Choosing the Best Materials For Your Gears

When choosing the best alloy steel for gears, there’s a lot to consider. Heavy-duty applications are no place for guesswork, which means understanding exactly what you need from your gears and what materials will best serve you.

This is true whether you work in aerospace, robotics, packaging and labeling, medical, 3D printing, automotive, machining, agriculture, or any other industry. Simply put, until you understand the possible options and their specifications, you’re at a disadvantage in your field. Moreover, using the wrong materials can lead to:

  • Compliance and regulatory issues that may lead to lawsuits or shutdowns
  • Dangerous situations for your workers, your machines, and your business
  • Poor performance of gears, pulleys, and tools that lead to reduced overall functioning in your shop or warehouse
  • Loss of clients or even your good name

Obviously, these are outcomes best avoided. And by selecting the right ingredients for fabrication, you can do just that. Let’s take a look at the types of gear materials available as well as which ones fit which applications.

Types of Gear Materials

The system in which a gear will function dictates what that gear must be able to handle. This includes considerations such as:

  • How great a load will the gear need to bear?
  • For how long at a time will the gear need to do its job before it gets rest? (This is important when it comes to heat resistance, for instance.)
  • What type of environment will the gear operate in? Will there be magnetic fields, heat, or corrosive elements against which it must be protected?
  • What is your budget?
  • What is your industry?
  • What types of gears have you had before, and have they worked for you?

The answers to these questions will dictate which material is the best alloy steel for gears. In some cases, alloys aren’t even the answer and you’ll turn to more esoteric options, such as thermoplastics, which we will discuss in more detail below.

Alternatively, the material of the gear can literally shape it, determining its geometry for the specific application. If you know what material you want to use, the design process will then revolve around its needed capabilities. Again, this will account for the application, the presence of corrosives or magnetics, operating time, environment, and so forth.

Either way, the most common alloys fall into five basic categories: copper, iron, tool steel, aluminum, and thermoplastics. Below, you will learn more about what each of these alloys contains, the functions they perform best, the types of environments for which they are suitable, and more.

By the time you’re done reading, you should have a good idea what type of material will work for your gears. If you want to skip to the good part, feel free to scroll to the bottom and give us a call today!

In the meantime, read on.

Copper Alloys

Copper is an excellent material for environments that tend to corrode gears, such as applications that involve water or other elements. In fact, copper has been used in piping for thousands of years, dating as far back as Ancient Egypt.

It is also a great material for environments where the gear must be non-magnetic, continuing to function even under magnetic and electromagnetic conditions. Copper does not respond strongly to magnetic fields, which is why it makes such a good insulator. In fact, unless it is in the presence of a very large magnet, you’d never be able to tell that it wasn’t inert.

Although it is not technically an inert metal, because its electrons do react with other elements, it is a very good runner-up when you’re looking for a material that won’t quickly corrode, oxidize or wear away.

Over time, it does turn green, but it takes years for this patina to develop. Combining it with other elements can reduce this tendency quite a bit further, meaning gears that use copper have life spans measured in years or decades.

Copper typically comes in one of three alloys:

  • Brass: This alloy marries copper and zinc in different amounts depending on how ductile you need the alloy to be. Less zinc, and the alloy remains more flexible; more zinc and it is less ductile. Copper makes it easy to work and antimicrobial. This alloy is ideal for low-load environments.
  • Phosphor bronze: This copper alloy swaps out zinc for tin and phosphorus. Together, the three metals become strong, anticorrosive, and wear-resistant.
  • Aluminum bronze: The name of this alloy is a bit misleading, as it is actually a combination of copper, iron, nickel, manganese, and aluminum. These are even less likely to wear and corrode than phosphor bronze.

Iron Alloys

Iron has made a name for itself when it comes to strength and durability since the Iron Age began around 1,200 BCE. The ability to work steel forever altered humanity’s options, and since then, we have enjoyed a superior addition to the selection of alloys.

Cast iron is the most basic form of this element, poured in its raw form into molds that determine its lines and angles. It is a cost-effective alternative to phosphor bronze in applications where magnetic fields don’t come into play. (Iron is not suitable when they are a factor, as it responds strongly to magnets.)

