promising, since it uses 'balls' that are better shaped for 3d printing, but I cant unjam it without damaging it ( and myself ). For my printer, models like this need 0.40 tolerance between parts. Ive tried other bearings on Thingiverse and they all seem to have this problem. Maybe its my printer, but always the 'balls' are joined, and when released, there is very rough turning from the bleeding of the plastic at the join.
Ive tried more tolerance and if it prints without being joined, that makes the bearing too loose.
Im gonna try the one that uses BB balls next.

Ok sorry if it doesn’t work out for you, it does for me. Mayby it’s the printer. Good luck with the BB balls.

Sorry I didnt mean to come across rude. Your design is better than most because you avoid using spherical balls, which dont print well using FDM.

You need to calibrate your extrusion multiplier. Do a print of a basic cube in vase mode with no top layers (or stop it mid print), and measure the wall thickness with a pair of calipers. It should be with .01mm of what's set in your slicer. So if you are using a .40mm nozzle you'll probably have your layer thickness at .48. You should adjust your extrusion multiplier till the wall thickness is as close to .48 (or whatever your setting is) as possible..

So if you print a single wall cube and it's .53mm thick, and your extrusion mulitplier is 1.00 you take (1.00/.53).48 , and that gives you your new multiplier. In this example ~0.90

I did start printing one now too, but there is indeed a problem with the stick.
I stopped it after a few layers, to see if i can take it apart, but it was hard.
But that's a problem from the program settings. I use Cura too, and it makes this shell with 0.8mm thickness.
This adds material at all sides and therefor it glues the roller together with the housing.

Maybe there is a way to adjust the model, Bribro12? ? Else maybe its a better idea to use Repetierhost with slic3r, what seems dont add a shell.
I got this problem at few models, where i had to redo them with +0.4mm, that they match perfect ie bearing holders.
But at all, i like this style of bearings.

Joeee yes you’re right mayby I should make a model with a bigger gap between the rings and the balls. Thanks for the useful feedback. This in comparison with some other people. And what SimonSolar2X is also true it does depends from printer to printer and printer settings. Totaly not saying you have bad printers but 3D printers are just Different from each other.

I started to print another bearing, but my printer did make the area over the rollers and the housing at once,
and not rollers seperate to the housing.
I think thats another reason, why it tend to stick together, and maybe its an other idea, well at last i can do that in Blender,
to make the rollers and housing only seperate objects. That way, the printer print them seperate, and at this meantime, the other part can harden.
I only got not the time right now to play a lot around with it, else i would try more.
And yes, i found the comment too from earlier about different settings, what been already suggested, what maybe most ignore.
You can ignore that at bigger models, but for exact measurements its critical. I only wonder, that there are no settings to turn the shell off.
That would make some things much easier.

After further consideration I think it depends on the printer and material being used.
For example extrusion can be under different pressure and expand into gaps more or less depending on many variables- filament viscosity, temperature, Extruder settings. This hearing probably prints as is very well on expensive and or precisely calibrated machines.
Many models need tweaking to match the printer and tolerances between parts often need adjustment.
There is actually a very similar customizable version which allows you to set the tolerance to match the printer.

Yet another customizable printable bearing
by Torleif

Ok no problem Simon and thank you very much!

Have anyone gotten this to work? I even tried lowering my XY setting but it's not even close to working, When finally get it to barely turn the bearings fall sideways jamming everything up.

I have hahaha. I know it's not easy to print but it is possible. I have made a few of them and you do have to wrick the balls lose and turn it a lot to get it to rotate souple. I will make a video soon of my printer printing it and the bearing rotating because a lot of people think it doesn't work but it does. Sorry for the inconvenience.

There's absolutely no need to apologize. I was just curious if it could work.

Ok thank you EsQueue.

Seems that -0.03 was too much XY. -0.02 seems like the sweet spot. How do you break it apart without damaging it. I got it separated but did a little bit of damage. It spins though just need to figure out a less destructive way of getting it free. LOL.


I first go with a knife between the balls and the inner and outer ring and then I gently wrick the balls lose with some pliers. Once I get some movement out of it I just keep moving them until it starts to rotate. Once it rotates I just hold the inner ring and hold the outer ring to a dremmel and that makes it rotate realy souple.

if you printed it and it is blocked try reprinting with the horizontal expansion option set to a negative number like -0.3 or -0.2

I printed and is it blocked

Nice design.
What lubricants could one use for extending the life of this type of thing?

