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What You Need to Check before Purchasing Linear Actuators

By Nathan Syngrem Subscribe to RSS | December 9th 2011 | Views:
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Actuators are devices that are used to create motion in a straight or rotary line. Actuators that create motion in a straight line are referred to as linear actuators. These actuators often work on an externally applied energy source such electric power, hydraulic power or pneumatic power. Actuators are often the primary tools that help in automation. But before you choose an actuator, there are a few parameters of performance and adaptability that need to be checked. Here are some tips to help you do so:

* Mostly, manufacturers will offer you 12v linear actuators. However, it is important for you to check with the manufacturer if these actuators come with control boxes to help you covert DC power into AC power (if need be). This will enable you to even use these actuators with a household AC outlet (110v).

* If you need actuators more powerful than the 12v actuator, for instance if you need a 24v actuator, you can easily contact your chosen manufacturer and get the actuator custom made. To do this, it is advisable to first find a good manufacturer who will understand your customization requirements.

* These days, a lot of business happens over the internet, so if you are a customer located in Europe or UK and are purchasing from a manufacturer based on USA, it is advisable to check if they will custom manufacture 220v control boxes according to country-based specifications. For smaller applications, you can even opt for a mini linear actuator.

* Another important aspect of your purchase decision is the warranty period. When you are investing a considerable amount of money in the actuator, you also need to check if your product comes with a guarantee. Usually, an 18-month warranty is a good deal. In case of any defects in the product or any servicing requirements, you can be assured about free service and repairs from the manufacturer. Do read the fine print to read the conditions under which the warranty is applicable.

* Finally, when it comes to product specific features, it is advisable to test the highest attainable speed in the actuator. You also need to check if the actuator demonstrates identical behavior while extending or retracting. If your linear actuators have a minimum of moving parts, it will marginally reduce your maintenance hassles in the long run.

Overall, it is always best to choose linear actuator with a simple design. This will make your unit uncomplicated and it will thus be less susceptible to wear and tear.

Nathan Syngrem - About Author:
PI is well known throughout the high-tech world as a leader in design and manufacture of motion control products, linear actuator, piezo ceramics and nanoactuators, microscope stage, linear stage, linear motor and micro robots.

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