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    Solutions in Motion™

    Troy Branham

    Recent Posts

    Hydraulic, Mechanical, and Pneumatic Cylinders: When to Use What?

    Posted by Troy Branham on Jun 13 ,2018

    By definition, actuators either move things or stop them. In industrial design and other heavy-duty applications, actuators — or cylinders — provide the driving force that moves (or holds) machinery components. You may ask, "Should I choose pneumatic cylinders for my design or some other type? Well, that depends on what you need to move, in what way, and under what conditions.

    Pneumatic cylinders are powered by compressed air. But cylinders can also be powered by pressurized fluid (hydraulic), by electricity, or by hand (mechanical). For obvious practicality reasons, we can rule out hand-cranked cylinders for industrial applications.

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    Topics: Hydraulic Cylinders, Pneumatic Cylinders

    Secrets of Fluid Power: Know Your Cable Cylinders

    Posted by Troy Branham on Jun 6 ,2018

    Think a cable cylinder might be the best actuator to your design project? Well, which one do you need? There are rodless cable cylinders, guided cable cylinders, single acting cable cylinders, and linear tension cable cylinders.

    Some aspects of cable cylinders are the same regardless of model. But of course, there are differences too, and it’s those differences that can help point you in the right direction. You can get the full story by downloading our Cable Cylinder Catalog, which includes a selection guide and sizing worksheet. Here’s an overview to get you started uncovering the secrets of fluid power.

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    Topics: rodless cylinders

    [VIDEO] Actuator Sizing: Magnetically Coupled Cylinder

    Posted by Troy Branham on May 30 ,2018

    When searching for the perfect magnetically-coupled cylinder for your next rodless cylinder application, there are certain observations you must make.

    In our new video, Chad Randleman, VP of Engineering & General Manager of W.C. Branham, explains how to do just that:

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    Topics: rodless cylinders

    Wind Turbine Control: Harnessing Mother Nature Using Caliper Brakes

    Posted by Troy Branham on May 23 ,2018

    Mother Nature is on the job in 41 U.S. states, delivering power to utilities via wind energy. But she only supplies the wind that makes the turbines go round and round. It’s up to humans to direct and control the process, and sometimes that requires no-fail stopping power. And caliper disc brakes are the go-to choice when it comes to wind turbine control.

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    Topics: Caliper Disc Brakes

    Product Spotlight: MAGTEC® Rodless Magnetically Coupled Cylinders

    Posted by Troy Branham on May 16 ,2018

    Let's talk MAGTEC. What is magnetic coupling, anyway? And when should you choose magnetically-coupled cylinders, as opposed to another style?

    One reason pneumatic cylinders are so versatile is that they can be configured in so many different ways. That makes it easier to find a great match for your specific application, but it doesn’t mean every air cylinder works best in every instance.

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    Topics: rodless cylinders

    Progress Report: Inside Michigan Hyperloop’s Pod Design

    Posted by Troy Branham on May 9 ,2018
    We've seen a lot of changes since 1903, including the introduction of the vacuum cleaner, air conditioning, frozen food, credit cards, video games, and the internet, to name a few. But you might be surprised to learn that no new forms of transportation have been invented since Dec. 17, 1903, when the Wright brothers created the first successful airplane.
     
    Pretty astonishing, right?
     
    But now, University of Michigan students have the opportunity to be a part of transportation history, thanks to Elon Musk’s recent innovation, The Hyperloop, and the SpaceX Hyperloop Pod Competition.
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    Topics: Hyperloop

    Positech Corp. Recognized for Unique Use of W.C. Branham Products

    Posted by Troy Branham on May 2 ,2018

    There’s nothing we love more than a good challenge here at W.C. Branham. Usually, it’s our customers who challenge us to help them select or custom-create exactly the right component(s) for their application. Recently, however, we turned the tables on them. We challenged our customers to show us the innovative ways they're using our products in their own designs.

    Our Branham Challenge turned out to be even more fun — and impressive — than we expected. We asked customers to share unique solutions that featured any of our products — a caliper disc brake, some type of pneumatic actuator, a right angle gearbox, or even one of our custom-designed components.

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    Topics: Pneumatic Cylinders

    [VIDEO] Actuator Sizing: Cable Cylinder

    Posted by Troy Branham on Apr 25 ,2018

    When picking the right sized cable cylinder for your pneumatic rodless cylinder application, the goal is to determine the amount of force necessary and provide a cost-effective and efficient solution.

    In order to find the right sized cable cylinder, we’ve compiled a list of steps that will help you make the right calculations:

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    Topics: Videos, rodless cylinders

    What Applications Require a High-Speed Right Angle Gearbox?

    Posted by Troy Branham on Apr 19 ,2018

    Reliability is crucial for any industrial equipment, but most of all when machinery is operating under high-speed, high-torque conditions. For these applications, a high-speed right angle gearbox is often the best design choice to ensure cost-effective, long-lasting, safe performance. Right angle gearboxes are also compact, an important advantage when space limitations are a design factor.

    High-speed automation is common in applications such as packaging, bottling lines and other food processing operations, pulp and paper manufacturing, heavy manufacturing such as cement or steel, and mining. And locations such as car washes, food and beverage operations, or medical facilities typically use high-speed roll-up doors.

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    Topics: Right Angle Gearboxes

    How WCB Is Supporting the SpaceX Hyperloop Pod Competition

    Posted by Troy Branham on Mar 28 ,2018

    From PayPal to Tesla, space exploration to solar power, Elon Musk's ideas and innovations transform just about every industry he touches. Now, W.C. Branham is excited to help participate in Musk's next big idea, helping a team competing in the SpaceX Hyperloop Pod Competition.

    In the fall, three Big Ten universities approached us with interest in our braking systems. Each team was participating in the Hyperloop Competition. Michigan Hyperloop, from the University of Michigan, was selected to race their pod this summer.

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    Topics: Hydraulic Brakes, Hyperloop