Superfinishing gears adds power to superbikes

PDJ Vibro has partnered with Nova Racing – one of the only companies to supply racing gearboxes to the British superbike grid – to polish the gears and shafts in a process referred to as superfinishing.

There are very few gears, shafts and selector parts that are not superfinished at the Nova factory as it has now installed its own vibratory finishing bowls.

Nova director, Sean Whittaker said: "There is no doubt that the gearboxes last longer, as the period between our supplying a gearbox and getting it back for refurbishment has been extended. It is because there is less wear on the gear teeth and reduced friction between the bearings."

A further benefit of having polished moving gearbox parts is that the time needed for running-in is shorter.
The process also gives a highly polished surface finish to the gears that can take on different colours, ranging from light brown to green-grey, after machining, hardening and oil quenching.

A batch of parts is processed for five hours in one of the 100 litre capacity bowls, which are filled with two sizes of ceramic medium to optimise finishing over the entire surface of the components. A recirculating water and detergent mixture prevents oxidation of the steel. The components are then transferred to a second bowl containing smaller porcelain stones to be polished in a water and detergent mixture.

Justin Cunningham

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