Steel, an iron alloy, melds iron with carbon and other trace elements, depending on the specific type of steel and application. Steel is easy to machine, very strong, with both ductility and hardness on its side. It is also quite resistant to wear.

If you’ve ever seen steel labeled with four numbers, look at the second two. These tell you the fraction of carbon used in the alloy. Different ratios are ideal for different situations, but if you’re not sure what you’re looking for in a gear, speak to an expert. They will be able to guide you toward the correct alloy.

Stainless steel, carbon steel, and alloy steel are all names you might have seen in reference to iron alloys, as well as tool steel, to which we turn our attention next.

Tool Steel Alloys

In addition to being the best alloy steel for making gears, tool steel alloys are used in a wide variety of applications. These are made with trace elements such as tungsten, vanadium, molybdenum, and cobalt, all of which increase its durability and resistance to heat.

The reason this is the best alloy steel for gears is because of its hardness and resistance to wear. Tool steel is named for its use in tool parts, because its chemical makeup lends it extreme toughness – think drill bits, punches, saw blades, and other grinding or cutting surfaces.

Tool steels are made in different ways to respond to the different environments in which they must operate. For instance:

  • Water-hardened steels have been quenched in water after machining, giving them an extremely hard and durable outer layer. However, this makes them more brittle, so they are not suited to all applications.
  • Hot-work tool steel can take higher temperatures for work that is literally hot. This includes high-temperature manufacturing with malleable materials, e.g. glass or metal.
  • Cold-work tool steel, as the name suggests, is for cold work. They offer major compressive strength, which is necessary to cut elements at temperatures below freezing.
  • High-speed tool steel alloys are made to stand up to the rapid pace of manufacturing. Even at very high rates of operation, which in turn create high heats and considerable stress on the parts, high-speed tool steels hold up.

For this reason, tool steel alloys are the best choice for gears. Gears must turn quickly, tirelessly, for many applications. Depending on the heat, cold and other factors at play, you can choose specific ratios of iron, carbon and other elements.

Aluminum Alloys

When you need to throw off some weight but don’t want to sacrifice toughness, aluminum alloys can be a good substitution for steel. They are less than half the weight of steel alloys, going by size, with a finished surface that protects the alloy from corrosion and oxidation.

While aluminum costs more than carbon steel, it is cheaper than stainless steel. The relative ease with which you can machine aluminum alloys, however, helps to defray the additional cost as compared to its carbon cousins.

Note that aluminum is not appropriate for high-heat applications, however. It does not tolerate temperatures above 400°F, at which it will begin to warp.

Thermoplastics

Last but certainly not least, we have the thermoplastics family. The overriding benefit of thermoplastics is how tolerant they are of heating and cooling. While they soften a bit when heated, they harden right back into place when cooled, without changes in chemical structure. This makes them self-lubricating.

Also, thermoplastics are extremely light. This family of polymer resins cuts major pounds out of any application, so those in which weight is a factor are especially well suited to this material. Moreover, they display no stress or wear when heated and cooled multiple times.

Gears can be made of thermoplastics in one of two ways:

  • They can be machined the same way gears made of metal alloys can be. Shaping the plastic results in a finished part with precise lines and angles.
  • Thermoplastic gears can instead be made through injection molding. This means funneling liquid plastic into a mold, akin to how cast iron parts are made. Once it hardens, the mold is removed.

There are several types of plastic, two of the most common of which are polyacetal and polyoxymethylene. Both can be used to make gears of all types.

Gear Material Design & Selection

As with almost anything in life, the best material for your gears will depend on your intended purpose. That includes a huge range of factors. Some of the most common questions to ask before deciding on a material are:

  • Where are you working and what environmental factors will come into play?
  • Is your application hot or cold?
  • Is it high-speed?
  • Does your gear need to continually self-lubricate?
  • Which is more important, ductility or hardness? (This question is also applicable to other competing factors, such as whether heat resistance or compressive force are more important, etc.)
  • Are microbes a factor?
  • How much wear will your gear receive, and in what period of time will the wear occur?
  • What is your budget overall? What is your budget for a specific gear?
  • Are your gears of standard size?
  • Do you have your own blueprint, or do you need one made or reverse engineered?
  • Are oxidization, corrosion or magnetic fields an issue?

