This paper discusses the modeling and analysis of an example medium speed medium precision lathe spindle. This and few other similar topics have been assigned as term projects in an introductory senior undergraduate/graduate level finite element analysis course taught at Kettering University. The experiences and the general feedback from the students of the class show satisfactory organization of the course material that includes modeling and analysis of real life examples.
With reference to the specific topic on design of machine tool spindles, it is not a new area, however, it is generally taught at the graduate and research levels. Use of modern computational tools to perform iterative design and analysis calculations of such spindles make the senior undergraduate and/or graduate master students aware of the implications of modeling a real life system using the 1D and 3D finite beam elements and to validate those results by a CAE tool. Final course projects such as this serve as a good learning tool to the graduating engineers. Sample results obtained from various CAE tools such as UG-NX 7.5 are presented in the paper and discussed.