Intech Power-Core Thermoplastics Engineering Blog

Actuator Redesign For High-Speed Belvac 795 Can Making Machine

Posted by Alexander Bartosch on Feb 25, 2013 12:01:00 PM

Though the necker on a can making line performs a very specialized task, the mechanical subsystems found on this machine offers a number of design lessons that can be applied more broadly by any engineer working to improve the performance and reliability of high-speed equipment.

Consider, for example, the necker’s cam-driven ram actuators. Mounted on a rotating turret and moving at speeds up to 250 strokes per minute, these rams push the round can shell onto a series of shaping dies that gradually reduce the diameter of the can to form its neck.

Traditionally, these Belvac rams have consisted of a round moving pin that translates axially within a barrel-like steel housing, with a machined keyway to keep the pin from rotating. The ram was driven directly via a pair of metal cam followers that mount on the rear end of the pin and engage a stationary cam.

That design, however, suffered from three problems in the field. For one, it required an aggressive lubrication regimen to combat ram and cam wear. For another, it allowed the pin to lift and twist in the barrel, causing premature wear that extends all the way back to the can. And lastly, the traditional design limited the operating speed of the necker.

We eliminated all three problems with a radical redesign of the ram that:

  • Eliminated the need for lubrication. The redesign replaced lubrication-hungry metals with lube-free polymers wherever possible. The redesign completely does away with the metal-on-metal wear between the cam and cam followers, which had been the primary failure mode with the traditional ram design.

  • Optimized the geometry of the ram. The redesign features a square ram, rather than round. The square ram does a far better job at managing the actuator’s on- and off-axis forces. It also guides the pin more effectively, reducing wear.

  • Removed moving mass. Thanks to the use of polymer components and structural aluminum, the redesigned ram weighs in at less than half the weight of the traditional round ram design. Total reduction of moving mass on a 10-stage line is nearly one metric ton.

Now in use by can makers around the world, the redesigned ram has offered a compelling payback. It has resulted in reduced maintenance costs, including the elimination of expensive automated lubrication systems. It has also contributed to reduced defect rates and faster line speeds.

Learn more about the redesign in our latest design case study, Redesign Improves High-Speed Can Making Machine. The case study offers a deeper look at our design process, including a glimpse at the finite element analysis (FEA) work that guided some of our decisions. The case study also highlights the side-benefits of designing for lubrication elimination.

 

Download the design case study

Tags: Belvac 595, cam follower, cam followers, reduce noise, reduce shock, reduce vibration, Self-lubricating, non-lubricated, cams, PA12GC, iCamFollowers, Cast Nylon, can making, low inertia, high load capacity, friction-reducing coating, production line shut-down, Belvac necker, Belvac 795, Belvac super k

How to avoid design compromises when the equipment function calls for cam followers

Posted by Alexander Bartosch on Sep 10, 2012 10:40:00 AM

 

How to avoid design compromises when the equipment function calls for cam followers

Engineering design is an art of compromise. To achieve a design goal — for example, a certain machine function — engineers select components based on several criteria such as functionality, reliability, component’s availability, cost, and lead times. Pro and cons are analyzed and final selection made.

In the case of cam followers, in the past engineers did not have a choice other than selecting the manufacturer. With few options available, the engineers were forced to accept a host of costly requirements and operational limitations.

Intech iCams

Whether the application calls for high or low load capacity, the design has to provide for lubrication either manually or through a central lubrication system. Rail or cam surfaces have to be hardened. In operation, lack of lubrication of the bearing or the rail surface can lead to a catastrophic failure. Over-greasing can lead to the cam follower’s skidding, causing wear, and excess grease can contaminate the product being processed.

In addition, shock and vibration can cause metal to metal impact that has to be considered. Metal particles and grease contamination often prevent equipment manufacturers from entering the growing clean room market. The relatively low rotating speed of needle bearings, their high rolling resistance, and inertia may be limiting factors in high speed equipment design.

When selecting Intech iCamFollowers® the designer can eliminate most of the disadvantages of metal cam followers. This is especially the case in designs where the cam follower’s primary function is to transmit motion and not its high load carrying capacity.

Today the trend is toward high speed, light weight, and light duty machines in processing, packaging, medical, and semi-conductor machines, which account for about 40 percent of applications. In these applications, Intech iCamFollowers® can easily carry the load, help simplify design, and better achieve the design goal.

Considering the cost associated with design and operation of metal cam followers, it pays to better understand the actual load carried by the cam followers in the application. With load data, including radial and axial forces, load duty cycle, and desired linear speed, Intech engineers can use a unique plastic roller life calculation to quickly assess whether an iCamFollower can be used.

The load capacity of Intech standard iCamFollowers® is listed on Intech’s web site and represents the maximum load the cam followers can safely carry for 100 million cycles, under both static and dynamic loads, without developing a flat or excessive wear. A consultation with Intech engineers may lead to an alternative designs, opening the way to eliminating wear and lubrication as well as the number of modifications in the machine’s design.

