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The Importance Of Bearing Selection On Gearbox Performance

- Apr 19, 2018 -

The gears throughout a gearbox are precision manufactured with high accuracy that require trained technicians to assemble and install. It is not unusual for a simple reduction gearbox to have many stages that may include bevel and pinion gears for drive/input direction changes, as well as multiple helical gears of differing ratios to achieve the desired output.

The objective is to have the gearbox operate as quietly as possible. To assist with this, helical gears are generally used in preference to spur (or cross-cut) gears to reduce audible gear mesh noise. We all recall the ‘whine’ of our manual cars when we reversed? In these cases, reverse is a spur gear.

Helical gears are excellent for power transmission, durability and quiet operation, however there is a downside to this design. As these gears are manufactured with an angle, there is always a resultant axial (thrust) force that requires attention.

In applications where this axial load becomes extremely large, the helical gears are cut in opposing directions, often referred to as ‘herringbone gears’. This design requires:

  • Increasing the gearbox sizing

  • More accuracy in assembly and

  • Adds additional cost in the precision

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