Method for the geometric modeling and rapid prototyping of involute bevel gears
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The growth of additive manufacturing technology allows the fabrication of complete functional devices with complex geometries with ease and low cost. This technology allows the fabrication of pieces that could not be made in the past with traditional manufacturing techniques, in this case, bevel gears with exact spherical involute (ESI). Focusing on this issue, this paper presents a method for the geometric design and fabrication of practical industrial-like ESI bevel gears with variable surface detail. The definition of the tooth profiles on back cones is proposed introducing a projection procedure for straight and spiral toothing. An in-house-developed software package was developed to test the method, and a pair of plastic examples were fabricated on a generic 3D printer. A comparison between the fabricated pinion and its STL model was conducted for validation purposes. Mean deviations of \(0.22\) and \(0.15~mm\) were obtained for the whole model and for the contact surfaces comparison, respectively. Thus, the fabrication of bevel gears using AMT is achieved, and can be implemented to a specific application using a particular additive manufacturing technique.
KeywordsBevel gear Geometric design Exact spherical involute Additive manufacturing
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The first author acknowledges the support of CONACYT (Consejo Nacional de Ciencia y Tecnología), México. The second, acknowledges the support of the SNI (Sistema Nacional de Investigadores), México.
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