- Trained on our vast library of engineering resources.

Flexure bearings for limited movement assemblies

Featured Product from C-Flex Bearing Co., Inc.

More Info Email Supplier Request a Quote

Flexure bearings for limited movement assemblies
Gimbals and linkages are examples of limited movement assemblies comprised of components that pivot relative to each other. They present a unique challenge when designing the pivot mechanism.

To align and join these components in a fashion that allows controlled motion relative to one another, the design engineer could use a pin or shaft. However, if the assembly moves with regularity, wear and friction will become a problem without a bearing. To resolve this issue, plain or rolling element bearings could be used to provide rotary motion. A shaft or pin through the bearing would keep the assemblies aligned and provide the pivoting motion, but threads and nuts or grooves and retaining clips would be required for the shaft to maintain the axial location.

Introducing bearings and other components add to the complexity, expense and assembly time.

What if there was an easier solution?
Flexure bearings, also referred to as pivot bearings, were designed precisely to tackle the design challenge of limited movement rotational assemblies. They are constructed of stainless steel, non-contacting sleeves connected internally by leaf springs. This allows the sleeves to rotate relative to one another without touching or creating any friction. Flexure bearings are extremely repeatable with low hysteresis characteristics and high radial and axial stiffness. As they do not wear and do not require lubrication, they are also maintenance-free.

A single flexure bearing can take the place of bearings, shafts or pins and retaining components, simplifying the design as well as reducing the component cost and assembly time.

Cantilever, or single-ended, flexure bearings have two sleeves. One half of the bearing is fixed, while the other is mounted in the pivoting component, allowing limited rotation. Double-ended bearings have three sleeves and are designed for central mounting with two pivotal arms.

Although flexure bearings are recommended for radial loading applications, they can also be used for axial, moment or torsional loading applications. When used in radial load applications, the bearing orientation determines whether the springs are placed under tension or compression.

Among the variables that can be specified:

  • Size
  • Special materials
  • Clamping options
  • Maximum deflection angles (typically +/- 30°)
  • Sleeve geometry 


Custom Products
C-Flex Bearing Company can provide a vast array of custom alterations to our standard pivot bearings. If you have an application where a standard pivot bearing will not suffice then see if one of the alterations we offer below will suit your needs. If you have a requirement that can’t be met with the options listed here feel free to contact us and we can work with you to create a custom product just for your application.


C-Flex Brochure 

Watch our NEW video! A short intro to our flexible couplings

C-Flex Bearing Co., Inc. is a privately owned small business located in upstate New York. We have been incorporated since 1993. Under the current administration, we have been in business since 1988 however under different names. We began manufacturing turbine components for the gas turbine industry. In 1992, we generalized into basic machine shop work. In 1997, the three companies were merged into C-Flex Bearing Co., Inc. with the focus on our one product line, the frictionless bearing or pivot.

Information on pivot sizes and performance properties can be found HERE:

For Lattice Style Couplings

For Super Plastic