A gear is a rotating simple machine. It has cut teeth that interweave with one or more sharp toothed machine parts in order to transmit torque. A couple of gears working together make up a transmission. Gears are produced by gear manufacturing companies.
Larger machines that incorporate gears can alternate speed, torque, and direction of a power source. In the majority of machines, gears convolute with other gears. However, in some cases, gear manufacturing companies make a gear that will interknit with another toothed part that does not rotate. When this occurs, a translation is produced instead of a rotation. Gear manufacturing companies make these as well.
Spur gears, otherwise known as straight cut gears, are the simplest type of gear made by gear manufacturing companies. Although many spur gears are made on an assembly line, some spur gears are custom made gears. Often, spur gears are manufactured by reverse engineering companies.
Spur gears are made up of a disk that is shaped in a volumetric curve with the teeth projecting outwardly from the center. Each tooth is straight edged and placed parallel to the axis of rotation. Spur gears can only be meshed together in the right way if they are matched to parallel shafts. Spur gears are used in the electric screwdriver, oscillating sprinkler, and windup alarm. As well, spur gears are found in both washing machines and dryers. So you cannot get your clothes clean without spur gears!
Bevel gears are made by gear manufacturing companies. Dissimilarly to spur gears, bevel gears are often utilized on shafts mounted at 90 degree angles. As well, bevel gears made at gear manufacturing companies are useful when the direction of a shaft rotation must shift. Bevel gears are often found in car differentials.
Rack and pinion gear arrangements are linear actuators that have a variety of uses, one of which is the operation of locomotives on a track. As well, rack and pinion arrangements are found in the steering mechanism of an automobile. Sometimes, the rack and pinion is produced by worm gear manufacturers.
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