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The oil industry is (pardon the pun) tanking. That may conjure up horrific images of other industries following suit in a domino effect of collective collapse into the overabundant oil slick the industry is currently drowning in, but not everyone is getting knocked down alongside the oil sector.
Gear manufacturers are generally an optimistic bunch, as revealed by our 2013 State-of-the-Gear-Industry Survey, which appears in this issue.
Latest News from the Industry
Gear Technology's annual State-of-the-Gear-Industry survey polls gear manufacturers about the latest trends and opinions relating to the overall health of the gear industry.
From a technological perspective, there typically aren't many EUREKA! breakthroughs in the "state of the gear industry" to report, and 2014 was really no different.
Most companies spend this time of year crystal ball gazing. Managers want to know the future so they can make projections, plan schedules, determine budgets and make major decisions that will ensure their success.
Gear Technologyâ€™s annual State-of- the-Gear-Industry survey polls gear manufacturers about the latest trends and opinions relating to the overall health of the gear industry. As in years past, the survey was conducted anonymously, with invitations sent by e-mail to gear manufacturing companies around the world.
If you are like most navigators of the printed page, the first thing you read in this final 2013 issue of Gear Technology was our State of the Gear Industry Survey. And who would blame you? Itâ€™s not Sabermetrics, but once youâ€™ve read it youâ€™ll have a pretty clear snapshot of last year and a peek into the next. But if you also like to get a little closer to the bone about things, what follows are the collected opinions of five well-regarded people in the gear industry speaking to a number of issues with relevance.
Trying to figure out whatâ€™s going on in this crazy economy of ours seems a bit like reading tea leavesâ€”one part pseudoscience and three parts wild conjecture. Of course some pundits are telling us that this bull market has legs, while others insist that weâ€™re due for a major correction. Some pump us up with positive news, while others remind us about scary stuff like the budget deficit, the European financial crisis and unemployment.
Gear Technology's annual State-of-the-Gear-Industry survey polls gear manufacturers about the latest trends and opinions relating to the overall health of the gear industry. As in years past, the survey was conducted anonymously, with invitations sent by e-mail to gear manufacturing companies around the world.
In March 1989, the U.S. Trade Representative requested the U.S. International Trade Commission to conduct an investigation and prepare a report on the competitive position of the U.S. gear industry in U.S. and global markets.
Gear Technologyâ€™s annual state-of-the-gear-industry survey polls gear manufacturers about the latest trends and opinions relating to the overall health of the gear industry. As in years past, the survey was conducted anonymously, with invitations sent by e-mail to gear manufacturing companies around the world.
Before we get into projections and prognostications about the future, letâ€™s take a minute to review 2012. For many in the gear industry, the year was better than expected. Some manufacturers had a very successful year leading up to an even more successful manufacturing trade show (IMTS 2012). Others were searching for more business, hoping that the general state of the economy wouldnâ€™t make things worse. In some cases, it did.
Economic times are good right now in America and in the gear industry. We're in the seventh year of an up cycle. The tough shake-outs of the 1980s and early 90s are over. Orders are up. Backlogs are at comfortable levels. We're looking at what promises to be the biggest, most successful trade show in the industry's history coming up in Detroit in October. The most pressing question on the immediate horizon seems to be "How long can the good times go on?"
More Gears in Cyberspace Dial in to the web site of Chicago's Museum of Science and Industry for an online version of the museum's Gears from the Century of Progress exhibit.
Sometimes in the pressure to meet deadlines and handle the Crisis of the Day, we lose sight of the forest for the trees. As a partial cure for this syndrome, I recently reviewed the six interviews with gear industry leaders that have appeared in our pages during the last year, trying to get a grasp of a larger picture. It struck me with renewed force how six men, each with a lifetime of experience in this business, see the gear industry forest the same way.
Another year has passed and, because of the short term ups and downs of the economy, it's still hard to judge whether we are in an appreciably different place than we were a year ago. The economy doesn't seem to be worse than it was, but it also doesn't seem to be a whole lot better.
From the Economics to 4.0 â€” Industry Leaders Have Their Say
Latest news from around the industry
Next year will be the 500th anniversary of Christopher Columbus' famous "discovery" of America. Poor Columbus has fallen on hard times of late, what with revisionist historians smacking their lips over his more notable failures and reminding us that American natives have a vastly different point of view on this Great American Success Story. But before we relegate the Great Navigator to the scrap heap of trashed-over heros, let's take one last look at some of the positive lessons to be learned from the Columbus experience - ones that could be instructive to our current situation in the American gear industry.
