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Troubleshooting Rubber Insulated Bushing Performance Problems

Back in early 2013, we received a phone call from a large OEM experiencing early wear out problems with the rubber-insulated bushings in their shaker machines.  This was a very severe application with each of the three bushings in the machine, seeing continuous, radial, torsional, and conical loading.

The OE had been thru two (2) vendors, three (3) iterations of bushings, and several different bushing designs, and  still had not achieved acceptable performance, which they defined as “required to hold up for a minimum of one year in the application”.

Bushings Inc. is happy to assist potential customers in troubleshooting these types of performance problems.  Typically with the customers answers to a few simple questions we can help diagnose the root cause of the bushing problem in the application, and come up with a solution.  A sample part is sometimes requested to assist in the analysis.  

Some of the most common problems experienced are:

  • High heat (this can be either ambient temperature, or the heat generated by the mechanical work being done in the application)
  • Overloading (part size is insufficient for the load being carried)
  • Ambient conditions (such as the presence of oil, solvent or lube in the application)
  • Improper method of manufacture – (part not manufactured using the optimum method of manufacture for the duty cycle which the part sees in the application)

The graph below depicts results of our tests which we used to diagnose, and solve their application problem.

bushing analysis graph

Part “A” was a fully mold bonded bushing, which the OE advised was de-laminating early on in the duty cycle.  Parts “B” and “C” were silent-bloc bushings, part “B” worked fine in the application, but was seeing early wear outs (within 6 months of operation).  Part “C” was a harder version of the silent-bloc bushing – but when this part was installed in the shaker, the machine would not start.

After the load deflection test, Bushings Inc. designed a center bonded bushing, molded in hardness slightly stiffer, than part “B” – we also molded a variant, in a slightly stiffer compound.  Our initial part worked well in the application.  Once we achieved the desired hardness for optimum function in the application, we tweaked the rubber formula to obtain greater tensile strength to further extend the life of the part.

After more than 18 months of testing in the application, we are happy to say, that this bushing was adapted by the OE for their shaker machines, and is working well, with no further complaints of short life.

Let us help you with your application problems, we can provide no charge assistance with your product design, or application troubleshooting.

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What Our Clients Say About Us

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"I want to take this opportunity to thank the Bushings Incorporated team that recently helped us get our automated assembly line up and running.  For years our line required our rubber insulated overmolds be manually inserted due to several failed attempts to get an automated press to properly insert the bushings.  The Bushings Incorporated team was able to help by working with our manufacturing engineers to develop fixtures, and procedures that were able to get the automated press up and running.

With the new press up and running, the consistency has been great, and the operator is very happy with the new process.  The operator says that the new press and fixturing is doing a good job at installing the bushings straight and consistent.  He has experienced no “mushrooming” or tearing of the bushings with the automated press (this was the reason for manually inserting them for so many years).  The operator also says that the job is much easier on him, and the production level is up due to the new process.

The help that was received to improve our process was above and beyond.  That kind of support is needed and appreciated, and while most vendors lack in their support, it is my feeling that Bushings Incorporated and their team have gone one step above.

Thanks again for the support!"

Steven A.
Engineering Product Manager
Motion Control Division


Our Company

Established in suburban Detroit in 1942, Bushings Inc. is an ISO 9001:2015 certified manufacturer of rubber insulated bushings, and marine/industrial engine mounts, with headquarters in Rochester Hills, Michigan.

Our rubber molded products, including engine mounts, rubber insulated bushings, and rubber overmolds are world class quality, and are specified by leading Original Equipment and Aftermarket Manufacturers.


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