Laser Measuring and Extrusion Barrel Alignment
Laser Barrel Alignment Saves Time and Money
In almost all manufacturing plants there is a lot of time and money to be saved by having your equipment properly aligned. An investment in laser alignment helps you by lowering replacement parts costs, decreased downtime, less wear and tear on critical components as well as lower power consumption.
Extrusion barrel alignment is one of the most common uses of laser alignment due to the small tolerances that exist between a screw and extruder barrel. Proper alignment barrel relative to the output shaft of the gearbox will dramatically increase the life and output of an extrusion line over its life cycle. The larger and longer the ex-trusion screw is, the more important proper alignment becomes. For example, a misalignment of .060" on a 4" 24:1 screw requires over 9000lbs force on the screw to bend it to conform to the misaligned barrel. That 9500lbs of force translates to extra wear on the screw and barrel which will lead to premature failure. Once the tolerance between the screw and barrel is compromised extruder output is reduced and line efficiency and profits suffer. In some situations misalignment can even lead to screw breakage.
Laser barrel alignment is the only way to prevent improper alignment and it should be done every time the screw is removed or when the gearbox is decoupled from the extruder. Lasers represent the most accurate and fastest way to perform this alignment procedure with our device capable of measuring less than .001" deviation. That is one thousandths of an inch.
A complete laser alignment of a typical extrusion line can be performed in 8-10 hours or less and the payback on this small investment in time is well worth the small cost. Precision offers barrel alignment as well as roller, coupling and pulley alignment services.
At PPI we also use our 2 axis laser alignment on our own CNC and conventional machining centers. Not only does this lower wear and tear on our equipment, it also ensures that the parts we make on our equipment are in tolerance every time. Using the collimated laser system we are able to align our chucks as well as tool holders to ensure perfect alignment. As an ISO-9001:2008 certified company we have included these steps into our machine calibration procedures and consider them key to our success in making high precision parts. Precision Products is not just our name, its what we do.