Timco Cast Polyamide 6 (“Nylon 6”) as Sheave Material

Updated Oct 7, 2010

Timco uses only the best virgin cast polyamide 6 with a polymerization of 97% or better. This cast polyamide 6 or nylon 6 is cast in an open or centrifugal mold. It is a very tough and resilient material. Even under excessive loads, it will bend before it breaks. If broken, the material resembles a tear rather than the clean break one would find with steel. 

Cast polyamide 6 is the ideal material for sheaves in most applications where wire rope, wire, fiber rope, coated cable, fiber optical, flexible hose, and belt must be lifted, flexed, and guided. 

  • Its light weight is often the most important property of a nylon 6 sheave. It increases lifting capacity, reduces inertia and therefore, cable wear, and it facilitates handling.
  • The strength of a particular nylon 6 sheave can be calculated precisely. Please consult our sheave design leaflet, or complete the work sheet for sheaves and let us do the calculations.
  • The corrosion resistance of nylon 6 sheaves against saltwater is well known. The material can be submerged in saltwater for decades.
  • The service life of nylon 6 sheaves can be phenomenal. The Groove wear is slow due to elasticity of the material.
  • Design variations are easy because the material can be machined at high tool speeds. Timco supplies sheaves with blank center bore, with bushings (bronze or plastic) or anti friction bearings securely mounted.
  • Excessive loads can be handled by properly designed cast polyamide sheaves. Timco uses press-fitted steel sleeves to achieve extra secure bearing seating. Timco also supplies sheaves with firmly seated cast-in metal sleeves where both torque loads and heavy lifting loads must be handled.
  • Price is an important consideration. Timco’s manufacturing plant is divided into two departments: One, where high-speed CNC lathes literally “turn” out hundreds or thousands of sheaves, and a smaller tool shop where even single sheaves and assembles can be made for a fair and very competitive price.


The basic advantages of sheaves made of cast polyamide 6 by Timco are: 

  1. Wire rope (cable): light weight, increases cable life, low cost.
  2. Wire: low inertia, long service life, no damage to wire surface, low cost.
  3. Fiber rope: low inertia, no snagging of fibers, low cost.
  4. Coated wire or cable: no damage to coating, low cost.
  5. Fiber optics: big sheaves radious economically feasible, no damage to cable surface, low cost.
  6. Belt or similar: low friction, light weight, low cost.


The applicability of a nylon sheave is limited by high temperatures, excessive speed, and by chemically aggressive environment. Please consult our engineering department or request our engineering manual for cast polyamide sheaves.

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