Gear Production

JUN 2015

Gear Production

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8—GEAR Production Supplement F E A T U R E more powerful drives behind them; measuring systems that are so precise they basically eliminate subjectivity and human error; and closed-loop software that features a graphical user interface that is more conversational and user-friendly than past versions—light years beyond the DOS-based software introduced more than three decades ago. Mr. Alaniva also points to major improvements in abrasives technology. Along with more powerful, rigid and stable grinding machines, wheel bonds and grain structures have been developed that perfectly match the action and desired outcomes of deep grinding. This has resulted in gears that routinely meet the tolerances of industries such as aerospace and high-end automotive, using a process that is increasingly cost effective. This has had a tremendous effect on Rave Gears' relationship with its customers from an operational standpoint. "Not that long ago a 12-hour setup for ground tooth development was considered to be effcient, and that didn't change for years," Mr. Roberge says. "Now, by eliminating setups on cutting machines and doing all our work on the grinder, we are regularly setting up our machines and beginning production within three hours. And let me be clear, we're talking about developing a fnished spiral bevel gear the frst time through, while we worked 12 solid hours in the past and ended up with a part that wasn't acceptable, which meant you had to start all over again." Lessons Learned The company's commitment to deep grinding— as well as the closed-loop system—is helping bolster its reputation for producing complex gearing quickly, accurately and economically, according to Mr. Roberge. "People call wanting a quote for deep grinding 120 sets of gears—three ring gears and two pinions, for instance—and we're able to do it for a fraction of the cost that we once were," he says. "You're not going to get the job if you have to charge them for fve or six operations. When you combine the closed-loop process with deep grinding you can get everything done in one operation. Plus, turnaround time has been reduced. Jobs that previously took days to machine can now be Gears in protective coverings are ready to be shipped to customers around the country, in- cluding those found in the aerospace, automotive, oil and gas, racing, and military/defense markets.

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