The art of precision measurement is essentially all about the data that is obtained in the process and the value that it brings to a manufacturing operation. It is about making decisions based on high quality data.
There are three primary options available today for shaft measurement: optical, tactile, and a combination system. The optical systems have become common over the past few decades because of their flexibility and speed. So how do you choose the best option for your specific application?
The simple shaft is one of the ubiquitous items in every mechanical system. Shafts contain a number of key functional elements, such as splines, tapers, grooves, threads, cams and gears, which all have associated critical dimensions to allow these mechanical systems to perform the function for which they were designed.
Form is a relatively easy thing to measure in many senses. In the simplest manner, form measurement involves a probe or stylus being moved along an ideal circular or linear path to gather data on the probe movements relative to that ideal geometry.
A friend of mine likes to quip that someday computers will make all our lives easier. He’s kidding (I think), but it seems to be a fact of modern life that every time we open our phones, tablets, or computers, or even check our watches, there are upgrades waiting to be installed for the apps we have, and new and improved apps on offer to replace those.
We usually think of a “quantum leap” as a big thing, a great change or advance, and often when we are using this term, it is. Yet the term actually originates from atomic science and describes an electron moving from one energy level to another.