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Flexibility and productivity are the keywords in todayís grinding operations. Machines are becoming more flexible as manufacturers look for ways to produce more parts at a lower cost. What used to take two machines or more now takes just one.
The grinding/abrasives market is rapidly changing, thanks to new technology, more flexibility and an attempt to lower customer costs. Productivity is at an all-time high in this market, and itís only going to improve with further R&D. By the time IMTS 2014 rolls around this September, the gear market will have lots of new toys and gadgets to offer potential customers. If you havenít upgraded any grinding/abrasives equipment in the last five years, now might be a good time to consider the investment.
In the quest for ever more exacting and compact commercial gears, precision abrasives are playing a key production role - a role that can shorten cycle time, reduce machining costs and meet growing market demand for such requirements as light weights, high loads, high speed and quiet operation. Used in conjunction with high-quality grinding machines, abrasives can deliver a level of accuracy unmatched by other manufacturing techniques, cost-effectively meeting AGMA gear quality levels in the 12 to 15 range. Thanks to advances in grinding and abrasive technology, machining has become one of the most viable means to grind fast, strong and quiet gears.
Modern manufacturing processes have become an ally of the product designer in producing higher quality, higher performing components in the transportation industry. This is particularly true in grinding systems where the physical properties of CBN abrasives have been applied to improving cycle times, dimensional consistency, surface integrity and overall costs. Of these four factors, surface integrity offers the greatest potential for influencing the actual design of highly stressed, hardened steel components.
Cubitron II wheels are put to the test in this case study.
The complete Industry News section from the January/February 2013 issue of Gear Technology.
The complete Product News Section from the August 2013 issue of Gear Technology.
For over 50 years, grinding has been an accepted method of choice for improving the quality of gears and other parts by correcting heat treat distortions. Gears with quality levels better than AGMA 10-11 or DIN 6-7 are hard finished, usually by grinding. Other applications for grinding include, but are not limited to, internal/external and spur/helical gear and spline forms, radius forms, threads and serrations, compressor rotors, gerotors, ball screw tracks, worms, linear ball tracks, rotary pistons, vane pump rotators, vane slots, and pump spindles.
Grinding is a technique of finish-machining, utilizing an abrasive wheel. The rotating abrasive wheel, which id generally of special shape or form, when made to bear against a cylindrical shaped workpiece, under a set of specific geometrical relationships, will produce a precision spur or helical gear. In most instances the workpiece will already have gear teeth cut on it by a primary process, such as hobbing or shaping. There are essentially two techniques for grinding gears: form and generation. The basic principles of these techniques, with their advantages and disadvantages, are presented in this section.
Borazon is a superabrasive material originally developed by General Electric in 1969. It is a high performance material for machining of high alloy ferrous and super alloy materials. Borazon CBN - Cubic Born Nitride - is manufactured with a high temperature, high pressure process similar to that utilized with man-made diamond. Borazon is, next to diamond, the hardest abrasive known; it is more than twice as hard as aluminum oxide. It has an extremely high thermal strength compared to diamond. It is also much less chemically reactive with iron, cobalt or nickel alloys.
Hard Gear Finishing (HGF), a relatively new technology, represents an advance in gear process engineering. The use of Computer Numerical Controlled (CNC) equipment ensures a high precision synchronous relationship between the tool spindle and the work spindle as well as other motions, thereby eliminating the need for gear trains. A hard gear finishing machine eliminates problems encountered in two conventional methods - gear shaving, which cannot completely correct gear errors in gear teeth, and gear rolling, which lacks the ability to remove stock and also drives the workpiece without a geared relationship to the master rolling gear. Such a machine provides greater accuracy, reducing the need for conventional gear crowning, which results in gears of greater face width than necessary.
Because of the better thermal conductivity of CBN abrasives compared to that of conventional aluminum oxide wheels, CBN grinding process, which induces residual compressive stresses into the component, and possibly improves the subsequent stress behavior. This thesis is the subject of much discussion. In particular, recent Japanese publications claim great advantages for the process with regard to an increased component load capacity, but do not provide further details regarding the technology, test procedures or components investigated. This situation needs clarification, and for the this reason the effect of the CBN grinding material on the wear behavior and tooth face load capacity of continuously generated ground gears was further investigated.
The merits of CBN physical characteristics over conventional aluminum oxide abrasives in grinding performance are reviewed. Improved surface integrity and consistency in drive train products can be achieved by the high removal rate of the CBN grinding process. The influence of CBN wheel surface conditioning procedure on grinding performance is also discussed.
News Items About abrasives
1 Rex-Cut Rebrands Cotten Abrasives Line (March 14, 2012)
Rex-Cut Products, Inc. recently announced a strategic rebranding commitment to build their cotton fiber abrasives product line. The firm ... Read News
2 Rex-Cut?s Fiber Mounted Points Line Reveals Fresh Abrasives (April 27, 2006)
New cotton-fiber mounted points from Rex-Cut Products expose fresh abrasives as they work to deburr and finish in one step with chatter-f... Read News
3 Gear Expo Preview: Norton Abrasives Booth 1153 (August 22, 2013)
Norton Abrasives, a brand of Saint-Gobain, has developed and launched Norton Vitrium3, the next generation of bonded abrasives products, ... Read News
4 IMTS Preview: Saint-Gobain Abrasives (August 20, 2012)
Saint-Gobain Abrasives, the world's largest abrasives manufacturer, has recently introduced Norton Paradigm Diamond and CBN Wheels, w... Read News
5 Norton Grinding Abrasives Feature Bond Technology (June 20, 2013)
Norton Abrasives, a brand of Saint-Gobain, has developed and launched Norton Vitrium3, the next generation of bonded abrasives prod... Read News
6 Dianamic Abrasives Named Sole Reishauer Distributor (January 13, 2005)
Dianamic Abrasive Products Inc. was named exclusive aftermarket distributors for Reishauer AGs diamond and CBN dressing tools and w... Read News
7 Norton Abrasives Announces Brand Standards Program (December 3, 2012)
Norton Abrasives, a brand of Saint-Gobain Abrasives, has announced the introduction of a new global Norton brand standards program. The s... Read News