Solutions in Motion™

    Why Compact Air Cylinders Are Still A Big Deal

    Posted by Troy Branham on May 30 ,2019

    compact air cylinders

    When we hear the familiar phrases “small but mighty” and “oldie but goodie” referring to fluid power, what comes to mind? Compact air cylinders, of course! Although they've been around since the 1950s, compact air cylinders have certainly stood the test of time. They have proven so versatile, they’re still the right solution for a wide range of industrial applications.

    You’ll find compact air cylinders in manufacturing and assembly plants, material handling operations, packaging, printing, robotics, semiconductor production, and all types of conveyor systems.

    Tight Space is Never a Problem

    Space-efficiency is increasingly important in industrial facility and equipment design, and compressed air is the most common power source in most industrial operations. With their low profile, light weight, and short stroke, compact air cylinders address both issues.

    Compact cylinders have value beyond their ability to fit into limited spaces. They can be configured in almost endless ways, which is why they are useful for such a wide range of applications. They come in a tremendous range of bore sizes and stroke lengths. They can be fitted with most of the same mounts used for larger actuators, and they work nicely with electronic positioning sensors.

    Single-acting cylinders can either push or pull a linear load. Compressed air drives the piston in one direction, and it returns either via gravity or – most commonly – by internal spring action. This is ideal in situations such as clamping, ejection, or actuating levers or flaps where there is no return load and nothing to obstruct the return stroke.

    Double-acting cylinders both push and pull, to move loads forward and back or up and down. They are widely used in applications that require tasks such as:

    • Assembly and processing
    • Bending and forming
    • Clamping and pressing
    • Punching
    • Shaking
    • Lifting, lowering, and/or intermediate positioning
    • Feeding and sorting

    No wonder compact air cylinders are still a big deal!

    Improving on Greatness: Oval Bore

    Over time, traditional piston-driven actuators can develop rotational wear, which reduces precision and performance. That can be critical in certain applications. W.C. Branham's OVLPRO®️ Low-Profile compact air cylinders eliminate that problem. Instead of the traditional round bore and piston, these ingenious actuators feature an oval bore. The piston and connected rod cannot rotate.

    Our oval bore pneumatic cylinders are not only short, thin, and lightweight. They come pre-lubricated for high-duty cycles, sensor-ready, and they are repairable in the field so your investment is protected. The standard body is made from high-quality extruded anodized aluminum, available with rear, side, or combination porting, and male or female piston threading.

    The OVLPRO line includes:

    • OVP25 (25mm bore) that can create 78 lbs of extend force and 67 lbs of retract force
    • OVP25MX, with stainless steel components and HPCB high-performance composite bearing
    • OVP44 (44mm bore) that can create 241 lbs of extend force and 210 lbs or retract force
    • OVP44MX, with stainless steel components and HPCB high-performance composite bearing

    Custom Is Always an Option

    Versatile as compact air cylinders are, sometimes you need a unique solution. Oval bore is a perfect example that the gears are always turning in our minds here at W.C. Branham. We love puzzles, so we love to hear about (and help you solve) tough design challenges. Got one for us? Let’s talk.

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    Topics: Pneumatic Actuators