A Detailed Study on Differential Bearing Adjuster Ring Thread Engagement and Joint Strength, under Combined Bending and Axial Loading
Adjuster rings are used in commercial vehicle axle assembly to preload differential bearings and provide support in the axial direction. Adjuster along with the carrier and bearing cap combined to form a threaded joint. Adjuster with external threads engages with internal threads formed in carrier and bearing cap. Preload in differential assembly maintains the system rigidity and helps to maintain an optimized hypoid gear engagement. An adequate preload is important to achieve a desirable bearing life. Reduction in thread engagement at adjuster joint fully or partially will cause a reduction in preload and can lead to gear misalignment. This can cause severe durability concerns. In some cases, it is observed that under vehicle operating loads adjuster ring is backed off from its assembled condition by bending the split pin (split pin is, positive lock, used to maintain adjuster position) and adjuster threads were stripped off.