If you cannot answer all of these questions, that’s fine. More importantly, if you can answer them but have no idea what that means for gear materials, that’s also fine. A qualified gear materials specialist can help you talk through your machine and/or application to find the one that will work best for you. From brass to plastics, iron to tool alloys, we have every gear material you might need to get your project done.

The only thing that remains is to get in touch.

Get in Touch to Learn More About the Best Alloy Steel for Gears Today

Here at Illinois Pulley & Gear, our team is here to serve. We have more than 15 years in business and more than 90 years’ combined professional experience in the field of gears and pulleys. Our precision machining services encompass a variety of applications, materials, industries, and customers – and we would love to add you to our list.

Whether you have a question about gear materials or anything else, we invite you to get in touch. Our goal is to provide the highest-quality products on the market, with efficiency and economy. From automotive to agricultural, aerospace to automation, we’re here for you. Give us a call at 847-407-9595 or simply reach out today. We look forward to hearing from you.

Accounting for Belt & Pulley Inertia

Physics and Mechanics: How to Account for Belt and Pulley Inertia in System Design 

Newton’s first law of motion states that if an object is at rest or moving at a constant speed in a straight line, it will remain at rest or keep moving in a straight line at constant speed unless it is acted upon by an unbalanced force. In the engineering and manufacturing industries, we are intimately familiar with this concept. 

In order for a motor to be able to adequately accelerate or decelerate a load, it has to first overcome the load’s inertia. Inertia, the tendency to do nothing or to remain unchanged, is the resistance to a change in motion we experience in mechanics. It’s what we’re always working against to power vehicles and create new things. 

Inertia in Belt-Driven Linear Motion Systems: 

For engineers and manufacturers who deal with belt-driven linear motion systems, this lesson translates to a simple fact: motors we use must be able to overcome both the inertia of the applied load and the inertias of the belt, pulleys, and motor coupling. 

Estimating Inertia: A Step by Step How to From the Experts at Illinois Pulley & Gear 

It’s possible to estimate the amount of each component’s respective inertia with accuracy sufficient for most purposes. This can be accomplished through the use of a standard inertia equation. First, you’ll need to know that the amount of inertia associated with an object depends on the axis around which it rotates. 

Because the applied load and belt rotate around the driven pulley’s axis together, we can begin our estimation by grouping the applied load and the belt together. Gather data you’ll need from manufacturer information: belt manufacturers will generally provide weight information in mass units. The mass of the belt can be calculated by taking the mass per unit length by the belt’s total length. Model the applied load and the belt as a point mass, and calculate their inertia using the following: 

JL = mr2 

  • Let “JL” represent the inertia of belt and applied load (kgm2)
  • Let “m” represent the mass of belt and applied load (kg)
  • Let “r” represent the radius of driven pulley (m) 

Next, treat the pulleys and coupling as solid cylinders rotating about their own axes. Calculate their inertia using the following solid cylinder inertia equation: 

Jp = ½mr2

  • Let “Jp” represent the inertia of the solid cylinder, or the pulley and coupling (kgm2)
  • Let “m” represent the mass of cylinder (kg)
  • Let “r” represent the radius of cylinder (m) 

Of course, in many driven actuators, pulleys will have different masses, and in turn, different inertias. This can occur if one pulley is driven while the other pulley is idler. This solid cylinder inertia equation will be sufficiently accurate for most uses. 

However, if you need the highest accuracy for pulley and coupling inertia measurements, calculate with the consideration that these components have a center bore. This equation is great for higher accuracy needs: 

Jph – ½ m(r20 +r2i)

  • Let “Jph” represent the inertia of the hollow cylinder, or the pulleys and coupling (kgm2)
  • Let “m” represent the mass of cylinder (kg)
  • Let “ro” represent the outer radius (m)
  • Let “ri” represent the inner radius (m) 

Often, belt driven systems will use a gearbox. Gearboxes are widely loved for their abilities to increase torque and reduce speed. Interestingly, they also reduce the inertia of the load directed to the machine’s motor. When this happens, make sure to divide the total inertia of the entire moved mass by the square of the gear reduction. (The total mass includes the applied load, belt, pulleys, and coupling.) Then, add the inertia of the gearbox back in. 

