Leading Linear Rail Manufacturers

A linear rail is a device used for moving items through a production process with great precision and little friction. Some areas of use include creating, packing, and distributing products. A linear rail system sustains the movement and load of a piece of equipment in a horizontal or vertical direction. Read More…

Linear Rails

Del-Tron is a linear slide manufacturer/distributor of ball bearing slides, crossed roller tables, roller slides, multi-axis positioning stages, xy tables, motor-ready lead screw stages & crossed roller rail sets.

Del-Tron Precision, Inc. $$$

When describing Tusk Direct, a linear slide distributor, products such as linear motion components, roller tables, ball & crossed roller slides, dovetail slides, bushings, multi-axis positioners & motor ready lead screw actuators, come to mind.

Tusk Direct, Inc. $$$

Isotech is a distributor of precision linear motion components: air cylinders, linear actuators, linear slides, ball slide assemblies, crossed roller slide assemblies, re-circulating ball slide guides. We can supply standard or high precision products in either English or metric, all with the convenience of on-line ordering. Our parts are ready for installation right out of the box.

Isotech, Inc. $$$

Established in 1967, Velmex makes manual & motor driven dovetail slides, open frame tables, twin rail slides, rotary and XY stages. Choose hand, lead screw or belt drive.

Velmex, Inc. $$$
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placeholder image Del-Tron Precision, Inc. Tusk Direct, Inc. Isotech, Inc. Velmex, Inc.

What Is a Linear Rail?

This type of mechanical equipment can be referred to using different names such as linear guides, linear guideways, and linear guiding systems. A linear rail transports weights along a predetermined vertical or horizontal course with the production of the least amount of friction or resistance. Tough, corrosion-resistant, and high-strength galvanized steel is normally used to make linear guide rails.

Linear Rails

How Linear Rails Function

Linear rails guide and support moving components as they make a reciprocating linear motion in a specific direction. Linear rails can be classified based on their friction qualities. The rolling steel ball can be used to meet the requirements of moving parts such as tool holders and carriages of machine tools. This is due to its low friction coefficient, high sensitivity, and sustainability for high-speed movement.

Types of Linear Rails

Linear rails are found in different combinations that serve a specific application, including different types of bearings, bearing contacts, race profiles, precision controls, and recirculating or non-recirculating designs. They are always designed to fit their applications. Some of the most commonly used linear rails include dovetail rails and box way rails.

Dovetail Rails

Dovetail rails are linear rails with simple surface bearings that depend on lubrication and a low coefficient of friction. Their name is derived from the dovetail-shaped protrusion that fits into identical negative geometry. This protrusion is usually located on the stationary foundation or rail where the carriage's negative is built.

Dovetail Rails

The whole contained setup is referred to as a dovetail table. These types of rails are tough, having the ability to endure lateral and radial loads. Dovetail rails are commonly utilized with large machine tools such as shapers, milling machines, and lathes.

Box Way Rails

Like dovetail rails, these rails are also simple surface bearings. However, instead of having a dovetail-shaped protrusion, they feature a square gib with T-shaped flanges at the top.

Boxway Rail

The box way rails contain a higher projected surface area in contact between the carriage and the rail. Due to this area, they can handle stronger loads than dovetail rails.

Sleeve-Bearing Slides

Sleeve-bearing slides utilize cylindrical surfaces instead of a matching tongue and groove shape. These types of surfaces are referred to as bushings and journals. The journal is a lengthy shaft that functions as the guide rail of the base, whereas the bushing is a hollow cylinder built into the carriage.

Sleeve Bearing Slide

The advantages of sleeve-bearing slides include their ease of use and the capacity to handle weights applied in any direction. However, sleeve-bearing slides are not as sturdy as box way rails and dovetail rails. Due to this fact, they are only suitable for light to medium weight applications.

Linear Ball Bushings

Linear ball bushings refer to a type of linear rails analogous to sleeve-bearing slides. They use ball bearings instead of simple bushings. Recirculating ball bearings are found in the bushings.

The process of recirculation might be radial or tangential. The return path in tangential recirculation is positioned from the tangent or side to the shaft, allowing for a more compact design.

Closed Linear Bushings

However, the return path in radial recirculation is perpendicular to the axis. This return path setup allows for the installation of more weight-bearing rows, resulting in higher load capabilities. Bushings are also grouped using their form. These groups are closed bushings and open bushings.

Applications and Uses of Linear Rails

Linear rails are used for gantry robots, overhead transport systems, Cartesian robots, and robot transport units. In overhead transport systems, linear rails have an excellent use for guidance as the weights are centered below the rail. Heavy weights are conveyed due to the linear rails' high load capacity. The rigidity of linear rails serves to stiffen the contained system.

Choosing the Right Linear Rail Supplier

To ensure you have the most beneficial outcome when purchasing linear rails from a linear rail supplier, it is important to compare several companies using our directory of linear rail suppliers. Each linear rail supplier has a business profile page illustrating their areas of experience and capabilities, along with a contact form to directly communicate with the supplier for more information or request a quote. Review each linear rail business website using our proprietary website previewer to quickly learn what each company specializes in. Then, use our simple RFQ form to contact multiple linear rail companies with the same form.

Linear Rails Informational Video


Linear Slides Power Pages

Linear Rails

Linear Rails

Linear Rails are ideal for moving items through a production process with great precision and as little friction as possible if creating, packing, and distributing products. Linear Rail is a type of gadget that...

Linear Slides

Linear Slides

Linear slides, also referred to as linear guides or linear-motion bearings, are types of bearings that allow smooth and near-frictionless motion in a single axis. Machine tools, robots, actuators, sensors, and other...

Roller Tables

Roller Tables

A roller table is a small, stiff, limited linear guide device with an integrated cross-roller guide. Electrical or mechanical drive systems are frequently used to move a roller table, making it easy to transfer heavy loads...

Ball Bearings

Deep Grove Ball Bearing

Ball bearings are types of rolling-elements bearings that carry loads, reduce friction, and position moving machine parts while facilitating motion. They reduce surface contact and friction across moving planes by...

Linear Bearings

Linear Bearings

Linear bearings are a type of bearing that "bear" or support the load of the carriage during its single-axis linear movement and provide a low friction sliding surface for the guide rails. In a linear guide, the carriage is the component that travels in a straight line, back and forth, along the length of the guide rail...

Lead Screw

Lead Screws

A lead screw is a kind of mechanical linear actuator that converts rotational motion into linear motion. Its operation relies on the sliding of the screw shaft and the nut threads with no ball bearings between them...

12 Volt Linear Actuators

12 Volt Linear Actuators

A linear actuator is a device that transforms rotational motion into push or pull linear motion, which can then be used to lift, lower, slide, or tilt machinery or materials. They offer effective, maintenance-free motion control...

Electric Actuators

Electric Actuators

Electric actuators are devices capable of creating motion of a load, or an action that requires a force like clamping, making use of an electric motor to create the force that is necessary...

Types of Linear Actuators

Types of Linear Actuators

A linear actuator actuates, moves, in a linear, straight, line to complete or start a process. There are a variety of terms used to describe a linear actuator such as ram, piston, or activator. They are very common in...

Motion Control Products

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