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Articles About coordinate measurement
Mitutoyo offers capable, affordable and flexible gear inspection option via coordinate measuring machines and gear inspection software.
When parts you manufacture pass through numerous processes such as deep hole drilling, machining, hobbing and grinding, a CMM is essential when your customers require 100 percent in-process and final inspection.
In recent years, gear inspection requirements have changed considerably, but inspection methods have barely kept pace. The gap is especially noticeable in bevel gears, whose geometry has always made testing them a complicated, expensive and time-consuming process. Present roll test methods for determining flank form and quality of gear sets are hardly applicable to bevel gears at all, and the time, expense and sophistication required for coordinate measurement has limited its use to gear development, with only sampling occurring during production.
The trend toward moving coordinate measuring machines to the shop floor to become an integral part of the manufacturing operations brings real time process control within the reach of many companies. Putting measuring machines on the shop floor, however, subjects them to harsh environmental conditions. Like any measuring system, CMMs are sensitive to any ambient condition that deviates from the "perfect" conditions of the metrology lab.
Metrology is a vital component of gear manufacturing. Recent changes in this area, due in large part to the advent of computers, are highlighted in this article by comparison with more traditional methods.
Question: What is functional measurement and what is the best method for getting truthful answers?
Temperature Induced Dimensional Changes Temperature causes various materials to change size at different rate, known as their Coefficients of Expansion (COE). The effects of this phenomenon on precision dimensional measurements are continuous and costly to industry. Precautions can be taken to allow parts and gages to temperature stabilize before conducting gage R & R studies, but the fact remains that on the shop floor temperatures vary all the time. The slow pace at which industry has accepted this reality probably has to do with the subtlety of these tiny size variations and our inability to sense gradual, but significant temperature changes.
From time to time, the editors of "Shop Floor" receive correspondence from readers relating to particular articles they have written for past issues. As one of the purposes of this column is to provide a forum for the exchange of ideas, we reproduce here two of these letters and their replies. The subject of the first is the functional measurement of gears. (See Gear Technology, Sept/Oct, 1991, p. 17) Robert E. Smith writes the reply.
Runout is a troublemaker! Good shop practice for the manufacture or inspection of gears requires the control of runout. Runout is a characteristic of gear quality that results in an effective center distance variation. As long as the runout doesn't cause loss of backlash, it won't hurt the function of the gear, which is to transmit smooth motion under load from one shaft to another. However, runout does result in accumulated pitch variation, and this causes non-uniform motion, which does affect the function of the gears. Runout is a radial phenomenon, while accumulated pitch variation is a tangential characteristic that causes transmission error. Gears function tangentially. It is also possible to have a gear with accumulated pitch variation, but little or no runout.
The purpose of gear inspection is to: Assure required accuracy and quality, Lower overall cost of manufacture by controlling rejects and scrap, Control machines and machining practices and maintain produced accuracy as machines and tools wear, Determine hear treat distortions to make necessary corrections.
How well you conduct your inspections can be the difference-maker for securing high-value contracts from your customers. And as with most other segments of the gear industry, inspection continues striving to attain “exact science” status. With that thought in mind, following is a look at the state of gear inspection and what rigorous inspection practices deliver—quality.
Eliot K. Buckingham explains the procedure for proper measurement over wires for worm gears, in response to last issue's article.
Gleason's GMS analytical gear inspection systems provide all the right features at Eaton Corp.
The working surfaces of gear teeth are often the result of several machining operations. The surface texture imparted by the manufacturing process affects many of the gear's functional characteristics. To ensure proper operation of the final assembly, a gear's surface texture characteristics, such as waviness and roughness, can be evaluated with modern metrology instruments.
Our experts discuss runout and helix accuracy, as well as the maximum number of teeth in a shaper cutter.
AGMA introduced ANSI/AGMA 2015–2–A06— Accuracy Classification System: Radial System for Cylindrical Gears, in 2006 as the first major rewrite of the double-flank accuracy standard in over 18 years. This document explains concerns related to the use of ANSI/AGMA 2015–2–A06 as an accuracy classification system and recommends a revised system that can be of more service to the gearing industry.
This section will deal with the use of gear inspection for diagnostic purposes rather than quality determination. The proper evaluation of various characteristics in the data can be useful for the solution of quality problems. It is important to sort out whether the problem is coming from the machine, tooling and/or cutters, blanks, etc. An article by Robert Moderow in the May/June 1985 issue of Gear Technology is very useful for this purpose.
