Tapered roller bearings consist of inner and outer rings that accommodate rolling elements. The rollers taper to a conical shape. The corresponding raceways in contact with the rollers are angled to accommodate their tapered form. The rollers themselves are held in a cage that fits the inner and outer rings.
The angled and tapered shape of tapered roller bearings minimizes the stresses created by a combination of radial and axial loads. Radial and axial loads are often combined to create different loads on the bearing assembly. The ability to handle angular loads and vary angular loads - makes tapered roller bearings indispensable in a variety of technical designs and industries. The taper basically concentrates the radial and axial loads into a more easily exploitable unified load. Which angular loads can be utilized depends on the precise angle of the tapered bearing. They can utilize various forces by configuring two or more tapered bearings.
The steepness of the roller bearing slope increases the thrust/axial load it can carry, while the shallower angle increases the radial load capacity. As the radial load increases, the bearings experience greater stress on the sides of the bearing raceway. The shallower angle minimizes pressure, which reduces stress on the rollers. The increased axial load contributes to the stress applied to the top of the roller. A steeper angle distributes the pressure more into the center of the bearing and less into the rollers themselves.
Single row tapered roller bearings: support high loads and maintain precise clearance.
Double row tapered roller bearings: support high loads and offer improved stiffness compared to single row bearings.
Four-row tapered roller bearings: designed to support high radial and axial loads in applications such as rolling mills.
Matched tapered roller bearings: provide high load-carrying capacity and improved accuracy in machine tool spindle applications.
Thrust Tapered Roller Bearings: support heavy axial loads and have high load-carrying capacity.
Generally, angles of 10° to 19° are common for applications with heavy radial loads. For anything less than 10°, you should consider the need for a full thrust roller bearing and investigate whether significant radial forces are present. 20° and 24° are a good balance as the axial load increases (radial load decreases). This angle is small enough that radial loads still do not put extreme stress on the bearing, but steep enough to handle axial loads more efficiently. For larger axial loads, an angle between 25° and 29° is required, and this is the point where radial loads create more wear and shorten component life. Still, it is powerful enough to handle highly mixed radial and axial combined loads simultaneously.