CV axles are found on all kinds of vehicles, from passenger cars to trucks to minivans. They’re a fixture of modern-day automobile design, and one of the foremost manufacturers of CV axles in the world today is GSP.
Given their wide range of applications, we wanted to educate ourselves on what they do and why they matter. Speaking with GSP Automotive, we learned about designing and making these drivetrain components, and the approach GSP takes.
GSP’s Product Manager Robert Murgado was our contact. He gave us the background on GSP and what it strives to achieve with the end product. “We have two objectives we strive for in our CV axles,” he began. “The first is that we meet or exceed OE specifications. The second is that we provide a value for the customer.”
GSP takes CV axles seriously. Utilizing their vertical integration, the company has extensive control over the design and manufacturing process. It reaches as far as the rubber boots and grease that keep the joints protected and lubricated.
To accomplish these goals, GSP leverages its wide array of expertise, testing equipment, and manufacturing capabilities. “As a vertically integrated company, we have extraordinary control over the manufacturing process,” Murgado commented. “It extends all the way down to rubber and making the boots that protect the axles.”
For the design, GSP took what worked on OEM-style CV axles and made improvements. “Our CV axles incorporate a prismatic CV joint,” said Murgado. “This design choice lets the CV continue moving despite being articulated. Ours has 15 to 20-percent better articulation, in fact. We also hollowed out the joint in three places, and that helps with heat dissipation. The more we can cool things down, the longer the part will live.”
GSP takes great pride in the making of its CV axles. Seen here is an outer CV joint getting ground down to accommodate ball bearings.
Protecting the carefully crafted joints are boots, which GSP makes specific for each and every application. “It starts with the material,” said Murgado. “We use a rubber compound that needs to work in extreme conditions, and on a vehicle, these axles stay on there for years. In Canada, subzero temperatures are normal, and the grease in the boots needs to be able to work in these conditions. So we actually released a specific cold-weather axle recently. The point is, we take into account the elements and design an axle and boot setup that will work for a long time.”
Last but not least are the clamps that keep the boots from coming off. “Clamps are important for preventing leaks and contamination,” said Murgado. “The clamp will change for a specific joint, but it will always use premium materials.”
One of GSP’s design hallmarks is this prismatic tri-pod joint, or PTJ. “GSP uses a Prismatic Tripod Inner Joint on the majority of their product unless precluded by OE design,” said Autumn Lamb, Marketing Manager at GSP. “The prismatic structure provides uniform wall thickness for the joint housing. This aids in heat dissipation, thus reducing ball track deformation, a common inner joint failure. This design provides longer inner joint life, lighter weight, and overall better performance.”
GSP’s repertoire of CV axles extends far and wide, covering multiple makes and models. “Our catalog starts in the 1970s and goes up to modern-day vehicles,” Murgado said. “We have over 2,400 part numbers for U.S. vehicles alone. What’s more, we use Motor Inc data, licensed straight from the manufacturer, and pair that with VIO [Vehicles In Operation] data to look for gaps in product coverage and assess which parts make sense for production.”
From top to bottom, GSP’s approach to CV axles is certainly impressive. The company makes great strides in developing these drivetrain components and making sure the end user receives the fruit of intensive labor. Now that you know what goes into a GSP CV axle, be sure to check out more on their official website and Facebook page.
This article was published on Offroad Xtreme