PRODUCT SHOWCASE: Drewco Creates a Line of Expandable Pedestal Fixtures to Increase Gear Production Efficiency


Drewco Workholding, experts in workholding for 68 years, presents a customized line of expandable pedestal fixtures. Applicable for grinding, hobbing, or milling gears, the line provides an ideal system for companies who want or need the flexibility to address a wide variety of gear sizes effectively.

Designed to expand and contract easily, these tools provide a significant return on invment. These fixtures also provide Drewco customers with a reduced setup time and reduced change over time as well as allow them to maximize their machine’s capabilities.

“When changing from the typical ring style setup to our modular pedestal system, customers have seen reduced setup times from 40 percent to 88 percent,” said Richard Pettibone, president of Drewco Workholding.

The fixtures in this line centralize the gear blank with an expanding collet and then face clamps it when necessary, depending on the operation. Removable and reversible pedestals that travel and rotate in T-slots support the gear blanks. The pedestal’s locations allow the fixture to accommodate the needed range of gear diameters.
 This pedestal fixture design reduces the need to have an experienced setup person perform the time-consuming function of indicating the gear in and increases safety because no bump bars are needed. Since fewer components are needed compared to traditional systems, they free up manufacturing floor space. The fixture design also allows companies to add new parts in the future.

The Drewco expandable pedestal fixtures are used for machining gear teeth on grinding, hobbing, and milling machines. They are specifically designed for new or existing machines and adapted to machines with or without draw bars.  The expandable pedestal fixtures are primarily designed for larger gears, including pinion and ring gears, with a variety of tooth profiles, including helical, herringbone, and spur. In terms of size, the line is highly adaptable. It is typically created for gears blanks with bores that range from 6 inches to 20 inches and for gears with outside diameters of up to 90 inches.

Drewco is a design-and-build custom workholding firm. When designing these pedestal fixtures, the design engineers work specifically with each customer. They review part families, individual part dimensions, and production frequencies to develop a fixture that will generate the best investment outcome for each customer.

“Our goal is to make heroes out of our customers inside their own companies,” said Ann Pettibone, Drewco’s co-owner.

For more information on the pedestal fixture line, contact Richard Pettibone at Find more information on Drewco’s other custom products at