What is a Guide Rail?

Linear guide rails

A guide rail is what you need if you are manufacturing, packing, or distributing things. It also comes in handy if you need to move items through the manufacturing process with little friction and great precision. Guide rails or linear rails are devices used extensively across different industrial sectors.

INA linear guide rails with balls
INA linear guide rails with balls

Linear rail systems are designed for supporting the load and movement of an equipment piece in a linear way that can either be horizontally or vertically. This piece of mechanical equipment is relatively simple that has been designed to do an equally simple job. It allows you to move things safely and smoothly through the packaging or manufacturing process. 

Probably the only complicated thing here is that linear rails are known in different names including linear guide rails, linear guidance systems, linear slides, linear guideways, and linear guides. No matter what you choose to call it, linear rails can efficiently move load along the determined vertical or horizontal path with the least amount of resistance or friction. 

Most of the time, a guide rail is made from galvanized, hardened, and high strength steel to help it resist corrosion. Made with the use of a cold drawing procedure, the metal is profiled and shaped before a roller runner is added. As the general rule, the profiled rail guides are considered to be most appropriate for high loads that are also designed to provide an extremely precise and accurate linear motion

Guide rails come in various sizes, from the miniature linear rails meant to move small components in limited spaces to the gigantic examples that move components that can weigh over a tonne. 

Common Applications of a Guide Rail

Due to the extensive variety of accuracy classes, preloads, and sizes available, guide rails are suitable for almost all circumstances. 

Guide rails have the tendency to perform much better compared to other guide devices made possible by their displacement, rigidity, load capacity, and accuracy. This is the reason why guide rails serve as the basis of many different industrial applications. 

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Tuli linear guides, ball screws, bearings & more

Every time you need a guide system with low friction and high rigidity for the loads that weight from several grams up to several tons, you can be sure that there is a guide rail that suits your unique requirements for performance. 

Their rigidity, travel accuracy, and load capacity are all better compared to other solutions. In comparison, while a round shaft guide can also endure lift-off or downward loads, linear rail guides can endure moment loads, lift-off loads, and downward loads. 

Unlike the crossed roller guides that can only travel limited distances, linear rail guides can deliver amazingly long travel improved rigidity, stiffness, and a long life that makes them even more in demand and popular. 

The next time you need a reliable system that is suitable for different applications that call for high rigidity, high precision, and a long life, you don’t really have to look any further. A guide rail is the best solution you can get that is guaranteed to meet all your needs. 

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