All of the cutting edges on an hourglass worm gear hob have different shapes and spiral angles. If the spiral angles are small, straight flutes are usually adopted. But for the hob with multiple threads, the absolute values of the negative rake angles at one side of the cutting teeth will greatly affect the cutting performance of the hob if straight flutes are still used. Therefore, spiral flutes are usually adopted to solve the problem. However, no method of determination of the spiral flute of the hourglass worm gear hob has been put forward till now. Based on the curved surface generating theory and the hourglass worm forming principle, a generating method for the spiral flute of the planar double enveloping worm gear hob is put forward in this paper. A mathematical model is built to generate the spiral flute. The rake angles of all cutting teeth of the hob are calculated. The laws of the rake angles of the cutting teeth of four hobs with different threads from one to four threads are analyzed when straight flutes and spiral flutes are adopted respectively. The laws between the value of the negative rake angles of the hob with four threads and the milling transmission ratio are studied. The most appropriate milling transmission ratio for generating the spiral flute is obtained. The machining of the spiral flutes is simulated by a virtual manufacturing system and the results verify the correctness of the method.

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