Function of a linear guide system

A linear guide system’s principal role is to allow an application payload to move freely in one linear direction while restricting motion in all other directions. Multiple points, lines, or planes of contact between the mobile carriage guide elements and the immovable track are used to constrain motion in a linear guide system.

While some führungsschiene elements are static (such as simple bearings) and others rotate during travel (such as guide wheels), the guide elements in all linear guide systems fundamentally have a fixed contact profile with their running surfaces in the plane corresponding to the travel axis.

For carriages to travel correctly on linear guide systems, track in linear guide systems must maintain consistent contact profiles. Variations in contact profile dimensions, such as variable distances or angles between running surfaces, might enable the carriage to have acceptable running characteristics in some areas of the track while binding and clearance develop in others.

A consistent track running surface profile can be created using a few general track system types. There are several broad track system design philosophies, each optimal for certain application conditions.

Each design can provide the prismatic running surface profile requirement, but the level of difficulty required to do so varies. This article describes some of the designs and strategies for achieving parallel track running surface profiles in a führungsschiene system.

Track Design types of the linear guide system

The track is classified into two types based on their overall design: 

Single Piece Track Design:

A single-piece track is the most basic track design. The track has all of the necessary running surfaces, which have been constructed in such a way that they are parallel along the whole length.

Track Assembly System Design:

Many applications necessitate wide track systems to provide increased roll moment load capacity and rigidity, or to accommodate bigger carriage payloads. Track systems made up of two distinct sections of track are the solution for these applications. A track assembly refers to the entire track and substrate construction.