Definition of gear in English:

gear

See synonyms for gear

Translate gear into Spanish

noun

  • 1often gearsOne of a set of toothed wheels that work together to alter the relation between the speed of a driving mechanism (such as the engine of a vehicle or the crank of a bicycle) and the speed of the driven parts (the wheels)

    ‘a racing bike with ten-speed gears’
    • ‘The aim of nanotechnology is to manipulate molecules atom by atom, treating them like mechanical devices with gears, wheels, levers, hooks, pivots, locks and keys.’
    • ‘This process is, of course, generally used on the larger castings and was originally introduced for the production of gears, worm wheels and cored bars.’
    • ‘The spacing of the gears allows engine speeds to be reduced and the torque curve to be better exploited.’
    • ‘Try a hybrid that takes the wheels and gears of a road bike and places them on a mountain bike frame.’
    • ‘A mechanical controller has gears and mechanical timers.’
    • ‘Fitted with whirring wheels, gears and other devices, the old mechanical toys have acquired retro-cool status among many affluent young collectors.’
    • ‘It is quite a funky bike, coming complete with suspension on the front wheel, rotary shift gears, the oddest bell known to mankind, and rapid release wheels.’
    • ‘Again, mechanical gears allow you to see the various orbits.’
    • ‘With a loud creak and groan, the wall behind the cross was pulled upwards by a series of mechanical gears to reveal a heavy metal door.’
    • ‘The machine occupied a whole room, filling it with a tangle of piano wires and pulleys to move its various wheels and gears.’
    • ‘The door slid back with a loud whine and creak of the mechanical and electric gears.’
    • ‘Oddly her head starts making mechanical noises like gears grinding together.’
    • ‘The machine consisted of replaceable shafts, gears, wheels, handles, electric motors, and disks and required much manual work to set it up.’
    • ‘It was like an essential oil, which lubricated the myriad moving parts, the gears and wheels of the mine's complex infrastructure.’
    • ‘We checked the massive engine room and filmed the now rusty gears on the open gearbox.’
    • ‘The engines are cross-coupled so that each propeller is run by two diesel engines through clutch and cone belt transmission gears.’
    • ‘I love a mystery, but not if you hear the gears and wheels clinking and clanking in the background.’
    • ‘The team relied purely on programming and built a simple robot that used wheels rather than gears for its movement.’
    • ‘Wheels turned and gears ground while he thought that one over.’
    • ‘One major problem with using a conventional set of gears is that gears have a ratio relationship between their input and output.’
    gearwheel, toothed wheel, cog, cogwheel
    gear ratio, speed
    View synonyms
    1. 1.1A particular function or state of adjustment of engaged gears.
      ‘he was tooling along in fifth gear’
      • ‘It slides smoothly and effortlessly into lower gears but fifth gear is a bit notchy and I have a bit of a tussle to engage it.’
      • ‘Plant your foot, even in manual mode, at 130 mph, and it will change down two gears to fourth and scream off towards the 155 mph limiter.’
      • ‘Your ears start to hurt from the pressure in fifth and sixth gears; now I know why people wear helmets with these machines.’
      • ‘That is this car's major selling point, but turn the traction control off and hit the loud pedal hard enough to kick down the gears, and the sheer violence of the forward motion would humble a fighter jet.’
      • ‘Overdrive gears improve the fuel economy of your car during highway driving.’
      • ‘Use that torque to good effect and it will amble along in the higher gears, barely sipping diesel.’
      • ‘The engine will quite happily sit at the legal limit in fifth gear at under 2000 revs.’
      • ‘The only problem was with following the optimum gearchange indicator when changing gears - I wanted to hold onto the revs for that little bit longer especially on some of the steeper slopes.’
      • ‘The manual box is pretty nifty, but heavy to select reverse, and the overdrive sixth and high fifth gears mean it depends on left wrist exercise.’
      • ‘The shifts are not only quick, but require very little throttle liftoff to change gears.’
      • ‘One of the two clutches engages the odd-numbered and the other the even-numbered gears.’
      • ‘There is the option to change gears manually, but when the auto box is this good, there really is no need to go manual.’
      • ‘Unusually for a sportscar of this type, it comes with six gears, making the occasional motorway cruise all the more bearable.’
      • ‘The system allows the driver to manually shift gears or drive in an automatic mode.’
      • ‘I retired because I had no hydraulic pressure, so I could not change down through the gears, which is why I went wide and had to use the run-off area.’
      • ‘The available sport setting automatically selects gears according to a sporty shift characteristic curve.’
      • ‘This system allows you to change gears like a manual car when you want to have some fun, but behaves like a regular automatic when you're in the mood to just take it easy.’
      • ‘Louise shifts up and down through the gears without altering her speed.’
      • ‘The former Tour of Spain points winner was disappointed with the result, saying that problems changing gears curtailed his speed.’
      • ‘In the auto-shift mode the system chooses the most logical gear for engine speed and fuel economy at any time.’
    2. 1.2Used in reference to the level of effort or intensity expended in an activity or undertaking.
      ‘from this weekend, the campaign is expected to step up a gear’
      • ‘now the champions moved up a gear’
      • ‘the play moves down a gear whenever he walks off stage’
      • ‘The food, the environs, the ambience are all in top gear for a grand welcome to "Mahabali Chakravarthy."’
      • ‘Local girls u13 basketball team were noticably in top gear at the Co. Kildare community games final played at Kilcullen on Wednesday, May 24.’
      • ‘With the scores at 10 -, and Town dominant, Odsal stepped up a gear to try and breach the Town defence.’
      • ‘After James Young narrowed the gap with a fine point Castletown suddenly stepped up a gear and within minutes were six points clear.’
      • ‘Now I'd like to take you briefly through a timeline of election day, as the different players and pieces step up a gear.’
      • ‘Perhaps the biggest source of comfort was the fact City at least got a result even though they never quite found top gear.’
      • ‘As the competition speeds up into high gear, Diamandis said there are several additional sponsorships still available for the Ansari X Prize competition.’
      • ‘The Motown slowdown is in high gear this week.’
      • ‘We need to step a up gear soon in order to get the job done.’
      • ‘For example, as I write this, the Democratic primaries currently are in high gear, and every candidate has at least one official Weblog.’
      • ‘Poor passing and delivery had been letting Laois down but they suddenly found a higher gear and Chris Conway and Paul Lawlor finished a couple of great moves.’
      • ‘When the United States entered World War II, the country had to move quickly into high gear.’
      • ‘Esposito came back as expected, but it was at this point that Hall stepped up a gear.’
      • ‘As I shifted into gear in preparation for the 1965 Mr. America, I saw less of the Dream Team and more of the inside of a tuna can.’
      • ‘As for dedicated ICQ users, they'll be delighted their favourite program has revved up a gear.’
      • ‘So it appears the program has either fizzled, not yet kicked into high gear, or been relatively dropped.’
  • 2usually with modifier Equipment that is used for a particular purpose.

