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Safely guided in any orientation: new igus lokchain with dynamic pins

28 September 2018

igus has introduced lokchain; a new e-chain concept with dynamically locking pins and a compact guide trough for the guidance of all media types.

The pins extend automatically to hold the e-chain securely in the guide trough, allowing completely new machine design concepts for vertical, hanging or circular applications.

“Even long travels with a moving lower run are possible by fixing the lokchain in the upper run trough,” says Justin Leonard, the e-chain director at igus. “The system can also be used in vertical circular applications – a typical example would be on a rotating C-arm X-ray scanner.”

The basic design principle of lokchain is simple: pins integrated into the side links hold the energy chain firmly in the guide trough. When the chain link is bent into a radius, the pins retract automatically to release the chain from the guide. When the chain link comes out of the radius and engages the trough, the pins extend automatically to secure the chain back into the trough. 

The special construction of the lokchain minimises abrasion and wear to increase service life. Another advantage of the new e-chain system is the mobility of the chain links. They ensure that the energy chain operates safely and quietly, even with small bending radii and over long travel distances. 

The lokchain is currently in the prototype phase, which gives machine builders the opportunity to help shape the required size and design.

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