Design Application Examples Using Linear Shafts

Whether you’re building a new machine or considering making modifications on an existing machine, engineering effort, cost and time are all factors that should be heavily considered before beginning any new project. Why not take a cue from some of your colleagues and see how they’ve applied some designs into their own builds? It’s not always necessary to “reinvent the wheel” and it’s quite possible to minimize the risks as well as cost and time! Though you may need to make adjustments before implementing these into your own designs, you can ensure they’ve already been tested and therefore function reliably. Here are some great designs using linear shafts as an integral component.

Application Example 1

This first application design was used for Material Testing. A combination of linear shafts, linear bushings, and other components were used to create a Fatigue tester. The upper portion of the workpiece holder is connected to two linear bushings that travel along the shaft, allowing for accurate and easy movement of the mechanism. This design uses hardened linear shafts to prevent deformation from occurring between the shaft and bushing while maintaining the precision necessary to properly perform the fatigue test.

Application Example 2

This next example uses linear shafts to create a fixture assembly commonly used in the automotive industry.  The slide unit is driven by a manually operated lead screw assembly that is guided by a set of linear shafts and bushings. The linear shafts are held in place by split shaft supports that clamp onto the end of the shaft. This removes the need for machining at the shaft ends while still providing precise linear motion. In addition, the linear shafts also provide support for the loads applied to the assembly.

Application Example 3 Application Example 3 illustrates a simple way of providing linear motion in a vertical application using linear shafts. In this application, there was no effective way to utilize linear guides since they require continuous support along the entire rail. Utilizing linear shafts allowed for more design freedom so that specialized components could be incorporated (in this particular case the linear shafts are press-fit into a metal bracket that serves several functions including shaft support). This helped reduce the total number of parts required to achieve the necessary linear motion and reduce the overall size of the mechanism.

Application Example 4

This application design was used for a vertical product placement machine used in the Electronics Industry. The vertical motion of the inspection platform is achieved with a ball screw assembly. The ball screw assembly is driven by a Servo motor and guided by linear shafts. Since the inspection platform is lightweight, the moment load is minimal and inexpensive, linear shafts can be used instead of linear guides.

Application Example 5

Application Example 5 is an assembly station for smaller electronic components. Air cylinders are used with linear shafts and linear guides to achieve simultaneous horizontal and vertical motion. These linear shafts help displace the applied loads and improve the overall accuracy of the assembly. This is an excellent example of the versatility of linear shafts in applications where it is not possible to use linear guides.

We hope you’ve found these examples helpful and are able to use them as your “designspiration” for your next machine build. Be sure to check out MISUMI linear shafts that are now being manufactured locally at our new state-of-the-art facility in Ohio here.

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