Bedford, MA--In the world of motion control, stiffness and load capacity are critical to system success--a fact that has made roller-type, rolling element guideways popular. Below size 25, however, design engineers could only specify ball units. Miniature-size roller guideways with twice the load-carrying capacity were expensive to manufacture and unavailable.
Schneeberger has broken that barrier with its new MR15 Monorail Guideway. By using an innovative manufacturing process to reduce component count, the company lowered production costs.
The manufacturing procedure, based on a unitized injection-molding process, reduces the number of carriage parts to five, and eliminates all hardware. Carriage components include a main body (load-bearing steel section plus integral plastic recirculation system), two retaining plates, and two end caps. By comparison, the next larger size MR25 Monorail Guideway has eleven parts, with two mounting bolts.
"Because the MR15's compact construction saves space," says Engineering VP George Jaffe, it offers OEM engineers the capability to downsize designs. "Jaffe adds that the lower part count also increases reliability due to fewer part interfaces and reduced lubricant loss.
As with its other Monorail Guideways, size 25-65, Schneeberger claims the MR15 offers significant operating performance and life advantages over guideways with recirculating balls, or other roller geometries. For example, Jaffe points to optimization of the carriage and rail cross section, plus the use of rollers for rolling elements. These features allow high rigidity and low vibration for smooth operation and uniform translation force. Integral, double-lipped wipers, moreover, minimize lubricant loss and effectively protect the rollers and track surfaces from dust and dirt.
"The MR15 simplifies development of linear axes," Jaffe contends. "While occupying the same space as a ball guideway, its higher load-carrying capacity and permissible moments ensure a long service life and enhanced crash safety. Higher stiffness," he adds, "allows faster machining rates."
Manufactured in four accuracy grades and three preload classes, the MR15 is available in single rail lengths to 1,500 mm. Applications include small machine tools, and small, precise handling axes.
Additional details... Contact Schneeberger Inc., 11 DeAngelo Dr., Bedford, MA 01730, (617) 271-0140.