Low-quality thermoplastics tend to give thermoplastics, in general, a poor reputation, with some melting when exposed to UV light, some offering limited resistance to solvents and some relaxing and weakening under long-term loading.
This situation is worsened by the fact that some companies are producing copy-cat or even counterfeit products that pretend to have the characteristics of top-performing thermoplastic brands.
To combat this trend, it would be advisable for users to check whether they are using the product that they intend to use. Sometimes a visual inspection is enough to ensure that the polymer that is being used is what it claims to be, but there are some products that are being marketed by unscrupulous polymer dealers who match polymer colors to persuade users of a particular polymer’s authenticity.
These experiences tend to be the exception, but can be costly. Not only can the cost of copy-cat or counterfeit bearings be considerable, if bearings fail catastrophically, expensive production downtime or equipment breakdown can result.
It may be best to check with the manufacturer if there is any doubt as to a polymer’s authenticity, especially when a thermoplastic brand is chosen for particular characteristics. If purchasers are buying from a reseller, it is recommended that buyers request a certificate of conformance with a manufacturer’s stamp.
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