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Gears are useful in all kinds of machines, not just cars and bikes. They are used to direct the power of the machine for the purpose required – say either for more speed or for more force. One gear would help you ride faster on a straight road, while the other is best when you want to climb a hill.
The main purpose of gears is to transfer power from one part of a machine to another. For example, in a cycle, gears help to transfer power from pedals to back wheel. In cars, a similar transfer happens from the crankshaft to the driveshaft. By connecting different sized gear you can:
Remember that a car’s engine generates a huge amount of power. Even while idling, the piston would push up and down at least 750 times a minute. That is, it would generate power of 750rpm. If this was fed directly to a car’s wheel – the car would run at close to 100kmph. This, of course, is a problem. You want to drive at much lower speeds – and not at the same speed all the time. The other problem is that you need a lot of force to start up a car from a standstill – an engine directly connected to the wheels may not even be able to transfer that much force. This is where a gearbox comes in. At low gear, the speed transferred to the wheels is reduced greatly – but the force transferred is increased proportionately. Once the car is set in motion, you shift to a higher gear to increase the speed being transferred.
Changing gears simply means meshing different sized gear wheels together. This cannot be done while the power transfer is in process – that is why you have to press the clutch before you change gears. Clutch disengages the engine from the gearbox, giving you time to select a different sized wheel to transfer power.
The gears create a trade-off. When you use a gear to generate more force, you have to sacrifice on speed and vice versa. This is why when you are trying to ride your car up an incline, you shift to lower gear to generate more force – but you also have to slow down considerably. Similarly, when you are going fast, the amount of force being transferred to the wheels is low. This is because the total energy being transferred, regardless of the gear sizes, has to remain the same. Formally, this is called the conservation of energy. Informally, you cannot get something from nothing. No matter your drive fast or slow, a perfect car insurance plan is an ideal thing you should purchase. Many insurance companies provide add on covers that takes care of your gearbox, engine and other parts of the car.
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