Whether the goal is high precision or low cost, ball screws are often the best option for linear actuation. Thomson Saginaw Ball Screw Co. Miniature ball screws are an efficient low-cost option for linear actuation. The mechanisms are used in a variety of automotive applications and come in sizes as small as 0.375-in. diameter and 0.125-in. lead with 90% efficiency. (Acme screws are typically just 30 to 60% efficient.) Single-nut screws have 170-lb dynamic load capacity and 1,600-lb static load capacity. Load capacities double when using two nuts. The next time you're faced with a design project that calls for linear actuation and you're considering "old standbys" like hydraulic or pneumatic cylinders, think a little longer. Ask yourself practical questions like, "Do I really want to deal with pneumatic noise?" Or, "If a hydraulic line breaks how much time and money will the messy cleanup demand?" If the answers to these questions lead to second thoughts about your plans, think about ball screws as well. Ball screws should be the method of choice in linear-actuation applications. Ball screws convert rotary input to linear motion and offer several advantages over other actuators, such as Acme screws, hydraulic or pneumatic systems, and belt, cable, or chain drives. For example, ball screws are up to three times more
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Lead Screws and ACME Screws
Lead screws and ACME screws are used to drive a nut in linear motion via direct contact between the screw and the nut. Lead screws usually incorporate proprietary screw and nut geometries and materials, and can be configured in zero-backlash arrangements.
Ball screws convert rotary motion to linear motion, or torque to thrust, and vice versa. They are primarily a power screw with a train of ball bearings riding between the screw and the nut in a recirculating track.
Roller screws convert rotary to precise linear motion in a similar manner to ball screws or lead screws. Due to the greater number of contact points of the rollers compared to balls or thread on thread contact, a roller screw provides higher stiffness and smooth motion.
Topics of Interest
Roller screws have the edge on ball screws in demanding, continuous-duty tasks. Roller screws have a series of threaded, helical rollers assembled in a planetary arrangement around a threaded shaft.
Servosystems are often an economical alternative to pneumatic cylinders. The actuation of cams, detents, and levers has long been the forte of pneumatic or hydraulic systems in machines. These systems...
Nook Industries provides a complete selection of inch and metric Ball Screws, Roller Screws, Acme Screws, Lead Screws, End Bearing Supports, Precision Locknuts, Worm Gear Screw Jacks, Electric...
Lead screws were once believed to be a cheap substitute for ball screws, to be used in less demanding applications. They were often assembled using low quality screws from ball screws or fastener...
Balls screws for linear motion come in a variety of styles, each with its own benefits and downside. Leadscrew assemblies or drives are widely used to generate linear motion. And you can get this...