Flexible Couplings and Misalignment

May 18, 2011
Tolerances For Shaft AlignmentSome coupling manufacturers will sell couplings claiming that the coupling can take shaft misalignment. While this is true for most flexible couplings, it can be easily misinterpreted. Flexible couplings are designed to withstand, without damage, some shaft misalignment. Sometimes it is perceived that, since the coupling can take the misalignment, the machines can run under this condition without any consequences. When running machinery with significant shaft misalignment, bearing and seal life may decrease immensely, and other damage result. Therefore, for longer machinery life, it is always recommended to have equipment laser aligned to standard industry tolerances for shaft alignment, and not to the looser alignment tolerances allowed by the coupling itself.

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