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Plastic Balls in Bearings?

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Fatgadgi25/02/2019 00:07:22
163 forum posts
21 photos

A few years back (cough, perhaps a lot) I was at a design course aimed at failure modes.

One of the problem examples was the classic - what is the worst failure a ball point pen could have. After many answers, the critical failure was deemed to be leaking because of the damage a 50p pen could cause to expensive bags and clothing.

As Chris said, plastic bearings don’t need lubrication. Neither do carpets, so perhaps he has it right.

BUT I definitely will never forgive two faced Mr Dyson putting electric vehicle manufacturing and his headquarters in Singapore !!!!

Bandersnatch25/02/2019 01:02:03
1719 forum posts
60 photos
Posted by Will Bells on 25/02/2019 00:07:22:

As Chris said, plastic bearings don’t need lubrication.

Sorry to belabour this but neither do sealed steel ball-bearings. Moreover, with the amount of dirt/dust kicking around the bearings should, necessarily, be sealed in either case.

My guess is that the only reason for plastic bearings for the brush rollers is a bottom-line somewhere.

Chris Trice25/02/2019 01:04:01
1362 forum posts
9 photos

If both do the job and one is cheaper, which would you use?

Bandersnatch25/02/2019 01:33:35
1719 forum posts
60 photos
Posted by Chris Trice on 25/02/2019 01:04:01:

If both do the job and one is cheaper, which would you use?


By "do the job" do you mean equal (or better) reliability? If someone can come up with convincing reliability numbers (in this service) to prove that, then I'd use the cheaper one. I'd take a lot of convincing though particularly comparing a sealed steel bearing with an unsealed plastic one. It's also unlikely that the manufacturer looks at it in those terms ..... "is it cheaper and will it get us through the initial warranty period?"

Actually if I were replacing a bearing that had failed I'd go for the steel bearing anyway. The difference in cost between commercial grades of plastic and steel bearings is quite minimal as a replacement - and I'd certainly feel a whole lot better.

Edited By Bandersnatch on 25/02/2019 01:37:00

Jeff Dayman25/02/2019 04:26:27
1895 forum posts
45 photos

+1 for steel ball brgs vs plastic when replacing failed ones.

Vacuum cleaners are a throwaway product these days and are always built down to a price like all mass market appliances. If they last the warranty period length plus a couple weeks that is mission accomplished.

Dyson's real achievement is a marketing and advert campaign that convinces people that their vacuums have better or more "leading edge" technology than other brand appliances. Take one apart and you will see very little actual technical innovation, but lots of visual gimmicks with transparent cones, funnels, bits going around, and lots of inaccessible areas jammed with dust and lint.

Their stuff may be designed in UK but look at the boxes and it is made in Thailand and Malaysia.

I'd say the best empty catchphrase they have gotten away with is advertising they have a 'digital motor'. Digital motor control circuit, sure, but 'digital motor', that's just marketing / advertising hot air.

My opinion only - Just my $0.02 worth - your mileage may vary.

Edited By Jeff Dayman on 25/02/2019 04:27:21

Edited By Jeff Dayman on 25/02/2019 04:27:58

John McNamara25/02/2019 06:42:12
1313 forum posts
113 photos

Hi All

Hi all If you have not experienced Ave then you may be in for a shock. And yes he does have a very fruity command of the English language... Er Canadian with all that prevails in the tundra.

He has a passion for taking Dyson gadgets to bits!


So put your hard hat on and dig in for a bumpy ride.

I must admit I think he is rather skukem.


Chris Trice25/02/2019 09:14:04
1362 forum posts
9 photos

Dyson BTW are the top bar on the graph outselling their nearest rival by three to one.

Edited By Chris Trice on 25/02/2019 09:23:08

blowlamp25/02/2019 10:32:00
1420 forum posts
87 photos
Posted by Chris Trice on 25/02/2019 09:14:04:

Dyson BTW are the top bar on the graph outselling their nearest rival by three to one.

Edited By Chris Trice on 25/02/2019 09:23:08

I wonder why? Everyone I know that owns one has had problems with them from very early on.


Jeff Dayman25/02/2019 14:22:55
1895 forum posts
45 photos

The company have a very skilled marketing and advert staff - that's all. They can convince people to buy them.

Mr AvE calls it as he sees it - and he knows cheap consumer grade crap when he sees it apart.

Chris Trice25/02/2019 16:49:08
1362 forum posts
9 photos

Don't we all?

Jeff Dayman25/02/2019 18:13:33
1895 forum posts
45 photos

One further AvE video observation - in AvE's review of the Dyson "Ball Animal" vacuum he finds an off the shelf Panasonic vac motor inside.