I use WD40 or fine machine oil

WD-40 is not a lubricant. Use oil, or better yet, silicone grease.

Yes jsondag we’ve been over that. Just leave it as it is. That discusion about WD40 was just ridiculous.

My apologies, I did not read down further, was just attempting to provide helpful information on an appropriate lubricant to the comment I saw asking about it.

No problem Jsandag, can happen.


It's a general purpose lubricant and anti-rust/corrosion spray-on machine oil.
Though, basically any fine machine oil would do, I'm guessing.

Yes I know what it is. It's actually gonna cause more harm than good, as it's not a lubricant or an oil.

WD40 is actually a mix of powerful solvents that displace water and will dissolve polymers such as polycarbonate (some people print with this stuff!) not sure about PLA, ABS, or PETG but I bet it degrades at least one of those as well.

WD40 will evaporate quickly, taking away and lubricating effect it may have had, but leaving behind chemicals which will degrade many polymers.

I thought it was pretty common knowledge that WD40 is not actually a lubricant, nor should it ever be used as one. Hope that helps.

Its a lubricant. it says it on the can. there are better but he is stating what he uses.

I know what WD40 is, what it does and what it’s properties are. But I desided to give it a try and the results are great. Maybe the corrosive properties of WD40 are the ones that get the balls lose. It really helps to get it lose. I honestly don’t care what it is or does, as long as the results are what I need i’m happy. I never said you have to use it. Someone just asked me what I use.

Lol you should calm down man. I never said that "you said I have to use it", so not sure why you're getting all defensive. It's pretty funny how you act as if I was insulting you.

Clearly you don't know much about WD40, if you think that it might be helping my corroding the balls to get them loose, that's a ridiculous thought. I guess you don't know much about bearings either because looser does not mean better....

Assuming it was dissolving a small layer to loosen the bearings up, it would DEFINITELY NOT be a uniform process and would result in many divots and dimples, which would increase the friction between the two surfaces. This isn't advanced bearing engineering, this is simple logic.

A thicker lubricant like a light grease would be best for this type of bearing you designed. Fuck even olive oil would be 100x better than WD40.

Why recommend such a garbage lubricant and spread misinformation about it? Your anecdotal evidence goes against an entire industry, so stop telling people its good because it isn't. Just because it's better than nothing does not mean anything tbh....

your the tool thats being a total negative. give the man a break and stop dis crediting him. Instead how about just posting what you think is better for your certain reasons dick head

Useless Comments like yours are unfortunately a reason to make an Account here. TpAurora.
First. Before You claim, other don't know much about a product, inform yourself first,
before you start putting Words into other mouths like "Why (You) recommend such garbage... " and claim, they spread misinformation.

I do not see "recommend" him the Oil or anything else. as you start with your wild claims,
also allege him furthermore, he's "getting defensive" and "have to calm down".

WD40 has mostly anti-corrosive properties and some weak lubricating properties. at last, SOME weak lubricating properties.
Of course, its needed some lubrication components, when you want loose a rusty screw.
That should be very common sense, what you seems lack of, when you claim, its "such a garbage"
But obvious enough, to loose some parts from an printed object.

It does NOT affect PLA or any other plastic, what you find out, when you do a proper research about it at the net.
Even opposite, some use it, to lead her Filament into the extruder without any negative effects.

I report going to report your comment now, because its you, what spread misinformation
and your rude behaviour is a reason for a bad community by claiming wild things about others and put words into her mouth.

WD40 evaporates very quickly. I did some brief research and found that WD40 will damage polycarbonate, an increasingly common polymer used as filament. Not everyone uses PLA.

He definitely suggested WD40, so I don't know what you're talking about.

Your English skills are laughable. You can't create a single coherent sentence. Judging from Bribro12's profile picture, he is in fact a MAN not a GIRL, so why do you keep referencing to him as "her"?

Anybody that uses WD40 to lubricate their filament should return their 3d printer and quit the hobby forever.

Please, go back to school and learn how to speak English. Once you have done that, feel free to message me.

