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IMS Bearing Options


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Hello everyone.  I'm new to the forum so please forgive me if this topic has been addressed elsewhere.  I'm trying to determine lower cost IMS bearing options for a dual row IMS.  I know that Pelican offers a conventional single row bearing that I can use in a dual row application, but I'd prefer a conventional dual row bearing if available.  I see where a bearing of this type is available at Pedro's Garage, but it requires the purchase of an expensive DOF kit.  Does anyone carry a conventional sealed steel dual row bearing?  Thanks.

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IIRC the dual-row IMSB is a generic 5204-2RS ball bearing, available for about $20 through Amazon or via a place like this:

http://www.usabearingsandbelts.com/18m7/double-row-ball-bearings/5200-series.html  .

 

You still need the tool kit, and perhaps buy the Pelican kit just for the upgraded center bolt.  So $20 plus $165 for the Pelican kit is $185.  The LN kit can be had for as low as $577 online.

Edited by Dennis Nicholls
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Hello everyone.  I'm new to the forum so please forgive me if this topic has been addressed elsewhere.  I'm trying to determine lower cost IMS bearing options for a dual row IMS.  I know that Pelican offers a conventional single row bearing that I can use in a dual row application, but I'd prefer a conventional dual row bearing if available.  I see where a bearing of this type is available at Pedro's Garage, but it requires the purchase of an expensive DOF kit.  Does anyone carry a conventional sealed steel dual row bearing?  Thanks.

 

 

I'll apologize for asking up front, but why do you want to cut costs on an item that could potentially reduce your engine to paperweight?  Even Porsche does not sell this bearing anymore..............

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I'm basing the decision primarily on the published service life of the Pelican single row bearing, which is somewhere in the neighborhood of 30K to 45K miles depending upon where you look.  I would think the dual row version would be a bit better.  The very expensive ceramic hybrid dual row bearing, which is what I presume you would recommend, has a published service life of 75K miles.  Personally I have struggled to understand how a bearing that costs so much more than the conventional variety has to be replaced with this frequency.  If the CH bearing was a permanent solution, I wouldn't even be asking the question.  Obviously I will have to replace the conventional bearing with twice the frequency over the long haul.  That being said, I am certainly open to suggestions and opinions.  Thanks.

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I'm basing the decision primarily on the published service life of the Pelican single row bearing, which is somewhere in the neighborhood of 30K to 45K miles depending upon where you look.  I would think the dual row version would be a bit better.  The very expensive ceramic hybrid dual row bearing, which is what I presume you would recommend, has a published service life of 75K miles.  Personally I have struggled to understand how a bearing that costs so much more than the conventional variety has to be replaced with this frequency.  If the CH bearing was a permanent solution, I wouldn't even be asking the question.  Obviously I will have to replace the conventional bearing with twice the frequency over the long haul.  That being said, I am certainly open to suggestions and opinions.  Thanks.

 

OK, here goes:  One point you need to recognize is that the single row bearing Pelican is selling is simply a bad idea, as is basing your cost assumptions on mileage.  According to Porsche's own data, somewhere around 10% of all single row OEM bearings fail in service, so replacing the much superior dual row with a weaker single row is a big move in the wrong direction from a durability standpoint.  At best, the 30-45K mile service life estimate is a WAG type guess.  Considering how many single row engines Porsche replaced under warranty (and well short of 30-45K miles), this mileage number could easily be too high and estimate as well.

 

LN's service life estimate for the dual row replacement is a very conservative estimate, as they strongly prefer to under rather than over estimate.  We have customers that are well beyond that number with no signs of problems.  That said, no ball bearing will last forever in this type of application, it is a "consumable" component, not unlike brake pads, water pumps, or clutch discs.  Sooner or later, they will need service, which is why Porsche redesigned their engines to eliminate them.  At this time, the only known permanent solution for the IMS bearing is the "Solution" system which has no ball bearings at all; but this is only made for the single row bearing engines.

 

At my shop, we simply will not replace an OEM steel bearing with another steel unit, simply because the economics do not make any sense.  Most of the total cost for an IMS replacement is the labor to take the car apart and put it back together again; the parts costs are a very small percentage.  With more than 12,000 ceramic bearings installed and on the road, LN has more than proved the case for the slight extra cost of the ceramic hybrid bearings.

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I too had heard about the high percentage of single row failures.  My understanding was that most of these occured in low mileage vehicles with infrequent service.  If you are saying I cannot get 40K - 50K reliable miles out of a conventional dual row bearing, then I suppose that solution isn't for me.  I appreciate the information - thanks.

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I too had heard about the high percentage of single row failures.  My understanding was that most of these occured in low mileage vehicles with infrequent service.  If you are saying I cannot get 40K - 50K reliable miles out of a conventional dual row bearing, then I suppose that solution isn't for me.  I appreciate the information - thanks.

 

You may or may not get 40-50K out of a steel bearing depending upon a lot of factors beyond those you mentioned, but you will get that and more from a quality ceramic bearing like the LN unit.

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