Felss has developed a patented axial forming machine that is capable of net-shape forming of high-strength, high-precision splines by a special low-force, recursive cold forming process. The process is applicable for both external and internal splines, and for hollow and solid parts. It is especially beneficial for high-quality spline components requiring economical production processes.
The process is simple: A spline tool presses the external splines against a hollow or solid material in an axial direction. The teeth are formed directly at the same time using a one-piece tool which makes the forming process highly precise. The net-shape spline forming is achievable at a close and consistent tolerance class of IT 5 to 6, and spline quality is improved typically by 40%. This is possible because of the special frequency cold forming process and a special high-stiffness tool system, which allows for a fine adjustment of the inner diameter of the spline forming die.
The axial forming machine can be used to produce a wide range of different forms, profiles, internal and external splines, blind holes, etc. It is especially used by the automotive industry for low and high-volume production of a broad variety of parts with spline characteristics. Examples of such parts are transmission main shafts, transmission input/output shafts, camshafts, rear axle shafts, or steering shafts. Other examples in additional industries are different spline profiles such as involute toothing, ball track profiles, cylindrical serrations, and diametric pitch splines.
The machine is available with a horizontal process layout for longer parts (up to 1,800 mm), and with a vertical layout for shorter parts (up to 300 mm). Both machines have 600 kN in press force. It is also available in other customized equipment layouts for example as integrated units in transfer lines.