This past weekend in Columbus, OH was a sporting event hosted by Arnold Schwarzenegger. This event has many aspects of it and this past weekend was the first year where spectators were not permitted due to the COVID-19 risks and scares. The caterer for the event had already prepped all of the food to prepare for thousands of people so instead of donating locally, they connected with head chefs in Nashville, TN to create a “tailgate extravaganza” to try and lift the community up after the recent tornado and storms ravaged the area and demolished homes as well as communities. The Arnold still happened, with participants only, they were all, “Picking Things Up and Putting Them Down.”
Seeing these giant athletes perform deadlifts always reminds me of the EXAIR Adjustable E-Vacs and how they are used frequently to pick things up and put them down. When determining the correct Adjustable E-Vac I always like to start with the shape, weight, and surface of the part. This is how I determine which vacuum cup can be utilized. The good news is as a customer, the choice doesn’t have to be made alone, that is why the Application Engineering team is here, we’ll help you determine which vacuum cup will suit the given application.
Some of the factors we use to determine the suction cup is listed out below.
Is the lift going to be a vertical cup lift or a horizontal cup lift? This means is the face of the cup vertical, picking up a box from the ground by the sides, or is it going to be horizontal where the face of the cup sits horizontally over the part.
For a vertical cup face, if lifting the part up vertically then a bellows cup will not be suitable and something with a cleat will be needed due to the rigidity of the cup to help keep the cup and part stable. The bellows may collapse due to the weight of the product, where the cleats will interface with the part and create a solid connection to aid in the lift.
For a horizontal cup face, if lifting the part up vertically then a bellows cup would work ideal in the event the surface is uneven. Maybe one end is slightly taller, in this scenario, a bellows cup would help the cups to all seal to the surface and still be able to pick up the item. These cups are also thinner to help adapt to an irregular surface on the part or to help keep suction if the part deforms upon being picked up. The bellows is not recommended for rather heavy objects as the bellows may collapse under extensive load and cause the cup to lose suction.
Talking about the weight of the item, this also becomes a major factor as each cup has a maximum lifting weight and that is determined by the surface area of the cup as well as whether it has cleats, bellows, or just a plain cup. Our goal when sizing the cups to the parts is to ensure they are going to engage the surface in a solid secure manner that makes the lifting rig safe and stable to use.
For example, take a look at this solar lens manufacturer who utilizes many EXAIR products in this pick and place operation.
If you would like to discuss your Adjustable E-Vac, Vacuum Cup, or heavy lifting, please contact me.
The 2020 ASF Media Room – Arnold Sports Festival, 2020 – https://www.arnoldsportsfestival.com/visitor-info/media/