Gear Production

SEP 2016

Gear Production

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10—GEAR Production Supplement machining center, and rotated at speeds ranging from 500 to 2,000 rpm, fully enveloped in an abrasive media cloud. Highly refined surfaces can be developed when a secondary operation utilizing dry polishing soft granulates, treated with fine polishing materials occurs as a follow- up to the abrasive deburring, contouring and smoothing operation. "Once you've got abrasive particles impinging the part at that level of force, you're creating a shot-peening effect without creating shot-peening surfaces," Mr. Davidson says. From an environmental perspective, that TAM produces these effects in a waterless, dry operation is an added advantage. Unlike most of the other mass-finishing methods, TAM produces no wet-waste discharge effluent that requires treatment or remediation. Admittedly, TAM investment is more on the capital equipment level, but users can create edge contours and other surface finishes very rapidly—with 60- to 120-second cycles in many cases—and machines can accommodate large gears in the 48-inch diameter range that would make vibratory or centrifugal finishing inefficient, if not impossible. According to Jim Riley of BV Products, a surface improvement technologies specialist based in Victoria, Australia, the advantage and benefit feature sets most commonly attributed to these types of isotropic finishing are: Performance Benefits • Reduced friction • Incr eased part durability • Improved corrosion resistance • Reduced wear • Reduced lubrication requirements and cost • Impr oved oil retention • Reduced contact and bending fatigue • Impr oved pitting resistance • Reduced vibration and noise attenuation • Reduced applied tor que requirements • Improved surface finish uniformity (part-to- par t, feature-to-feature and lot-to-lot) • High-quality, micro-finished surfaces Reduced Friction Benefits • Increased fuel economy • Reduced contact fatigue • Increased power density • Lower operating temperatur e • Extended mean time between maintenance overhauls • Reduced maintenance costs • Eliminated br eak-in • Extended component life • Reduced metal debris • Reduced part failures • Minimized overheating Many gears and gear sets in a variety of industries remain subject to fatigue, fracture and wear, Mr. Davidson says. "Such parts can gain substantial improvements in life and performance, from alterations to their overall surface texture. Improvements in overall smoothness, load-bearing ratio, surface profile skewness and isotropicity can, in many instances, improve life and performance and cut operational costs dramatically. Manufacturers that have not subjected their parts to an analysis to determine the potential benefits of this kind of processing may be making parts that are not all that they can be." A better understanding of gear-finishing options will add to performance levels and service life. (Photo courtesy of Mark Riley, BV Products.)

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