Flexible Couplings and Universal Joint
These flexible couplings require lubrication unless one or more of the elements is made of a self-lubricating material. Other couplings use diaphragms or bellows that can flex to accommodate relative movement between the shafts. The Universal Joint.—This form of coupling, originally known as a Cardan or Hooke's coupling, is used for connecting two shafts the axes of which are not in line with each other, but which merely intersect at a point. There are many different designs of universal joints or couplings, which are based on the principle embodied in the original design. One wellknown type is shown by the accompanying diagram.
Determining Maximum and Minimum Velocities:
If shaft A (see picture below) runs at a constant speed, shaft B revolves at maximum speed when shaft A occupies the position shown in the illustration, and the minimum speed of shaft B occurs when the fork of the driving shaft A has turned 90 degrees from the position illustrated. The maximum speed of the driven shaft may be obtained by multiplying the speed of the driving shaft by the secant of angle α. The minimum speed of the driven shaft equals the speed of the driver multiplied by cosine α. Thus, if the driver rotates at a constant speed of 100 revolutions per minute and the shaft angle is 25 degrees, the maximum speed of the driven shaft is at a rate equal to 1.1034 ~ 100 = 110.34 R.P.M. The minimum speed rate equals 0.9063 ~ 100 = 90.63; hence, the extreme variation equals 110.34 − 90.63 = 19.71 R.P.M.