Several articles have appeared in this publication in recent years dealing with the principles and ways in which the inspection of gears can be carried out, but these have dealt chiefly with spur, helical and bevel gearing, whereas worm gearing, while sharing certain common features, also requires an emphasis in certain areas that cause it to stand apart. For example, while worm gears transmit motion between nonparallel shafts, as do bevel and hypoid gears, they usually incorporate much higher ratios and are used in applications for which bevel would not be considered, including drives for rotary and indexing tables in machine tools, where close tolerance of positioning and backlash elimination are critical, and in situations where accuracy of pitch and profile are necessary for uniform transmission at speed, such as elevators, turbine governor drives and speed increasers, where worm gears can operate at up to 24,000 rpm.
Surface roughness measuring of gear teeth can be a very frustrating experience. Measuring results often do not correlate with any functional characteristic, and many users think that they need not bother measuring surface roughness, since the teeth are burnished in operation. They mistakenly believe that the roughness disappears in a short amount of time. This is a myth! The surface indeed is shiny, but it still has considerable roughness. In fact, tests indicate that burnishing only reduces the initial roughness by approximately 25%.
No one (not even you and I) consistently makes parts with perfect form and dimensions, so we must be able to efficiently check size and shape at many stages in the manufacturing and assembly process to eliminate scrap and rework and improve processes and profits. Automated inspection systems, which are widely used in all kinds of manufacturing operations, provide great efficiencies in checking individual features, but may not be as effective when asked to evaluate an entire part. You need to know why this is true and what you can do to improve your part yields.
A programmable algorithm is developed to separate out the effect of eccentricity (radial runout) from elemental gear inspection date, namely, profile and lead data. This algorithm can be coded in gear inspection software to detect the existence, the magnitude and the orientation of the eccentricity without making a separate runout check. A real example shows this algorithm produces good results.
Our experts tackle the topic of measuring involute masters, including both master gears and gear inspection artifacts.
In 1993, M & M Precision Systems was awarded a three-year, partial grant from the Advanced Technology Program of the Department of Commerce's National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST). Working with Pennsylvania State University, M&M embarked on a technology development project to advance gear measurement capabilities to levels of accuracy never before achieved.
The data discussed in this article was taken from an upright vacuum cleaner. This was a prototype cleaner that was self-propelled by a geared transmission. It was the first time that the manufacturer had used a geared transmission in this application.
The first commandment for gears reads "Gears must have backlash!" When gear teeth are operated without adequate backlash, any of several problems may occur, some of which may lead to disaster. As the teeth try to force their way through mesh, excessive separating forces are created which may cause bearing failures. These same forces also produce a wedging action between the teeth with resulting high loads on the teeth. Such loads often lead to pitting and to other failures related to surface fatigue, and in some cases, bending failures.
Quality gear inspection means doing the "right" inspections "right." A lot of time and money can be spent doing the wrong types of inspections related to function and doing them incorrectly. As we will discover later, such things as runout can creep into the manufacturing and inspection process and completely ruin any piece of data that is taken. this is one of the most important problems to control for quality inspection.
There are problems in dimensional measurement that should be simple to solve with standard measuring procedures, but aren't. In such cases, using accepted practices may result in errors of hundreds of microns without any warning that something is wrong.
Question: We just received permission to purchase our first CNC gear inspection system. With capital approvals so hard to come by, especially for inspection equipment, I want to be sure to purchase a system I can count of for years to come. My past experience with purchasing CNC equipment has shown me that serviceability of the computer and the CNC controller portion of the system can be a problem in just a few years because of the obsolescence factor. What information do I need to look for when selecting a supplier to reduce the risk of obsolescence, as well as to reduce the long-term servicing costs in the computer and controls portion of the system?
The purpose of this article is to clarify some terms and methods used in measuring the size of gears. There is also an explanation given of the error induced and how to correct for it in certain cases when the measurement is made using pins instead of balls.
Could the tip chamfer that manufacturing people usually use on the tips of gear teeth be the cause of vibration in the gear set? The set in question is spur, of 2.25 DP, with 20 degrees pressure angle. The pinion has 14 teeth and the mating gear, 63 teeth. The pinion turns at 535 rpm maximum. Could a chamfer a little over 1/64" cause a vibration problem?
It has previously been demonstrated that one gear of an interchangeable series will rotate with another gear of the same series with proper tooth action. It is, therefore, evident that a tooth curve driven in unison with a mating blank, will "generate" in the latter the proper tooth curve to mesh with itself.
Transmission error (TE) is recognized as one of the most important causes of gear acoustic emissions...
It may not be widely recognized that most of the inspection data supplied by inspection equipment, following the practices of AGMA Standard 2015 and similar standards, are not of elemental accuracy deviations but of some form of composite deviations. This paper demonstrates the validity of this “composite” label by first defining the nature of a true elemental deviation and then, by referring to earlier literature, demonstrating how the common inspection practices for involute, lead (on helical gears), pitch, and, in some cases, total accumulated pitch, constitute composite measurements.
