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Linear Actuator FAQ’s

What is a linear actuator and what does it do?

A linear actuator is a mechanical device that enables rotary motion to be converted into linear motion. Through a drive mechanism – belt or ballscrew being common examples – linear actuators can transport a load in a precision linear motion.

How to choose a linear actuator?

Several key factors should be considered when selecting a linear actuator system for your specific application, so they meet your performance and functional requirements and to ensure a long lifetime.

Key factors such as payload, speed and environmental conditions should be at the forefront of any selection when incorporating linear actuators into your machine design.

By using Kiwi Motion data sheets, or by contacting us, a correct choice can be made.

If you still need advice and guidance the expert, helpful, friendly team at Kiwi Motion will be on hand to help.

What are the advantages of linear actuators?

Linear actuators are a ‘ready to go’ fully designed linear system. They can save a considerable amount of time and money in both the design stage and in fitment to the machine.

Specified to meet the needs of any automation system, and with off the shelf mounting fixtures, our linear actuators offer a simple method of achieving the linear motion required.

Where are linear actuator used?

Linear actuator systems are used in a huge range of applications where precise and repeatable motion is required.

They are used in applications all over the world and in almost every industry.

Common applications include:

  • Printing and packaging
  • Robotics
  • Plasma cutting machines
  • Automotive assembly lines
  • Semiconductor machines
  • Plus many more

Can you synchronise two linear actuators?

Yes, you can by two methods. The first and by far the most cost-effective method is to use two belt driven linear actuators and mechanically link them via a connecting drive shaft, enabling two actuators to be driven from one common motor.

Two linear actuators can also be synchronised by using two or more synchronous electric motors.

What are the common types of linear actuators?

The most common type of linear actuators includes belt driven, ball screw or leadscrew driven, linear motors and ball screw driven rodded type linear actuators. Each offer exclusive performance characteristics and will be better suited to certain types of application.

The two most common types of linear actuator are belt and ball screw driven. These types are cost-effective options and will meet the demands of most automation requirements. Kiwi Motion offers every type of linear actuator listed here to provide a linear actuator system to suit your application.

Can I use my own motor, or do you supply motors?

You can specify your own motor and/or gearbox and we will make the motor interface and provide the coupling to suit.

If you would prefer us to provide the complete linear solution, to specify the motor, gearbox assembly, this service is provided by Kiwi Motion.

How do I mount a linear actuator?

All Kiwi Motion linear actuators are complemented by a wide range of easy-to-fit mounts. These will either fit directly into the grooves of the actuator body, fit to the ends of the actuator, or in the case of rodded-type actuators, screw onto the piston rod. All mounts are available to download as models, so the complete linear actuator system can be incorporated into the machine design.

What are the most common linear actuator applications?

Kiwi Motion linear actuators are used all over the world, in many different applications and industries.

Some common industries and applications for linear actuators include:

  • Machine Tools
  • Printing Machines
  • Packaging Machines
  • Semiconductor
  • Automotive
  • Plasma Cutting Machines
  • Pick and Place Systems
  • Aerospace
  • Special Purpose Machinery
  • Pharmaceutical
  • Food & Beverage
  • Bottling Machines
  • Laboratory Equipment

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Linear Actuators | Belt and Ball Screw Actuators