igus® celebrates 25 years of chainflex®

igus® is celebrating 25 years since the launch of its chainflex® range of cables developed specifically for moving applications in energy chains. With 1,040 cables available from stock, the chainflex® range includes motor, control and data cables. As market leader for e-chains®, igus® tests and offers both energy chains and chainflex® cables as a system solution with a 36-month guarantee upon request.

“The degree of automation in companies is continuously increasing, particularly on the journey towards Industry 4.0,” says Frank Blase, CEO, igus®. “At the same time, it is necessary to guarantee uninterrupted flow of data, media and energy. With business in this area exceeding 100 million euros in revenue this year for igus®, this really motivates us to invest significant resources in innovation, product reliability and fast, worldwide availability, to ensure that our customers receive the best possible ratio of price to reliability.”

Considerable investments are being made at the igus® test laboratory in Cologne. Here, there are more than 70 cable test machines performing more than two billion test cycles per year. On average, 650 cable tests are being conducted simultaneously. New test rigs enable fast acceleration speeds of 15m/s2 on a travel of 50 metres; a new cryo-chamber has been installed, which allows tests down to -40°C. Thanks to new torsion attachments and the expansion of the outdoor installation for long travel distances, cable use can be simulated under even more real conditions. The overall area of the test laboratory has increased by 1,000 square metres to a current total area of 2,750 square metres.

Thanks to a multitude of tests, igus® is the only manufacturer able to offer a 36-month guarantee for all chainflex® cables, including torsion cables such as the world’s first CAT7 cable for robotic applications. These tests also allow igus® to make exact statements in its catalogue regarding bend radii, temperature ranges and service life for special use in the e-chain, in addition to the standard norms.

The results from the test laboratory are also used in the five online configurator tools for chainflex® and three online tools for readycable® harnessed solutions. igus® has invested significantly in its online capabilities to allow customers to quickly determine the service life in moving applications and find, configure and order the most suitable cables for their particular application.

In addition to investment its test capabilities, igus® has expanded its production and storage capacity in North America, Asia and Europe – this ensures even faster delivery to its customers in local markets. With cable production on three continents and 14 storage and assembly centres worldwide, customers receive the exact cable needed for their production system from stock: single, individually cut cables, reeled cables, fabricated cables or ready-to-install energy chain systems. Complementing this offering, igus® provides an on-site system installation Service.

Frank Blase concludes: “Now and in the future, affordable pricing will not be the sole concern of customers. Their primary concern is the quality and reliability of cables when working in an energy chain. We consider ourselves the first point of contact for finding a solution for our customers and our 36-month guarantee makes it clear that chainflex® lasts.”

igus® celebrates 25 years of chainflex®

Video of the Week – drylin® – smooth moving kitchen furniture

In the furniture industry, cleanliness and weight saving are vital. Examples of where igus® products offer big benefits include: smooth table drawers, clean bearings for rotary and pivoting motion, elegant and secure cable management, low profile linear guides for moving sofa components, variable seat settings or individual height adjustments.

The use of technical polymers in place of ball bearings enables lubricant-free designs that do not attract dirt. This eliminates the risk of grease stains on fabrics and makes them ideal for clean, hygienic environments.

drylin® W profile guides for example, offer a cost effective, pre-assembled system with low friction and high longevity. Series E14 e-chains® are easy to fill with electrical cables and can accept tight bending radii. igubal® self-aligning bearings are both robust and lightweight. drylin® E compact powerful DC motors can provide movement assist and be used in conjunction with other igus® polymer bearing and guide products.


Christmas Greetings from igus®

We wish you a merry Christmas
We wish you a merry Christmas
We wish you a merry Christmas
And a happy new year

Plain bearings we bring
Fit to your machine
e-chains® for your cables
All parts are low wear

Now bring us your wear problems
Now bring us your wear problems
Now bring us your wear problems
We don’t care how severe

Life up and cost down
Avoid a meltdown
The plastic parts from igus®
Always give you low wear

And we won’t stop until we solve it
And we won’t stop until we solve it
And we won’t stop until we solve it
Even if that’s next year

Help and samples free
Just send emails to me
Whatever your wear problem
Remember we are here

We wish you a merry Christmas
We wish you a merry Christmas
We wish you a merry Christmas
And a happy new year

Christmas greetings from igus®, see you in 2016

igus® xiros® rollers – a revolution for packaging machines

We have developed a system for guide and transport rollers used in the labelling, packaging and food industries that helps OEMs build machines that adhere to some of the most strict regulations and cope with extremely harsh environments when deployed on the factory floor. The xiros® rollers consist of an anodised aluminium tube and two xiros® ball bearings, which are lightweight, low friction and cost-effective in comparison with their metal counterparts. They also run without the need for lubricants, which may damage, discolour or deteriorate the integrity of the material or film during the processing.

