The motion plastics specialist igus has introduced an exciting new approach for linear carriages — a clip mechanism that enables easy installation and removal from the linear guide in just a few seconds.
Whether it’s building technology, mechanical engineering, industrial handling systems, measuring and testing systems, or camera technology, linear systems are integral to everyday life. The principle is always the same: a component, such as a control panel, is installed on a carriage and moves over a linear profile with the aid of a guide system or a rolling guide. Previously, it has only been possible to remove the carriage with some effort, often using tools and usually via the profile ends, provided the installation space permits it.
This design limitation prompted tractor manufacturers for an alternative solution, such as a carriage enabling operators to keep their touch displays in the optimal view position. There is also a requirement for it to be removed quickly and safely in one step after finishing work. They can be stored safely and protected from theft, moisture, and cold.
“Inspired by this need, we developed the linear “carriage-to-go” as part of a design study – a carriage that can be removed from the linear rail without tools and from any position in just one step,” explains Michael Hornung, Product Manager drylin Linear and Drive Technology at igus. “In the field of linear technology, this idea is an innovation that saves time and opens up new areas of application.”
Intuitive operability ensures fast installation and removal
The operation of the clip carriage is simple. The carriage moves on a double profile rail via four self-lubricating and maintenance-free high-performance plastic slide bearings. If the user pulls a lever on the underside of the carriage, two bearings open via a spring mechanism. The carriage can now be pivoted off the rail and removed. The installation is just as quick. The user places the carriage on the upper rail and clips it onto the lower rail.
“Operation is so intuitive that installation is reliable and quick,” says Hornung.
The first pilot customers are enthusiastic about the new technology. Among these customers are users of camera systems and measuring and testing technology. You can install cameras and evaluation units on linear guides faster than ever. The design study is therefore becoming a product. The market launch is planned for spring 2022.
Clip carriage expands the drylin W product range
With the new clip carriage, igus is expanding the drylin W product range. There are currently more than 50 different versions of linear guide carriages, which, in combination with other design elements, allow an almost unlimited number of variants. The essential feature of all models is that they enable high accuracy and smooth operation due to the high-performance plastic used in the plain bearings and that they can be cleaned quickly and thoroughly due to the absence of lubricants.