Special Steel 52100 Bearing Steel

Table of Contents

Welcome to the ultimate guide on Special Steel 52100 Bearing Steel. This unique material stands out in the world of metallurgy and engineering, revered for its exceptional properties and applications in bearing manufacturing. Let’s dive deep into what makes this steel special, how it compares to other materials, and why it might be the right choice for your next project.

Overview of Special Steel 52100 Bearing Steel

Special Steel 52100 Bearing Steel, also known as chromium steel, is a high-carbon, high-chromium alloy known for its remarkable hardness, wear resistance, and fatigue performance. It is predominantly used in the manufacturing of bearing components due to its excellent mechanical properties.

Key Details at a Glance

Chemical CompositionHigh carbon, high chromium
HardnessUp to 64 HRC
Wear ResistanceExcellent
Fatigue StrengthHigh
ApplicationsBearings, rollers, precision tools
Bearing Steel

Types and Composition

Chemical Composition

Special Steel 52100 Bearing Steel‘s composition includes specific percentages of carbon, chromium, and other elements, making it ideal for high-stress applications.

ElementPercentage (%)
Carbon (C)0.98 – 1.10
Chromium (Cr)1.30 – 1.60
Manganese (Mn)0.25 – 0.45
Silicon (Si)0.15 – 0.35
Sulfur (S)0.025 max
Phosphorus (P)0.025 max

Properties and Characteristics

52100 Bearing Steel offers a balance of properties that make it suitable for high-load and high-speed applications. Here are some key characteristics:

HardnessAchieves up to 64 HRC after heat treatment.
Wear ResistanceSuperior due to the high chromium content.
Fatigue StrengthExcellent for components under cyclic stress.
ToughnessGood, making it resistant to crack propagation.
MachinabilityModerate; requires skilled processing techniques.

Applications of Special Steel 52100 Bearing Steel

52100 Bearing Steel is predominantly used in the manufacture of bearings due to its durability and high performance under stress.

BearingsUsed in automotive, aerospace, and industrial sectors.
RollersCommonly used in rolling mills and other machinery.
Precision ToolsEmployed in cutting tools, measuring instruments.
Ball ScrewsEssential in high-precision mechanical applications.
GearsIdeal for high-stress gear systems.

Specifications, Sizes, and Standards

52100 Bearing Steel is produced in various sizes and adheres to strict standards to ensure quality and performance.

DiameterRanges from 5 mm to 100 mm
LengthCustom lengths as per requirement
StandardsASTM A295, SAE 52100, EN31
Heat TreatmentOil quenched, tempered
Surface FinishPrecision ground, polished

Suppliers and Pricing Details

When sourcing 52100 Bearing Steel, consider the supplier’s reputation, quality certification, and pricing. Here’s a comparative look at some top suppliers:

SupplierCountryPrice per kg (USD)Notes
ABC MetalsUSA$5.50High-quality, certified
Steel Works Ltd.Germany$5.75ISO certified, reliable supply
Bearing Steel Inc.China$4.80Competitive pricing, bulk orders
Metal MastersIndia$4.90Good quality, affordable
EuroSteelUK$5.20Excellent service, fast delivery

Advantages of Special Steel 52100 Bearing Steel

What makes 52100 Bearing Steel so special? Here are some of its standout advantages:

  • High Hardness: Achieves impressive hardness levels post heat treatment, making it ideal for high-stress applications.
  • Wear Resistance: The high chromium content provides superior resistance to wear and abrasion.
  • Fatigue Strength: Capable of withstanding cyclic loading, making it perfect for bearings.
  • Durability: Long-lasting performance, reducing the need for frequent replacements.
  • Versatility: Suitable for various high-precision and high-stress applications.

Disadvantages of Special Steel 52100 Bearing Steel

While 52100 Bearing Steel has many advantages, it’s essential to consider its limitations:

  • Machinability: Requires skilled techniques and proper equipment to machine effectively.
  • Cost: Higher than some other bearing steels, which may impact budget-sensitive projects.
  • Corrosion Resistance: Not as high as stainless steels, necessitating protective measures in certain environments.
  • Heat Sensitivity: Requires precise heat treatment to achieve desired properties, which can be complex and time-consuming.

Comparing 52100 Bearing Steel to Other Materials

When considering alternatives to 52100 Bearing Steel, it’s useful to compare its properties with other commonly used materials:

Property52100 Bearing SteelStainless SteelTool Steel
HardnessVery HighModerateVery High
Wear ResistanceExcellentGoodExcellent
Corrosion ResistanceModerateExcellentPoor
CostModerate to HighHighHigh
Special Steel 52100 Bearing Steel


What is 52100 Bearing Steel?A high-carbon, high-chromium alloy known for its hardness and wear resistance.
Where is 52100 Bearing Steel used?Primarily in bearing manufacturing, as well as rollers, gears, and precision tools.
How is 52100 Bearing Steel heat treated?Typically oil quenched and tempered to achieve desired properties.
What are the advantages of 52100 Bearing Steel?High hardness, excellent wear resistance, high fatigue strength, durability.
What are the limitations of 52100 Bearing Steel?Requires skilled machining, higher cost, moderate corrosion resistance.
How does 52100 Bearing Steel compare to stainless steel?Superior hardness and wear resistance but lower corrosion resistance.
Can 52100 Bearing Steel be used in high-temperature applications?Generally not ideal due to its heat sensitivity and precise heat treatment requirements.
What is the typical price range for 52100 Bearing Steel?Prices vary by supplier and region, generally ranging from $4.80 to $5.75 per kg.


Special Steel 52100 Bearing Steel is a standout material in the world of high-performance steels. Its exceptional hardness, wear resistance, and fatigue strength make it the go-to choice for bearing manufacturers and other high-stress applications. While it does have some limitations, such as machinability and cost, its advantages often outweigh these concerns. Whether you’re in the automotive, aerospace, or industrial sector, 52100 Bearing Steel offers reliable performance and durability, ensuring your components last longer and perform better.

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