Is there a preferred solution to the problem of driving parallel rotary shafts from a single motor?
I have six shafts that I want to drive from one motor. The shafts are all:
- rotating the same direction
- planar (although this is not a hard constraint)
- low speed and moderate torque (~100W/0.1HP)
If I were to wrap one timing belt on pulleys around each shaft, most of the shafts would have very low contact angles and would likely slip. Running six timing belts, one from each shaft to the motor, is ungainly and expensive. Gearboxes would be difficult to align, have low efficiency (40-80% from my research), and require frequent maintenance (lubrication).
This seems like it must be a solved problem, but none of the solutions I can find seem very elegant. Any suggestions?