Exploring Screw Jack Varieties

Worm Gear Jack, Bevel Gear Jack, Machine Screw Jack, And Ball Screw Jack – Features and Distinctions

Screw jack plays an important role in various industries for lifting and positioning heavy loads. As a user, you may be very confused. The screw jacks have worm gear jacks, bevel gear jacks, machine screw jacks, and ball screw jacks. What’s the difference and how to use the right one for your application? This guide will help you to take a close look at their unique functions, and help you discern which type suits your best need. Join us now!

1. Understanding Screw Jacks Mechanisms

  • Worm Gear Jack: A screw jack that uses a worm gear mechanism to lift or move loads with precision. It commonly pairs with a machine screw or ball screw for different applications.
  • Bevel Gear Screw Jack: A screw jack equipped with bevel gear mechanisms. It also can pair with a machine screw or ball screw like the worm gear jack.
  • Ball Screw Jack: A screw jack utilizing a ball screw mechanism, enhancing efficiency and offering higher precision in linear motion.
  • Machine Screw Jack: A screw jack employing a machine screw to convert rotary motion into linear motion for lifting or positioning tasks.

A worm gear or bevel gear jack is commonly matched with a machine screw or ball screw. Conversely, the versatility of machine screw or ball screw jacks allows them to work seamlessly with worm gear or bevel gear mechanisms.

This interchangeability offers diverse combinations, enabling tailored solutions for various applications. Whether it’s the precision of a ball screw with a worm gear or a machine screw with a bevel gear, these combinations provide adaptable options to meet specific industrial requirements.

2. Worm Gear Jack vs. Bevel Gear Jack

screw jack using bevel gear mechanism

screw jack with bevel gear

worm gear lift mechanism

screw jack with worm gear

Worm Gear Jacks and Bevel Gear Jacks are both mechanisms used for lifting and positioning in various industries. Understanding the features and limitations is important when considering screw jacks in specific applications.

Worm Gear Jack: A Worm Gear Jack employs a worm gear mechanism comprising a worm screw and worm wheel. The input rotation of the worm shaft moves the worm wheel, resulting in vertical movement. It’s commonly used in industries requiring heavy lifting and where mechanical advantage is crucial, such as construction and manufacturing.

  • Efficient for applications where slow and steady lifting is required.
  • Perfect for heavy lifting applications due to its robustness.
  • High ratio speed reduction up to 1/32


  • Efficiency: Worm gear mechanisms can be less efficient due to friction between the worm and gear. This friction can generate heat, reducing overall efficiency.
  • Backlash: They might have a small amount of backlash, leading to slight movement before the load starts to lift.
  • Speed: Worm gear screw jacks generally operate at slower speeds compared to some other screw jack types.
  • Self-locking: While self-locking is an advantage for holding loads, it can be a limitation when precise positioning is required without external support.

Bevel Gear Jack: Bevel Gear Jacks utilize bevel gears that transmit motion through intersecting gear teeth. This configuration generates vertical movement in machinery. It’s commonly applied in scenarios demanding precise and smooth motion, like robotics, automation, and machinery where space is limited.

  • Known for its compact design and efficient power transmission.
  • Ideal for small to medium load high speed, high duty circle applications.


  • The cost is relatively higher compared with other type of screw jack, especially when equipped with a ball screw.
  •  The load-carrying capacity is relatively lower, and not suitable for heavy load applications.

3. Machine Screw Jack vs. Ball Screw Jack

screw jack with acme screw

screw jack with acme screw

screw jack with ball screw

screw jack with ball screw

Machine Screw Jack: Utilizes a traditional machine screw and nut mechanism for converting rotary motion into linear motion. It’s a cost-effective and reliable method for lifting and positioning loads. Commonly used in various industrial settings, including lifting platforms, conveyor systems, and general material handling.

  • Robust and reliable for lifting heavy loads.
  • Efficient load-holding capability.
  • Economical solution for small to heavy loads applications.
  • Ideal for vertical, horizontal, or pivoting motion applications where precision isn’t the primary concern.


  • Speed: The machine screw jacks are not designed for high-speed and high-duty circle operations. The slower speed restricts their use in quick movements or frequent adjustment applications.
  • Precision: In comparison to ball screw jacks, machine screw jacks might have more backlash, reducing their precision in positioning applications.
  • Efficiency: They have lower overall efficiency due to more friction in their design.

Ball Screw Jack: Employs ball bearings between the screw and nut, resulting in smoother and more efficient motion transfer. The rolling mechanism reduces friction and enhances precision. Applied in scenarios where precise and smooth linear motion is crucial, such as CNC machines, robotics, and high-precision equipment.

  • High precision and low friction for smooth motion.
  • Excellent efficiency and reliability in applications demanding accuracy.
  • Suitable for applications demanding smoother, faster, and more accurate linear motion.


  • Cost: Ball screw jacks tend to be more expensive due to their precision manufacturing and the use of ball bearings.
  • Maintenance: Requires more maintenance due to the ball bearings, which can wear over time and need periodic replacement or lubrication.
  • Backlash: While ball screw jacks generally have less backlash than other types, they can still exhibit some level of backlash, affecting precision in certain applications.
  • Temperature Sensitivity: Extreme temperature variations can impact the performance of ball screw jacks, affecting the ball bearings and lubricants.


Throughout our discussion, we’ve explored various screw jack types: worm gear, bevel gear, machine screw, and ball screw jacks. Each has unique abilities, serving distinct purposes in different industries, from heavy lifting to precise movements. Below summary for your reference. Should you have any questions or need any help, our engineer is ready to help.

Machine Screw JackBall Screw Jack
Worm Gear SetSlower travel speed
Lower Efficiency
Lower duty circle(20%ED)
Full static capacity in Tension/Compression
Usually self-locking in most cases
The ideal choice for small-load manual operation
Sliding friction generates more heat
Typical 1~120T load capacity, 1 or 2 input shaft
Faster Travel Speeds
Higher efficiency)Higher duty cycles (30%ED)
Not self-locking, needs a brake motor to hold the position
Not suitable for manual operation
Rolling friction generates less heat
Typical 1~50T load capacity, 1 or 2 input shaft
Full static capacity in Tension/Compression
Bevel Gear SetModerate travel speeds
Moderate efficiency
Usually holds position without a brake
Smaller jacks may be operated manually
Ideal for moderate duty cycles
Sliding friction generates more heat
Typical 1~20T load capacity, 1,2 or 3 input shaft
Full Static capacity dependent on mounting
Fastest travel speeds
Highest efficiency
Requires a brake motor to hold the position
Not suitable for manual operation
Ideal for high-duty cycles (near continuous)
Rolling friction generates less heat
Typical 1~20T load capacity, 1,2 or 3 input shaft
Full static capacity dependent on mounting

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