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Lubrication-free igus linear axes: Custom made, delivered quickly


The motion plastics specialist igus takes a completely new approach to drive technology: the SLTI3 lead screw unit offers customers the highest degree of variability in the design of their individual linear axis. This is made possible by 3D printed carriage and shaft end supports. This means that lubricant-free and maintenance-free lead screw units can be implemented cost-effectively and very quickly according to customer requirements.

Lubrication-free and maintenance-free linear axes from igus are already the core components of many moving applications, both in the automotive and in the packaging machine. Among them is the low-profile drylin SLT series, which has a drive system with ball-bearing, laterally arranged lead screws with trapezoidal or high helix thread and is suitable for both motor and manual operation. The drylin SLTI3 lead screw unit now supplements this type series with a very flexible system. For this purpose the number of components has been significantly reduced so that the lead screw unit can be assembled in seconds. Customer-specific stroke lengths are also possible, as is the use of trapezoidal or high helix threads according to requirements. Entirely new degrees of freedom in design are promised by the first complete linear carriage from the 3D printer as well as printed shaft end supports, which are manufactured in the laser sintering process.

Self lubricated and low wear: iglidur I3
The 3D print is ideally suited to realise individual wishes down to the smallest detail. The customer not only receives his custom-made lead screw unit in a very short time, but can also implement own ideas for profiles, stroke lengths or fastening options. The iglidur I3 material is used in the drylin SLTI3 lead screw unit, the SLS material from igus for selective laser sintering, with which the most complex shapes can be precisely manufactured. The process also endows the components with high strength, which require no more support structures with subsequent reworking. Extensive tests conducted on the large 2,750-square-metre floor area of the igus test laboratory with counterparts made from different materials have shown that iglidur I3 is at least three times more abrasion resistant compared to conventional SLS materials, both in the pivoting, rotating and linear motion. The igus 3D printing service enables an efficient production of single pieces or small batches.

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