Plastic energy chains last four times longer than steel

Kronopol has installed Igus E4/4 system series 5050 plastic energy chains on its machines producing timber products; compared with the steel energy chains that had to be replaced every six months, the Igus energy chains have been in operation for over four years without any failures.

Kronopol of Zary, Poland, is one of the largest producers of particleboards and derived timber products in the world. It is reported to be the only company producing all three types of derived timber product boards (particle board, oriented strand board - OSB - and medium-density fibreboard - MDF) on one site. 1200 people work at the plant of around 55ha, producing 1.3million m2 per year, with exports to more than 40 countries.

The factory's Siempelkamp wood working machines had originally been equipped with steel energy chains for the cables and hoses. But according to Grzegorz Szer, foreman of the Kronopol electro department, "These energy chains only lasted for six months and I always had to replace them after that." Eventually plastic energy chains from Igus were used to replace the heavy steel chains. Szer says: "In spite of the harsh operating environment and continual use, the plastic energy chains have already lasted for 24 months without a single failure. For us this now means four times higher service life.

Kronopol's machines are equipped with Igus E4/4 series 5050 plastic energy chains, which are well suited to high fill weights over long travels and operation in very dirty or humid environments. The side parts of the energy chain are connected through a patented tongue-and-groove joint. This dramatically increases stability both in tensile and shear directions, which is important when high lateral accelerations or torsion act on the chain. Igus delivered the E4/4 5050 series with an extra middle link. Due to the high cable loads, Kronopol could even extend the self-supporting length of the energy chain if required.

Follow the link for more information about the E4/4 series plastic energy chains.

igus (UK) Ltd

51A Caswell Road

+44 (0)1604 677240

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