Naples coombe launches modular solution to fast evolving automation problems

Assembly Automation

ISSN: 0144-5154

Article publication date: 1 December 2002




(2002), "Naples coombe launches modular solution to fast evolving automation problems", Assembly Automation, Vol. 22 No. 4.



Emerald Group Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2002, MCB UP Limited

Naples coombe launches modular solution to fast evolving automation problems

Naples coombe launches modular solution to fast evolving automation problems

Keywords: Positioning, Automation

The facility to be able to design and assemble a multi-axis handling or positioning system, quickly, from a set of modular parts is exactly what fast moving modern manufacturing demands… and gets, with the Elmore range of modular linear units just introduced by motion specialist Naples Coombe (see Plate 8).

The range includes all the driven linear elements and right angle sections required by OEMs and manufacturing engineers to build complete multi-axis mechanical systems, quickly and efficiently at low cost. In addition, as a complement to the system, Naples Coombe supplies all the necessary servo and stepper drive motors and servo axis controllers, relieving users of the time consuming and frustrating task of trying to integrate incompatible products from several vendors.

Plate 8

One of the most comprehensive systems of its type, the ELMORE range is entirely suited to such operations as palletising and packaging, feeding and cutting and painting, coating and gluing. Wafer transfer in a clean room environment is another application area and also medicals and pharmaceuticals.

The basic elements of the range are the belt driven ECO linear sections, with integrated top-mounted carriages for load carrying and actuation. Guided like all elements in the range by recirculating linear ball bearings, these units are available in three profile sizes, 60 mm, 80 mm and 100 mm, all of which can be combined in modular two axis X-Y systems, and also three axis X-Y-Z systems using Elmore SC belt driven right angle sections. The ECO linear units are rated for speeds up to 5 m/s and have maximum dynamic load capacities to a maximum of 5,000 N. Up to 6 m of linear travel is possible from a single section profile with a repeatability of 0.1 mm.

For applications requiring some, or a combination of longer maximum strokes, (up to 11,000 mm), higher dynamic load capacities (up to 9,100 N) and improved repeatability (0.05 mm), Naples Coombe offers the ELM senes profiles.

Available in four profile sizes, 50 mm, 65 mm, 80 mm and 110 mm, these units are belt driven like the ECO units, but have an additional polyurethane strip, which covers the moving belt and guiding assembly, providing higher levels of protection in hygiene conscious industries. The availability of a stainless steel version of the ELM further extends the operating possibilities for these units into applications such as food processing where frequent washdown operations are encountered.

Offering the same maximum stroke length and repeatability as the ELM series, but with a much higher dynamic load capacity – up to 15,900 N – is the ROBOT linear unit, the highest rated linear element in Naples Coombe’s modular range. Available in four profile sizes 100 mm, 130 mm, 160 mm and 220 mm, the ROBOT is ruggedly constructed to handle more heavy-duty applications. Belt driven, it offers the same degree of protection as the ELM sections and the facility for stainless steel versions.

Where the application requirements are greater precision, rather than load, the ELMORE range provides two units, an extremely compact direct drive profile, complete with its own integrated linear motor, and a more conventional ballscrew driven unit. These two units offer the same high levels of repeatability, at 0.005 mm, but differ in their dynamic load capacity – 845 N for the direct drive unit as opposed to 9,110 N for the ballscrew unit. With its integrated drive, the compact W140 unit is ideal for fast, precise and relatively low load tasks on all types of automated machinery. The VR 140 ballscrew unit performs similar tasks to the direct drive W140, albeit at higher loads. It is not as compact as the latter unit – the result of requiring an external drive motor, but is the first choice for applications involving vertically suspended loads.

The flexible specifications of the linear elements in the ELMORE range give users maximum versatility to design and construct powerful, yet precise X-Y axis systems. However, the system as a whole offers more. It includes vertical, right angle section profiles that accommodate applications requiring a Z vertical axis. The SC series units use the same well-proven belt drive technology that is employed on all ECO, ELM and ROBOT linear units, enabling them to achieve similar high speed operation, up to 5 m/s. They are available in 65 mm, 100 mm, 130 mm and 160 mm sections and offer maximum strokes up to 2,500 mm, plus excellent repeatability, of 0.05 mm.

A wide range of ancillaries ensures that the task of combining the ELMORE linear units into fully operating multi-axis handling or positional systems is kept as simple and as straightforward as possible. The range includes support legs, T nuts and bolts, clamping profiles, brackets, bearings, encoders and end sensing switches, tripping plates, cable carriers and drive motor and controllers.

For further information contact John Naples, MD, Naples Coombe Ltd, Main Street, Chaddleworth, Berks, RG20 7EH. Tel: 01488 638488; Fax: 01488 638802; E-mail:; Web site:

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