Media

Gears & Grounds

We like to write about mechanical history, the shoulders of all the greats we stand upon, current tech, basic machine shop knowledge, plus give you as much perspective,  references and insights as possible.

From old to new, and everywhere in between, we've taken our projects, experiences and interests, and curated them for hands-on people. We actually read the patents and do original research on the histories to give you some fresh and practical insight.  For knowledge, and products that will get you headed to your shop, stick around for new content, and sign up for our Gears & Grounds newsletter.

Some of the books on our shelf

Find more content on our social media pages!

Evolvent FacebookEvolvent YouTubeEvolvent Instagram

Latest Post

I just want to make a gear...

Jul 21, 2021 Andrew Prestridge

CAD and machine tools have been rapidly increasing in capability and decreasing in cost, so the ability to mill, route and 3D-print gears is in reach to a larger audience. So how do I get started? Here are some simple answers:

View Details

Featured Article

5000 Years of Gears

Aug 19, 2020 Andrew Prestridge

Today we are standing on the shoulders of some very interesting innovators dating back thousands of years. They enabled clocks, navigational devices, water pumps, lifting devices, planetary computers, early internal internal combustion engines, machines of all kinds, machines that make machines, the transmission of horsepower and more. Here is our timeline of the people that made the biggest contributions.

Read more

All Posts

I just want to make a gear...

CAD and machine tools have been rapidly increasing in capability and decreasing in cost, so the ability to mill, route and 3D-print gears is in reach to a larger audience. So how do I get started? Here are some simple answers:

View Details

How to Measure Screw Size and Pitch

Screws are defined by three measurements: diameter, pitch, and length. Diameter and length call out the overall dimensions while pitch defines the threads and ensures the screw can actually screw into the nut or threaded hole

View Details

How To Fix, and Maintain, Your Jacobs Super Chuck

Jacobs Chuck Rebuild: Here's our guide on how to remove and repair your Jacobs Chuck - you can fix most problems in about 15 with a bit of cleaning, lubrication, and basic tools. With proper maintenance, your drill chuck can last generations with reliable performance.

View Details

Arthur I. Jacobs and his Super Chuck

Jacob's Super Chuck, a broken gem Arthur I. Jacobs designed a great drill chuck and it has been in use for over 100 years.  One of the parts inside the chuck is intentionally broken.  It may be the only item you own that works and is broken at the same time.

View Details

Gears in a Nutshell: NASA Gearing

NASA does a great job at explaining all the different types of gears and their uses.  A must have reference for any shop.   © Evolvent Design, 2020

View Details

Hydraulic Oils

Hydraulic Oil, how it works, why we use it, and the cost

View Details

Paper Lead and Ink

All Ideas need to start somewhere - graphical communication is key to recording and making the most of your ideas. In a modern technical world we're so quick to get on a keyboard and type, but the real value of ideas starts when you put your pencil (or pen!) to paper and start somewhere. We've come a long way from clay tablets, but the principles stay the same...

View Details

Lubrication & Tribology

What is Tribology? Tribology may be an unfamiliar word, but it’s a familiar topic. Tribologists study the interaction of sliding surfaces, specifically for friction, wear, and lubrication. Any time objects are in contact and moving, two things are happening: there is friction, and there is wear. Oil is the common link to reduce wear and friction, but there is more...

View Details

Rudolph Diesel, a Patent, and Coal

Rudolph Diesel is known as the father of the Diesel Engine, but how did we get to the modern Diesel Engine and Diesel Fuel as we know today? Born in 1858, Rudolph Diesel designed and patented the first Diesel Engine, originally claiming the engine could burn, "any kind of fuel, whether solid, liquid, or gaseous"

View Details

How to Prevent Thread Galling: Advice and Tricks

What is Galling? Galling is a form of cold-welding that occurs in threaded components under high pressure, and may cause the threads to seize. Galling is caused by the asperities (high points) of one component puncturing the protective oxide layer of another, and then transferring material between the two.

View Details

Machinery's Handbook Guide

Few professional books are as ubiquitous as the Machinery’s Handbook. This book can rightly be called a machinist’s bible, and not just for its super thin pages. Clocking in at nearly 3000 pages, the 31st edition Machinery’s Handbook adorns a special corner of my desk.

View Details

American Gear Manufacturers Association (AGMA)

American Gear Manufacturers Associate (AGMA) sets the standards for gears

View Details

NASA Fastener Design Manual: Behind the Most Common Fasteners

Screws, nuts, washers, and other fasteners are each designed and optimized for their intended use. Most of the time, what you have in your garage will work great for a quick built - but the diameter, length, pitch, and much more...

View Details

Designing the Pitch of a Screw: History of Whitworth

Whitworth and Threads With the thousands of uniform screw options available now, it's hard to imagine a time with both more, and fewer options. Thankfully Joseph Whitworth standardized a system for the modern thread, giving a worldwide, universal playing field for interchangeable fasteners.

View Details

How to Use a Dividing (Indexing) Head

Dividing heads (often called indexing heads) are machine tools used to provide controlled and repeatable rotation to a tool or workpiece, usually as an accessory to a milling machine or grinder

View Details

Technical Language: From Ancient Shipwrecks to Space

Our modern world is impressive; it gives us instantaneous information through the Internet and this connects us for better or worse. But how about connecting across languages? English sources only show a fraction of what the world knows

View Details

Our Mechanical World

Our modern mechanical world stands on the shoulders of the ancient navigators, locksmiths, clockmakers, and millwrights. While many of their relics and inventions  are probably lost, here we piece together the mechanical devices that have survived the test of time

View Details

5000 Years of Gears

Today we are standing on the shoulders of some very interesting innovators dating back thousands of years.  They enabled clocks, navigational devices, water pumps, lifting devices, planetary computers, early internal internal combustion engines, machines of all kinds, machines that make machines, the transmission of horsepower and more.  Here is our timeline of the people that made the biggest contributions.

View Details

The Original Hobbing Machine

Christian Schiele is credited with the first Hobbing Machine patent filed in 1856 - a machine capable of making "toothed wheels" (spur gears) and "oblique wheels" (bevel gears). Despite the innovation in design, there was never a physical prototype...

View Details

Gears Don't Slide, They Roll

If you mesh two gears together and rotate one, the two contacting surfaces will roll, and not slide-off of each other. The difference may seem semantic but it has a huge impact on the life and performance of the gear, and it all comes down to friction.

View Details


Check out our YouTube channel covering
all things mechanical -->


Our latest Instagram updates below 

YouTube Icon

Checking...

Facebook IconYouTube IconInstagram Icon
Section