This equation produces the total inertia directed back into the machine’s motor. The total can be used for motor selection and sizing choices. Need an equation? Mathematically, it looks like this:

            JL + Jp1 + Jp2 + Jc

Jtotal =   _______________       + Jg

            i2

  • Let “Jtotal” represent the total inertia directed to the motor (kgm2)
  • Let “JL” represent the inertia of the belt and applied load (kgm2)
  • Let “Jp1” represent the inertia of the first pulley (kgm2)
  • Let “Jp2” represent the inertia of the second pulley (kgm2)
  • Let “Jc” represent the inertia of the coupling (kgm2)
  • Let “i” represent the gear reduction
  • Let “Jg” represent the inertia of the gearbox (kgm2

Still Need Some Expert Help with Your Belt Driven Linear Motion System? 

As you have already learned, determining which gears and pulleys are the right ones to use is critical. Failure to use the correct sized pulleys, for example, can cause you to drive your pumps incorrectly.  Finding that you could use some help from a specialist? Contact the experts at Illinois Puelly & Gear. 

Illinois Pulley & Gear (IPG) manufactures a large variety of high-quality timing pulley stock and timing belt pulleys. Made on-demand, IPG is able to produce virtually an unlimited variety of products. 

All IPG pulley stock is precision machined from bar stock at their Schaumburg facility. They do not use extrusions or imported pulley stock. Pick your material, tooth profile, and any number of teeth, and IPG will produce it. 

Illinois Pulley & Gear: Timing Belt Pulley Manufacturers 

At Illinois Pulley & Gear, we are passionate about producing high-quality products that are built to last. Every product is USA-made to order. You will always receive the highest-quality product, made according to standard or custom specifications. 

You can request products made-to-order to your unique specifications, depending on your precise needs. Place blanket orders for the entire year or order as needed.

Our clients find that Illinois Pulley & Gear is the option that makes the most sense economically, without compromising whatsoever on effectiveness, function, or efficiency. We are client-oriented and ready to listen. 

To inquire about specific or custom products today, reach out via our online contact form or give us a call at 847.407.9595.

HTD Timing Belts and Curvilinear Tooth Profiles

From flat belts to ribbed belts, curvilinear belts to trapezoidal belts, there are many different types of timing belts! All the different timing belts are like a “family”, with each of the different belts being a different member of the family. Knowing a bit about each will keep you informed and help you make the best choices for your machinery. 

In this post, we’ll focus on HTD timing belts with curvilinear tooth profiles, specifically – but keep an eye out for our future blog posts on the other types, as well! Read on for a comprehensive guide to HTD timing belts and curvilinear tooth profiles from the experts at Illinois Pulley & Gear. 

What is an HTD Timing Belt? 

HTD stands for high torque drive. HTD timing belts are a type of synchronous belt featuring teeth that are rounded. They differ from trapezoidal timing belts in that their tooth profiles are deeper and more closely spaced. Pitches in HTD belts will range from 3 to 20 millimeters and are usually available with a double-sided tooth option. 

What is a Curvilinear Tooth Profile? 

HTD® Timing Belts feature a curvilinear tooth profile. This type of tooth profile was designed in the 1970s to improve upon the trapezoidal tooth profile. Designed for high torque, high-speed applications, curvilinear timing belt tooth profiles have a deeper tooth than trapezoidal tooth profile belts and deliver less backlash than trapezoidal tooth profile timing belts. 

Timing belts with a curvilinear profile give the belt a greater contact area with the pulley, leading to a smaller unit pressure on the tooth itself. The effect, in turn, is improved performance depending on your particular application. 

