Mechanical Basics

What Is Transmission System?

Propeller Shaft is one of the devices of Transmission System. Transmission System in automobiles is the process of transmitting the power from the engine (that is generated by the engine) to the rear axles or wheels

So, to transmit such power from the engine to the wheel, automobiles require a system and devices (like gearbox, propeller, etc); the System that consists of power transferring devices is called Transmission System.

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What can you learn from this post?

  • The device that helps to transmit the power
  • What is Propeller Shaft?
  • What is a Universal Joint?
  • Conclusion
  • Frequently Asked Questions

It is a well-known fact that most Cars, Trucks, and Buses (all automobiles) consist of Engine that develops the Power, and the Drive Axle will receive the developed power to rotate the wheels of automobiles. We will find an interesting tech if we once think about how this power transmitted to the Drive Axle even though the power developer “the engine” is located in front of an automobile.

Let us read what transmits the power from the gearbox to the drive axle or what actually helps to transmit the power to the Drive Axle.

The Device That Helps To Transmit the Power:

Transmitting the power from the Engine to Drive Axle is not a small task; it requires devices, joints, and shafts. When it comes to large trucks the distance between the Gear Box and the Drive Axle will be more and requires a number of joints with long and heavy shafts.

Yes, shafts will help the automobiles to transmit the power from the Engine to the Drive Axle (via Gear Box), and the technical name of such shaft is Propeller Shaft. 

A Quick Review: The developed power will be transmitted to back wheels through the clutch, gear box, propeller shaft (that connected with universal joints), Differential Box, and at last the power will be received by Wheels that are connected at the end of the Drive Axles.

Now, let us see what is propeller briefly?

What is Propeller Shaft?

The Propeller Shaft is a Cylindrical device (or a component) that helps any mechanical body or automobiles to move forward against any obstacles.

For clear understanding of propeller shaft in the transmission system, let us take a Car (or Lorry) as an example.

What Is Propeller Shaft And How Power Transmits From Gear Box To Drive Axle?

Here, we can see that the power is transmitted to the Gear Box via Clutch from Engine but if we observe carefully, the Propeller is the thing that connect the Gear Box and the Drive Axles to transmit the power.

The Engine will be located at a certain height from the ground that is more than the Drive Axle position; the propeller shaft is the straight that cannot be bend to connect both the Gear Box and Drive Axle, but the power should be transmitted to run the wheels, then how the power is transmitted?

To answer this question; here comes the concept of coupling in propeller shaft as called Universal Joint. Let us see what is a universal joint? and how it helps the propeller shaft to work?

What Is A Universal Joint?

The Universal Joint is a couple (or joint) that consists of hinges at their ends. It helps to join the two shafts (mostly propeller shafts) when they are not aligned in a straight line. Universal Joint can be called as Hooke’s Joint. So the propeller shafts are connected with the help of universal joint or hooke’s joint to make them rigid. (We can observe it in the above image)

Now, we can answer the question of how power transmits from gear box to the Drive Axle.


At this point of the study, we have to be very clear that Propeller shaft is used only when the distance between the Gear Box and the Drive Axle is more and unable to transmit the power. Even though the engine is placed back of the automobile, we need propeller shaft for transmission but the length of the propeller shaft will be short.

Propeller Shaft is very tough and work for long periods in transmission system. Propellers can be reused with few alterations. There may be few cases where the universal joint (hooke’s joint) failure takes place; at those conditions, we just need to replace the old one with the new

Frequently Asked Questions

Propeller Shaft in Automobile is a type of components in the transmission system of Automobiles. It is a long cylindrical shaft that connects the Flywheel with Differential Box to transmit the generated power from engine to the rear axles.

The propeller shaft function is to transmit the power that is generated by the engine to the differential gearbox. Thus, the vehicle can move forward.

The Propeller Shaft is a long and cylindrical component so, it need to be tough and hard in construction. According to it, the propeller shaft is made up of alloys that include Aluminum, Stainless Steel, and a few other compositions like Nickel and Bronze too.

The Transmission System does consists of many components and devices in its functioning. So, the propeller shaft function is to transmit the power from one device to another device; the devices or components that propeller connects are Flywheel located at Front Side and Differential Gearbox located at Rear Side.

We can say that the propeller will be the mediator between Flywheel and Differential Gearbox.

The Universal Joint also called as Hooke’s Joint is a joining component that does consist of fingers to join the propeller shafts whenever it require.

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