Cam & Cam-Follower General Classifications

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Cam & Cam-Follower General Classifications

Classification of Cams and Followers

There is not a general classification for cam mechanical systems. However, the 'functional embodiments' and 'functions' of each sub-system have relatively few possibilities, which we can classify.


There is often confusion with the term cam-follower, in English at least. The term Cam-follower is often used for both the element that is in direct contact with the cam and the element that has its motion defined by the cam.

Where possible, I will use the term Cam-Follower for the part that has its motion defined by the cam.

There are two common shapes of the element that are in direct contact with he Cam - circular and flat. I will use the term Cam-Roller Follower when it is rolling bearing, and Flat-Faced Follower when it is a Flat-Face. For other shapes, it should be clear. from the context.

A General Classification of Cam and Cam-Follower Types:

tog_minusCam Shape

tog_minusCam Motion

tog_minusCam-Follower Shapes

tog_minusCam-Follower Motion

tog_minusConstraint between Cam and Follower

tog_minusType of Motion