Advantages of HTD Timing Belts and Curvilinear Tooth Profiles:

The type of timing belt you should select varies based upon several factors. But, if you do need an HTD timing belt with a curvilinear tooth profile, rest assured that this type of timing belt has many unique characteristics and benefits, such as the following: 

  • Curvilinear tooth profiles tend to have a lesser chance of tooth jumping
  • HTD timing belts have less installation tension
  • Curvilinear tooth profiles have light bearing loads
  • This type of belt has greater shear strength
  • HTD timing belts are known for their lighter construction, leading to smaller centrifugal loss
  • Timing belts with curvilinear tooth profiles tend to cost less since a narrower belt can handle the same load 

HTD Timing Belt Applications: 

HTD timing belts are commonly used across several varied industries. The specific application can depend on pitch sizes. HTD belts with small pitch sizes are perfect for light power applications where precise positioning matters, including small power tools, small kitchen appliances like food processors, office machines like printers, home appliances like sewing machines and vacuum cleaners, medical equipment, and vending machines. 

HTD belts with larger pitch sizes work well in heavy machinery used in the manufacturing, construction, mining, forestry, and agriculture industries.   

Illinois Pulley & Gear: Timing Belt Pulley Manufacturers 

At Illinois Pulley & Gear, we are passionate about producing high-quality products that are built to last. You can request products made-to-order to your unique specifications, depending on your precise needs. Our clients find that Illinois Pulley & Gear is the option that makes the most sense economically, without compromising whatsoever on effectiveness, function, or efficiency. 

We are client-oriented and ready to listen. To inquire about specific or custom products today, reach out via our online contact form or give us a call at 847.407.9595.

Gear Shaping vs Gear Hobbing

Gear shaping and hobbing are perhaps the two most common methods of gear creation. Gears are essential to the running of many machines, so creating the right gear is critical for smooth operations.

An Introduction to Gear Shaping

What is Gear Shaping?

Gear shaping is one of the most common methods of gear creation. Using the gear shaping method, gears are created using a machine to cut teeth into a piece of metal. A pinion shaped cutter rotates and reciprocates, creating the teeth.

The cutting can occur either at the upstroke or downstroke of the machine. During the creation process, the gear and cutter axes are parallel with the cutter rotating in motion with the gear blank. Both the cutter and the gear blank move at the same pitch-cycle velocity, with a train of gears producing the motion between the cutter and gear blank shafts.

When is Gear Shaping Used?

Gear shaping is generally known as a relatively simple and reliable gear production method. Gear shaping is also a convenient and versatile method of gear cutting. The gear shaping method is most often used to create internal gears and external gears, as well as integral gear pinion arrangements.

Gear shaping is also commonly used to create gears that will be located close to flanges or any other obtrusive surface in its destination machine.  Because of the impressive accuracy of gear shaping, gears with low requirements for kinematic accuracy are often produced through gear shaping, without the need for further shaving or grinding of the gear.

What are the Advantages of Gear Shaping?

Gear shaping with a pinion shaped cutter, as described above, can be very cost-effective. The complexity of the mechanical gear shaper means the gear shaping produces a high level of accuracy in surface finish. If you need greater accuracy for your gear’s intended application, however, you can always finish your gear through another, more conventional process, such as grinding, honing, lapping, or shaving the gear. 

An Introduction to Gear Hobbing

What is Gear Hobbing?

Like Gear shaping, gear hobbing is also a versatile and widely used process for gear creation. The process of gear hobbing requires a particular tool known as a gear hobbing machine, a kind of special milling equipment. Types of hobbing machines include the index hob and master hob. The hobbing machine can also cut splines and sprockets. The process of gear hobbing involves the use of an automated hob to cut teeth into a circular blank (or flat cylinder) piece of metal, or a “blank” gear. The hobbing machine works to cut the teeth as the gear blank rotates.

When is Gear Hobbing Used?

Most spur and helical gears are produced by the gear hobbing method. The versatility and productivity of gear hobbing make it a very popular gear production process. It is also used to cut splines and sprockets.

What are the Advantages of Gear Hobbing?

Gear hobbing is a flexible process, with particular flexibility afforded to the working angle. Many different types of gears can be produced with this method. It’s comparatively inexpensive, but it is pretty accurate as well.

What’s the Difference Between Gear Shaping and Gear Hobbing? 

Which is More Accurate, Gear Shaping or Gear Hobbing?

As described above, gear shaping produces very high accuracy in surface finish. Gear hobbing, however, gives great movement accuracy. So, both have pros and cons depending on what kind of accuracy your gear needs. Overall, most experts would say gear shaping is more accurate than gear hobbing.

