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Motorized Linear Stage

  1. May 3, 2007 #1
    I'm trying to put together a motorized stage of sorts to anneal very small wires. The motorized stages I've seen so far are for high-precision optics/other high accuracy fields while my project does not need such accuracy, just a slow moving stage. The stage itself also needs to be able to withstand temperatures of about 300C (not the motor). Any idea of what stage/motor I should use in doing this? The optic-quality motorized stages are upwards of $2000, and I've looked into a linear actuator as a solution, but I'm not sure they move slow enough for my needs.

    Ideas for inexpensive linear stages with at least 50mm travel? The table on the stage does not need to be large at all, with little carrying capacity.

  2. jcsd
  3. May 3, 2007 #2


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    If you can handle as much inaccuracy as you seem to indicate, you can make one yourself quite easily.
    Just cut a couple of wooden or plastic blocks to use as end pieces, and another for the base. Clamp the end pieces together with an aluminum or steel slab of whatever dimensions you want for your stage edge-wise between them, then drill 3 holes through all of them (the stage material, of course, must be thicker than the diameter of the holes).
    Unclamp them and tap the centre hole in the stage to fit a threaded rod. Two more pieces of steel rod that are very slightly smaller in diameter than the holes will be your guide rails. They go through the outboard holes and are glued into the end pieces. The threaded rod goes through the centre holes (all lubricated), and its rotation moves the stage back and forth. All that you have to do then is attach a gear or pulley to one end, install a couple of Nylock nuts to hold it in place, and hook up a small variable-speed reversing motor. :approve:
  4. Mar 9, 2011 #3
    A slow moving, inaccuracy and 50mm of travel are easy to achieve. The difficult thing is the working temperatures of 300C in your applications. For a motorized linear stage, it contains some of small parts which made of the platics and copper wires, such as the micro switch or Hall-Effect.
    And even if you are trying to command the movement by your motion controller and without any micro switch, you have to solve the problem of insulation between stage and motor.
    Look forward to having any other perfect solution.
  5. Mar 14, 2011 #4
    I agree with danger on the simple stage idea. Use a high heat moly blednum grease or other synthetic high performance like viper lube. due note when using different materials with changes in heat(in your case 300 deg) that the tolerances in your guiding "rails" vs your holes must be taken into account. Otherwise you will get binding. I suggest using 1 type of metal for the project. Aluminum is much easier to work with IMO.
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