If iCamFollowers® can be used, the advantages, compared to metal followers are many:

For New Equipment:
* Simplified design- cost savings
* No need for surface hardening- c
an run on aluminum rails
* No rail or cam wear
* No need for lubrication- manual or automatic
* Reliability
* Higher machine speed- Lower inertia, low rolling resistance
* Shock absorption
* Wash Down- stainless steel bearings and shafts, sealed design
* Sub-zero temperatures
* Elimination of lubrication and metal particles c
an open new markets

In plant Operations:
* Eliminating Lubrication
* Eliminating rail and cam wear
* Cost savings on maintenance

* Cost savings on production shortfall
* Longer maintenance cycles
* Noise reduction
* Low cost to try if iCams work

 

Learn More

 

 

Credits: As featured in Design World May 9 2011. http://www.designworldonline.com/how-to-avoid-design-compromises-when-the-equipment-function-calls-for-cam-followers/#_

Tags: cam followers, reduce noise, reduce shock, reduce vibration, Self-lubricating, cast nylon 12, Clean rooms, moisture absorption, PA12GC, iCamFollowers, PA12C, PA12G, sub-zero temperatures, Cast Nylon

Introducing Intech Non-lubricated Linear Slides

Posted by Alexander Bartosch on Feb 2, 2012 1:09:00 PM

Below is the first look at our newest product: A non-lubricated linear Slide.

Tags: cam follower, cam followers, maintenance, Power-Core, precision machined, minimum resistance, iCam Followers, lubrication-free, reduce noise, reduce shock, reduce vibration, plastic rollers, Self-lubricating, wear life, composite material, cast nylon 12, Linear Motion Devices, Precision Linear Slides, electrically insulated, energy efficiency, Clean rooms, Wash-downs

Double-rowed Power-Core drive sprocket in packaging machine

Posted by Simon Barrell on Apr 19, 2010 5:20:00 PM

In food industry applications lubrication is always an issue, so for a packaging machine we designed a composite double-rowed drive sprocket machined from Intech Power-Core™ material with a SS core that prevents abrasion on the steel chain, even at high operating speeds.

This chemical resistant sprocket is corrosion proof and ensures that no lubricant is required which could contaminate the food.


Double rowed drive socket
Double rowed-drive sprocket used in a packaging machine


 

 

 

 

 

 

One drive sprocket is used for two different chain circuits, and this component provides an integrated solution with a cast-in stainless steel hub to securely attach both sprockets to the shaft.

Intech Power-Core™ sprockets are available with or without metal core. The material’s properties lend themselves to superior wear characteristics of the sprocket teeth. Intech Power-Core™ sprockets do not wear out the chain, reduce noise and absorb shock and vibration.

Tags: Power-Core, reduce noise, reduce shock, reduce vibration, stainless steel, drive sprocket, packaging machine, corrosion proof, wear characteristics

Crystalline structure absorbs energy in high speed Power-Core roller.

Posted by Simon Barrell on Jan 19, 2010 1:35:00 PM

A special design by Intech’s engineering staff, using a composite tire material, a tested method of manufacturing and assembly, all contribute to the exceptionally quiet performance of Intech Power-Core™ rollers.

Image100 Rollers

Intech Power-Core™ rollers


The design marries a precision roller or ball bearing with an Intech Power-Core composite tire. The quiet roller ride can be attributed to the tire material with its tension-free, homogeneously crystalline structure, achieved through a unique casting process. This fine crystalline structure exhibits excellent energy absorbing properties while resisting flat development under load, while the Power-Core tire also protects the metal rail against wear.

Tires are precision-machined, and then heated in an oven to 250° to 300° F before the bearing is pressed in through a specially designed snap-in lip. After cooling, the tire is effectively shrunk onto the bearing. The precision-machined tire, with OD tolerance within 0.0001”, has excellent roundness contributing to the smooth and quiet ride.

The expected life of the roller in number of roll-overs, and flat-free time under load, are determined with a calculation and data developed by a leading university.

Tags: Power-Core, reduce noise, wear life, Intech rollers, roller life

Guide Rollers Provide Secure Fit Under Varying Loads & Temperature

Posted by Alexander Bartosch on Aug 13, 2009 3:24:00 PM

Intech was selected by Bombardier to provide replacement rollers for the platform safety door on the Orlando People Mover System.

Bombardier Transportation, with a reputation for excellence in designing high capacity urban transit systems and automated people movers, required longer wear-life rollers, with increased reliability to reduced maintenance. Our design engineers at Intech Corporation, explored how the engineered Intech powercore rollers might address Bombardier Transportation’s requirements.

 

Concave Rollers For Sliding Door Hardware

Concave Rollers for Guide Door Openings Once application details, including angle, load, door weight, linear speed, temperature variations, humidity levels, rail material and cycling information were presented, Intech was able to custom design a concave roller. The assembly features a precision machined Intech Power-Core™ tire thermally installed over a sealed ball bearing. At a radial load of 100 lbs. per roller running at 53.82 ft/min, Intech determined roller performance life of between 500 to 700 million door-opening cycles, which could potentially provide the Orlando International Airport with 5 to 7 years of quiet, trouble-free and maintenance-free operation.

Intech Power-Core™ rollers do not absorb moisture and maintain outstanding performance characteristics throughout a temperature range that extends from -40°F to 140°F. The precision thermal-fit tire is credited with providing a reliable and secure fit under varying load and temperature situations.

After one year of continuous operation, there are no visible signs of wear on the roller surface. Additionally, Intech Power-Core™ rollers are being installed on the heavy 200 lb. glass station doors in order to reduce noise and increase resistance to grinding and wear. Station door rollers for Leg A2 are in the process of being replaced at the Orlando site with Intech Power-Core™ replacement rollers. Bombardier field technicians are installing the replacement rollers and, where applicable, will ensure that they are timed to open and close at precision-controlled intervals so that the doors orchestrate perfectly with the opening of train doors to provide a safe, smooth passage.

Please download a white paper showing many of the applications and advantages of intech rollers:

Learn More

Tags: Power-Core, reduce noise, wear life, sliding door hardware, Intech rollers, roller life, guide rollers