The transmission chain used in mechanical gear shaping is more complex than that of the gear hobbing process. The tooth profile error level of gear shaping is also lower than gear hobbing. With newer gear shaping machines, the transmission chain is greatly shortened, and transmission error is reduced greatly as a result. Gear shaping as a process is incredibly precise.

Which is More Efficient, Gear Shaping or Gear Hobbing?

Gear hobbing is generally regarded as being more productive, or efficient, when compared to gear shaping. The gear hobbing machine has fewer redundant movements, and can typically be a more cost-effective process, especially during the production of larger gears with fewer teeth, for example. Efficiency can be further improved by the addition of more gear blanks being stacked and cut at one time.

A notable exception to this general rule is that gear shaping may be more productive than gear hobbing when the required gear has a large number of gear teeth and a small tooth width. This is because the gear hob cuts using a high-speed rotating motion. The gear shaper is not as quick when it comes to cutting speed.

In creating gears with a module greater than 5 millimeters, gear hobbing is more productive than gear shaping. In creating gears with a module of fewer than 2.5 millimeters, the efficiency and accuracy of gear shaping are superior to that of gear hobbing.  Finally, in the creation of gears with a module between 2.5 and 5 millimeters, gear shaping and gear hobbing are equally productive, or equally efficient

Illinois Pulley & Gear: Your Gear Experts

Illinois Pulley & Gear (IPG) is a custom pulley manufacturer with the goal of providing high-quality products in efficient and economic ways. Our primary products are Gears, Timing Belt Pulleys, and Timing Pulley Stock, and we create a wide range of gear and pulley stock for a slew of industries, including Aerospace, Agriculture, Automotive, Power Transmission, Automation, Robotics, Packaging & Labeling, Food Processing, Medical/Pharma, Wire Processing, 3D printers, Equipment, and Machine Components, and so much more!

At Illinois Pulley & Gear, we are passionate about producing high-quality timing belt pulley systems and gears that are built to last. Every timing belt pulley and gear is made-to-order to customer specifications, depending on your precise need.

We are client-oriented and ready to listen. To inquire about your business’ specific needs, reach out via our online contact form or give us a call at 847.407.9595.

How IPG’s Custom Pulleys Work with BRECOflex Timing Belts

BRECOflex CO., LLC manufactures high-quality, popular timing belts, including polyurethane timing belts. At IPG, we can manufacture equally high-quality pulleys that are specifically designed to work best with these timing belts. If you’re looking for pulleys that work with BRECOflex timing belts, choosing a custom-made pulley manufactured by IPG makes the most sense economically, without compromising on effectiveness, function, or efficiency.

Pulleys for BRECOflex Timing Belts

IPG is a custom pulley manufacturer with the goal of providing high-quality products in efficient and economic ways. IPG’s focus is set on customer service and quality parts. IPG custom-makes pulleys exactly to BRECOflex standards. As a result, customers can be sure their pulleys will always work with BRECOflex timing belts.

The number one benefit of using IPG as your resource for BRECOflex-fit pulleys is that our pulleys can be customized in any way needed. You won’t have to pick from pre-made stock and hope something works out for your company’s purpose. IPG goes above and beyond in terms of customer service. For example, one IPG client receives products with screwed-on flanges to support the heavy side loads experienced in the Glass Industry. Made-to-order timing pulleys may be produced with a full range of customer specified requirements, such as pitch, number of teeth, bore size (English or Metric), keyway, setscrews, lightening holes, and timing marks.

IPG is happy to create custom products for their clients and understands the importance of the absolute perfect fit. IPG does not sell belts; rather, IPG’s primary products are timing belt pulleys and timing pulley stock. IPG also creates a wide range of gear and pulley stock for a slew of industries, such as:

• Aerospace

• Agriculture

• Automotive

• Power Transmission

• Automation

• Robotics

• Packaging & Labeling

• Food Processing

• Medical/Pharma

• Wire Processing

• 3D printers

• Equipment and Machine Components

Benefits of Using BRECOflex Timing Belts:

BRECOflex timing belts are the best in their industry in terms of innovation. BRECOflex is the only brand that creates timing belts with flexible tensions member design. They are wear-resistant, have high-tooth pitch accuracy, and high-tooth sheer strength with no post elongation. They also boast a long power range, up to 200 KW (275 HP). BRECOflex timing belts are great for the long term: not only are they resistant to petroleum, oils, and fats, but they also won’t harden with age. The quiet, smooth running of BRECOflex timing belts leaves with you no vibration and little to no required maintenance.

