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NEW Metric Keys and Key Steels

  • Metric Keysteel to DIN 6880
  • Metric Parallel Keys (Feather Keys) to DIN 6585A/B/AB
  • Keys available with Square and/or Radius ends
  • Steel C45 (EN8)
  • Special sizes of Keysteel and Parallel Keys can be supplied


Keysteel is also referred to as Key Bar or Key Steel. TransDev stocks two standard lengths of 12 inches (304.8mm) and 1 metre (1000mm). TransDev Keysteels are supplied as rectangular or square bars in C45 Steel to DIN 6880 and come in a wide range of widths and heights to suit all applications. Special (non-standard) sizes are also available, so please ask if you do not see the exact size you require. TransDev can also mill bars down to size if required.

Parallel Keys (Feather Keys)

TransDev’s range of Parallel Keys are designed to safely fasten pulleys, sprockets and gears to rotating shafts. They also act as a failsafe, providing an economical and additional protection to more expensive and crititcal components. For this reason it is important to replace them periodically.

Because Parallel Keys require a keyway for installation, you can easily request this to be cut when ordering Driveflex pulleys, gears and sprockets. They can also be easily combined with the Driveflex range of Taper Lock Bushes. As well as cutting keyways our Special Manufacturing department can custom manufacture or rework Parallel Keys.


What is a Keyway?

A keyway is a long slot cut into a component e.g. a gear. pulley or sprocket to accept a key. The key is usually metal and engages with a similar slot on a mating component e.g. a rotating shaft, so that the two components do not move against each other. A keyway is used to prevent components from slipping on a shaft and add torque capacity in driven systems, and is an alternative to Splined Shafts.

What is a Key?

There are many shaft keys for cost-effective and efficient power transmission, which includes Square Keys, Parallel Keys, Rectangular Keys, Woodruff Keys, Taper and Grib-Head Keys, and Feather Keys. Parallel Keys, also known as straight keys, come in 2 designs: square and rectangular. Similar to Parallel Keys, Feather Keys feature rounded rather than squared off ends.

What is Keysteel?

Key Steel can be cut into any number of keys, but the correct tools are required to achieve more complex keyways.

What does a Parallel or Feather Key look like?

Typically, shaft keys are made from either medium carbon steel or stainless steel. But they can be made from many different types of material such as aluminium alloy, bronze, copper, and brass to suit different application environments .The keyway must be slightly larger than the key itself if the key needs to fit into the pocket.

What does a Key do?

In mechanical engineering, the key shaft is employed to join a rotating machine element to a shaft. Without the key, the two components would have no way of interacting with one another, but, when mated, the two components work in unison, allowing for axial movement between the pair. The main difference between Keys and Splined Shafts is that keys are inserted between shaft and hub. Where one or two keys will be used for load transmission, there are usually four or more splines on a shaft.

Where is a Parallel Key used?

A key is usually inserted or mounted between the shaft and the hub of the component in an axial direction to prevent relative movement. The Keyseat is a recess in the shaft and the Keyway is the recess in the hub to receive the key and thus securely lock the component.

Good to know about Parallel Keys?

When a keyway is cut into the shaft it reduces the load carrying capacity of that shaft. This is due to the stress concentration near the corners of the keyway and the reduction in the cross-sectional area of the shaft, i.e. the torsional strength of the shaft is reduced. To avoid key failures due to overload, it is important to choose a key material with the same strength and hardness as the shaft or hub. If a key is not fitting properly in both the flywheel and crank shaft keyways, replace the key.

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