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How does a Gear Reducer Works

While gearbox reduction and worm gear reducer are extremely common in mechanical power transmission equipment, many would be unable to describe how it works. The following is a basic explanation of how gearbox reduction works, along with mathematically-based description of its function.

The Role of the Gear Reducer

Gearbox reduction, on a basic level, reduces a motor's rotation speed output while increasing its torque. Here are some common uses for gearbox reduction:

Reducing a motor's RPMs. Sometimes, a motor's operating speed is simply too fast for the application. To find the speed of a wheel in miles per hour from its RPMs, multiply its diameter by the RPMs, then divide by the constant 336.1352. By this formula, we can determine that a motor running at 3,000 RPMs attached to a 6-inch wheel will move at 54 miles per hour. This is far too fast for some applications, such as precision robotics. A Falk gear reducer would be used in this situation to convert the excess speed to useful torque at a more reasonable speed.

Speed to torque ratio selection. Some systems require variable speed to torque ratios. One of the most familiar examples is an automobile. While you're likely to want more torque and less speed for driving in the city or up hills, you'll want more speed and less torque for driving on the highway. Just as a Falk gear reducer does in an industrial setting, so does a car's transmission utilize gearbox reduction.

Gearbox Reduction - How it Works

Having covered a couple of examples of the uses for gearbox reduction, let's move on to the mathematics behind how a speed reducer, such as a Falk gearbox, works.

A gearbox speed reducer converts speed to torque. This can be understood with the mathematics of gear ratios.

Gear ratio is a measure of how varying sizes of gears, wheels, chains, belts etc. interact to transfer energy. All of these components can be thought of as circles on their most basic level.

The basic measurements of circles come into play here, including diameter (the measurement across the center of the circle) and circumference (the distance around the outside of the circle - calculated by multiplying the diameter by pi, or 3.1415).

This formula can be used to describe how a Falk gear reducer works on a very basic level. A wheel with an 8 inch circumference will make half as many rotations as a wheel with a 4 inch circumference will to move the same distance across a surface.

If that 4 inch wheel is turning against the surface of the 8 inch wheel, the 4 inch wheel will make two rotations to turn the 8 inch wheel once. This would be a gear reduction of 2:1. This means that the output speed has been halved, while its torque has been doubled.

While a gearbox works on the same basic principle, it isn't likely this simple. Gear reducers will often utilize a series of dozens of gear reducer, sometimes converting RPMs to torque by a measure of 1000:1.

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