You are not alone if an image of circular gears connected together pops up in your mind when you hear the word gears. But are they the only type of gears that exist in the world? Not really! So what are the different types of gears and what are its uses? Let’s find out with a quick read through this post.

**What Are Gears?**

Gears are parts of a working machine that rotate together to create torque. Gears have teeth like structure around it called cogs that help it interlock with one other to provide rotational force. They are defined by 2 main characteristics which are its radius and the number of teeth it has. These 2 characteristics dictate the functions of the rotational force that the gears produce.

**What Do They Do?**

Gears have essentially 3 functions. Gears can change directions, increase force and control speed. Let’s take a simple example of 2 gears to understand all three.

If we have 2 gears where one of them is smaller so has fewer teeth than the larger one. What would happen if we use the large one as the driver? When we rotate the large gear the smaller gear needs to move faster in order to keep up it. So if the larger gear has 24 teeth and the smaller one has 12 then the smaller gear will move twice as fast. This is a simple example of gears controlling speed.

Similarly, when a car needs to go uphill, it needs extra force to push itself up. So by reversing the driver gear, we can achieve this easily. So in the previous case, you understood that the larger gear moves more slowly than the smaller gear but it does so with more force. So if you use the small gear as the driver the energy gets transferred to the larger gear with stronger force thereby pushing the car up.

Gears rotate in opposite directions meaning in case of 2 gears when one moves clockwise the other will move counter clockwise. So one can control the direction and also change it at an angle using a conical gear. Which brings us to the next section of understanding different shapes of gears.

**Other Types Of Gear**

This section will help you understand how gears are not just flat and round and how different shapes have their own distinct characteristics.

Rack and Pinion – Changes rotary motion to linear motion.

Worm Gear – Used when a large amount of speed needs to be reduced.

Bevel Gear – Cone shaped gears used in intersecting shafts.

Sun and Planet – This converts reciprocating motion into rotary motion.

Non Circular Gears – Elliptical, triangular, square gears etc. to make precise movements.

We’re sure you know more about gears than you did before. Or maybe more aware!