A Blog by Jonathan Low

 

Oct 19, 2022

Russia's Looming Logistical Nightmare: Ball Bearing Shortage Puts Railroads On Verge of Collapse

"For want of a nail, the shoe was lost; or want of a shoe, the horse was lost; and for want of a horse, the rider was lost." That's an old proverb, complementing Shakespeare's line attributed to King Richard III as he went down in battle and desperate to escape cried, "My kingdom for a horse." 

The proverbial nail in Russia's case is a ball bearing, as pictured to the left.  Russia's railroad cars, engines and trucks depend on them. But it can no longer manufacture or import them. And because of the state of its roads it is dependent on its railroads (just as it was a century ago during WWI). Without railroad cars and engines it cannot transport soldiers, weapons and supplies. They are also used in tanks, artillery and armored personnel carriers. So without them, it cannot continue its war against Ukraine. And it is already running out of planes and missiles. For want of a ball bearing... JL

Trent Telenko reports in Twitter:

Russian railways are running low on bearings and have taken 10,000 freight cars out of service, with 200,000 more at risk. This is serious since Russia is heavily dependent on rail transport. The roller bearings Russia uses on its engines and rolling stock are both foreign sourced and covered by Western embargos. 20% of their freight cars are down for bearing already, with no replacements. Even the SKF factory in RU imported balls from Sweden (but) RU can’t import anymore. By Feb 2024, 40% of their rail cars will be down. Trends point to Russia suffering a failed state economic collapse as early as winter 2022-2023 due to a lack of rail rolling stock & trucks to distribute goods.This is hugely vital logistical development in the Russo-Ukrainian War I've been looking to happen for a couple of months. When you outsource key transportation consumable materials to foreign nations on a just-in-time basis. Sanctions kill your transportation capability.

 

Russian railways are running low on cassette bearings and have taken 10,000 freight cars out of service, with 200,000 more at risk. This is serious, since Russia is heavily dependent on rail transport. It is my understanding that the roller bearings Russia uses on its train engines and rolling stock are both foreign sourced and covered by Western embargos. Just-in-time inventory systems only work with continuous supplies.Global and national just-in-time supply chains fail catastrophically when transportation capability is mildly disrupted. While the fall of Russian imports from Western sanctions have reduced the need for Russian railway rolling stock. The mass rail movement for the Feb 2022 Ukrainian invasion massively used up much of Russia's railway bearing reserves to get the huge mechanized forces in place. Furthermore, the Russian mobilization is now making use of that Western import railway capability to move and support 'Mobiks' deep in Ukraine by rail. These transportation trends are pointing to Russia suffering a Venezuela style failed state economic collapse as early as the winter of 2022-2023 due to a lack of rail rolling stock & trucks to distribute goods.

 

The economic repercussions of Russian energy & food suddenly just falling out the world economy from this pending "transportation apocalypse" beggars the imagination.

 

20% of their freight cars are down for bearing already, with no replacements. Can’t import them either. Even the SKF factory in RU imported the spherical balls from Sweden (but) RU can’t import the balls anymore. By Feb 2024 40% of their rail cars will be down. It is for reasons like this that Putin can’t afford a long war.

0 comments:

Post a Comment