Intech Power-Core Thermoplastics Engineering Blog

Stainless steel chain plating drum drive replaced by lube free gears

Posted by Simon Barrell on Jan 31, 2011 2:22:00 PM

One of our customers, who use an aggressive liquid bath in a plating process for coating metal parts, was experiencing a frequent breaking of the stainless steel chain drive which was corroding in the highly aggressive environment.

The parts are loaded into a large plating drum with a mesh exterior, which is then lowered into a tank containing a highly corrosive solution and heated to high temperatures between 120°F – 150°F. After coating, a series of cleaning and coating cycles are repeated across a battery of baths. A motor engages the drum drive, which needs to rotate slowly and steadily while carrying a high load into each step of the cleaning and coating process. The heavy metal parts in the drum can shift suddenly as the drum rotates, causing heavy shock load to be absorbed on the drive. The stainless steel chain, weakened by corrosion would give up under the shock load.

Intech engineers designed a large lubrication free Intech Power-Core™ gear and included a circular series of 2” diameter cast in ports made of Inconel™ in order to securely attach the gear to the drum. They also integrated a Power-Core bearing block in the shaft.

The Intech gear is resistant to the corrosive environment and was designed to absorb the sudden shock load, and proved to offer substantial savings to the customer.

Plating drum gears

Tags: Power-Core gears, lubrication-free, shock load, stainless steel, high load capacity, chain drive, plating drum

Why Do Intech Power-Core Gears Last?

Posted by Simon Barrell on Jan 19, 2011 3:50:00 PM

Rugged, high performance Intech Power-Core™ gears, rollers, and cam followers are individually calculated and designed from high performance Power-Core™ material to meet each engineer’s specifications for durability, performance, stability, and wear life.  Intech engineers analyze the application and provide gear tooth and anti backlash design modifications that have been developed specifically for plastic.  Company president, Georg Bartosch asserts “We will not sell a product unless we can first assure ourselves, on paper, that the product will work.”



Intech Power-Core gears

Intech Power-Core™ gears



Engineering calculations, developed in conjunction with a leading university, provide the wear-life and performance assurance the design engineer and OEM depend upon to gain a significant competitive advantage in product marketing and plant/equipment maintenance.

Intech Power-Core™ gears, rollers, and cam followers feature a very dense, stress-free, self-lubricating, homogeneous crystalline structure.  The Power-Core™ material does not absorb moisture, offers exceptional impact strength (shock load) resists most chemicals, operates in temperatures from 40º to +160ºF, can be safely cast around metal cores, and can be machined, if desired, by using a fluid coolant.

The integral metal core allows a higher torque transmission via a secure gear attachment to the shaft.  In addition, the metal core dissipates generated heat and reduces backlash requirements to make the gear quieter.

Each application is unique.  With over 20 years of experience in designing plastic components, Intech engineers begin each project by asking “what if” questions  and become involved with the design process.

Tags: Power-Core, wear life, shock load, anti-backlash

Cam Followers for RT Light Testers in Can Making Production Line

Posted by Simon Barrell on Aug 27, 2010 11:26:00 AM

In a high speed can making production line, light inspection is required to find pin holes and split flanges after the necking process. Once cans have been coated and sealed, these finished cans are tested for leaks using a light tester, which can detect holes 0.002” wide, smaller than a human hair, and also spot cracked flanges as small as 0.015”.

When Intech iCamFollowers® are installed on the light tester ram they ensure that 3,000+ inspections can be performed per minute, more than sufficient to keep up with the high speed can production line and offer several important benefits.

After installation, the lubrication lines originally used to grease the metal cam followers can be disconnected, cutting down on periodic maintenance and possible contamination of the can. Another important benefit is the fact that the cam propelling the ram back and forth is now protected from wear by the IPC tire.

Fitted with precision ball bearings the Intech iCamFollowers® are easy rolling and the plastic tire does absorb shock and vibration for overall smoother performance.

