The process of creating a gear using machinery or equipment is called gear cutting. There are a number of ways the gear cutting process is performed, with gear hobbing being among the most popular. The following are the most common practices:
- This gear cutting process is also called metalworking and is often done with very large gears or splines. When used for large scale gear cutting, a vertical broach is used, which is a rail that has a toothed cutter. This tooth cutter creates the spline on the gears.
- Gear Hobbing. This gear cutting method uses a hob to create the teeth or splines on a gear blank. The process requires both the gear blank and the hob to rotate at the same time in order for the profile of the hob to be imprinted on the gear blank. During the gear hobbing process, the hob needs to make one revolution for the cutting of each spline of the gear.
- Milling or Grinding. This gear cutting method uses a specific tool in order to create the splines on a gear blank. The milling or grinding uses either a machine or grinder with a gear cutter specifically numbered for the creation of the number of splines to be made.
- This is the gear cutting process of having the gear blank affixed on a shaper and a tool is used to manually create the splines. This gear cutting technique is often used for internal splines on a shaft or precision cutting for gear teeth.
Gear cutting for a helical gear takes a different process altogether. The process requires an indexing feature, which as the name implies, moves the plane cutter in precise small increments. The plane cutter moves along the x axis of the gear blank while the indexing feature would rotate the gear blank in a worm like fashion to create the helical gear.