How to Design Custom Linear Actuators for Your Application

Nov 10, 2023 6 mins read

Designing Custom Linear Actuators - A look at custom actuator design including stroke length, motor sizing, mounting configurations, controllers, and programming parameters.

For automation projects with unique motion requirements, custom linear actuators provide an optimized solution. This allows tailoring the actuator specifications exactly to your operating parameters and dimensions.  

Key considerations when designing custom linear actuators include:

- Stroke Length
- Motor Sizing
- Mounting Configurations
- Feedback and Control
- Programming Parameters

Stroke Length
The linear travel distance or stroke length must align with your application needs. Overly long travel wastes costs and space. Insufficient stroke limits motion.

Motor Sizing
Properly sizing the motor determines speed and force capabilities. Gear reduction ratios can optimize torque levels. Servo, stepper, and DC motors each have pros and cons.

Mounting Configurations
Actuators can have horizontal, vertical, or inverted mounting to suit machine designs. Custom mounting brackets may be required. Consider clearances throughout the stroke range.

Feedback and Control
Encoder feedback enables closed-loop motion control. Various controllers and drives are available to interface with motors and programming.

Programming Parameters 
Control software is tuned by setting operating parameters like speed, acceleration, stroke endpoints, home location, etc. per your specifications.

A trusted motion control partner will help analyze your requirements in order to engineer a custom linear actuator optimized for your needs in terms of dimensions, performance, speed, precision, duty cycle, and operating environment. Investing in customization upfront saves costs over modifying standard catalog components.

Let me know if you would like me to expand or modify this overview of designing customized linear actuators. I can dig into more details on any of the key considerations covered.

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