Results from our annual survey of gear manufacturers reveal that business is good, but the skilled labor situation is not.
Depending on who you ask, the Industrial Internet of Things is growing more slowly than anyone predicted. Why is that, and what does that mean for the gear manufacturing industry?
Gear industry experts give their opinions about the most important trends facing gear manufacturers today.
Overall, the gear industry enjoyed a very strong 2018, and the optimism expressed by survey respondents is the highest in recent years. When asked about their optimism regarding their companiesâ€™ ability to compete over the next five years, 85.8% of respondents indicated some level of optimism.
Weâ€™ve just come off a very strong year for gear manufacturing, and most of you are looking forward to another good year in 2019. At least, thatâ€™s what the results of our annual State-of-the-Gear-Industry survey tell us.
More than any other field, IIoT overlaps directly with metrology's mission to analyze and measure as much of the manufacturing process as possible, and it's no surprise that the latter is utilizing the former.
This report describes Klingelnberg's vision of Industry 4.0 gear production.
As the founder, president and co-host of Manufacturing Talk Radio, as well as publisher of Metals & Manufacturing Outlook eZine, I am excited to report that the economic outlook for 2018 is just too good not to tout. Whatever "final GDP number" the government divines for 2017, the year will finish above 3% for the first time in a decade.
News about the latest products in the industry.
It's probably no surprise to anyone that the majority of the gear industry had a pretty good year in 2017, and that most gear manufacturers are expecting a pretty good 2018 as well. After all, most major economic indicators - including the ones that focus on the manufacturing sector - have been positive for some time.
At the mid-year point of 2017, it appears that the U.S. economy, and the manufacturing sector in particular, are gradually accelerating, with most markets seeing an upside breakout from the flat or down conditions of 2015 and 2016.
Suppliers are working hard to make sure their heat treating equipment is controllable, repeatable and efficient, and manufacturers continue to incorporate technology that gives heat treaters and their customers more information about what's going on inside the magic box.
The results of our Annual State of the Gear Industry Survey (See page 26) provided insight on 2016 as well as forecasts for 2017. Here is additional insight from some of the industry's leaders.
Gear Technology's annual State of the Gear Industry survey polls gear manufacturers about the latest trends and opinions relating to the overall health of the gear industry.
For many of us, 2016 was a rough year - and the results of our annual State of the Gear Industry Survey show it. 40% of respondents indicated their companies had cut staff, while only 27% indicated an increase in employment. Clearly, there have been widespread cutbacks.
It's Monday morning, December 15, 2036. An autonomous vehicle drops off two engineers in front of a gear manufacturing facility in Metro Detroit. They punch in for work on their wristwatches and pay Uber for the ride on a smartphone. One of the engineers begins walking the shop floor, monitoring a series of collaborative robots using a tablet the size of a paperback novel. These robots interact right on the floor with the minimal staff scheduled to oversee manufacturing operations. Another engineer wears an interactive headset and begins training a group of new engineers (in real time) from China using some form of augmented reality.
It always strikes me as something of an irony that the brightest holidays of the year fall in the deepest part of the darkest season. They come when the days are the shortest, the clouds the thickest, the weather (at least in Chicago), the worst. And yet it is at precisely this time when we celebrate the happier human emotions of family, love, and charity and somewhat arbitrarily declare a "new" year.
Dear Editor: Re: Your editorial and "Viewpoint" by Joe Arvin. Both you and Mr. Arvin make some valid points. Your editorial appears to be a response to Mr. Arvin's "Viewpoint." This is a response to both
The following article is concerned with the analysis of the wear-reducing effect of PVD-coatings in gearings. Standardized test methods are used, which under near-real conditions enable statements to be made about the different forms of damage and wear (micropitting, macropitting, scuffing).
Myth No. 1: Oil Is Oil. Using the wrong oil is a common cause of gear failure. Gears require lubricants blended specifically for the application. For example, slow-speed spur gears, high-speed helical gears, hypoid gears and worm gears all require different lubricants. Application parameters, such as operating speeds, transmitted loads, temperature extremes and contamination risks, must be considered when choosing an oil. Using the right oil can improve efficiency and extend gear life.
Industry battles it out for World's Largest Gear title.
Universal tractor transmission oil (UTTO) is multifunctional tractor oil formulated for use in transmissions, final drives, differentials, wet brakes, and hydraulic systems of farm tractors employing a common oil reservoir. In the present work, the gear protection properties of two formulated vegetable-based UTTO oils, one synthetic ester-based UTTO oil, one synthetic ester gear oil, and one mineral based UTTO oil are investigated.