The two-flank roll test measures kickout (tooth-to-tooth composite error) and tooth thickness. In this article, it will be shown that measured values vary with the number of teeth on the master gear.
Wait a minute, we don't measure pitch diameter. We're sometimes asked to measure it by customers, though, especially ones with older drawings.
The presence of significant errors in the two-flank roll test (a work gear rolled in tight mesh against a master gear) is well-known, but generally overlooked.
This paper presents the results of research directed at measuring the total stress in a pair of statically loaded and carburized spur gears. Measurements were made to examine the change in total stress as a function of externally applied load and depth below the surface.
This article describes a new technique for the size determination of external Involute splines by using a span measuring method. It provides application performance information demonstrating how this method and its measurements correlate with the traditional spline ring gage sizing method.
Your May/June issue contains a letter from Edward Ubert of Rockwell International with some serious questions about specifying and measuring tooth thickness.
Much of the information in this article has been extracted from an AGMA Technical Paper, "What Single Flank Testing Can Do For You", presented in 1984 by the author
In response to Ed Uberts letter, we have come a long way in gearing since WWII. The Europeans do use long addendum pinions in many cases. This modification does improve load capacity, sliding conditions and the working life of a gearset. When modifying a pinion tooth it is necessary to modify the gear tooth or adjust the center distance accordingly but we will leave that to the designers.
Much information has been written on gear inspection, analytical. functional. semiautomatic and automatic. In most cases, the charts, (if you are lucky enough to have recording equipment) have been explained.
This letter is in response to your article asking the readers where their interests lie. The division of Rockwell International where I work has engineering departments in Cicero.
The status on traceability of gear artifacts in the United States.
Klingelnberg measuring centers eliminate trial-and-error with modern analysis tools.
A reader clarifies technology presented in the March/April 2011 issue.
Meeting the many challenges of large gear inspection.
Presumably, everyone who would be interested in this subject is already somewhat familiar with testing of gears by traditional means. Three types of gear inspection are in common use: 1) measurement of gear elements and relationships, 2) tooth contact pattern checks and 3) rolling composite checks. Single Flank testing falls into this last category, as does the more familiar Double Flank test.
An expression is derived, giving the optimum number of teeth over which the span measurement should be made, for profile-shifted spur and helical gears.
Anyone involved in the design, manufacture and use of gears is concerned with three general characteristics relative to their application: noise, accuracy, and strength or surface durability. In the article, we will be dealing with probably the most aggravating of the group, gear noise.
A new inspection method has several advantages over traditional methods, especially for very large or very small gears.
With growing markets in aerospace and energy technologies, measuring hob cutters used in gear cutting is becoming an essential requirement for workpieces and machine tools. Zoller, a provider of solutions for tool pre-setters, measuring and inspection machines and tool management software, has developed a new partnership with Ingersoll/Germany for shop floor checking of hob cutters by a combined hardware and software approach.
Good timing leads to partnership between Process Equipment and Schafer Gear.
Investment in Gleason GMM Series inspection equipment helps drive Milwaukee Gear's expansion into profitable new markets around the world—all hungry for high-precision custom gears and gear drives.
Xspect Solutions Provides Wenzel Bridge-Type CMM Equipped with OpenDMIS Software for Basic Gear Measuring Capability with CMM Flexibility.
In comparison with the traditional gear design approach based on preselected, typically standard generating rack parameters, the Direct Gear Design method provides certain advantages for custom high-performance gear drives that include: increased load capacity, efficiency and lifetime; reduced size, weight, noise, vibrations, cost, etc. However, manufacturing such directly designed gears requires not only custom tooling, but also customization of the gear measurement methodology. This paper presents definitions of main inspection dimensions and parameters for directly designed spur and helical, external and internal gears with symmetric and asymmetric teeth.
At Andrew Tool, CMMs have been an integral part of their manufacturing processes for years, but they had never faced a project with such intricate measurements, tight tolerances, heat treatments and a very short time frame requirement.
Gear manufacturing schedules that provide both quality and economy are dependent on efficient quality control techniques with reliable measuring equipment. Given the multitude of possible gear deviations, which can be found only by systematic and detailed measuring of the gear teeth, adequate quality control systems are needed. This is especially true for large gears, on which remachining or rejected workpieces create very high costs. First, observation of the gears allows adjustment of the settings on the equipment right at the beginning of the process and helps to avoid unproductive working cycles. Second, the knowledge of deviations produced on the workpiece helps disclose chance inadequacies on the production side: e.g., faults in the machines and tools used, and provides an opportunity to remedy them.