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Shaft Alignment 101: The Basics

In the intricate world of machinery, the alignment of shafts is critical to ensure optimal performance and longevity. Every day, countless motors drive various machines, from pumps to engines, relying on precise alignment for smooth operation. However, misalignment poses a significant threat, straining both the motor and the machine it drives, potentially leading to costly damages to bearings, couplings, and other components.

Manufacturers establish strict tolerances to define acceptable levels of misalignment, emphasizing the importance of aligning shafts to minimize strain. However achieving perfect alignment, or collinearity, is a rare feat in real-world applications. Misalignment typically manifests in two forms: offset and angular misalignment, often occurring simultaneously across three dimensions.

In addressing this challenge, understanding misalignment in three-dimensional space is crucial. Correcting misalignment involves aligning shafts in both the vertical and horizontal planes. Fortunately, adjustments can be made to manipulate the relative positions of shafts, bringing them closer to collinearity.

In this video, you’ll learn the intricacies of precision alignment, exploring the measurement, calculation, and adjustment processes necessary to achieve optimal shaft alignment.


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Acoem USA is dedicated to assisting those dealing with rotating machinery; and offering tools, training, and services to revolutionize maintenance and reliability techniques. Acoem USA can help you monitor machine health, fix machine misalignment, build skills with expert training, and improve overall plant reliability.

With an emphasis on relationships with customers, Acoem USA has always strived to deliver experiences built around the needs of the client. Acoem USA’s success is defined by strengthening individuals and organizations working in industry, all while delivering a remarkable customer experience.

You can count on Acoem USA as your partner in reliability.