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A bevel gearbox – what is that?

Bevel gearboxes are a common form of right-angle gearboxes. Here, two bevel gears mesh in such a way that a angle is created between the input and output.

In most bevel gearboxes, this is 90 degrees. However, other angles are also possible. Depending on how they are used, these gearboxes can rotate in the same direction or in the opposite direction.

The simplest and lowest-cost type of bevel gearbox consists of a straight-toothed or a helical-toothed bevel gear stage. Hypoid gearboxes are a special form of bevel gearboxes. You can find out more about these gearboxes here. (linked to hypoid gearboxes)

What are the special features?

The gearing in a bevel gearbox results in a small overlap of the gear tooth profiles. This has an adverse effect on the smoothness of operation. In addition, a bevel gearbox can only accommodate comparatively low torques. Accordingly, the gear ratio is usually low. If, for example, a bevel gearbox and a planetary gearbox are combined, the bevel gearbox usually has a transmission ratio of 1:1.

Hypoid bevel gears and spiral bevel gears can do even more

If a bevel gearbox is to provide high torques and smooth running, hypoid gears are a possibility. They rely on spiral-cut gear teeth. This is more costly in terms of design and production. On the other hand, higher torques are possible and operation is smoother.

High bearing load

These gearboxes are subject to high axial and radial forces. These can be accommodated with the right bearings. However, when you combine bevel gearboxes and planetary gearboxes to form multi-stage gearboxes, you have to consider the service life of the bearings. Especially if the bevel gearbox operates at high speeds at the input stage. An interesting detail: Unlike the case of worm gearboxes, self-locking is not possible in bevel gearboxes.

Bevel gearbox application examples – who uses them?

There is hardly an industry and sector in which this type of gearbox is not used. They are ideal where there is little space. Also as bevel gear planetary gearbox combination. Because this simply makes higher torques possible.

The advantages of bevel gearboxes:

  • They can be used when space is limited.
  • They are compact and can be combined with other types of gearboxes.
  • Higher speeds are possible when using spiral bevel gears.
  • They are a cost-effective alternative to hypoid gearboxes.

The disadvantages of bevel gearboxes:

  • They have a complex design.
  • Their efficiency is lower than that of planetary gearboxes.
  • Their running noise is higher.
  • In the single-stage ratio range, the torques are lower.

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