Extrusion: Power Extruder Clamp Speeds Changeovers
AutoGrip electro-mechanical clamp can be operated from a safe distance by a two-hand pushbutton controller.
Graham Engineering’s new extrusion clamp with electro-mechanical actuation is billed as safer and simpler to operate than manual devices and provides more repeatable clamping forces.
The AutoGrip power clamp from Graham’s American Kuhne product line reportedly reduces downtime in installations with frequent screw, breaker plate, or tooling changes. It reduces the risk of injury or burns involved in manually releasing and tightening clamps during changeovers. The torque required in manual systems to sufficiently seal the clamp assembly is particularly dangerous with large extruder sizes. In addition, the manual clamps are typically heated to temperatures of greater than 400 F (200 C), increasing the risk of injury with traditional manual systems.
The AutoGrip clamp (shown in foreground of accompanying image) is remotely controlled by a two-hand pushbutton controller for user safety and convenience. The drive motor and gear box are mounted above the clamp, protecting them from melt residue and making them easy to access for maintenance.
The AutoGrip power clamp is available for extruder sizes of 3.5 in. (90 mm) through 6 in. (150 mm). In addition to applications involving new extruders, it can be retrofitted on many existing installations.
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