No issue at all with them using this motor - Panasonic vacuums have done very well at our house - had two, both went about 5x the warranty life, at about 1/3 the cost of a Dyson. The Panasonic vac motors are pretty good, I'd say, based on my experience. However, Dyson advertised this Ball model as having revolutionary new Dyson motor technology.

My wife foolishly listened to a colleague's recommendation and bought a new Dyson vac between the two Panasonic ones we have bought. The Dyson product was a major disappointment from the start, it just did not perform, and it needed several repairs in the first month (broken switch actuator levers, broken latches, split hose). We passed it on to another couple who desperately wanted a Dyson and were also disappointed. With the two Panasonic units, no such nonsense at all.

Neil Wyatt25/02/2019 20:09:05
18232 forum posts
714 photos
77 articles

The odd thing about Dyson is they seem to invest in customer support and replacing faulty parts rather than reliability.

They have been wonderful at replacing failed parts for their machines, but in contrast my Earlex/Wickes Workshop vac is 17 years old with no fails* and Hetty is about 8 with no signs of wearing out.


*Aside from about 1/2" at the end of the nozzle being worn away by me rubbing it on a swarfy carpet and the time I spilt Ferric Chloride in it and had to open it up and replace the on off switch as a result.

Sam Stones26/02/2019 03:33:59
769 forum posts
305 photos

Hi Will,

I sent you a PM.



Sam Stones26/02/2019 04:43:23
769 forum posts
305 photos

Neil Wyatt wrote ...

The odd thing about Dyson is they seem to invest in customer support and replacing faulty parts rather than reliability.

It's more than odd Neil - I would go so far as to say -

The odd thing about Dyson is they seem to invest in customer support and (yet) replace faulty parts with faulty parts.

After months of emailing; three replacements; submitting a lengthy technical report; one of eight brave bods let me into a secret.

I should look for the product release number. Any product prior to this (and I can substantiate this from the replacements we received) should be suspect.

Sam smile d

Geoff Theasby26/02/2019 09:38:55
613 forum posts
17 photos

Re: Dyson, I originally got one because they are good at picking up dog hair. They filter the air, which helps asthmatics, they do not lose suction, you can see when they are full. I also have a newer VAX. It clogs up regularly, sometimes every time it is used. It is lighter, and it is cordless.

Cornish Jack26/02/2019 12:32:08
1170 forum posts
163 photos

If you feel that you really have to pay that sort of silly money for a vacuum cleaner, go for real quality with a Sebo ... no, I don't have shares but I DO have two such and with HEPA filters they will certainly sort out the hairy dog problem - we have cats ... same sort of problem!



Howard Lewis26/02/2019 16:32:19
3608 forum posts
2 photos

Our Panasonic is so old that I cannot remember when it was bought.

The only problems have been the hose coming out of the end fitting from time to time (several years) and the brushes wore out on the large head, which combined with the rollers failing, made a replacement necessary.

My wife used to fund raise for a local cat refuge, in the market.. Next door was a stall selling spares for vacuum cleaners. he seemed to have huge array of parts for Dysons, not many for Panasonics.

As a suspicious Luddite, cannot but fear that the Dyson is leading edge high tech, but possibly like Clkive Sinclair's advanced engineering, less durable / reliable

If I wanted a vac for the shop, I would opt for a Numatic, (Henry or one of his cousins).


Bazyle26/02/2019 18:08:57
5471 forum posts
206 photos

I recently got a small ash vac from Lidl. Intended for sucking up the ash from a fire grate so short hose and no carpet tool. It is ideal for the workshop as is takes less space than the wet'n'dry and sucks harder than any I've ever known. Obviously I call her Monica. I doubt it has a good duty cycle so wouldn't do for a wood shop but metalworkers mostly only need short stints.

Sam Stones26/02/2019 18:26:00
769 forum posts
305 photos

After drafting my note directly into this forum, including my opinion that much of their design was impressive, when I hit the Add Posting ‘GO’ button my note blew away into cyber space.

In revamping what I had written, I forgot to include that the shift to overseas manufacture seemed to spell the start of the technical problems.

The good news has been that I repaired the fault on the three devices with nothing more than some reinforcing wire and a few blobs of Araldite.

Anyone wanting to see/learn more of my saga should PM me with their return email address.

Sam smile d

Sam Longley 126/02/2019 19:17:26
794 forum posts
28 photos

Most of the pullies on my yacht have delrin balls in the roller bearings in them. The furling gear , which takes considerable load applied by a winch, has delrin balls in the swivels

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