BRECOflex Timing Belt Construction Types:

IPG’s custom pulleys work with all BRECOflex timing belt construction types. BRECOflex timing belts are available in:

  • Open-Ended M,
  • Welded-V, and
  • Truly Endless BFX construction types.

What’s the difference between these three distinctions? First things first, each construction type is meant for a different application.

Open-Ended M timing belts are used for linear drive applications. This type of BRECOflex timing belt has a fantastic tooth shear strength and high spring rate. Select an Open-Ended M timing belt if you need a linear drive with stiffness and high repeatability.

Spliced and Welded V timing belts are used for conveying and many other general purpose applications. They’re also commonly used for welded profiles and backings. Spliced and Welded V timing belts are available in moth tooth configurations. Welded belts have 50% of the strength of a truly endless belt.

Truly Endless BFX timing belts are used for power transmission applications. This is the strongest belt construction type. Truly Endless BFX timing belts have steel tension members and very high tooth shear strength.

BRECOflex Timing Belt Materials: What are BRECOflex Timing Belts Made of?

As we mentioned previously, BRECOflex typically uses polyurethane in the manufacturing of timing belts. Polyurethane is selected because it is “a broad spectrum” of many thermoplastic elastomers. BRECOflex currently manufactures timing belts made from 16 different types of polyurethane materials.

Why does BRECOflex use polyurethane? According to BRECOflex, the material is suitable for most applications, is extremely wear resistant, and has an extensive temperature range. It’s also resistant to ozone and sunlight as well as petroleum, oils, and fats. No lubrication is required for this material, it’s non-marking, and it allows belt processing without loss of material properties. Lastly, and perhaps most importantly, polyurethane construction allows for high tooth shear strength and high-tension resistance, two things that are of chief importance in a quality timing belt.

What kind of polyurethane does BRECOflex use? According to BRECOflex, their “standard” is a type of polyurethane referred to as TPU-ST1. TPU-ST1 is used for all belt types, including BFX belts l that are longer than 720 millimeters. They’re typically white in color, and have a hardness designation of “92 Shore A.”

The Different Kinds of BRECOflex Timing Belts:

IPG’s custom pulleys work with all different BRECOflex timing belts. The most common types of BRECOflex timing belts are:

  • PAZ (Nylon Facing on Tooth Side) – this type of timing belt offers reduced coefficient of friction, improved belt and pulley engagement, reduced noise and vibration, and lower friction force.
  • PAR (Nylon Facing on Belt Back) – this type of timing belt offers reduced coefficient of friction and is resistant to most kinds of oil and grease. This type of timing belt is also ideal for use as a back cover for accumulator conveyers.
  • PAZ-PAR (Nylon Facing on Both Sides) – this type of timing belt combines the advantages of both PAZ and PAR timing belts!
  • T-Cover (Clear Polyurethane Back Cover) – this type of timing belt is wear and abrasion resistant, and is ideal for conveying smooth surfaces, like glass, metal, or wood.
  • DR (Extra Thickness) – this time of timing belt is great for longitudinal and/or lateral machining. It also has a long service life for abrasive conveying uses.
  • DL (Double Sided) – this type of timing belt can transmit power on both sides of the timing belt, and are ideal for serpentine drives.

Choosing a Custom Pulley for BRECOflex Timing Belts:

If you’re looking for pulleys that work seamlessly with BRECOflex timing belts, choosing a custom-made pulley manufactured by IPG is the option that makes sense economically, without compromising whatsoever on effectiveness, function, or efficiency.

At Illinois Pulley & Gear, we are passionate about producing high-quality timing belt pulley systems that are built to last. Every timing belt pulley is made-to-order to customer specifications, depending on your precise need. We are client-oriented and ready to listen. To inquire about timing belt pulley systems today, reach out via our online contact form or give us a call at 847.407.9595.