Down angle gearbox from Reintjes
As part of the company’s planned move into new areas, the German marine propulsion company Reintjes has introduced a down angle gearbox that is claimed to have advantages over conventional gearboxes.
The main advantage claimed is that an installation using this new gearbox can save space in the engine compartment because it allows the engine to be mounted lower in the hull.
With a straight shaft arrangement using a conventional gearbox combined with an angled shaft and propeller, the engine itself has to be mounted at a matching angle which means that the forward end of the engine is higher. The horizontal mounting possible with the down angle gearbox not only allows the engine to be mounted horizontally but also makes access to the engine for servicing and maintenance easier. With the new gearbox a horizontal shaft takes the drive from the engine to the gearbox and then the gearing in the gearbox changes the angle to match the requirements of the propeller shaft. Two angles for this shaft are possible, 8° or 10°.
This new gearbox is available in a variety of sizes to meet the requirements of most workboat and passenger ferry installations. The range of power that the gearbox can handle starts at 250kW and tops out at 3250kW and the gear ratio can be anything between 1.5 and 4 which will meet the requirements of both fast and slow vessels.
Special attention has been paid in the design of the gearboxes to reduce the noise levels. A spokesperson commented, “Compared to commercially available down angle gearboxes our noise values were already very satisfying during initial Reintjes measurements. The so-called beveloid gear design represented a special challenge in the design, calculation and the manufacturing of the gears but all were managed in a proper manner.” Reintjes claims that the low operating noise of these new gearboxes is largely due to optimal tooth flank corrections, which is one of the strongest features of these new gearboxes.
Reintjes is emerging as a major player in the gearbox and propulsion markets with a range of products that cover many of the requirements of the workboat sector. The company produces gearboxes for both the marine and industrial sectors and in the marine sector they recently moved into the production of pod propulsion units with their Fortjes Drive that comprises a fixed drive unit with a propeller at each end of the lower unit. This is claimed to offer a high efficiency propulsion unit that is simple to install. By having a fixed drive unit without steering the installation is simplified and this allows higher efficiency from the design.
By Dag Pike
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