    ‘camping gear’
    • ‘To make shopping easy, the company arranges its catalog according to clothing, accessories, gear, and gifts.’
    • ‘A few weeks after they'd gone missing, some of their personal dive gear washed up on a beach 75 miles from the dive site.’
    • ‘They caught five poachers, equipped with modern rappelling gear, in possession of six bags of bird nests.’
    • ‘To that point, it is a good idea to have personal protective gear, say, in your car, in case of an emergency.’
    • ‘The support vehicle also carries two operators with their personal and mission gear.’
    • ‘Prizes also include sunglasses, clothes and electronic gear.’
    • ‘Her mother then ventured inside to get her some clothes and some sanitary gear.’
    • ‘Many of these workers are working in hazardous environmental conditions without face masks, without proper gear.’
    • ‘Any juvenile attending training must have the proper handball gear (goggles and gloves) to prevent injury.’
    • ‘I went to the fire house and I said, why do you have all this gear and boots and jackets and stuff?’
    • ‘They had the right guns and gear, boots, hat, and clothes.’
    • ‘We fly around taking gear and people from one place to the next, sometimes all night long, just stopping to refuel.’
    • ‘There is protective gear and people are safe that way.’
    • ‘Inside was a bunch of dirt bike clothes and gear.’
    • ‘For maximum ride safety, your personal clothing and gear should also feature reflective elements.’
    • ‘The lesson taught by the headmaster was that a rescue knife to cut harnessing and webbing should be essential gear for Navy rescue personnel.’
    • ‘Although safety may be a consideration, not enough people use safety gear, and even when they do, they are not invincible.’
    • ‘As for gear, many people are using the small mini-disc recorders in the field these days.’
    • ‘First stop was to pick up the bags with the fresh clothes and camping gear from the truck, then set up the tent.’
    • ‘On his back were a parachute and 100-pound rucksack crammed with clothes, food, medical gear and other stuff.’
    equipment, apparatus, paraphernalia, articles, appliances, impedimenta
    View synonyms
    1. 2.1 informal Clothing, especially of a specified kind.
      • ‘designer gear’
      • ‘He expanded his clothing line from basketball gear to lifestyle wear.’
      • ‘So the crumpled, unshaven look is strictly last season and those who are with it are found in designer gear and sports shoes.’
      • ‘As it was, he was also wearing his travelling gear, painfully bright clothing that stood out a mile against his dark skin.’
      • ‘And from this minor blip things rapidly escalate; by the middle of week two, he's openly cheating and dressed top-to-toe in designer gear.’
      • ‘Even though it was just after Christmas, not one child out of the 30 or so there was wearing any designer gear.’
      • ‘I know somebody who used to work with them and witnessed refusal of clothing because it was not designer gear.’
      • ‘When out shopping, find a shop selling quality gear for half the price of what it would cost to dress in designer gear.’
      • ‘The audience had the usual haircuts, shaven or spiky, and the same tastes in branded designer gear.’
      • ‘To avoid bramble scratches and tick attacks, wear long gear and good shoes.’
      • ‘Worst of all was a basketful of designer gear, delicate fabrics and complicated creases.’
      • ‘A new survey claims Scots don't care for designer gear.’
      • ‘These limp fashion disasters are surely worn by the same people who in six months time will be strutting down the beaches of Ibiza parading the latest designer gear.’
      • ‘They were Mexicans, elegant in their designer safari gear.’
      • ‘He has a Santa Claus-like beard and often wears vintage leather motorcycle gear.’
      • ‘Expect to find savings of up to 70 per cent on clothes, with best buys in the outer wear, party gear and children's clothes sections.’
      • ‘Do everyday clothes as dance gear impact its otherness as an experience?’
      • ‘It was a large archway beneath the railway lines, filled with smoke, camouflage netting and PR people in army gear.’
      • ‘The fashion parade will feature a beautiful collection of clothes, from flowing evening gowns to funky techno gear showcased by local models.’
      • ‘At first, the onstage listeners (dressed in basic ballet gear, plus hats, glasses and handbags) are caught up in their own individual responses.’
      • ‘Have you considered putting them in cool leather biker gear or spandex outfits?’
      clothes, clothing, garments, articles of clothing, articles of dress, attire, garb
      View synonyms
    2. 2.2 informal A person's personal possessions and clothes.
      • ‘I told her to come back to my place with all her gear’
      • ‘The next day the girl returns and starts bringing in her clothes and other personal gear!’
      • ‘It excels in affordable, bright, trendy, big personality clothes and club gear.’
      • ‘It was a four-day trip, each man carrying his own rations, sleeping bag, clothing and personal gear.’
      • ‘For one thing, a small mule train will follow behind your group, carrying food, tents, and 15 pounds of your personal gear.’
      • ‘They walked with their webbing packed full of ammunition and in their haversacks they carried five days' bully beef and biscuits and a minimum of personal gear.’
      • ‘With all our food, water, fuel and personal gear safely stowed atop our jeeps, we were off.’
      • ‘Out came more personal gear, in went more ammo and water.’
      • ‘The hard briefcase will help protect your personal gear, but it's normally heavier and cumbersome.’
      • ‘We had five trips, moving our personal gear, then the group stores and finally the deflated rafts.’
      • ‘If a crewmember bailed you out by loaning you personal gear be extra, extra generous!’
      • ‘They forced us to remove all our gear (food, clothes, sleeping bags etc) and confiscated anything that wasn't moved off the grounds.’
      belongings, possessions, effects, personal effects, property, baggage, chattels, movables, paraphernalia, appurtenances, impedimenta, miscellaneous articles, odds and ends, bits and pieces, bits and bobs, trappings, accessories
      View synonyms
    3. 2.3Nautical A ship's rigging.