The Intech iCamFollowers® have also been running successfully for many years in the necking operation on Belvac neckers, both on rams made by Intech, the light weight, self-lubricating square ram, as well as on the original Belvac rams.Light tester and cam followers

Tags: cam follower, cam followers, Self-lubricating, shock load, vibration, can making, icamfollower, light tester, necking operation

Power-Core gear segment and pinion in high-speed card feeder

Posted by Simon Barrell on May 4, 2010 4:54:00 PM

A high frequency reciprocating gear and pinion being used in a feeder to insert postcards into magazines was suffering frequent breakdowns. Sealing the gearbox to permit lubrication that would prevent wear was not an option, and so Intech was approached to design a non-lubricated solution that could accommodate shock loads 5 to 10 times higher than the running torque of the application.

Intech Power-Core™ gears exhibit a high load sharing factor, an important quality when handling e-stops or shock loads. The load sharing factor, a measure of multiplying the load-bearing capacity of an individual tooth, is optimized for each application. Because the key way is cut into the metal hub and not the plastic, Power-Core eliminates the weak spot inherent in conventional plastic gears.

The metal hub absorbs all key way stresses, transferring maximum torque to the composite gear teeth. The teeth are made of a lightweight plastic composite, weighing just 0.037 pounds per cubic inch.



Intech Power-Core Segment Gear Pinion
A non-lubricated plastic pinion replaced a metal gear, eliminating breakdowns in a high-speed card feeder.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Torque of Power-Core gear approximates that of cast iron, but without the brittleness, weight, lubrication, and teeth breakage. As a result, Power-Core gears can reach higher speeds, increasing the throughput of your equipment. We can precisely calculate torque capacity, allowing Power-Core gears to replace metal gears in many applications.

Power-Core gears can operate without lubrication at pitch line speeds up to 15 feet per second. When a special friction-reducing coating is added, you can double gear speed to 30 feet per second.

Tags: Power-Core gears, lubrication-free, shock load, non-lubricated, plastic gears, friction-reducing coating, load-bearing capacity, card feeder, composite gear teeth, gear speed, metal gears, plastic pinion, running torque

Combating vibration, shaft bearings are only as good as their grease

Posted by Simon Barrell on Mar 16, 2010 4:02:00 PM

Intech Power-Core™ guide rollers and iCamFollowers™ absorb shock and vibration and their life is typically calculated for 100 million cycles, a performance relying in part on longevity of the roller bearings installed inside the plastic tires. Tests have found that degraded lubrication is the leading cause of bearing failure.

In harsh environments with high shock load frequency, combined with high humidity, some grease types can liquefy, then this will cause leakage from the bearing seals or can produce an added churning-friction effect on the bearing. As a result, in high speed applications, the operating temperatures will rise significantly, compounding the breakdown of the grease properties and resulting in premature bearing failure.

We have identified a new type of lubricant to improve our rollers resistance to shock and vibration by providing lubrication to the bearing when operating under extreme conditions. The grease, NLGI No. 2, has shown a consistent mechanical stability and less churning or deterioration than other lubricants.

We have been able to apply this newly acquired knowledge in a case of premature bearing failure in guide rollers used in a train sliding door in Florida. Exposure to high frequency vibration and high humidity caused a bearing failure while the plastic tire remained intact. By regreasing the guide roller bearings with the NLGI No. 2 grease, we have been able to better match the expected life of both the plastic tire and the bearings.

Intech Corporation is constantly striving to improve its products and certainly the discovery of this grease’s properties helps our customers extend the life of our rollers and bearings in shock and vibration applications.

Cam follower for packaging application 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Cam follower for packaging application

 

Concave, v-shaped, flat tire rollers

Concave, v-shaped, flat tire rollers

 Intech Rollers for High Security Door

Intech Rollers for High Security Door

Tags: cam followers, roller bearing, shock load, vibration, roller life, plastic tires, bearing failure, grease, lubrication

High speed rotating face cams machined from Power-Core™ outlast steel

Posted by Simon Barrell on Feb 2, 2010 1:23:00 PM

Exact steerage requires dimensionally stable cam tracks with narrow tolerances. Our cams are precision machined from solid blocks of cast Intech Power-Core™ material, offering a longer lasting solution than stainless steel.

