Universal Joint: All you need to Know |

Are you keen to understand Universal Joints?

Then your search has ended here. Let’s start with the fundamentals by learning an overview of this joint before diving into the meat of the text.

Without further delays, let’s get started…

What is Universal Joint?

When two shafts intersect at fixed or variable angles, universal joints act as coupling mechanisms to transfer torque and rotary motion. Additionally called Cardan joints or Hook’s Joint.

The universal joint is acknowledged as the most traditional coupling, frequently used in cars and trucks, invented by Philo of Byzantium in the 3rd Century BC. It is situated where two shafts are angled together to transmit torque.

The Universal Joint is the simplest and most typical type of joint. They have several specific qualities that make them ideal for a variety of applications.

Universal Joint

Types of Universal Joint-

There are basically three different types of universal joints. They are-

  • Cross Universal Joint
  • Ball Trunnion Universal Joint
  • Constant Velocity Universal Joint

Cross Universal Joints-

Two Y-shaped joints, one of which is coupled to the driving shaft and the other to the driven shaft. Where four arms of the spider are attached to both ends of the yokes.

Additionally, each spider arm had four bearings. The driving and driven shafts can be removed at an angle while the yoke can move around the trunnion thanks to these bearings.

Ball Trunnion Universal Joint-

A ball-shaped head that is attached to one end of the propeller shaft makes up this sort of joint. Additionally, a pin is forced into this shaft end. The pin’s end is equipped with two steel balls.

Through a ball and pin, the joint allows for rotating motion. The balls can rotate axially as well.

Constant Velocity Universal Joint-

It is a form of universal joint that enables constant-speed movement of both the driving and driven shafts. When the vehicle is in front-wheel drive, these joints are commonly employed.

Read Also- Knuckle Joint | Definition | Construction | Design | Applications and More

Working of Universal Joint-

The driven shaft rotates in parallel with the revolving driving shaft, and the universal joint permits angular motion at the same time.

As a result, the power is applied at an angle from the gearbox to the propeller shaft.

In order to provide a flexible connection between two stiff shafts that are at an angle to one another, these joints are used.

They enable the power to be transmitted not only at an angle but also when the angle is constantly changing.

Universal joint diagram

Read More- Cotter Joint: Definition, Types, Applications, Advantages, Disadvantages

Why Universal Joint is used?

On an uneven road, the differential peaks and falls as the vehicle travel. As a result, when the propeller shaft is turning, the differential is rising and falling, which causes the propeller shaft to also vary its angle.

These joints enable adjustments in the propeller shaft’s angle without a transmission under such circumstances.

In order to transmit power when the drive shaft is not in a straight line between the gearbox and drive wheels, universal joints allow drive shafts to move up and down with the suspension while the shaft is moving.

Applications of Universal Joint-

Some of the most important uses for universal Joints are as follows:

  • Motion Transmission
  • Power Transmission
  • Industrial Applications
  • Aircrafts
  • Control Mechanism
  • Electronics
  • Medical Industry
  • Textile industry
  • Optical Instruments

Read Also- Difference between Knuckle joint and Cotter joint

Advantages of Universal Joint-

Some of the most important advantages of adopting Universal Joint are as follows:

  • Flexible compared to knuckle joint
  • Ecoomical
  • Easy to assemble
  • Higher torque transmission
  • Provide Angular Displacement

Disadvantages of Universal Joint-

Employing a Universal Joint has the following disadvantages:

  • Wear and tear may cause due to insufficient Lubrication
  • Regular maintenance is needed
  • unable to provide stable motion


Still, need clarification on this topic? 

Don’t worry !! Here is the video guide to help you out. Check this out-

Read Also- Riveted Joints: Definition, Types, Uses, Efficiency, Advantages and More


Wrapping Up-

That’s all I have on the Universal Joint at the moment. I hope you have fun and learn something new while you’re here. If so, kindly share this information with your friends, coworkers, and anyone else you think will benefit from it.

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