Rack and pinions are used for lifting mechanisms (vertical movement), horizontal movement, positioning mechanisms, stoppers and to let the synchronous rotation of several shafts generally industrial machinery. On the other hand, also, they are found in steering systems to change the direction of cars. The characteristics of rack and pinion systems in steering are the following: simple framework, high rigidity, little and lightweight, and exceptional responsiveness. With this system, the pinion, installed to the steering shaft, is definitely meshed with a steering rack to transmit rotary movement laterlly (converting it to linear movement) so that you can control the wheel. Furthermore, rack and pinions are utilized for many other purposes, such as playthings and lateral slide gates.
As a mechanical component to transfer rotary into linear movement, gear racks tend to be compared to ball screws. There are benefits and drawbacks for using racks instead of ball screws. The benefits of a Spur Gear Rack equipment rack are its mechanical simplicity, large load carrying capacity, and no limit to the space, etc. One disadvantage though is the backlash. The benefits of a ball screw are the high precision and lower backlash while its shortcomings include the limit in duration due to deflection.
There are applications where in fact the gear rack is stationary, as the pinion traverses and others where in fact the pinion rotates on a fixed axis as the gear rack moves. The former is used broadly in conveying systems while the latter can be utilized in extrusion systems and lifting/lowering applications.
To provide many variations of rack and pinion, KHK has many types of equipment racks in stock. If the application requires a long duration requiring multiple gear racks in series, we have racks with the tooth forms correctly configured at the ends. These are described as “gear racks with machined ends”. When a equipment rack is produced, the tooth cutting procedure and heat treatment process can cause it to try & go out of true. We are able to control this with special presses & remedial processes.