And, well, before you try to teach other your worse English, you should first learn how to read proper English,
whats an idiom and what refers to persons, and stop again starting wild claims, like, "keep using" when there is only once used a "her".
Go trolling somewhere else? You are no teacher, seems more only like a wannabe.

You think my English is worse than yours? It is very obvious English is not your first language. I don't have an english diploma but I am a native speaker (not my only language), and can definitively say that your grammar is likely at the level of a 5th grader. I would suggest not tell anyone on this website that their english is worse, because very good chance you will be wrong.

Just so you know I was exaggerating, but was referencing to "Her filament" and "put words into her mouth".

A 5th grader ? Then i must be above you. Because you cant even read an whole sentence without understanding it.
I did not refer to Bribro here, as YOU claim, what you try to put in my mouth again.
When you quote, then please the WHOLE sentence, not only what fits your trolling.
"Even opposite, some use it, to lead her Filament into..."
" .. about others and put words into her mouth. "

" Bribro12's profile picture, he is in fact a MAN not a GIRL, so why do you keep referencing to him as "her"?"

2 Times, where i did NOT refer to the User Bribro, but where you try to twist my Words.
It clearly shows that you have NOTHING to contribute, only trolling around and spam the comments with your Off Topic Trolling about nothing, what is basically done allready.

You showed no proof that WD40 harm plastic, but that you did "now" a briefly research.
Its obvious, that all what you have are your wild claims and your trolling.
You can stop that now and go somewhere else trolling.

The Topic WD40 is done, it doesnt harm (what has a logical reason, when it should be widely used) the filaments, as you claim, "it could.. somewhere .. maybe.. " or that anyone did "suggest it to use it". No one did that, when someone mention something like that, it doesnt mean, someone "suggest it".
Anyone have to decide by his own if he use it or not, that is, what mature people do (obviously not you), but its looks more like, you are bored, and look for a reason, to bother and troll Peoples.

TpAurora, your absolutely worthless comments are of the caliber found on YouTube videos. Perhaps you would be better off there. Joeee may not have perfect English skills, but he has far more skills in decency and humanity than you do.

Ok you’re completely right

Wow, I never really considered that the anti-rust ingredients of WD40 would have such a pivotal(no pun intended) effect on the materials, both either potentially beneficial or detrimental. I'll give it a few goes experimentally if I get a chance. Kinda hard to get a hold of it in my country.

Let me know how it goes. Honestly though even if it does work you will need to reapply it every day.

A lot of people use this stuff for squeaky hinges and then wonder why it squeaks again after a few weeks. Something common like Vaseline (it is petroleum based though, so not sure if it's safe for every plastic) would be much better, as you need a thicker type grease to properly lubricate these type of low RPM bearings.

The only one what are laughable are you TPAurora, Lack of Knowledge and a typical Troll.
Nothing to say about your pointless crap, where you allege him again he "suggest. He did nothing from that and everyone can see your childish trolling.
And again your unbelievable logic, when someone has a male avatar he must be a man.
Sure, English is not my main language, even i saw English peoples with way more worse spelling.
But this is nothing, what YOU need to care of.
Neither to this or how some loose her printed objects with your false claims.
I bet you dont even build this thing, so what is your business here. I can tell you that, its nothing.
Go further trolling anywhere else, we know what WD40 does and what it doesnt.
No need to spread your useless "experience" further, or better, spam the comments, when you actually have nothing to say as trolling.

i would be smart if you updated the "thing details" with the dimensions of the bearing like inner and outer width.

Otherwise outstanding job!

Thanks for the tip, will do that and thank you!

It looks like it's welded together when slicing with slic3r:


I pressed "Split" button in Slic3r and welds are gone.

Very nice Frol, glad to hear this.

I added pictures of the bearing being sliced and printed

Indeed i can see but I use cura engine to slice it and it is perfect. Will post picture

you did an a nice job of design Bribo12. I will be using it in my designs for bearing points. Im designing up my own with your concept. I will use your tips on seperation of the inner and outer race IE WD40. ill also use silicon oil once its seperated. Keep up the good work and dont let the negative fools get you down. There little people that cant come up with there own design ideas so have to try and lower others down to there level of dullness.

Thank you very much Rodtod66 I really appreciate it. And will certainly do that.