Machine Design

Linear guides support range of motion for grinding operators

Engineers at Equipois Inc. needed a guidance mechanism for its zeroG arm, a device that provides work cell technicians with near-weightless operation of tools such as drills and hand grinders in a wide working envelope. In one application, the 30-lb arm had a moment load on its slide of 1500 in/lb. Design specs dictated that operators should only need 6 lb of push force to move the cell’s hand grinder. For a cost effective and durable solution, the firm turned to PBC Linear and its Integral V Technology (IVT) linear guide system.


PBC recommended its IVT solution in a double bolt-on configuration to handle the large static and dynamic loads. The company precision machines aluminum extrusions for guides using its patent-pending process which creates more rigid extrusions that nearly match the strength of steel. The process handles all critical sides of an extrusion in one pass, generating a precise form with 0.002-in. flatness, ± 0.001-in. parallelism, and ±0.002-in./ft straightness This eliminates the need for fasteners and also cuts installation time. The grinding cell also required a guide system that could support the arm’s high roll-moment load. IVT easily handles 338-Nm static and 374-Nm dynamic loads, more than enough to provide the Equipois system with easy mobility.

Sources:
PBC Linear, Roscoe, Ill., http://ivt.pbclinear.com/IVT
Equipois Inc., Los Angeles, Calif., www.equipoisinc.com


The grinding work cell’s zeroG arm moves along a linear guide system from PBC Linear.

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