Belt Drive Spindles

In the past, the use of a belt-driven spindle was the only method of lathe machining. This type of spindle can be considered as the earliest developed spindle type in industry. For machine users who require high rigidity and high dynamic rotation precision, a belt drive spindle will be the best choice.
 
Due to the high variability of the belt drive spindle, it can be used in multi-task machining centers. However, the belt drive structure cannot provide very high speed and torque, and the belt may not be strong enough or have insufficient cutting force during heavy cutting.
 
Most belt drive spindles are used for lathes, and CNC vertical lathes are also called CNC vertical turning machine, which is a machine tool that rotates a work piece along a rotating axis to perform various machining tasks such as cutting, knurling, sanding, drilling, deformation, facing, and turning.

Structural limitations

The structure of the belt drive spindle cannot reach high speed and torque. In its structure, the belt is installed on the gear inside the connecting device and the gear box, so the heavy cutting process may cause the connection between the two to be insufficiently tight and strong, resulting in insufficient processing power. As mentioned above, most belt drive spindle applications are used in lathes and other non-high speed machine tools. Therefore, the spindle speed and spindle torque are usually not the key for the user to select the spindle, but the flexibility and convenience of the machine operator.
 
Various parts on the machine, whether it is a simple structure of pumps and valves or a complex spindles, robotic arms, gearboxes, due to continuous work, they will come to the day of shutdown. The structure of the belt drive spindle is easier for engineers and users in the processing factory to allow them to repair without having to send it back to the spindle supplier every time the spindle fails. 

 

Direct drive spindle

In addition to the belt drive spindle, the direct drive spindle is also a commonly used spindle, which can generate a large torque through a relatively simple mechanism. Torque is generated through the spindle structure, not just from the power source.
 
The excellent spindle structure determines the performance of the spindle torque. The direct drive spindle can achieve higher torque during the machining process. Direct drive spindle is one of the oldest spindles. This spindle has a simple structure and a fast actuating mechanism. The direct drive spindle can be installed on a heavy-duty machining center, such as some double column models.
 
Direct drive spindle has high accuracy, low vibration, the similar interface and easy replacement features, the spindle maintenance is easier, and the direct drive type also has lower manufacturing and assembly costs. Although the direct drive spindle can also achieve high speeds and maintain good dynamic performance under high-speed running, this is not a major advantage compared to the belt drive spindle.

 

Comparison with milling spindles

Milling machines (such as machining centers and milling centers) differ from most lathe spindles in structure and use. Since the invention of the milling machine, a series of great changes have taken place in industrial manufacturing. Not only does it care about the quality of the spindle itself, the quality of the end mill tool installed in the milling spindle is also important.
 
An excellent tool can ensure the final quality of the work piece, and properly cooperate with the milling spindle to make the processing process and results more ideal. Regarding the installation for the milling spindle and the end mill tool, it should be noted that before each machining task, the entire spindle and end mill tool must be checked according to the manual given by the supplier in order to achieve the expected processing results.

 

Conclusion

Although the belt drive spindle has been used in the industry for a long time, due to its simple structure, users can perform simple troubleshooting on their own. Of course, in some cases beyond their ability, they still need professionals to help them solve problems. Due to its structural advantages, it is expected that belt drive spindles will still be widely used in the future.

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