Pneumatic clamps are essential for pneumatic systems. Imagine that every component you were working on had to simply float in space while it was being processed. Chances are that you wouldn’t like this very much because you could never be sure that the object in question wouldn’t just roll away to somewhere else.
Your company’s manufacturing workflows would get tiresome and even annoying since there’d be almost no way to ensure that your component remained in a single position. Fortunately, there’s a compressed air-driven technology that could help you out if you’re slowly starting to find that this is becoming your workshop’s reality.
Pneumatic clamp cylinders are used for holding a workpiece in place while work is being done. Most pneumatic clamp cylinders are designed for weld-spatter resistance for long life.
There are over twelve different varieties of clamp families that you can select from. Each of these has a number of variations within them, so technicians have long felt that these are among the more flexible types of components that they’ve worked with.
Different Families of Pneumatic Clamps To Try
Depending on your organization’s specific needs, you might want to take a look through a wide variety of different types of clamps or simply pick one individual component and stick with it. There are more than enough options to satisfy the needs of those who have to aggregate multiple manufacturing workflows under a single roof.
Situations like this usually call for various separate assembly lines to process workpieces independently from one another. Some people might also run into a situation where some regions of the machinery layout are shared between more than one workflow, which further complicates things.
Pneumatic engineers have dedicated a great deal of time to solving these issues with easily available parts that can be integrated into systems that have already been laid out and installed in working environments. All you have to do is select the right kind of clamp for your circumstances and then find a point to affix it to. There are plenty of styles to pick from.
Consider the C(L) series of pin clamp cylinders for a moment. They were initially designed with for different body types, which allowed them to find their way into a number of different types of installations. Over time, people started to make requests for part modifications so other options were added.
There are now 55 individual types of guide pins offered for this series as well as an optional locking mechanism. That’s helped some series, like the C(L)KU32, to provide users with an impressive adjustment range of 0.5-3mm. You normally don’t get this kind of flexibility or design consideration when working with something that’s as simple as a clamp, so a number of engineers have been of the opinion that this speaks volumes about the high quality of said component.
Quite a few people have also expressed the exact same opinion of the MACM centering unit, for much the same reasons.
In general, the MACM was designed to help align and position a variety of heavy workpieces on conveyor belts. This tends to be a rather difficult job because of the size of the components involved, which necessitated the construction of a custom piece of pneumatic engineering. Workshops that have to deal with truly heavy pieces can select a module that allows up to 2,250 lbf. of load weight. That’s 10 kN, which is a huge amount for a device like this.
Best of all, they offer a stroke size of 50mm at this class, so you can be sure they’re strong enough to tackle this kind of weight without starting to bow. You might have worked with compressed air-driven modules that didn’t hold up to this level of work.
If you’ve found that you have a clamp that’s overworked, then this can be an excellent drop-in replacement for it. Engineers and safety experts always recommend not exceeding the original manufacturer’s specifications when dealing with anything that bears a load, so you’ll certainly want to swap out any part you now deem overworked.
There are also circumstances where you’re going to want to swap out parts for other reasons.
Clamping Forces Fit For Your System
One of the most common questions that new pneumatic technicians ask is whether it’s possible to go too far in the other direction and opt for a piece that has an allowable weight too large. While this is something that’s hotly debated, you usually want to consider scale whenever you install a new component.
By installing a part that’s too massive, you might be using more pressure from your air cylinder than necessary. That can make your compressor work just a little harder, which isn’t the most efficient way of doing things. Companies that are concerned about process optimization and streamlining their workflows will certainly want to pair the weights that they’re working with to the maximum allowable size of each component module they install along their air line.
Perhaps some of these concerns can be assuaged by be reminded of how easy it is to swap out modules whenever necessary. You can simply detach one from your air tubing and put a new piece in its place whenever you prefer.
As long as you make sure that all of the connectors fit properly and everything is tight, there’s no problem with doing so on a relatively regular basis. Once you have everything working, however, you won’t have to worry about making any further adjustments beyond what might be considered routine maintenance.
Those who are interested in something that’s a bit more flexible may want to have a look at the MK2T swing clamp cylinder since it’s offered in six different bore sizes and available in strokes from 10-50mm.
While there are always going to be some specific use cases that require customized parts, this should prove flexible enough for an overwhelming majority of situations.
Of course, those who have run into an unusual situation can always get in touch with our experienced crews.
Find Pneumatic Cylinders in Stock At Orange Coast Pneumatics
Orange Coast Pneumatics has taken the opportunity to stock a large number of these parts. You should be able to find a product that fits your particular use case and the dimensions that you have to deal with.
Take a moment to make a list of any special concerns that you might have run into so far while working with your existing installation. Whenever you run into problems, contact us with our online form. A representative from our team will help you get the parts you need to process every workpiece your company is charged with assembling.