Mineral-oil-base lubricants show a significant decrease of kinematic viscosity with rising temperature, as exemplified in Figure 1 by lubricants for vehicle gears. An important attribute of lubricants is their viscosity index (VI), according to DIN/ISO 2909 (Ref. 4). Viscosity index is a calculated coefficient, which characterizes the change of viscosity of lubricants as a function of temperature. A high viscosity index represents a low variation of viscosity due to temperature and vice versa. A low viscosity-temperature-dependence is required for lubricants that are operated at significantly varying temperature conditions, such as vehicle engine and gear lubricants in summer and winter time. This way, the oils remain flowing and pumpable at low temperatures on the one hand; and on the other hand, sufficiently thick lubricant films can be formed at higher temperatures for a safe separation of the surfaces.
The diagnosis and prevention of gear tooth and bearing wear requires the discovery and understanding of the particular mechanism of wear, which in turn indicates the best method of prevention. Because a gearbox is a tribologically dependent mechanism, some understanding of gear and bearing tribology is essential for this process. Tribology is the general term for the study and practice of lubrication, friction and wear. If tribology is neglected or considered insignificant, poor reliability and short life will result.
Aircraft transmissions for helicopters, turboprops and geared turbofan aircraft require high reliability and provide several thousand hours of operation between overhauls. In addition, They should be lightweight and have very high efficiency to minimize operating costs for the aircraft.
Today gear drive operations have several options when selecting the proper lubricant for their gearboxes. As in the past, the primary lubricant used for gearbox lubrication is mineral oil. But with the advances in technology, synthetic hydrocarbons (PAOs) and polyglycols show very specific advantages in certain applications. With gear drives becoming more and more precise, it is now also to the benefit of the gear operator to verify that he or she has the proper additive package and viscosity in the lubricant selected. Fig. 1 shoes that a gear oil is a combination of a base oil and specific additives. The base oils can be either mineral oil, a synthetic or even in some cases a combination of the two.
Question: Do machines exist that are capable of cutting bevel gear teeth on a gear of the following specifications: 14 teeth, 1" circular pitch, 14.5 degrees pressure angle, 4 degrees pitch cone angle, 27.5" cone distance, and an 2.5" face width?
Historically, wind turbine gearbox failures have plagued the industry. Yet an effective oil analysis program will increase the reliability and availability of your machinery, while minimizing maintenance costs associated with oil change-outs, labor, repairs and downtime. Practical action steps are presented here to improve reliability.
The Integral Temperature Method for the evaluation of the scoring load capacity of gears is described. All necessary equations for the practical application are presented. The limit scoring temperature for any oil can be obtained from a gear scoring test.
Uncertainty casts a shadow over future business opportunities for manufacturers serving the new energy markets.
The October 2011 issue of Gear Technology featured the article â€śLow-Distortion Heat Treatment of Transmission Components,â€ť which covered the combination of low-pressure carburizing and high pressure gas quenching in an automotive environment. Here, heat treating expert Dan Herring explains why oil quenching is an appropriate choice for many applications.
A study was performed to evaluate fault detection effectiveness as applied to gear-tooth pitting-fatigue damage. Vibration and oil-debris monitoring (ODM) data were gathered from 24 sets of spur pinion and face gears run during a previous endurance evaluation study.
Environmentally friendly cutting fluids aren't just good for the environment. They can also be good for performance.
This article summarizes the use of laboratory fatigue data for bearings and gears coupled with probabilistic life prediction and EHD theories to predict the life and reliability of a commercial turboprop gearbox.
Natural resourcesâ€”minerals, coal, oil, agricultural products, etc.â€”are the blessings that Mother Earth confers upon the nations of the world. But it takes unnaturally large gears to extract them.
When it comes to purchasing gear lubricants, many people on both the sales and purchasing side decide to play the numbers game. The person with the most numbers, or the biggest numbers, or the lowest numbers, must have the best product - right? Wrong; gear oil selection is not a game, and numbers alone cannot determine the right product for an application.
This paper addresses the lubrication of helical gears - especially those factors influencing lubricant film thickness and pressure. Contact between gear teeth is protected by the elastohydrodynamic lubrication (EHL) mechanism that occurs between nonconforming contact when pressure is high enough to cause large increases in lubricant viscosity due to the pressure-viscosity effect, and changes of component shape due to elastic deflection. Acting together, these effects lead to oil films that are stiff enough to separate the contacting surfaces and thus prevent significant metal-to-metal contact occurring in a well-designed gear pair.
