AGMA Provides Membership with Information on Additive Manufacturing Opportunities in Gear Making

The American Gear Manufacturers Association (AGMA) announces the publication of an emerging technology document, Additive Manufacturing Technologies for Gears. This paper is part of the AGMA Emerging Technology Committee’s commitment to bring information on disruptive technologies to the AGMA membership. Kirk Rogers, PhD, Senior ADDvisorSM of The Barnes Group Advisors was brought on to author the paper with significant input from members of both the AGMA Emerging Technology Sub-committees on 3D Metal Printing and New Materials.

“I’m excited that the committee had been able to oversee the generation of this paper as it fills a key need for AGMA members, obtaining an overall understanding of metal additive manufacturing and how if may affect gear manufacturing directly. There are a lot of assumptions and misunderstandings in reference to metal AM,” said Justin Michaud, President, R.E.M. Surface Engineering and Chair of the AGMA 3D Printing subcommittee, “This paper will help address these issues by providing enough information to complete a high to medium level evaluation of the technology without overwhelming the reader.”

The transition of the 3D printing technologies from legacy uses in rapid prototyping to true manufacturing is already taking place in the aerospace, defense and medical implant industries. The AGMA Emerging Technology Committee worked to provide a look at this technology with focus directly placed on gears. This paper discusses the seven different additive manufacturing technologies in metal printing, as defined by ASTM Committee F42, that are well-known for the ability to reduce the price of complex components, reduce the number of assembly parts in high-level assemblies, and to provide next generation performance by enabling complex designs.

The paper discusses opportunities for the power transmission industry in additive manufacturing (AM):

  • Manufacture complex geometries such as internal cooling or lubrication channels
  • Reduce gear system inertia through the use of advanced designs that are difficult to manufacture conventionally
  • Improve durability by the use of multiple optimized materials in a single part
  • Change the cost of manufacturing by only placing material where it is needed
  • Reduce product development time and time to market; and
    Improve safety, repeatability and assist humans with aids and tools.
  • The paper also discusses disruptive AM technologies that may impact power transmission. It highlights specifically, gear materials and additive manufacturing.

“This paper provides AGMA members with a snapshot of the current state of 3D printing metal and where it is beginning to intersect with the gear industry.” stated Mary Ellen Doran, AGMA Director, Emerging Technology. “There is a lot of information out there on additive right now. But this paper is unique in that we worked to keep the focus on how this technology may directly be used to make gears. We hope that this is just a springboard for more activity by AGMA committees in this area.”

The paper, Additive Manufacturing Technologies for Gears, is currently available in the store on the AGMA website at It is free for members and is available to non-members for $99.

AGMA will host a webinar on May 2, 2019 at 2:00 pm Eastern time with Kirk Rogers. Kirk will provide an overview of the research that is contained in the paper and be available for questions from the AGMA membership. The webinar is free for AGMA members and is $49 for non-members. Registration is available on the AGMA website on the 3D printing page.

Additionally, on May 23 from 10:15am – 12:15 pm AGMA will provide an expert-led tour on the RAPID show floor visiting 14 booths in the metal 3D printing space.

Source: AGMA 

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