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Welcome to the Helix Linear Technologies Blog

How to Choose an Anti-backlash Lead Screw Nut

Posted by Chris Nook

Apr 19, 2016 2:32:34 PM

Lead screws are the norm for today's linear motion applications but despite the lead screw's advantages over competing technologies (i.e. affordability, precision, the ability to design with freedom, reduced maintenance, etc.), lead screw systems do have a certain amount of “play". An important design consideration for utilizing a lead screw is the amount of backlash your system can tolerate and still achieve it's goal. The big question is - which lead screw nut will help you in the battle against backlash?

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Topics: Design Considerations, Precision Lead Screws

Ball Screws vs Lead Screws - Pros and Cons

Posted by Chris Nook

Mar 2, 2016 2:09:35 PM

 


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Topics: Linear Actuators, Design Considerations, Precision Lead Screws, Acme Screws

Find the Air in Your Ways - Go Electric

Posted by Chris Nook

Feb 17, 2016 8:52:28 AM

 

Getting some fresh air is always a good idea right? It wakes you up, refreshes you or even changes your mindset. But what happens when the air starts to get stale?

Pneumatic actuators have been the staple of industry for years, and have been sold as being compact, fast and low cost. Their compact size is due to the remote location of their power unit, the air compressor. Fast response is due to the sudden inrush of air for activation. Low cost because the air cylinder by itself is inexpensive.  Electric actuators have made steady inroads to the air actuator market due to advances in control technologies, materials and automation disciplines.

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Topics: Linear Actuators, Design Considerations, Precision Lead Screws

Linear Actuators - When DIY Turns into Why

Posted by Chris Nook

Feb 11, 2016 6:30:00 AM

We have all been there – you saw a great idea and thought “I can do that”. Whether it was a repair on your car, a landscaping project in your backyard, or even a craft idea for your house, we have all had a DIY project go wrong. There is nothing wrong with attempting a project on your own - if it works out.

The same thing goes for linear motion. You know the basics behind it so building your own linear actuator should be easy – right? 

Everything can be found online so you start ordering from different manufactures. All of your pieces arrive in the mail eventually and it is time for assembly. Hours later you have something that sort of resembles what you were trying to build and the questions start.

Why do I have an extra piece? Why isn’t my leadscrew turning? Why did all of this cost so much? Why did I even try to do this on my own? Why can’t I just buy a linear actuator that is ready for me to use?

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Topics: Linear Actuators, Design Considerations, Precision Lead Screws

Dave Arguin joins Helix Linear Technologies

Posted by Chris Nook

Aug 31, 2015 1:12:58 PM

Dave Arguin, Vice President of Business Development at HelixDave Arguin joins Helix Linear Technologies as Vice President of Business Development.

Beachwood, OH – August 27, 2015 – Helix Linear Technologies has hired Dave Arguin to help expand a steadily growing list of national and international lead screw and linear actuator clients.

After spending 15 years with Kerk Motion Products and then 7 years with Haydon Kerk – Ametek, Dave has established himself as a knowledgeable and innovative leader in the linear motion industry.
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Topics: About Helix

Get Moving with a Precision Linear Actuator

Posted by Chris Nook

Aug 18, 2015 2:53:00 PM


Stepper motor driven screw linear actuators have been used for a while in a variety of applications. Integrated motor screw units used to only be available in high volume runs or too costly to consider. Building your own with expensive couplings and support bearings, mounting and aligning the assembly – add up to overwhelming costs. Helix has combined manufacturing technology, precision hybrid motors and standard lead screw components to make low volume runs an affordable modern option. 
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Topics: Linear Actuators, Design Considerations, Precision Lead Screws

A Custom Lead Screw Nut Might Be the Answer

Posted by Chris Nook

Apr 28, 2015 11:10:00 AM

There are a bevy of factors that dictate the performance of a lead screw, to include how it is mounted, as we covered in our last article. However, we believe that the most important factor is the pairing of the lead screw with the lead screw nut.
 
It may sound like we're stating the obvious but we don't think so. Due to the many advancements in nut design and material variety it's not such a straightforward decision these days. It’s common for some to overlook the impact of the nut after they've selected the lead screw for a particular application, but as many motion control applications are becoming more and more sophisticated - notably those in lab automation and medical equipment - the proper pairing of the lead screw and nut are becoming a paramount design decision. A single lead screw may have dozens of nut options and even those may not suit your particular application.

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Topics: Design Considerations, Precision Lead Screws

Helix Acme Lead Screw Standard Mounting Options

Posted by Chris Nook

Apr 8, 2015 12:51:54 PM

In order to ensure that an acme lead screw serves a particular application correctly, there are a variety of factors that need to be considered. In fact, there are four primary things to consider when it comes to lead screw selection: load, speed, length of travel and end fixity. In this article we are going to take a closer look at end fixity and how it relates to the proper mounting of your lead screw assemblies.

For the purpose of this discussion, we will define end fixity as the method by which the ends of the acme lead screw are supported within a given linear motion application.

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Topics: Design Considerations, Precision Lead Screws

Should You Increase RPM or the Lead of Your Lead Screw?

Posted by John McLoughlin

Mar 25, 2015 8:18:00 AM

When it comes to lead screw performance, it's all about axial load and rotational speed (RPM). As you likely know, the relationship between these two factors is known as "pressure velocity", or the PV curve. Simply put, this PV curve defines the safe limits of load and speed. For instance, as load increases, speed must be reduced in order to prevent excess heating and premature screw wear.

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Topics: Design Considerations, Precision Lead Screws

A Closer Look at Twin-Lead Acme Screw Assemblies

Posted by John McLoughlin

Feb 17, 2015 2:47:00 PM

If you are reading this, you probably know a thing or two about Acme lead screws and how they are fast becoming the preferred choice among design engineers when working with certain types of linear motion applications. One of the reasons for this, as we've covered in a previous article, is the fact that Acme lead screws come in "many different flavors", meaning that you'll be hard-pressed not to find one that fits your application. From various thread forms to a multitude of material choices, from design freedom to coating and lubrication options (or lack thereof), there truly is an Acme lead screw for just about any linear motion application.

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Topics: Precision Lead Screws, Acme Screws