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Machine Design

Miniature Beam, Oldham Couplings

Beam and Oldham couplings now include miniature sizes suitable for microcomponent applications.

Beam couplings come as standard parts in 20 body sizes with outside diameters as small as 3/8 in. (9 mm) and bores as small as 3/32 in. (3 mm). They feature multiple spiral cuts to accommodate angular and parallel misalignment and axial motion with modest bearing loads. The multiplecut pattern also provides for high torsional stiffness and higher torque capabilities when compared to singlebeam couplings. Available in aluminum for low inertia or stainless steel for higher torque, these single-piece couplings are zero backlash.

Oldham couplings come in seven sizes of setscrew or clamp-style hubs. They are comprised of two aluminum hubs with drive tenons that mate with a floating center member. This design allows for easy sliding to accommodate misalignment. Oldham couplings have light bearing loads because the only resistance caused by misalignment is frictional. The couplings are especially useful in applications with parallel misalignment. The replaceable center discs can be nylon to dampen vibrations and reduce noise, or acetal for precision applications. They offer zero backlash and high-torque capacity. Common applications for miniature beam and miniature Oldham couplings include medical devices, test and measurement instruments, inspection equipment, small encoders, stepper motors, and tachometers.

Ruland Mfg. Co. Inc.,6 Hayes Memorial Dr., Marlborough, MA 01752, (508) 485-1000,

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