Pronunciation

gear

/ɡir/ /ɡɪr/

transitive verb

[with object]
  • 1Prepare, adjust, or equip for a particular purpose or need.

    ‘they gear workouts to your specific needs’
    • ‘the interactive quiz has been geared for those aged 6 to 12 years’
    • ‘the program is geared towards families on lower incomes’
    • ‘Just as he is bold in diagnosing the cause of the problem - a private economy geared to producing wealth, not jobs - he is equally daring in his remedies.’
    • ‘Honestly, this was an administrative post geared toward our writers, but that isn't fair to our readers and I have been upbraided accordingly.’
    • ‘Meanwhile, their sexy ads dominate the pages of trendy, urban magazines geared to the slightly liberal twenty-something set.’
    • ‘This has resulted in the production of many more stamps geared to outside collectors, particularly young adults in developed countries.’
    • ‘For example, guides at the site are primarily there to receive tourists, and they have a standard tour geared toward that audience.’
    • ‘It's an interactive on-line program geared towards working adults.’
    • ‘So long as it isn't coordinated with the campaign, such an expenditure would be independent and not geared to elect or defeat anyone.’
    • ‘We also have an amazing ad agency, filled with industry awards, dishing out amazing ads geared toward supporting women.’
    • ‘This session will explore a variety of body-mind activities geared toward generating an inner state of peace.’
    • ‘He started his first business at 12, a Web marketing and advertising firm geared toward teens.’
    • ‘As evidenced by this, and most protest rallies, evolution isn't always geared towards beauty.’
    • ‘If you have children on the cruise, there are usually play areas and programs geared to different age groups.’
    • ‘This shop is only 10 or 15 feet wide and packed to the gills with old & new clothes, mostly geared to the retired crowd.’
    • ‘Also, his personality isn't exactly geared to getting uncertain people to get serious about supporting him.’
    • ‘Our wages are under 50% of turnover and that is what we are gearing to in the future.’
    • ‘Meanwhile, it is gearing for New Year's Eve with not one but four separate events.’
    • ‘The money from the agencies will support activities geared at topics such as the health of the Great Lakes, thermoelectric materials and cardiovascular biology, among other things.’
    • ‘And the school's curriculum has been specifically geared to highlight green issues.’
    • ‘Perhaps you would like to visit an information center full of reference material geared specifically toward small businesses?’
    • ‘The format of the report needs to be geared to meet the expectations of the audience.’
  • 2Design or adjust the gears in a machine to give a specified speed or power output.

