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From the discovery of the failure to the final letter of transmittal, the line of communication should remain open, accurate, and sincere. There is no other way to achieve an acceptable plan for corrective action.

Not only the title of this book, but the entire contents strongly emphasize the systematic approach to an analysis of the problem. Putting the complete picture in a sequential pattern makes sense. Case histories are good, but they often do not detail the methods used to determine the final answer. All too frequently a person views a gear failure, finds a similar picture in a book, and believes it to be of the same mode and cause; this may not be so.

The purpose of this text is to train the reader in the art of discipline, to establish a logical step-by-step system of analysis: begin at the beginning and continue methodically to the end. If only we can influence field personnel, field representatives, mechanical and metallurgical analysts, and responsible engineers in management to be aware of the overall picture and to appreciate the role each plays in the final analysis, this book will be a success.

No work of this extent is accomplished by the author alone. Not only has 36 years of first-hand experience been necessary, but also the experience of many experts in our peer group. Of course, Fairfield Manufacturing Company, now a subsidiary of Rexnord, Inc., has been uppermost in supplying the environment of quality reputation necessary to maintain a consistently ethical leadership. My first employer, the late Harrold J. Bates, was meticulous in his concern for detail and accuracy. We learned to orient all our efforts toward the needs of our customers. This training has been good, and this philosophy continues.

Since I retired a year ago, Fairfield has graciously supplied an office for my use while writing. The Metallurgical Department, under the direction of R. L. Hughes, has been exceptionally patient and extremely helpful in allowing me full use of its time, talent, past records, photographic ability, and laboratory facilities, and sometimes just by listening. Without the stenographic help of its secretary, this work would have been almost impossible. My wife, Faye, was always encouraging and really didn’t believe I had retired a year ago, since I always went to work at the same time every morning. This has been a work of discipline, but possible only with the help and the faith of those mentioned above.

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