In high speed machines Intech Power-Core™ cams exhibit damping behavior which leads to reduced stress peaks. Additionally the high performance plastic cam offers exceptional resistance to wear with limited or no lubrication, which is critical to avoid contamination.

The face cam converts circular motion to linear motion or vice versa, typically it is a disc with a groove cut in its face, in which a cam follower travels. The attached image shows such a cam used in a tableting machine.

In this case the customer required self-lubricating material performance and had experienced constant stress problems using cams machined from plastic materials with low levels of crystallinity, such as Delrin®. However they found that Power-Core™ material, with higher crystallinity levels, can be used to produce a more stable cam that does not suffer stress peaks.

Industries in which our cams have been used include packaging, food processing, printing, as well as stitching machines and other general engineering applications.

In high speed machines Intech Power-Core™ cams exhibit damping behavior which leads to reduced stress peaks. Additionally the high performance plastic cam offers exceptional resistance to wear with limited or no lubrication, which is critical to avoid contamination.


The face cam converts circular motion to linear motion or vice versa, typically it is a disc with a groove cut in its face, in which a cam follower travels. The attached image shows such a cam used in a tableting machine.

In this case the customer required self-lubricating material performance and had experienced constant stress problems using cams machined from plastic materials with low levels of crystallinity, such as Delrin®. However they found that Power-Core™ material, with higher crystallinity levels, can be used to produce a more stable cam that does not suffer stress peaks.

Industries in which our cams have been used include packaging, food processing, printing, as well as stitching machines and other general engineering applications.

Face Cam for Tableting Mach resized 600

Face Cam precision machined from cast Intech Power-Core™ material reduces inertia, absorb shock and vibration.

Tags: Power-Core, Self-lubricating, shock load, vibration, non-lubricated, stainless steel, cams, crystallinity, Delrin, face cam, stress peaks, tableting machine

Composite Worm Gears Extend Wear Life in Tough Applications

Posted by Simon Barrell on Jan 7, 2010 2:23:00 PM

Intech engineers are frequently asked for help to determine worm gear size, design parameters and to make wear-life projections using our proprietary gear calculations. As a result of these calculations, Intech Power-Core™ composite worm gears are chosen to replace industry-standard bronze gears in demanding operations to increase transmission efficiency with quieter, longer-wearing performance.

Intech Power-Core Worm Gears


Intech Power-Core Worm Gears


Power-Core material does not require special grade oil or frequent oil changes and the composite material does not generate abrasive particles which become suspended in the oil as a contaminant that contributes to wear. The tough, self-lubricating properties of the composite gear material enable Intech Power-Core worm drives to consistently outlast conventional bronze worm gears.

We completed a 1,000 hour test that compared gear performance between the Intech Power-Core gear and a case-hardened ground steel worm gear, and the results confirmed the capacity of Power-Core material to absorb shock load and vibrations. Test data showed an average noise reduction of 6 dB, with up to an 8% increase in gear transmission efficiency and no wear was detected on the 6.5 PD Power-Core worm gear.

In applications such as conveyors for glass washing or light load semi-conductor manufacturing machinery, the Intech Power-Core worm gears run with only light grease lubrication, or completely dry. Even in high torque applications that result in friction, the self-lubricating Power-Core worm gear can run for extended periods without lubrication.

The mating worm shaft can be made of conventional materials utilizing standard manufacturing methods. The low-maintenance Power-Core composite worm gears use readily available machine oil to lubricate the gear box, instead of more expensive specialized synthetic oil that is usually recommended for bronze worm gears.

Tags: Power-Core, wear life, composite material, gear box, shock load, vibration, self-lubricating gears, bronze gear, Gear Calculation, gear life calculation