This past fall, I had the opportunity to travel to Japan, Korea, Taiwan, and Singapore to witness first-hand the status of the power transmission and machine tool industries in these areas. Points of interest included equipment, material handling, computerization, wage and tax structures, inventory controls, and workforce attitude.
The struggles of the manufacturing economy in 2009 are well documented. Even among those of us with long careers, most of us have never seen activity come to a screeching halt the way it did last year. 2009 was tough on all of us. So, what should we expect in 2010?
Five years of effort by AGMA came to fruition in January with the publishing of a report from the Department of Commerce. This "National Security Assessment of the U.S. Gear Industry" indicates that if serious measures are not taken, the gear industry's future is in jeopardy. It also sets the tone for confronting major challenges now looming large in our industry.
Nashville - One of the highlights of this year's SME Advanced Gear Processing and Manufacturing Clinic was a tour of the new GM Saturn automobile manufacturing plant outside the city. There in the Tennessee hills is a hopeful vision of the future of the American automobile industry. It may well be the future of American large-scale manufacturing in general.
In May of this year the U.S. International Trade Commission made public its Report to the President on the condition of the U.S. gear industry. This 200+ page document is the result of a two-year study by the commission, with the help of the AGMA staff and members. It is the most comprehensive and current analytical coverage of the industry conditions and tends presently available. Because of the importance of this report to the industry, GEAR TECHNOLOGY is devoting a good portion of this issue to reprinting the Executive Summary for our readers.
Over the past several months, many gear manufacturers and industry suppliers have been telling me how busy they are. Their backlogs are the largest in history, their sales the highest theyâ€™ve been in many years. Theyâ€™ve invested in new capabilities, new machinery and people.
In November, Gear Technology conducted an anonymous survey of gear manufacturers. Invitations were sent by e-mail to thousands of individuals around the world. More than 300 individuals responded to the online survey, answering questions about their manufacturing operations and current challenges facing their businesses.
Publisher Michael Goldstein discusses why some gear manufacturing companies are enjoying record years.
Results of Gear Technology research on trends in employment, outsourcing, machine tool investment and other gear industry business practices.
Results of research on trends in employment, outsourcing, machine tool investment and other gear industry business practices.
Oil-out conditions, or conditions in which an aircraft is operating without any oil in its gearbox or transmission, are devastating for an aircraft's hardware. Even the sturdiest gears usually can't last 30 minutes under such conditions before they catastrophically fail, and the whole system usually follows shortly after. That doesn't leave pilots with a whole lot of time to find a suitable location to land in the case of an oil-out emergency.
In October, Gear Technology conducted an anonymous survey of gear manufacturers. Invitations were sent by e-mail to thousands of individuals around the world. More than 300 individuals responded to the online survey, answering questions about their manufacturing operations and current challenges facing their businesses.
The good news and the bad news about the gear industry and its role in the overall economy.
Never have so few served so many. That, in essence, describes gear makers and the role they play in our world. Think of itâ€”although the gear cutting industry represents much less than one percent of the global workforceâ€”the gears it produces are what make things run in practically every industry and profession imaginable. From bulldozers to Rolexes, gears are an integral part of the mix.
Results of research on trends in employment, outsourcing, machine tool investment and other gear industry business practices.
The oil-off (also known as loss-of-lubrication or oil-out) performance evaluation of gears is of significant interest to the Department of Defense and various rotorcraft manufacturers, so that the aircraft can safely land in an accidental loss-of-lubricant situation. However, unlike typical gear failure modes such as pitting or bending fatigue where early detection is possible, gear failure in an oil-off situation is very rapid and likely catastrophic. Failures rapidly result in the loss of torque transmission and the inability to control the aircraft.
Base oils play an important role in determining the performance of an industrial gear oil. They influence characteristics such as low temperature performance, biodegradability, energy efficiency and high temperature thermal and oxidative stability.
Amidst the energy industry's uncertain future, gearbox manufacturers are focusing on supplying the aftermarket.
Reader Survey Results. Gear Technology's annual State-of-the-Gear-Industry survey polls gear manufacturers about the latest trends and opinions relating to the overall health of the gear industry. As in years past, the survey was conducted anonymously, with invitations sent by e-mail to gear industry companies â€“ primarily in North America, but also including some respondents from around the world.