Posted at 17-Dec-2018

Handle with Care: Convey Delicate Products at High Speed

Paul Skade
By Gareth Lenton
General Manager, Power Transmission

I joined WYKO in January of 2000, the dawn of a new millennium and a completely new start for me after spending 2 years backpacking through South East Asia and Au...

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There used to be only one way to ensure careful product handling on conveyors: low-speed running. Especially if the products being conveyed were small, delicate, or unstable. But industry in general, and food and beverage production in particular, increasingly demands high-speed and mass-flow conveyors, to optimise productivity. So there’s a real need for a conveyor chain for critical applications that’s able to run fast and still handle products without loss or damage.

Rexnord 395 MatTop Chain


The Rexnord 395 MatTop Chain has a handle on the problem, with a combination of features that ensure high reliability, durability, and optimised product handling.

  1. High load capacity The class-leading strength of the Rexnord 395 MatTop Chain offers more load-carrying capacity, and a greater capability to withstand high peak loads. Suitable for speeds of up to 164ft/min (50m/min), the Rexnord 395 has a class-leading load-handling capacity of up to 500lbs/ft (7,300N). This allows for longer conveyors per drive unit, and fewer drive motors in total. The longer conveyors in turn mean fewer transfers, which helps to reduce the risk of product damage or loss. The higher strength also helps to increase the chain life, meaning less frequent replacement.
  2. High stiffness The high stiffness of the 395 MatTop Chain helps to reduce the risk of slip-stick – which can otherwise cause problems for unstable products. Greater stiffness also reduces the amount of back tension required. Whereas low back tension can be a problem with some belts – affecting chain-sprocket engagement – the design of the 395 MatTop Chain ensures optimum engagement at all times.
  3. Optimal chain-sprocket engagement The belt runs on positive drive sprockets, including round shaft bores. The fixed sprocket position not only reduces installation time, but also ensures optimal chain-sprocket engagement even with less back tension. This in turn helps to prevent the chain from jumping on the teeth, when there’s high or low chain tension around the sprocket and a light or heavy load is applied. No jumping means, of course, nothing to cause unstable products to fall over.
  4. 8mm pitch Available in Imperial-width steps of 2in (50.8mm) and metric-width steps of 3.3in (85mm), the 395 MatTop Chain has an 8mm pitch. This allows a tight, “knife edge” transfer around a nose bar diameter as small as 0.23in (6mm). Transitions and transfers – including 90° transfers – between two mass-flow conveyor sections are smoother and less disruptive to the products being carried. This is a definite advantage for conveying small, delicate or unstable products, which will travel over the transition section without damage.


Carry on conveying

High speed, mass-flow conveyors in the food and beverage industries in particular need to maintain maximum uptime. That means as little maintenance and as few unscheduled repairs as possible.

With the Rexnord 395 MatTop Chain, the improved sprocket engagement and positive drive system help to minimise the need for adjustments for belt tracking – enabling continuous operation.

At the same time, the headless rod and self-locking retention design of the chain reduce the chance of damage during assembly and disassembly, as well as reducing rod and belt wear. That means less likelihood of contaminants being generated, which could find their way into products. This, together with the direct food contact material used in its construction, makes the Rexnord 395 MatTop Chain ideal for the food, beverage and pharmaceutical industries.

To find out more about Rexnord conveyor products and components in general, and about the industry-leading Rexnord 395 MatTop Chain in particular, contact your usual ERIKS service centre. You can be sure they’ll handle your enquiry with care.

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