“In a thermoforming machine for coffee creamer packages, for example, the customer originally used ball bearings, which were built into the sterile area and used in the rollers, where the thermoforming and sealing films are guided,” said Dean Aylott, xiros® product manager, igus®. “During the process, these films pass through an H₂O₂ bath, which degraded the steel bearings resulting in failures. xiros® A500 polymer ball bearings were used as a replacement due to their high resistance to such chemicals.”

Tuned to the specific needs of the packaging industry, such as food hygiene or FDA compliance, igus® xiros® B180 ball bearings provide FDA-compliant, self-lubricating and maintenance-free machine elements that help optimise machine design. Also available for the food industry are xiros® ball bearings that are made of detectable magnetic materials, so that they can be found quickly and easily in the event of a system failure.

Using the igus® online xiros® configurator (www.igus.co.uk/xiros), users can assemble their own individual solution in just three simple steps. First, the desired inner diameter is selected – 8, 10, 12, 15, or 17mm; next, the appropriate outer diameter is added, either 30 or 38mm. Finally, the required length of the aluminium tube is specified, which can be anything between 25 and 1500mm. After defining the three parameters, the item is added to the shopping cart and can be ordered online for prompt delivery.

igus® xiros® rollers – a revolution for packaging machines

Video of the Week – igus® readychain® moving energy made easy

Take a virtual tour of the igus® readychain® factory in Cologne to see how complete energy chain systems are designed, developed and assembled.

Following a technical consultation onsite, igus® plans and engineers readycable® or readychain® solutions, specific to the customer’s requirements and individually quality checked. These come with a system guarantee upon request.

Each custom solution is delivered promptly to the customer’s factory for easy ‘plug and play’ assembly onto the machine, saving both process and storage costs.


Video of the Week – introducing drylin® N linear guides

Developed for applications where the installation height is small (between 6 and 12mm), the drylin® N linear guide system is available in four rail sizes with numerous carriage options. Like all drylin® products from igus®, the guide system is self-lubricating and therefore maintenance free.

The drylin® N guide rails are made of anodised aluminium and incorporate iglidur® J or J200 plastic bearing elements to ensure the lightweight system runs quietly. Speeds of up to 15m/s are possible, for payloads up to 50N.

The bearing elements are offered in standard and preloaded (with pretension) versions with either through-hole or threaded mounting fixtures for easy assembly. Longer carriage versions are also available. Profile widths available are 17, 27, 40 and 80mm and all parts are available exstock for immediatedelivery.


New molbiltiy for the igus® humanoid

Earlier this year the igus® humanoid received a Design Award at RoboCup 2015. The idea behind the awards was for a team of autonomous humanoids to win a football game with the official FIFA rules.

Now the igus® humanoid has many more skills thanks to the research group from the University of Bonn in Germany.

He can now capture items such as a football, move towards the ball, stand up from abdominal, supine and lateral position and score a goal.

New molbiltiy for the igus® humanoid

Click on the video below to see the igus® humanoid in action.

The Manufacturer ‘Top 100 2015’ awards

igus® MD Matthew Aldridge was awarded TheManufacturer ‘Top 100 2015’ award last night for being an inspiring leader.

The Manufacturer ‘Top 100’ awards provides a platform for the recognition of exceptional individuals in UK manufacturing by publicising the commitment and enthusiasm of those achieving great triumphs within the industry.

The Manufacturer wrote ‘Matthew Aldridge is a passionate ambassador for manufacturing and a strong advocate for innovation, equality and opportunities for young people.

The Manufacturer 'Top 100 2015' awards The Manufacturer 'Top 100 2015' awards.2

Southern Manufacturing 2016

We will be at Southern Manufacturing show from the 9th – 11th of February 2016 showcasing several new cable and bearing products on our stand (N97).

One focus to our stand will be the new dryin® W linear guide system, which is constructed entirely of carbon fibre reinforced plastic (CFRP). Ideal for applications across the aerospace, automotive and medical industries, the drylin® W linear guide system is up to 60% lighter than a traditional steel rail system, and 40% less compared with, the ‘light’ alternative, an aluminium rail. This light weight system is available for travel lengths of up to 2 metres, allowing designers to develop a more cost-effective solution.

“This CFRP linear system is ideal for aerospace and motorsport applications where weight may constitute money, or where high dynamic movements are important, such as robots for manufacturing,” said Rob Dumayne, director at igus®. “In addition, the carbon drylin® rail is available as a completely metal-free belt drive system, which integrates plastic pulleys and xiros® plastic ball bearings, meaning these systems can be used without restrictions within X-ray equipment.

Another focal point will be the readychain speed 2.0. Whilst looking for a solution to reduce the amount of cable needed for a customer, igus® developed readychain®; a pre-harnessed energy chain with integrated attachment designed for fast swapping. As with the whole readychain® service, the manufacturer only needs to determine exactly what is required, and igus® will supply the energy chain fully assembled and ready to fit.

Come along and visit our technical experts from the igus® team who will be available throughout the show to provide visitors with practical advice and guidance on selecting igus® products for their own specific applications.

Baby feet in feathers

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