    ‘it's geared too high for serious off-road use’
    • ‘The transmission is geared for power, economy and smooth transition, and is designed to withstand tough working conditions.’
    • ‘This library implementation is geared for speed rather than memory efficiency and is single-threaded which makes it unsuitable for many uses.’
    • ‘Ride quality is reasonable; suspension is geared to off-roading rather than sheer comfort.’
    • ‘The camshaft is geared to turn at one-half the rate of the crankshaft.’
    • ‘Despite being geared to reach its top speed in the fifth of its seven gears, you can never quite escape the V10's voice.’

Pronunciation

gear

/ɡir/ /ɡɪr/

Phrases

    change gears
    • Adopt a different approach to a situation or task.

      • ‘I'm not criticizing the administration for changing gears’
    in gear
    • 1With a gear engaged.

      ‘the captain revved the engines and put them in gear’
      • ‘It drives like a bus with, if anything, a slightly larger turning circle, and the gearshift is so floppy that it all but collapses the distinction between being in gear and being in neutral.’
      • ‘Chris quickly threw the Jeep in gear and drove off.’
      • ‘Just put the key in, turn it on, put it in gear and you're off.’
      • ‘The engine restarts automatically when the car is put back in gear.’
      • ‘Sighing, he put the automobile in gear and drove off down the street.’
      • ‘But automakers should learn to illuminate them only when in gear, not while idling in park.’
      • ‘With second-hand vehicles, you get a car that isn't perfect, because it has been run, parked in supermarkets, started in gear and the seat belt has been jammed in the door several times.’
      • ‘Ensure that the vehicle is in gear with hand brake engaged when parked.’
      • ‘In a few short moments, he put the car in gear and drove off.’
      • ‘He glanced into the rear-view mirror, put it in gear, and pulled out of his parking space.’
      1. 1.1Proceeding with energy, determination, or speed.
        • ‘I couldn't get myself into gear early enough on Saturday morning’

Phrasal Verbs

    gear down
    • Change to a lower gear.

      ‘we geared down to creep through the square’
      • ‘You enjoy the soundtrack a lot more in the convertible version, and I could often be found in tunnels, gearing down, top down, and enjoying the soundtrack of this engine.’
      • ‘As hitters gear up, he gears down, recording outs with changeups traveling as slowly as 68 mph.’
      • ‘He believed he geared down three gears, which would have put him at about 60-65 k/hr.’
      • ‘Plus, there are tons of controversies on the ‘best’ way to handle some situations (gear up or gear down, shut off fuel or use what power is left, etc.).’
      • ‘They were trying to gear down from Central Park and get ready to go to the JJB Stadium.’
      • ‘Around the province, some coastal communities will be gearing up for certain fisheries, while others will be gearing down from other activities.’
      • ‘For example, he would maintain 6.5 mph at 50 rpm in one gear and then, as he geared down, he found he maintained 8 mph at 70 rpm without a perceived increase in effort.’
      • ‘But unfortunately, when they geared up, I think they forgot to gear down.’
      • ‘Take it slow, increase your distance from other traffic, signal your intentions early and gear down rather than brake whenever you can.’
      • ‘Once on an icy section, do not accelerate, brake, gear down, or make a sudden change in steering direction.’
    gear up
    • 1Change to a higher gear.

    • 2Prepare or equip oneself for something; get ready.

      ‘the region geared up for the tourist season’
      • ‘as the presidential campaigns begin to gear up, the candidates are making their positions known’
      1. 2.1gear someone or something up, gear up someone or somethingPrepare, adapt, or equip someone or something for a particular purpose.
        ‘the factory was geared up to build 30,000 cars per year’
        • ‘he geared us up with boots, crampons, ice tools, a harness, and a helmet’
    • 3(of a company) increase its borrowings.

      • ‘the group will be gearing up this year’

Origin

Middle English of Scandinavian origin; compare with Old Norse gervi. Early senses expressed the general meaning ‘equipment or apparatus’, later ‘mechanism’: hence gear (sense 1 of the noun) (early 19th century).