Gear Software?

Short question with hopefully a simple answer. :nerd:

I am looking for software that aids in the design and use of various gear types.

Currently I use E-Machine shop and Ironcad Innovate to design gears and then export them to .Stl files for printing. The software automatically calculates spacing required for gear meshing and lets you input # of teeth, backlash, and pitch angles. The only limitation however is that the before mentioned software is limited to Spur gear design only.

Does anybody know of any software (Preferably the free type if possible) that is able to take simple inputs (# of teeth, pitch angles, gear diameters) and output worm gear, rack and pinion, and herringbone designs?

Spur gears are great but the vibrations, size constraints and noise often associated with their use can be a significant limitation.


Openscad might be worth checking out.

Here are some files to get you started making herringbone gears:

You will want to download the two .scad files and the .inc file into the same directory. Then, open Wades_Gears_helix.scad in openscad (download and install that if you haven’t already. It’s free software.). To make the large herringbone gear that comes on the TAZ, uncomment the WadeL_double_helix module like so:

//WadesL(); //this module call will make the large gear
//WadesS();  //this module call will make the small gear

From here, you can hit F6 to render. Then you can export your .stl with Design>Export as STL.

If you want to make changes, specify them in this part of the code:

module WadeL_double_helix(){
	//Large WADE's Gear - Double Helix
	//rotate([0,0,-2])translate([0,0,0])color([ 100/255, 255/255, 200/255])import_stl("39t17p.stl");


There are worm gear options, too, but I haven’t tried them yet. Syvwlch has some stuff available for download. +1 internets to, vik, gregfrost, jonaskuehling, and others who collaborated to make these herringbone gears in the fist place.

Thank you for the detailed responses to my question. I’ll be looking into the software you’ve mentioned!!

You could check out tinkercad. It has generator called “pro gear”. With this I was able to create a herringbone gear within a few seconds:

Not free, but Gearotic is worth looking into:

Made by the same guy as Mach3, I believe, it works as a gear design app that can handle all sorts of gears and will also spit out g-code for machining gears - that part is maybe not super useful on a 3d printer :stuck_out_tongue:

That Pro Gear shape generator in TinkerCad looks pretty cool. Just the thing to show the kids at school. They have been presented with the challenge of making something that will move at least 10 feet under it’s own power. They have a pile of batteries, motors, etc and access to their 3D printer. They’ll need to come up with a simple way to attach the gears to the motor shafts (not sure if they’ve progressed to the point of being able to print a pocket for a nut to hold a set screw).

I’d love to figure out a way to make a ring and worm gear with this, if it’s possible. Does anyone have some tips?

I have successfully used Inkscape to make gears. I has a nice built in gear tool. :slight_smile: And it’s open source.

I originally used it for my DIY Taffy Machine project. I just exported the gear from inscape and had it lazer cut out of plexiglass. But i was also able to import the 2D gear into Solidworks and extrude it to 3D. I don’t currently have need for gears, but i’m sure the same process could be used to create gears to be 3D printed. Solidworks was able to import it, but i’m sure other CAD programs (perhaps even freecad or blender) could import the files.

FreeCAD has a gear making workbench.

here’s a cool gear video for making a helical gear: