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    Solutions in Motion™

    What's the Difference Between a Mechanical, Electric, Hydraulic, and Pneumatic Cylinders?

    Posted by Troy Branham on Feb 20 ,2019

    When choosing the best type of actuator for your design, there are several variables to consider: What you need to move, how you need it to move, and under what conditions. 

    Your four choices are mechanical, electric, hydraulic, or pneumatic. The difference between these cylinders gives each one distinct advantages and disadvantages when used for certain applications.

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    Topics: Pneumatic Actuators

    How to Decide Between Hydraulic and Pneumatic Actuation for Your Project

    Posted by Troy Branham on Jan 16 ,2019

    Fluid power can be complex. There are a lot of variables to consider when deciding what type fluid will be best to power your project. Should you choose hydraulic actuation that uses an oil-type fluid or pneumatic actuation that uses compressed air?

    Here is a quick guide for picking the right kind of actuation for your project.

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    Topics: Pneumatic Actuators

    Why Pneumatic Rodless Cylinders are Ideal for Passenger Train Doors

    Posted by Troy Branham on Nov 14 ,2018

    Passenger train doors have to work smoothly, quietly, safely, and reliably. Often, they have to function in extreme conditions, where heat and/or humidity are very high, or temperatures are well below zero. They have to endure constant vibration and frequent shocks, no matter how well-maintained the railroad tracks. And passenger train doors are heavy. This is a job for pneumatic rodless cylinders.

    Here's why pneumatic operating systems are the ideal choice for both internal and external passenger train doors.

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    Topics: Pneumatic Actuators

    Electric Linear Actuators: What Do They Do?

    Posted by Troy Branham on Oct 17 ,2018

    Full disclaimer: W.C. Branham Inc. does not currently manufacture electric linear actuators. Instead, we manufacture many different types of pneumatic and low-pressure hydraulic linear actuators for over 35 years. So then, why write about electric linear actuators? Simple: We’d like to give you a few things to think about when you are trying to decide if going electric is right for your next application.

    As the name implies, a linear actuator moves a load of some kind in a straight line. You can use hydraulic or pneumatic power or electricity to operate linear actuators, but we’ll take a closer look at the electric option. How does it work? What can it do? And how does it differ from other options?

    Here's what you need to know about electric linear actuators.

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    Topics: Pneumatic Actuators

    5 Benefits of Using Fluid Power for Your Material Handling System

    Posted by Troy Branham on Oct 10 ,2018

    Fluid power is a great way to help automate material handling. It is the process of using a fluid under pressure to move a load or perform some other mechanical task. Hydraulic systems typically use a specialized oil, whereas pneumatic systems use compressed air as the “fluid.” Both types of actuators can be invaluable for material handling applications, though not necessarily the same ones.

    Here's what you need to know about fluid power and material handling.

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    Topics: Pneumatic Actuators

    [VIDEO] Actuator Sizing: PNEUSA®

    Posted by Troy Branham on Sep 5 ,2018

    The PNEUSA® is a unique cylinder design using an internally enclosed cable cylinder based on our original cable cylinder sealing technology. This provides complete protection of the internal sealing components from harsh environments, which means you can use the PNEUSA® in all types of applications!

    But finding the perfect fit for your application isn’t always the easiest job. Our VP of Engineering and General Manager, Chad Randleman, breaks down how to size a PNEUSA® rodless cylinder for your rodless cylinder application:

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    Topics: Pneumatic Actuators

    Hydraulic Rod Cylinders vs. Pneumatic Rod Cylinders

    Posted by Troy Branham on Aug 29 ,2018

    You’ve researched the many types of actuators and decided a rod-style actuator is the answer for your industrial equipment design. That’s great! But, do you want a hydraulic rod cylinder or a pneumatic rod cylinder? Either style can deliver excellent, reliable performance in the right circumstances, so what’s the difference?

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    Topics: Pneumatic Actuators

    Best Applications for Hydraulic Linear Actuators

    Posted by Troy Branham on Aug 22 ,2018

    When your industrial design calls for linear movement, you might want to use hydraulic actuators. There are definite advantages to using a fluid-powered actuator, but that doesn’t mean they are right for every purpose. It all comes down to the requirements of your specific application. So, when should you choose hydraulic linear actuators?

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    Topics: Pneumatic Actuators

    Linear vs Rotary Actuators: Which is Best for My Application?

    Posted by Troy Branham on Aug 15 ,2018

    Without actuators, everything would come to a standstill. That’s because actuators make things happen, literally keeping automated production plants moving, industrial doors operating, and so on. But they come in several styles, so how do you know which type to use?

    Here are some tips to help choose between linear and rotary actuators.

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    Topics: Pneumatic Actuators

    [VIDEO] How to Properly Size and Select an OVLPRO Rod Cylinder

    Posted by Troy Branham on Aug 1 ,2018

    When looking for a cost-effective and efficient solution for your rod cylinder application, you may be looking at many different options. The trick is to fit your rod cylinder to the requirements of your application, and with our OVLPRO options, we can help. Here’s how to properly size and select the right OVLPRO rod cylinder, from our VP of Engineering & General Manager, Chad Randleman.

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    Topics: Pneumatic Actuators, Videos