Rack & Pinions

Spur Gear Rack and Pinion Large Gears for Africa

When referring to a rack and pinion, one refers to a pair of gears consisting of a gear rack and a cylindrical gear called a pinion. The gear rack is usually flat with straight teeth cut or inserted on the surface of the rack. The rack mates with a pinion gear, and depending on the type of pinion, the rack’s teeth are either parallel (when mated with spur gears) or angled (when mated with helical gears). Regardless of the teeth design, rack & pinion gears are used to convert rotational motion into linear motion or vice versa.

The simplicity of the design and the low cost of manufacturing are one of the key advantages of a rack and pinion. Furthermore, rack & pinion gears have high load carrying capacities. In contrast, rack and pinions are limited by their design. Rack and pinion gears tend to have a more backlash (the additional space between mated gear teeth) which results in the teeth experience a greater amount of friction and stress.

The most common applications of rack and pinions include the steering system of automobiles, transfer systems, weighing scales, and sliding gates.

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