For a given set of forces transmitted by the gears, each of the three components of the generalized transmission error of spiral bevel gears is shown to be stationary with respect to small independent variations in the positions of the endpoints of the lines of tooth contact about their true values. The tangential generalized transmission error component is shown to take on a minimum value at the true endpoint positions. A computational procedure based on the method of steepest descent is described for computing the true line of contact endpoint positions and the three components of the generalized transmission error. A method for computing the Fourier series coefficients of the tooth meshing harmonics of the three generalized transmission error components also is provided.

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