Motion System Design

Bearings boost boo factor

According to the U.S. Census Bureau, the most recent estimate of potential trick-or-treaters (ages 5 to 13) is 36.4 million. That's a lot of kids to scare — good news for companies like Scareparts, Hilliard, Ohio, a manufacturer of animated props designed to frighten anyone in their path. The company produces a wide variety of menacing props that crawl, jump, grab, and make slashing movements, including Jester, pictured here, Sluggo, the half body of a man with exposed metal, and Resurrection, a large device that features skeletons lunging at viewers from beyond the grave.

To keep these gruesome characters moving smoothly, each one uses up to 20 bearings from igus Inc., East Providence, R.I., to enable the rotating and oscillating movements of various parts, such as bloody pop-out pieces, grabbing hands, and swinging coffin doors. Scareparts uses iglide J and iglide M250 bearings because they're made of plastic and require no maintentance or lubrication. These bearings can withstand the severe weather, dirt, mud, and high humidity to which many of the props are exposed. For more information, visit or

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